There is no solitary best motherboard that civilization can usage for their versatile pc builds. Therefore, based on the kind of performance and also convenience your mechanism requires, you will have to choose between different types of motherboards: primarily MATX and ATX motherboards. Based on the performance you expect from the gaming PC, you have to choose between a MATX and also ATX motherboard.

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ATX motherboards are regular-sized motherboards, conversely, MATX motherboards come through a much more compact design. It way you will uncover fewer RAM/PCIe slot on a MATX board. In the exact same way, conversely, a MATX motherboard might have limited space, one ATX motherboard can also equip a double-GPU system and 7.1 audio setups. Nowadays, you do not need to compromise between a compact design and competitive performance.

We must additionally talk around long-term upgrades. Vice versa, a consistent ATX motherboard pipeline enough an are for future upgrades, a MATX case may battle to attach much more hardware in the future, thanks to many slots.

In this article, we have contrasted the far-ranging aspects the MATX and ATX motherboards. You will understand exactly how your choice between these two types of motherboards will influence performance, compatibility, and power. Shall us begin?


micro ATX vs ATX motherboards: The Basics

Before we obtain too much ahead that ourselves, I’m walk to take a second – an ext like a couple of minutes – to describe the basics the what motherboards are and also why they’re important. There’s no allude in finding out which size is much better if girlfriend don’t know the basics!

Without transforming this into a history lesson, motherboards have actually been approximately for a lengthy time however both ATX and the smaller microATX were occurred in the mid-late 90s through Intel. ATX was quickly adopted as the “standard” because that motherboard design and the rest is history. Fast-forward to now, there are both bigger and smaller motherboard variants prefer eATX (bigger) and also mini-ITX (smaller), however for the purposes of this article, we’ll be concentrating on just ATX and also micro ATX motherboards together they’re the most frequently used; and also the just sizes to think about for most gaming PCs.

So, what is a motherboard? Basically, it’s the hub of her PC. It’s where all details is pass through and it even distributes/regulates power to some components. In new motherboards, it’s likewise handling her wired net connection as well as your audio (assuming you don’t have actually an external DAC or something similar), and even her WiFi on more expensive boards. I could keep walking with all of the things your motherboard does, however I think you obtain the point, the does a lot.

With that in mind, it’s precious noting that not all motherboards are the same. AMD and also Intel (the just 2 manufacturers the processors) both have their own proprietary sockets that they usage for their different processors; because of this, motherboard manufacturers need to make different motherboards to support the various sockets.

On peak of the various sockets, there are additionally multiple chipsets for each separation, personal, instance socket. Meaning, there’s not just 1 type of motherboard to choose from ~ you’ve uncovered the persons that support your CPU’s socket, there are often upwards that 3 various chipsets every socket making for a lot of of various (or not so different) option to choose from. Talk around confusing!

Now the you know what motherboards do, whereby the ATX and mATX requirements came from, and the differences in sockets and also chipsets in between CPU manufacturers, ns think it’s time to relocate on!

Motherboard form Factor

Ram Slots

One of the very first (and easily the biggest) distinctions that anyone will notification between one mATX and an ATX motherboard is the size. Most micro-ATX motherboards will frequently have less obtainable ports and also headers than an ATX board, a good example would certainly be how countless RAM slots there space – many micro ATX motherboards will certainly usually have 2, ATX motherboards will virtually always have actually 4. This borders how much potential ram there have the right to be, as an ext RAM requires an ext RAM slots.


The type of case you’re going to get also determines the dimension of the motherboard you have the right to use. Choose motherboards, cases come in differing sizes; with that in mind, you need to have the best sized plank for her case, or get a case large enough for her board, one of two people or. A mid tower case that support an ATX motherboard will certainly fit one mATX motherboard together well, but an mATX instance will no fit one ATX motherboard (in most cases), etc.

PCIE Slots

Additionally, a micro atx motherboard commonly has less PCIE slots 보다 an ATX. The is smaller, which renders sense, but honestly, it’s not also a problem usually. PCIE slots permit your motherboard come add much more components such as GPUs or SSD cards. You commonly don’t need plenty of PCIE slots and also matx moterhbaords have enough for many gamers.


If you’re planning to develop a basic PC to upgrade as you go, one ATX motherboard might be far better for you. But, if you’re structure a budget gaming computer that you’re simply going to use till you require to build a new one, a micro ATX motherboard might help save friend a few $ in the short-term. At some point it’s as much as you, however I often suggest micro ATX motherboards over ATX ones uneven the build costs much more than $1000.


You also want to think about what kind of features you’re going to need. Some can want a motherboard that’s an extremely reliable once it comes to overclocking, others can need 5.1 or 7.1 audio ports, and also some world just want a motherboard that’ll do its job without having to tinker approximately too much.

