Best AMD motherboards in 2019
Craft the gaming PC of your dreams around the best AMD motherboard available, at the lowest prices anywhere.
Finding the best AMD motherboard to anchor all your performance parts is perhaps the most critical choice you’ll make. While the best graphics card or the best CPU for gaming often hog the spotlight around a new gaming PC build, the motherboard is hugely important, especially when it comes to AMD. Not only does your mobo determine how many add-on cards you can pile into your case (and, in part, how many PCIe lanes are available to them), how many DIMMs are available to stuff with the best RAM for gaming, and which CPUs you’ll be able to slot into your machine, it also determines some convenience factors that are crucial to any build, like how many and which generation of USB ports you’ll have available. Choosing the best AMD motherboard is wildly important for future proofing your rig, as well—it determines whether you’ll be able to slot in future CPUs or if you’ll be able to eventually add a second inexpensive graphics card instead of splurging on a new high end GPU. With the full reveal of AMD’s X570 chipset at Computex this week, it’s a fantastic time to be AMD motherboard shopping.
So how do you go about picking out the best AMD motherboard for your build? First, you’ll need to pick a form factor, whether full sized ATX, Micro-ATX, or an even smaller Mini-ITX board, depending on the size of the case you’re going to stash your build in and how many extra PCIe slots you need. Next, you need to think about which AMD chip you’re going to pop into it. Luckily, most modern AMD boards all feature an AM4 CPU socket (barring the high end X399 TR4 socket for Threadripper chips) so you can rest assured that whichever processor you buy, it’ll tuck into your board. But if you plan on overclocking your CPU, you’ll need a chipset that supports it, so any A300 or A320 boards are disqualified. If you are considering using two GPUs (or adding a second later), you’ll need an X470, X370, or one of the upcoming X570 enthusiasts boards. Beyond that, it’s largely a consideration of how many PCIe lanes you need for add-on cards and storage, how many peripherals you plan on plugging into your machine, and how many DIMMs you need to accommodate RAM.
Gigabyte X470 Aorus Gaming 5 Wi-Fi
The best AMD motherboard
Chipset: X470 | Memory: (4) DIMM, 64GB, DDR4-3200 | PCIe slots: x16, x16 (x8), x16 (x4), (2) x1 | Video ports: HDMI | USB ports: (10) rear IO, (9) internal | Storage: (2) M.2, (6) SATA | Network: Ethernet, 1.73Gbps 802.11ac | Lighting: Three zone RGB, (2) RGB header
+ Dual 32Gb/s M.2 slots
+ Speedy Intel Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
– Other boards overclock better and run faster memory
– Few advanced hardware enthusiast options
You could easily pay more for an X470 board but in most cases you’ll largely just be dishing out some extra cash for bloat you’re unlikely to need. The Auros is fully loaded with the necessities but doesn’t skimp on extras like RGB bling, built in Wi-Fi, or a pair of high speed M.2 slots.
While you could step up to the next model in the Auros line, you’ll pay an additional $50 for the privilege in exchange mostly for a second Gigabit Ethernet line, a needless luxury for most home users. You still get three full length x16 PCIe slots, two of which are handily reinforced with metal, and four DIMMs that support up to 64 GB of RAM. The I/O area is also pleasantly festooned with USB ports for all your hungry peripherals, a full eight across generations/connectors.
Gigabyte Aorus AX370 Gaming 5
The best AX370 motherboard
Chipset: X370 | Memory: (4) DIMM, 64GB, DDR4-3200 | PCIe slots: x16, x16 (x8), x16 (x4), (2) x1 | Video ports: HDMI | USB ports: (10) rear IO, (9) internal | Storage: (2) M.2, (6) SATA | Network: Ethernet, 1.73Gbps 802.11ac | Lighting: Three zone RGB, (2) RGB header
+ Stable BIOS and strong memory support
+ 32 Gb/s M.2 and U.2 connectors
– Lacks Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
– Only one M.2 slot
Unsurprisingly, the X370 version in the Auros stable is also an excellent board, a fantastic, inexpensive mobo that will still satisfy the majority of gaming builds. While it’s not really optimized for overclocking (our testing with a Ryzen 7 1700X chip peaked at 4GHz), it’s an excellent option for anyone looking to shave a few dollars off their motherboard cost to tuck into other more vital components.
