Best AsRock Gaming Motherbord

Gaming these days has become a serious affair with an immense number of people practicing it, professionally or as a hobby in their spare time. And it is only normal that everyone wants to get maximum quality out of their PC so the game experience is a very pleasant one. First thing you need to do is get a gaming motherboad that will be the fundation of your gaming experience. One such very good investment is the AsRock Z77 Extreme4. The Best AsRock Gaming Motherbordratings have been very good due to its moderat price and solid performances.
Just so you know it means business right from the start it is capable of supporting 2/3 generation Intel Core i7/i5/i3 processor. Other amazing feature that it can support are Intel Turbo Boost 2.0 technology and the Hyper Threading Technology. Another very good feature is that it is capable of having an excellent SATA 6GB/s connectivity. As an extra surprise you will find an extra USB 3.0 port, getting the total up to 6.AsRock Gaming Motherbord

 

Product prices and availability are accurate as of February 11, 2013 at 12:42 pm and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

 
Even if it has a moderate price it still retains some higher characteristics of much more expensive boards, like for instance the rear-panel-based CLR_CMOS button. For a product with such good feature the Best AsRock Gaming Motherbord deals are surprisingly cheap and are from 130$ to170$. An already low price can go even lower if you are lucky enough to catch the Best AsRock Gaming Motherbord dicounted in any online site or actual computer hardware store.

 

AsRock Gaming Motherbord
To install it doesn`t require much effort and yous should run into any complications. The fact that the USB ports are driven by separate chipsets is a clear advantage. You also get XFast Turbo USB for faster speeds, XFast LAN too, for a better view of your computer`s LAN. All these great characteristics make the AsRock Z77 Extreme4 very popular with gamers all over the world that can`t afford extremely expensive equipement. A great deal of users have been impressed with its solid performances and even have gone one step further and called it the best mid range gaming motherboard money can buy.

Able to support a top class processor, with very good LAN connectivity, very good enhancemnets and a moderate price the AsRock Z77 Extreme4 is a very good choice which can improve your gaming experience even more and also make you play your best game without any disturbance. As a conclusion the Best AsRock Gaming Motherbord review agrees with other users and recommends it to whoever si looking to upgrade his gaming PC.  The Best AsRock Gaming Motherbord for sale is easily a steal and a great long term investment that will make you enjoy you favorite games even more and will help you win, of course.

Gigabyte Z170X-Gaming Motherboard

 gigabyte-z170xThe problem with being on the cutting edge of Intel’s CPU technology is that the latest CPU cores are always reserved for its mainstream CPU interfaces. It takes another half-generation for high-end models to get replaced, and the replacement is often a full generation behind mainstream counterparts. The notion that Intel can spend a product cycle or two perfecting its cores before unleashing them on the server market makes sense from a business standpoint, but it typically leaves enthusiasts to choose between faster mainstream technologies or higher-core-count server-based parts.
Since most games make little use of a fifth core (let alone a seventh or eighth), it makes sense to pick a quad-core CPU with the best per-core performance and highest possible clock. Both of those features are exclusive to the top CPUs of Intel’s “mainstream” class, which today is represented by the Core i7-6700K. On the other hand, Intel’s “professional” platforms provide the best connectivity for multiple graphics cards. Since mainstream users don’t need more than a single PCIe 3.0 x16 slot, Intel equips its mainstream platforms that way. And since users who would pair the fastest-possible quad-core processor with three or four of the fastest-possible graphics cards are only a tiny fraction of the overall market, Best Intel motherboard virtually ignores these builders.
The workaround for connecting multiple graphics cards to the Core i7-6700K and other Skylake-based desktop processors is to use a repeating switch, as already discussed in our EVGA Z170 Classified review. Labeled “Multicast” by the switch’s manufacturer, this part takes advantage of CrossFire and SLI’s need to send identical data to every card by repeating sixteen controller lanes to two sets of sixteen device lanes. Too expensive for mid-budget performance enthusiasts, this part is usually bundled with other high-end features to create a premium package. Though high-end in every respect, EVGA had a tough time filling-out its Z170 Classified with a broad-enough features set to match our expectations for the $400+ premium market.Gigabyte_Z170X-Gaming-G1
Unlike its above-mentioned competitor, Gigiabyte z170x motherboard-Gaming G1 has no trouble presenting enough features to qualify it as a “premium class” product by nearly any definition. Advancements begin with Intel’s DSL6540 Thunderbolt 3 controller, which replaces the ASM1142 USB 3.1 controller found on the Z170 Classified while simultaneously adding a myriad of connection possibilities.big-picture-with-text_update
Gigabyte also added an 802.11ac MIMO Wi-Fi controller with up to 867mbps bandwidth, while retaining dual Gigabit Ethernet capability. The company also didn’t drop the ASM1142 from its controller set, instead it was moved to a PCIe-based (via SATA-E) front-panel device. text_update

A motherboard is a circuit board designed to support the functionality of other components. It isn’t a performance producer, but rather a facilitator. Meaning the motherboard is responsible for unhindered performance and support of other components. A gaming motherboard should be designed to support gaming functionality. Including better support for GPUs, higher quality audio, higher quality networking, overclocking support, and even aesthetics that gamers might appreciate.

