How to Select The Best Motherboard If you’ve chosen to build your personal PC, then the first step you’ll have to begin is making an inventory of components to complete your computer. In our previous article, we talked about the things you need to consider when choosing an operating system and today we’ll discuss the best way to select the right motherboard for your system.
If you want to construct your own PC or buy a pre-built PC that you can extend or improve later, there’s one component of the best motherboard that you’ll need. The best motherboard is that component, and it’s a critical element of the PC jigsaw. It influences many of the other components you’ll be able to pick from, and it also dictates the motherboard you may use based on other choices, such as the CPU you’ll use in your new PC.
Although there are many elements to motherboards, for an aspiring user, I believe there are three primary aspects to take into consideration when selecting the most suitable motherboard to meet your needs. In this article, we’ll discuss each one in detail.
Table of Contents
- CPU/Motherboard Compatibility
- Case/Motherboard Compatibility
- Available Ports/Slots
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1. Your Best Motherboard and CPU Should Be Compatible
The most crucial step you’ll have to do is narrow your motherboard options to ones that work with the processor that you’ve selected. There aren’t all processors that work with all motherboards.
It is good to know that there are only three factors you need to know to decide if the motherboard and processor are compatible.
Best Motherboard Chipset
There are two processor makers: Intel and AMD. Although this may appear evident, Intel and AMD’s processors are made to function in motherboards that are designed for the respective manufacturer.
In other words, Intel CPUs have the best motherboards specifically designed to be compatible together with Intel CPUs. The same is the case for AMD processors.
You can’t utilize your Intel processor with an AMD motherboard, and vice versa.
The first thing to remember when selecting the Dell Inspiron 352 motherboard you will need to ensure that if you’ve chosen the Intel CPU, you only consider compatible Intel-based motherboards. the same applies to AMD CPUs.
Once you’ve narrowed down your options to AMD and Intel Best Motherboard The next thing to think about is that there are a few Intel CPUs that work with the Intel-based motherboards. This is also applicable to AMD’s processors.
When Intel or AMD launch new generations of CPUs, they are also required to launch new best motherboards to support these new processors.
For instance, AMD’s new Ryzen processors use AMD’s AM4 socket. But, AMD’s earlier range of processors (or at least their prior flagship processors) used AMD’s AM3 socket. AM3 as well as the AM3+ and AM3+ sockets.
Important to remember in this case is that generally, processors aren’t backward or forward compatible with the latest or older sockets. This means that you cannot install the latest Ryzen processor in an earlier AM3 socket motherboard. Likewise, it is impossible to install an old AMD processor on an upgraded AM4 motherboard.
This is also true for Intel.
It’s important to know that processors with newer versions (typically known as refreshes’) can use the same motherboard sockets. For instance, AMD’s new Ryzen 2000 series processors work using the same AM4 socket AMD’s initial Ryzen (1000 series) processors had.
If you’re thinking about purchasing a more modern processor before putting it up with an old motherboard (even if it has the same socket as the processor runs on) be sure to consider that older generation motherboards may require a BIOS update to be compatible with modern generation processors. This is why you must make sure, when you purchase an older model motherboard, make sure you verify whether it’s got an update to the BIOS that will allow it to be compatible with your new processor straight out of the box.
In the end, you can limit down your hunt for the right motherboard even more, since you can get rid of Best Motherboard that uses sockets non-compatible with your CPU.
Then, in regards to whether or the Dell 3542 motherboard you’re contemplating will work with the processor you’ve selected, the last aspect to be considered is the type of chipset that the motherboard comes with.
A chipset is the feature set that the motherboard is equipped with. For each motherboard socket, there are typically several chipsets to choose from.
A particular chip could have better components that are better to overclock your processor. The same chip could also offer a greater selection of ports. But, in addition, other chipsets might be reduced to have a lower price for those who are budget-conscious.
The importance of chipsets is that based on the processor you select it’s likely that there’s an appropriate chip to it. For instance, if, for example, you select a processor which can be overclocked, you’ll be looking for the motherboard that can support and allow for overclocking.
On the other hand when you’re planning to build a low-cost gaming PC, and you’ve chosen an affordable processor, you’ll not want to change your mind and connect that processor to an expensive Best Motherboard.
Here’s a list of the latest chipsets for the most well-known processors, and the applications they’re designed for:
Overclocking Chipset Best Motherboard
AMD: X570, X470
Non-Overclocking Chipset Motherboards
Intel: H570, B560, H510
AMD B550 (You can get a slight overclock with the B550 chipset but)
But, there are times when the latest processors don’t work with identical socket motherboards, which are compatible with older chipsets.
The most effective way to go about purchasing an upgrade to your motherboard or processor is to stick with the same processor generation and motherboard chip. In certain situations where there is no compatibility issue it’s okay to mix the generations of motherboards and CPUs on one socket (especially when you’re in a situation to upgrade) however, most of the time it’s best to stick with motherboards and CPUs of the same model.