It does lack Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, so if you’re not parking it next to a handy Ethernet connection you may want to reconsider (you’d be better spending the few extra dollars a Wi-Fi card would cost you upgrading to a board that natively supports it), but is otherwise a fully featured, highly capable motherboard that can be had at a very reasonable price.
Gigabyte AB350-Gaming 3
The best budget AMD board
Chipset: B350 | Memory: (4) DIMM, 64GB, DDR4-3200 | PCIe slots: x16, x16 (x4), x16 (x1), (2) x1 | Video ports: HDMI and DVI-D | USB ports: (7) rear IO, (6) internal | Storage: (1) M.2, (6) SATA | Network: 1x Gigabit Ethernet | Lighting: 2, 1x 4-pin RGB & 1x 5-pin RGBW
+ 3 PCIe slots and 4 DIMMs
+ Supports 3.1 Gen 2 USB
– Bandwidth limited on two PCIe slots
– No USB-C
If you’re in the market for a B350 board at a great price that’s still loaded up with features, Gigabyte’s AB350-Gaming 3 is an excellent choice, and can often be had for right around the $80 mark. It packs 4 DIMMs with support for up to 64 GB of RAM and a full three PCIe slots (though only the top lane gets a full serving of bandwidth). There’s a raft of USB ports, including speedy 10Gbps USB 3.1 2nd gen, and robust support for RGB lighting effects, if you’ve got a tempered glass window on your case and want to showcase your internals.
The AB350 is a perfect example of trimming away fat to provide an excellent board at the lowest possible price, something Gigabyte excels at (as the rest of this roundup has proven in spades). For an AMD build with a responsible budget, it’s one of the best options available.
Asus ROG Zenith Extreme
The best high-end AMD motherboard
Chipset: X399 | Memory: (8) DIMM, 128GB, DDR4-3600 | PCIe slots: (4) x16, x4, x1 | Video ports: HDMI and DVI-D | USB ports: (10) rear IO, (7) internal | Storage: (3) M.2, (6) SATA | Network: 1x Gigabit Ethernet, Wi-Fi, | Lighting: Aura Lighting
At the other polar end of the spectrum is the ROG Zenith Extreme, the pinnacle of X399 chipset support. If you’ve got the money and are looking for the perfect mobo to support your high end Threadripper, the Zenith Extreme lives up to its name, jam packed with high-end features and one of the best premium motherboards on the market.
The Zenith Extreme is also an overclocker’s dream, with automated overclocking function and LN2 cooling support built into the board. It’s got oversized components compared to the demands a Threadripper will placed meaning there’s an even higher OC ceiling, and premium implementation across its feature set, including stuff like PCB division isolated sound hardware and support for a MU-MIMO 802.11a/b/g/n/ac card Wi-Fi card.
ASRock Fatal1ty B450 Gaming-ITX/ac
The best mini-ITX board
Chipset: B450 | Memory: (2) DIMM, 32GB, DDR4-3466 | PCIe slots: x16 | Video ports: HDMI and DisplayPort | USB ports: (6) rear IO | Storage: (1) M.2, (4) SATA | Network: 1x Gigabit Ethernet, Wi-Fi, | Lighting: None
+ Most B450 features in a mini-ITX board
+ Great CPU overclocking support
– Fewer USB ports than larger boards
Packing even a mainstream chipset into a mini-ITX board usually means deep cuts, the inevitable sacrifice of a number of features in favor of that smaller form factor. ASRock’s Fatal1ty B450 Gaming-ITX/ac stands out from and increasingly crowded mini-ITX crowd by fielding a petite board without slicing off any of the most important selling points.
For less than $120, you get excellent performance-per-dollar with excellent overclocking support for both the CPU and memory. It’s competitive in performance terms with most X470 boards at a significant price discount, really only losing a handful of USB ports in the move to mini-ITX. If you’re looking for a small but highly capable mobo at an excellent price, look no further.
Source from PCGamer
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