It’s no secret that gamers also like fancy things, they customize characters in almost every game from WoW to GTA: V, so why wouldn’t they want to customize their motherboard? The GIGABYTE Z170X-Gaming G1 takes aim at the high-end gamer, let’s see what GIGABYTE has done for ‘The Gamer.’

 

We even see a pair of G1/4 fittings to connect the Z170X-best gaming motherboard G1 is 22-phase voltage regulator to an open-loop liquid cooler.

MSI’s Z170A Gaming M5 motherboard

Gaming PCs are a growing market. This bright spot within the otherwise shrinking world of PC sales has gotten the attention of motherboard makers. MSI has offered its own lineup of gamer-oriented boards for the last couple of chipset generations to target this burgeoning segment, and the company’s Z170 Gaming boards continue this tradition.

If you’ve somehow missed the trend, here are the important points. Gaming-branded boards typically involve subtle tweaks to the tried-and-true enthusiast formula. They usually have over-the-top cosmetic touches, fancy onboard audio and networking components, and bundled software and other extras, but they’re otherwise similar to their non-gaming brethren.

MSI’s gaming board span a range of price points, CPU sockets, and form factors. For those who want to build with Skylake, MSI’s 100-series boards range from the entry level, with the Z170A-G45 GAMING, to the extravagant Z170A GAMING M9 ACK. No, we won’t be respecting that all-caps branding from here on out.00-whole_board

The Z170A Gaming M5, which we’re looking at today, sits around the middle of the pack with its $180 online retail price. The M5 model gives buyers some nice perks without going overboard. It’s equipped with three PCIe x16 slots, two of which hang off the CPU. For next-gen storage, it sports dual M.2 slots with four lanes of PCIe Gen3 each, two SATA Express ports, and USB 3.1 Type A and Type C ports.Of course, it’s built on the Z170 chipset, with its bevy of USB 3.0 ports, additional Gen3 PCIe lanes, and support for the NVMe storage control protocol. Feast your eyes upon the M5 now:

This board sticks with the now-familiar red-and-black color scheme on which almost all makers of gaming-focused hardware have standardized. The full-sized ATX board has a mostly blacked-out look, thanks to the matte black PCB. The VRM heatsinks provide some of the red for its red-and-black theme, and the PCH cooler is adorned with MSI Gaming’s dragon logo.

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The VRM heatsinks conceal the Gaming M5’s digitally-controlled power phases, ten of which regulate power for the CPU. Two more power the processor’s integrated GPU. These power phases supply each of the input voltage rails the processor requires now that the fully-integrated voltage regulator (FIVR) used by Haswell chips has fallen out of favor.

The chipset heatsink is a low-profile affair, but the VRM heatsinks are closer to the CPU socket than we’d like. Thankfully, at only 23 mm tall, they’re unlikely to cause issues for larger CPU coolers. All heatsinks on the motherboard are held firmly in place with screws rather than push-pins. Screws not only ensure better heatsink contact with the components beneath, but they also give the board a more premium feel.

Since Skylake carries over support for existing LGA1150 cooler mounting mechanisms, we’re able to keep using our trusty Nepton 240M from Cooler Master. This closed-loop liquid cooler has a beefy copper block with a tendency to run afoul of capacitor banks located close to the CPU socket.

Unfortunately, the Z170A Gaming M5 has just such a row of capacitors to the left of the CPU socket. Those caps prevent the block from making sufficient contact with the CPU’s heat spreader, nixing two of the cooler’s four possible orientations as workable options. Thankfully, both the DDR4 DIMM slots and the left-most VRM heatsink are far enough away from the socket that the block can be mounted in the remaining two orientations without a hitch. MSI recommends installing DIMMs in the right-most slots of each bank first, so builders will only need to use the slot closest to the CPU socket if they’re installing four DIMMs.

We can’t check for compatbility with all possible coolers, so we’ve provided some measurements below to help you figure out which components can safely fit together on the board:02-measurements_top_down 03-measurements_side_on

Four fan headers are situated within easy reach of the CPU socket: two CPU fan headers and two system fan headers. There’s also a healthy amount of room between the CPU socket and the topmost PCIe x16 slot, thanks to a PCIe x1 slot in the first expansion slot position.04-expansion_slots

The Z170A Gaming M5 serves up three PCIe x16 slots. When one graphics card is installed, all sixteen of Skylake’s Gen3 PCIe lanes are routed to the left-most silver slot. Those wanting to partake in some dual-GPU fun should use the two silver slots: with two cards installed, each will get eight Gen3 PCIe lanes from the CPU. Peppered around those three x16 PCIe slots are four x1 slots, the left-most of which is always enabled and always fed with a single Gen3 lane from the chipset. The black x16 slot at right in the picture above operates as an x4 slot when the middle three PCIe x1 slots are unoccupied. Otherwise, it drops down to a single Gen3 lane.