Depending on what kind of human being you are, there is definitely a motherboard that’ll it is in perfect for your very own personalized needs. Whether that’s RGB lighting, overclocking potential, additional PCIe ports, or whatever it is that you need!

Something to keep in mind is that not all mATX motherboards room for the budget-minded builder, some come with comparable high-end attributes that girlfriend would get out the a pricier ATX board. Take the $200 ASUS ROG Maximus VIIIas an instance of a fully-loaded mATX mobo.


Your budget plan is something that need to be thought about when picking the end your motherboard. Generally speaking, if you develop costs less than $1000, you more than likely shouldn’t it is in spending much more than $100-$110 on your motherboard, otherwise, you’re just wasting resources that would be far better off dedicated elsewhere. Favor I’ve currently mentioned, friend can obtain mATX motherboards for considerably cheaper than ATX boards many of the time and also this is without a doubt my encourage route.

Seeing as just how a many mATX motherboards space coming with 4 slots for lamb these days, there’s even more reason to walk that way instead that ATX in most cases. One of the best downsides with mATX boards was that they would only ever before come through 2 slot for RAM, making lamb upgrades a pain. But, due to the fact that that’s changed, mATX boards have actually quickly end up being the standard.

That all said, if you’re plan on law a the majority of upgrades come your pc in terms of a multi-GPU setup and/or fluid cooling, climate you will definitely want to invest a bit an ext on your board ideal away, protest to having to upgrade your motherboard under the line. The last would ultimately cost you much more in the long run.

A note on cases

Because mATX and also ATX motherboards are sized differently, it would certainly be a fair to assume the there’s walk to it is in different cases for one of two people – and there are. If you’re involved with conserving as much space as you can, climate an mATX motherboard within of one mATX instance would do that for you; part mATX cases will even accommodate huge graphics cards and good aftermarket CPU coolers. The Thermaltake H15 is an example of a great, however inexpensive mATX case option.

You don’t necessarily have to use one mATX situation if you’re going to usage an mATX motherboard, though, most mid-tower ATX situations will have actually mounts for the smaller sized mATX mobo. There’s really no downside to utilizing an mATX motherboard within of an ATX case, if have the right to save a couple of bucks there is no sacrificing the features you need by walk mATX over ATX, execute it! Or, if you want the flexibility and functionality that a full ATX plank without the mass of a classic ATX case, buying a slim and compact ATX situation is one more option.

Airflow is something rather you must keep in mind once picking your case, specifically when you’re structure a gaming computer with air cooling. You certainly don’t want to pick a case that doesn’t have good ventilation; what you do want is front fan mounts and a rear pan mount in ~ the very least, picking a instance with an opened on the optimal is also better.

How to choose the best motherboard

When that comes under to picking the appropriate motherboard and ultimately selecting mATX vs ATX, the boils down to the attributes that you need and also how lot you’re ready to spend. If you want to save your build compact by using an mATX case and also an mATX motherboard, but you additionally want to retain a many the ATX features, climate be all set to spend a little more.

Once you’ve established the size you’re walk for, your next step is to recognize the processor you’re walking to usage + the socket and chipset ideal suited because that it. If you’re unsure of i beg your pardon processor come use, check out my perform of the ideal CPUs to use for her gaming PC. Through this time, you should likewise have a good idea the which case you’re walking to be using.

After you’ve established the socket and chipset you’re looking for, it’s time to consider the attributes you need. Do you require 7.1 audio? carry out you require on board WiFi? execute you need an extra PCIe slot for a WiFi adapter? Extra fan headers? 2 or 4 slot for RAM? RGB lighting? Multi-GPU support? These space all things you need to be considering come make sure you pick the right motherboard.

Not every motherboards space the same and simply buying the cheapest alternative isn’t the best selection in most cases, that’s why it pays to execute your research and also know what you require beforehand!


Although there space a few other form-factors exterior of micro-ATX and ATX, these are the 2 most popular sizes of motherboards the are provided in gaming computer builds. Both mATX and also ATX motherboards have actually their individual pros and cons, mATX plank are an excellent for saving room but often skimp top top features, ATX boards have actually lots the features yet cost a bit more.

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Which form-factor you at some point decide on is entirely up to her plans for her build and also how lot you have actually in her budget.At the finish of the day, both ATX and also mATX motherboards offer their purposes, no one is measurably much better than the various other assuming they’re supplying the exact same features.

There’s no power difference between an mATX or ATX motherboard, no distinction in overclocking capabilities (on comparable boards), and also ultimately no factor to select one over the other exterior of your own personal needs!

Just make sure that your motherboard supports your processor’s socket and runs ~ above the ideal chipset, and also make certain that her motherboard and also case will be compatible together!

Do you simply need a cheap gaming PCthat saves an are and money? carry out you require a mid-range build? Or perform you need a high-end gaming PC?

If you have any questions, comments, or anything else, feel cost-free to leave them below!