This arrangement provides enough PCIe lanes for two-way SLI setups and, thanks to more lenient bandwidth requirements, room for up to three-way CrossFire configs. That said, we usually recommend going for the fastest single graphics card you can afford before stepping up to more exotic multi-GPU setups.

The silver cladding on the two primary PCI Express x16 slots isn’t just for show. MSI has reinforced the PCIe slots with metal shrouds that are soldered to the board at multiple points. This setup should help to prevent damage to the slots if you’re transporting a system that has a massive video card.

5 Best Motherboards For 2016

Choosing a correct featured motherboard is the first thing when you are thinking of upgrading or building your PC. Motherboard is the most important part of a PC, so you must know your needs and match such one for your computer. If you already know what you need but still confused about choosing the perfect one among so many options in the market then let us finish your confusion. Here we brought the top 5 motherboard suggestion in 2016. Let’s have a look.

  • Gigabyte Z170X-Gaming G1 Motherboard

 

gigabyte motherboard, gaming motherboard, gigabyte gaz170

Our first attention goes upon the Gigabyte Z170X- Gaming G1 Motherboard.  This one is supposed to be the top of the enthusiast LGA 1151 market. The Z170X- Gaming G1 has come in one package along with awesome features including Dual Networking, Wi-Fi, Four-way SLI. It’s declared to be the best Skylake Motherboard they have ever tested. This model is not just for gaming purpose, it gives you awesome graphical features. The only problem of this model is to be the cutting edge of Intel’s CPU technology since the latest CPU cores have been reserved for its mainstream counterparts. Buy this awesome motherboard at here.

Features of Gigabyte Z170X- Gaming G1 Motherboard:

  • Intel® Thunderbolt™ 3 Certified Motherboard
  • Supports 6th Generation Intel® Core™ Processor
  • Dual Channel DDR4, 4 DIMMs
  • 3 SATA Express Connectors for up to 16Gb/s Data Transfer
  • Integrated HDMI 2.0 support
  • Intel® USB 3.1 with USB Type-C™ – The World’s Next Universal Connector
  • LED Trace Path with Multi-Color Choice
  • Water Cooling Ready Heatsink Design with G1/4 Threaded Fittings
  • APP Center Including EasyTune™ and Cloud Station™ Utilities 4-Way Graphics Support with Exclusive Ultra Durable Metal Shielding over the PCIe Slots
  • Dual PCIe Gen3 x4 M.2 Connectors with up to 32Gb/s Data Transfer (PCIe NVMe & SATA SSD support)
  • Creative certified Sound Blaster ZxRi 120+dB SNR
  • Killer DoubleShot-X3™ Pro for the best networking experience possible
  • GIGABYTE UEFI DualBIOS™ with Q-Flash Plus USB port
  • GA-Z170X-UD5 (gigabyte)

gigabyte ga-z170x ga-za70x ud5

Many users have complained about Intel Z170 motherboards being boring and there are no variations in the features and capabilities. But the realty says, even though most of the motherboards having the same features for connectivity, they are still very different from one another and manufacturers have assured it. The Intel Platform Controller Hub (PCH) used to be complemented by many third party controllers for providing extra connectivity. These days, you must not look over the connectivity and performance only, you should also look after the aesthetics, component quality and unique features. Thus, GIGABYTE has revamped their whole lineup and brought Ultra Durable series. The UN5 Series offers interesting ones and the GA-Z170X-UD5 is no exception. Buy this awesome motherboard at here.

Features of Gigabyte Z170X-UD5 Motherboard:

  • Supports 6th Generation Intel® Core™ Processor
  • Dual Channel DDR4, 4 DIMMs
  • Intel® USB 3.1 with USB Type-C™ -The World’s Next Universal Connector
  • 3-Way Graphics Support with Exclusive Ultra Durable Metal Shielding over the PCIe Slots
  • Dual PCIe Gen3 x4 M.2 Connectors with up to 32Gb/s Data Transfer (PCIe NVMe & SATA SSD support)
  • 3 SATA Express Connectors for up to 16Gb/s Data Transfer
  • 115dB SNR HD Audio with Built-in Rear Audio Amplifier
  • High Quality Audio Capacitors and Audio Noise Guard with LED Trace Path Lighting
  • Dual Intel® GbE LAN with cFosSpeed Internet Accelerator Software
  • Gold Plating for CPU Socket, Memory DIMMs with 2X Copper PCB
  • APP Center Including EasyTune™ and Cloud Station™ Utilities
  • GIGABYTE UEFI DualBIOS™ Technology
  • Asus z170-Dilux Motherboard

asus z170 delux motherboard, asus motherboard, z170 delux

Now turning to the hot ‘n feisty Asus z170-Delux Motherboard aiming at the new Core i7- 6700K processor which is definitely bound to please you. The model comes in a nice black and white design along with the benefits in USB 3.1 and the fastest Wi-Fi solution ever tested. These motherboards are absolutely fine to be paired with new Slylake-S series processors. The new series of Slylake porcessors are energy efficient and quite powerful which needs to be paired with a new series of motherboards which is in between the models Z170 and H170 range. Buy this awesome motherboard at here

Features of Asus z170-Dilux Motherboard:

  • Unleash performance with one click
  • Exclusive OC design
  • Plus unparalleled connectivity with 3×3 802.11ac Wi-Fi
  • 5-Way Optimization: One click optimizes your entire system with a dedicated water-pump header on board
  • ASUS Pro Clock Technology: Extends base clocks and improves stability for extreme overclocking
  • 6 USB 3.1 onboard: 5 Type-A ports and 1 reversible Type-C port
  • Dual 32Gbit/s ultra-fast M.2 x4: Onboard and PCIe add-in card
  • Hyper Kit: Bundled for instant U.2 support
  • MSI X99A SLI PLUS Motherboard

msi x99a sli plus motherboard, msi motherboard, x99a sli plus motherboard, gaming motherboard

Evaluation of motherboard becomes very difficult when it comes to the question of Intel’s X99 Platform. This model is specially designed for professionals and performance enthusiasts. Comparing to the highest end mainstream processors of Intel, Haswell-E offers more cores at a lower clock rate what sounds just like a recipe for reduced value in most of the applications but there is a catch. This model also has a 40-lane PCIe 3.0 controller. The -5820K’s frequency is slower up to 25% and  has 12 of its PCIe 3.0 lanes Disabled. Buy this awesome motherboard at here.

Features of MSI-X99A SLI plus Motherboard:

  • Supports Quad Channel DDR4-3333(OC) Memory
  • USB 3.1: Delivering speeds up to 10 Gb/s, USB 3.1 offers performance twice as fast as a regular USB 3.0 connection.
  • OC Engine: For More Flexible BCLK Adjustments
  • USB Steel Power: Super Stable 5V Power & Better Signal Transmission over USB
  • Turbo M.2: delivering next generation M.2 Gen3 x4 performance with transfer speeds up to 32 Gb/s
  • Military Class 4: Top Quality & Stability
  • OC Genie 4: Overclock in 1 Second
  • SATA Express + USB 3.1 + SATA 6Gb/s
  • Multi-GPU: NVIDIA Quad SLI & AMD Quad CrossFire Support
  • Intel® Gigabit LAN: Always connected with Intel® Gigabit LAN networking
  • Click BIOS 4: Easily Fine-tune Your System
  • ASRock Z170 Extreme 4 Motherboard

asrock motherboard, z170 motherboard, z170 extreme4 motherboard, gaming motherboard

ASRock Z170 Extreme4 Motherboard is a spin off from Asus over the last ten years for those new to the system building. The idea of creating a budget brat that supplements the flagship Asus brand seems to be quite straight forward. It did not worked out in this way, at least not in last couple of years.  But in the present age we got a feeling that there are not enough computer components manufacturers in the market and we mean the big stuffs such as graphics, memory storage and motherboards. So, no doubt, the ASRock Z170 Extreme4 Motherboard worth to be in the top 5 motherboards for 2016. Buy this extreme motherboard at here.

 

Feature of ASRock Z170 Extreme4 Motherboard

  • ASRock Super Alloy
  • Supports 6th Generation Intel® Core™ Processors (Socket 1151)
  • NVIDIA® Quad SLI™, AMD 3-Way CrossFireX™
  • Digi Power, 10 Power Phase design
  • 3 PCIe 3.0 x16, 3 PCIe 3.0 x1
  • Supports DDR4 3866+(OC) memory modules
  • 2 USB 3.1 (1 Type-C & 1 Type-A), 8 USB 3.0 (2 Front, 6 Rear)
  • Supports Full Spike Protection, ASRock Live Update & APP Shop
  • 7.1 CH HD Audio (Realtek ALC1150 Audio Codec), Supports Purity Sound™ 3 & DTS Connect
  • 3 SATA Express, 6 SATA3, 1 Ultra M.2 (PCIe Gen3 x4 & SATA3)
  • Graphics Output Options: DVI-D, HDMI, DisplayPort 1.2
  • Supports Triple Monitor

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Types of Motherboard: All That You Need to Know

A motherboard is the heart of a computer. It is the main printed circuit board present in the computers which holds the main electronic components of the system like the central processing unit and memory and also provides the connectors for other important peripherals. A motherboard is a large system in itself which contains a number of subsystems like the processor and other components. The basic function for which a motherboard is used in a computer is that it holds the important electronic components of the system including the memory and central processing unit and helps in establishing some sort of bridged connection between other internal components of the system. This well written article about the parts and functions of a motherboard will give you more information about all the important parts of a motherboard and the functions performed by these parts in proper detail.

The understanding of the components and functions of a motherboard is also important if you want to be able to design your own computer. As the motherboard is the most important part of a computer system, understanding its components and working properly is very important to be able to design and build your own computer. This course about how to build a computer will help you in understanding the importance of a motherboard in a computer system and will provide you with all the information about building your very own computer system.

Here we are going to study about the different types of motherboard which are available. We will discuss each of these types in detail and will see how all these are different from each other. Let us now start our discussion about the different types of motherboard.

AT Motherboard

An AT motherboard is a motherboard which has dimensions of the order of some hundred millimeters, big enough to be unable to fit in mini desktops. The dimensions of this motherboard make it difficult for the new drives to get installed. The concept of six pin plugs and sockets is used so as to work as the power connectors for this type of motherboards.

The hard to distinguish power connector sockets make it difficult for many users to easily make the proper connections and thus leading to the damage of the device.

Produced in the mid 80’s, this motherboard lasted a good span from the Pentium p5 to the times when Pentium 2 had been started to be used.

ATX Motherboard

Advanced technology extended, or popularly known as the ATX, are the motherboards which were produced by the Intel in mid 90’s as an improvement from the previously working motherboards such as AT.

This type of motherboards differ from their AT counterparts in the way that these motherboards allow the interchangeability of the connected parts. Moreover the dimensions of this motherboard are smaller than the AT motherboards and thus proper place for the drive bays is also allowed.

Some good changes were also made to the connector system of the board. The AT motherboards had a keyboard connector and on the back plates extra slots were provided for various add-ons.

LPX Motherboard

The low profile extension motherboards, better known as LPX motherboards, were created after the AT boards in the 90’s.

The major difference between these and previous boards is that the input and output ports in these boards are present at the back of the system. This concept proved to be beneficial and was also adopted by the AT boards in their newer versions. The use of a riser card was also made for the placement of some more slots. But these riser cards also posed a problem that the air flow was not  proper.

Also, some low quality LPX boards didn’t even have real AGP slot and simply connected to the PCI bus. All these unfavored aspects led to the extinction of this motherboard system and was succeeded by the NLX.

BTX Motherboard

BTX stands for Balanced Technology extended.

BTX was developed to reduce or avoid some of the issues that came up while using latest technologies. Newer technologies often demand more power and they also release more heat when implemented on motherboards in accordance with the circa-1996 ATX specification. The ATX standard and the BTX standard, both were proposed by Intel. The further development of BTX retail products was canceled in September 2006 by Intel after the acceptance of Intel’s decision to focus again on low-power CPUs after suffering issues such as scaling and thermal with the Pentium 4.

The first company to use, or to be precise, implement BTX was Gateway Inc, followed by Dell and MPC. Apple’s MacPro uses only some of the elements of the BTX design system but it is not BTX compliant. This type of motherboard has some improvements over previous technologies:

  • Low-profile – With the larger demand for ever-smaller systems, a redesigned backplane that shaves inches off the height requirements is a benefit to system integrators and enterprises which use rack mounts or blade servers.
  • Thermal design – The BTX design provides a straighter path of airflow with lesser difficulties, which results in better overall cooling capabilities. Instead of a dedicated cooling fan, a large 12 cm case-fan is mounted, that draws its air directly from outside the computer and then cools the CPU through an air duct. Another feature of BTX is the vertical mounting of the motherboard on the left-hand side. This kind of feature results in the graphics card heat sink or fan facing upwards, rather than in the direction of the adjacent expansion card.
  • Structural design – The BTX standard specifies distinct locations for hardware mounting points and hence reduces latency between key components. It also reduces the physical strain imposed on the motherboard by heat sinks, capacitors and other components which are dealing with electrical and thermal regulation.

Pico BTX Motherboard

Pico BTX is a motherboard form factor that is meant to manufacture even smaller size BTX standard. This is smaller than many current “micro” sized motherboards, hence the name “Pico” has been used. These motherboards share a common top half with the other sizes in the BTX line, but they support only one or two expansion slots, designed for half-height or riser-card applications.

In the initial stages of usage, the ATX and BTX motherboards were so analogous that moving a BTX motherboard to an ATX case was possible and vice-versa. At later stages, the BTX form factor had a large modification which was done by turning it into a mirror image of the ATX standard. Technically speaking, BTX motherboards are ‘left side-right’ when compared to ATX and not upside-down as before. This means they are mounted on the opposite side of the case. Various computer cases for instance, the Cooler Master Series (Stackers) were released to support a wide range of motherboard standards such as ATX, BTX, Mini-ATX and so on, in order to simplify motherboard development without buying a new case; however, all connector and slot standards are identical, including PCI(e) cards, processors, RAM, hard drives, etc.

BTX power supply units can be exchanged with latest ATX12V units, but not with older ATX power supplies that don’t have the extra 4-pin 12V connector.

Mini ITX Motherboard

Mini-ITX is a 17 × 17 cm (6.7 × 6.7 in) low-power motherboard form factor. It was designed by VIA Technologies in year 2001. These are largely used in small form factor (SFF) computer systems. Mini-ITX boards can also be cooled easily because of their low power consumption architecture. Such an architecture makes them widely useful for home theater PC systems or systems where fan noise can diminish the quality or worth of cinema experience. The four mounting holes in a Mini-ITX board line up with the four holes in ATX specification motherboards, and the locations of the back plate and expansion slot are the same. Although, one of the holes used was optional in earlier versions of the ATX. Hence, Mini-ITX boards can be used in places which are designed for ATX, micro-ATX and other ATX variants if required.

The Mini-ITX form factor has location for one expansion slot, pertaining to a standard 33 MHz 5V 32-bit PCI slot. However, often case designs use riser cards and some even have two-slot riser cards, even when the two-slot riser cards are not usable with all the boards. A few boards based around non-x86 processors have a 3.3V PCI slot, and the Mini-ITX 2.0 (2008) boards have a PCI-express ×16 slot. Such boards are not used with the standard PCI riser cards supplied with cases.

Now that you know how to choose your motherboard you can also build your dream PC using it. Every PC requires an operating system and you can check out this interesting blog post on choosing the right operating system for your PC.This article provides a detailed outline of two of the most popular operating systems, Linux and Windows, allowing you to determine which will suite your needs better. However, if you want to learn more about these operating systems before making a choice, check out this online course for an in-depth introduction to Linux or this online course if you want to master Windows 8.

Another important aspect about using the proper motherboard for your computer is that it affects the speed of the computer system. A good motherboard, which will be properly compatible with the components of a computer system, will enhance the speed of the computer, while a motherboard which is not compatible with the components of a computer system will negatively affect the speed of the system. This course about how to speed up your computer will give you a better understanding about the role a motherboard plays in the efficient and high speed working of a computer system and will give you important information about the ways to improve the speed of your computer.

PC build guide: recommended mid-range gaming PC

Pc Build Guide Mid Range Recommended Header

It’s amazing to look back at ads from the 80s and 90s and see what kind of PC hardware you could get for $2000. Technology marches on, PC parts become exponentially more powerful, and everything gets cheaper. Today you can build a high-performance budget gaming PC for less than $700. But we’d recommend most PC gamers spend a bit more to get a far more powerful, more future-proof machine. For about $1300, I think you can build an amazing gaming rig that will last at least four years without an upgrade. And I know just the parts that you should use.

This is PC Gamer’s guide to building the best mid-range PC money can buy. Really, this is the rig we’d recommend to the majority of PC gamers. It’s powerful and built to last, but not extravagant. The parts are reliable, high quality, and will get you close to the performance of a much more expensive rig. There are no compromises here, just smart choices.

With this rig, I expect you to be able to play most of today’s most demanding games on ultra settings, at 1080p and 60fps. You’ll probably be able to handle most of those games at 1440p, too. And three years from now, when games have even stiffer graphics requirements, this rig will still have the power to handle them on high or medium settings (especially with a bit of overclocking).

Update 10/2/2015: We’ve refreshed our build guide with a new motherboard, CPU and RAM with the release of Intel’s Skylake platform.

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Here are the parts I recommend for a great gaming build for anyone. And, naturally, you can tweak this build to suit your needs, and save a few bucks by ditching the DVD drive or buying a smaller HDD. Scroll down below the chart for the reasoning behind each part choice, and a few different case recommendations for sizes, styles, and prices.


Component type Recommended component Price
Processor Intel Core i5-6600k $260 (£215)
Motherboard Asus Z170 Pro Gaming $162 (£110)
Memory Crucial Ballistix Sport DDR4 2400 (8GB) $55
Graphics card MSI GTX 970 4G $335 (£270)
Power supply Corsair CX600M 600 watt 80 Plus Bronze $65 (£61)
Primary storage Samsung 850 EVO 250GB $98 (£74)
Secondary storage Western Digital Black 2TB WD2003FZEX $125 (£96)
CPU cooler Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO $35 (£25)
Disc drive Asus 24x DVD-RW $21 (£14)
Cases NZXT S340 (see below for more) $70 (£57)
$1226

Mid-range Pc - Intel Core I5 6600k

Processor: Intel Core i5-6600K

Price: $260 on Newegg (£215)

Ever since the Sandy Bridge Core i5-2500K in 2011, Intel’s i5 processor has been the perfect sweet spot for gaming. It’s reasonably priced, highly overclockable, and for gaming, not much different from the more expensive Core i7. Since most games are more GPU intensive than CPU intensive, an i5 processor is exactly the right amount of muscle you need.

An overclocked i5 can handily tackle some of gaming’s most demanding CPU tasks, like running the Dolphin GameCube/Wii emulator. It’s also a great all-around processor for normal PC usage. The new Skylake i5-6600K isn’t a major performance boost over its predecessor, but we recommend using Skylake if you’re building a new PC, as the new platform includes more PCIe lanes and support for much faster storage that will be important down the line.

Mid Range Pc Asus Z170 Pro Gaming

Motherboard: Asus Z170 Pro Gaming

Price: $162 on Newegg (£110)

Motherboards are a nightmare to shop for: there are so many, with such a broad range in prices, it’s difficult to identify the features that are important and how much you should be paying. You can easily spend $300 on a motherboard, but you don’t need to. The Asus Z170 Pro Gaming includes most of the important features of Asus’ high-end boards that matter for gaming, at a lower price. It’s the latest iteration of our favorite gaming motherboard.

At $160, the ASUS Z97-A is well-reviewed by buyers, offers plenty of overclocking potential, and has Asus’ typically powerful and easy-to-use UEFI BIOS. It includes an important M.2 port rated for PCIe x4 speed, as well as two PCIe x6 lanes for a dual-GPU setup. In another nice bit of future-proofing, it includes two USB 3.1 ports.

Mid Range Pc Crucial Ballistix Sport Ddr4

Memory: Crucial Ballistix Sport DDR4 2400 (8GB)

Price: $55 on Amazon

DDR4 prices are thankfully dropping quickly these days, and it won’t be long before those prices match DDR3. The Ballistix from Crucial are an easy choice: they’re fast, cheap, and low profile enough to sneak under a chunky air cooler.

According to my research into RAM speed ( here’s a great article on Anandtech), faster speeds and memory timings aren’t that important, especially for gaming. You’re not going to see much of a framerate difference as a result of RAM speeds. In fact, you probably won’t see any difference at all. RAM speed makes more of a difference in other PC tasks, but Anandtech’s bottom-line advice is pretty simple: more RAM is a better upgrade than faster RAM, and RAM faster than 1600 MHz makes a small but meaningful difference.

While you could make the jump up to 16GB and see a bit better performance in heavy duty applications like Adobe Premiere, for gaming, it’s not going to make much of a difference. Some recent testing has shown how little difference 4GB, 8GB and 16GB of RAM actually makes on gaming performance.

UK readers: This exact kit isn’t available in 8GB in the UK, but you can grab similar G.Skill Ripjaws V Series for for £53 on Amazon.co.uk.

Msi Gtx 970 Graphics Card

Graphics card: MSI GTX 970 4G

Price: $335 on Amazon (£270)

There’s still a lot of controversy around the GTX 970. Nvidia messed up and gave out incorrect information about the card, and it took several months for the divide between 3.5GB of VRAM and a slower 500MB to come to light. Despite the controversy, the MSI GTX 970 is still the best price/performance graphics card on the market. It’s fast, incredibly overclockable, and should handily deliver 1080p, 60 fps gaming for the next few years.

And there’s a reason why the memory issue didn’t show up in positive initial reviews of the card like ours: you have to go far out of your way, and run the card at resolutions/settings it’s not really capable of handling, to spot any issues with its memory management. If you’re still suspicious/confused about the 970’s performance, read Digital Foundry’s excellent breakdown of the controversy. It’s a great, informative read.

Now, why the MSI GTX 970 4G over other alternatives? Simply put, it’s a great card: quiet, very overclockable, and much cheaper than other 970 options.

I recommend the 970 over any other currently available card for price/performance, but if you’ve sworn off Nvidia, the Radeon R9 290X is the only close option. It’s much louder, and far more power-hungry, than the GTX 970, but you can get close to the same performance for the price.

Midrange Corsair Cx600m

Power Supply: Corsair CX600M 600 watt 80 Plus Bronze

Price: $65 on Newegg (£61)

How much power do you need for a gaming PC? Nvidia’s latest graphics cards are more power efficient than ever, but if you overclock your graphics card and CPU, you could easily be using 400 watts of power. A 600 watt power supply offers plenty of headroom for lost power (with a 80 Plus Bronze rating, a PSU is at least 82% efficient) and even a more power-hungry graphics card down the road.

I recommend Corsair’s power supplies for their reliability, and the CX600M model in particular because it’s modular. You can certainly find a cheaper power supply that offers as much juice, but modular power supplies are far nicer to build with. They leave you with fewer cables to deal with and let you plug in exactly what you need for your rig.

Midrange Samsung 850 Evo

Primary storage: Samsung 850 EVO 250GB

Price: $98 on Amazon (£74)

Now that it’s come down in price a bit, Samsung’s 850 EVO is a great buy for a fast, affordable SSD. On sequential R/W speeds it pushes the SATA standard to its limit, and on random R/W it puts up substantially better numbers than last year’s competition, the Crucial MX100 and Samsung 840 EVO. For $115, the 850 EVO is worth it.

If you know you’ll want more SSD space, you can upgrade to the 500GB model for $190.

Midrange Western Digital Black Hdd

Secondary storage: Western Digital Black 2TB WD2003FZEX

Price: $125 on Amazon (£96)

This is an optional addition to your primary SSD, but it’s one I expect most modern PC owners will want. Unless your PC is for games, and nothing but games, you’re probably going to want storage space for music, personal photos, movies, PC Gamer fan letter drafts, and all sorts of other files. You may also want to keep most games installed than you have room for on a 250GB SSD. Spinning disk HDDs still have a place in today’s PCs, since they’re so dang cheap.

The Western Digital Black is the HDD I’d recommend to anyone installing applications on the HDD. It’s considerably faster than a WD Green drive. While I wouldn’t recommend it for storing games where load times really matter (an MMO like Guild Wars 2 or a giant game like Battlefield), smaller, quick-loading indie games will be just as playable on a HDD as they are on an SSD. The speed of the Black drive gives you plenty of storage, still at a good price, without poor performance.

Budgetpc Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo

CPU cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO

Price: $35 on Newegg (£25)

The Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO is our recommendation for a budget CPU cooler, and it’s our recommendation for a mid-range CPU cooler, too. Why? It’s just that good. It’ll give you plenty of cooling for a heavy overclock, it’s extremely cheap, and it’s easy to install. It’s far better and cooling, and quieter, than a stock Intel cooler. It’s the easiest choice of any part on this list.

The cooler is also $35 on Amazon with Prime shipping, if you’d prefer to buy it there.

Midrange Asus Dvd Drive

Disc drive: Asus 24x DVD-RW

Price: $21 on Amazon (£14)

Do you need one? Do you want one? What the hell. This one costs $21, and it’s probably not going to break. You’re only going to put about three DVDs in it a year.

NEW PC OR NEW MOTHERBOARD

If you don’t want to spend big bucks on a new PC, consider upgrading your old system’s motherboard and CPU. This can boost the machine’s performance and give you access to the latest technologies. It can also save you hundreds of dollars.

What you won’t get is a new hard drive, optical drive, or operating system, though the new motherboard gives you the option of upgrading these components later. When you do it yourself, you choose the make, model, and cost that serve you best, rather than settling for what’s preloaded in an off-the-shelf machine.

For as little as $200 to $350, you can purchase a motherboard with a new Pentium 4 or Athlon processor and 512MB of RAM. (Visit this link to check the latest motherboard prices.) That’s hundreds of dollars less than the retail cost of a midrange PC that supports AGP 8X graphics cards, Serial ATA drives, and the other advanced features that your new motherboard is likely to offer.
Motherboard Buyers Guide

Size matters: Most desktop PCs sold in the last few years conform to the ATX form factor (as do most motherboards), but not all do. Many small or ultrabudget systems are based on other designs, and some PCs from HP/Compaq, IBM, and other big-name vendors aren’t ATX-compatible. Refer to your computer’s documentation to see if the new motherboard will fit inside its case.

Find the right CPU: The optimal combination of CPU price and performance may lead you to early versions of Athlon XP and Pentium 4 processors: Retail boxed versions of 1- to 2-GHz AMD Athlon XP processors cost less than $100, while Pentium 4 processors running at comparable speeds are less than $130. OEM versions of both (that’s minus the fancy box, the cooling fan, and sometimes a warranty) may be priced considerably lower. Avoid older Pentium 4 processors with 256KB of L2 cache. CPUs with 512KB cache are faster and well worth the small added expense.

Be picky: Steer clear of no-name vendors and buy from established manufacturers only.

Pay for power: Your old PC’s power supply may not have enough wattage or may lack the 12-volt amperage needed to run some Pentium 4 and Athlon motherboards. Check the new motherboard’s requirements against the specs on your power supply. If in doubt, buy a power supply that generates 300 watts or more,

Faster is better: A motherboard’s frontside bus speed is the rate at which data moves between the CPU and RAM. FSB speed can have a greater effect on overall system performance than listed CPU speed, which is a multiple of the FSB speed. The faster the FSB, the better.

Get it all: Your new motherboard needs PCI slots and USB ports, two UltraATA/100 connectors, parallel and serial ports (if you use these), and at least two DIMM slots for RAM (DDR RAM is best). For a little extra money, you can get Serial ATA, ethernet, RAID, FireWire, Wi-Fi, and other advanced features.

Sight and sound off: Some low-cost motherboards have sound and graphics functions built in. The quality of these integrated functions is often marginal. Make sure that any built-in sound and graphics can be disabled, and that separate audio and graphics boards can be added.

Minimize Your Mousing

For people in a hurry, every unnecessary mouse movement is an aggravation. Windows 2000, Me, and XP let you set the pointer to automatically move to commonly used buttons in dialog boxes. Click Start, Settings, Control Panel (or Start, Control Panel in XP), and click or double-click Mouse (choose “Printers and Other Hardware” first if you’re in XP’s Categories view, or “View all Control Panel options” if you’re in Me’s “commonly used” view). Now select Pointer Options, check the box labeled “Automatically move pointer to the default button in a dialog box” (the option’s wording varies slightly in Windows 2000), and click OK.