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

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ATX motherboards room regular-sized motherboards, vice versa, MATX motherboards come with a an ext compact design. It method you will find fewer RAM/PCIe slot on a MATX board. In the exact same way, whereas a MATX motherboard may have minimal space, one ATX motherboard can also equip a double-GPU system and 7.1 audio setups. Nowadays, you execute not need to compromise in between a compact design and also competitive performance.

We must additionally talk around long-term upgrades. Whereas a consistent ATX motherboard pipeline enough an are for future upgrades, a MATX instance may struggle to attach much more hardware in the future, thanks to multiple slots.

In this article, we have contrasted the significant aspects the MATX and also ATX motherboards. You will understand just how your choice between these two types of motherboards will affect performance, compatibility, and power. Shall we begin?


micro ATX vs ATX motherboards: The Basics

Before we get too much ahead that ourselves, I’m walk to take it a 2nd – more like a few minutes – to describe the basics of what motherboards are and also why they’re important. There’s no suggest in learning which size is better if you don’t recognize the basics!

Without transforming this into a history lesson, motherboards have actually been about for a long time but both ATX and also the smaller sized microATX were developed in the mid-late 90s by Intel. ATX to be quickly embraced as the “standard” because that motherboard design and also the rest is history. Fast-forward come now, there are both bigger and smaller motherboard variants like eATX (bigger) and also mini-ITX (smaller), yet for the purposes of this article, we’ll be concentrating on just ATX and also micro ATX motherboards together they’re the most commonly used; and 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 whereby all info is happen through and also it even distributes/regulates power to some components. In new motherboards, it’s also handling her wired internet connection and your audio (assuming girlfriend don’t have an external DAC or other similar), and also even your WiFi on much more expensive boards. I might keep going with all of the points your motherboard does, but I think you gain the point, that does a lot.

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

On peak of the different sockets, there are additionally multiple chipsets for each separation, personal, instance socket. Meaning, there’s not just 1 type of motherboard to pick from ~ you’ve found the ones that support your CPU’s socket, there are often upwards the 3 different chipsets every socket making because that a many of different (or not so different) choice to choose from. Talk about confusing!

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

Motherboard type Factor

Ram Slots

One that the first (and easily the biggest) distinctions that anyone will notification between an mATX and an ATX motherboard is the size. Most micro-ATX motherboards will often have less easily accessible ports and also headers 보다 an ATX board, a good example would be how many RAM slots there space – many micro ATX motherboards will certainly usually have actually 2, ATX motherboards will nearly always have 4. This limits how lot potential ram there can be, as much more RAM requires more RAM slots.


The form of case you’re going to get also determines the size of the motherboard you deserve to use. Like motherboards, situations come in differing sizes; through that in mind, you need to have the best sized plank for her case, or gain a case big enough for her board, one of two people or. A mid tower case that supports an ATX motherboard will fit one mATX motherboard together well, however an mATX situation will not fit an ATX motherboard (in many cases), etc.

PCIE Slots

Additionally, a micro atx motherboard frequently has much less PCIE slots than an ATX. The is smaller, which makes sense, but honestly, it’s not even a problem usually. PCIE slots allow your motherboard come add much more components such together GPUs or SSD cards. You frequently don’t need countless PCIE slots and matx moterhbaords have sufficient for most gamers.


If you’re planning to build a an easy PC to upgrade as you go, one ATX motherboard could be better for you. But, if you’re structure a budget gaming pc that you’re simply going to use until you need to develop a new one, a micro ATX motherboard might assist save girlfriend a couple of $ in the short-term. At some point it’s as much as you, yet I often suggest micro ATX motherboards over ATX ones unless the develop costs an ext than $1000.


You also want to think about what sort of functions you’re going come need. Some might want a motherboard that’s really reliable as soon as it pertains to overclocking, others could need 5.1 or 7.1 audio ports, and some civilization just desire a motherboard that’ll do its job without having to tinker roughly too much.

Depending top top what type of human being you are, there is definitely a motherboard that’ll it is in perfect because that your very own personalized needs. Even if it is that’s RGB lighting, overclocking potential, additional PCIe ports, or every little thing it is the you need!

Something to save in psychic is that not all mATX motherboards room for the budget-minded builder, some come with similar high-end functions that you would gain out that a pricier ATX board. Take the $200 ASUS ROG Maximus VIIIas an instance of a fully-loaded mATX mobo.


Your budget is something that need to be taken into consideration when picking out your motherboard. Normally speaking, if you construct costs much less than $1000, you most likely shouldn’t it is in spending much more than $100-$110 on your motherboard, otherwise, you’re simply wasting sources that would certainly be much better off devoted elsewhere. Choose I’ve already mentioned, friend can obtain mATX motherboards for substantially cheaper 보다 ATX boards most of the time and this is there is no a doubt my encourage route.

Seeing as exactly how a lot of mATX motherboards are coming v 4 slots for lamb these days, there’s even an ext reason to walk that method instead that ATX in most cases. Among the best downsides v mATX board was the they would certainly only ever before come with 2 slot for RAM, making ram upgrades a pain. But, because that’s changed, mATX boards have actually quickly come to be the standard.

That all said, if you’re to plan on doing a lot of upgrades come your pc in terms of a multi-GPU setup and/or fluid cooling, climate you will absolutely want to spend a bit much more on your board right away, protest to having actually to upgrade your motherboard under the line. The latter would ultimately expense you much more in the long run.

A keep in mind on cases

Because mATX and also ATX motherboards space sized differently, it would certainly be a same to assume the there’s walking to be different situations for one of two people – and also there are. If you’re concerned with saving as much an are as girlfriend can, then an mATX motherboard inside of one mATX situation would do that for you; part mATX cases will also accommodate large graphics cards and an excellent aftermarket CPU coolers. The Thermaltake H15 is an instance of a great, however inexpensive mATX case option.

You don’t necessarily have to use an mATX instance if you’re going to use an mATX motherboard, though, many mid-tower ATX cases will have actually mounts for the smaller sized mATX mobo. There’s yes, really no fence to making use of an mATX motherboard inside of an ATX case, if deserve to save a few bucks there is no sacrificing the functions you need by walking mATX over ATX, execute it! Or, if you desire the flexibility and functionality of a full ATX plank without the mass of a traditional ATX case, to buy a slim and compact ATX instance is another option.

Airflow is something rather you need to keep in mind when picking your case, specifically when you’re structure a gaming pc with air cooling. You certainly don’t desire to choose a case that doesn’t have an excellent ventilation; what you do want is front pan mounts and a rear fan mount in ~ the really least, picking a instance with an opening on the height is also better.

How to choose the appropriate motherboard

When the comes under to picking the right motherboard and ultimately choosing mATX vs ATX, it boils under to the functions that you need and also how much you’re ready to spend. If you desire to store your build compact by utilizing an mATX case and an mATX motherboard, yet you additionally want to retain a lot of the ATX features, climate be all set to invest a little bit more.

Once you’ve determined the dimension you’re going for, your following step is to recognize the processor you’re walking to use + the socket and chipset ideal suited for it. If you’re unsure of i beg your pardon processor to use, examine out my list of the finest CPUs to usage for her gaming PC. By this time, girlfriend should likewise have a good idea of which situation you’re going to be using.

After you’ve identified the socket and also chipset you’re feather for, it’s time to think about the features you need. Carry out you need 7.1 audio? perform you require on plank WiFi? carry out you require 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 points you must be considering to make certain you pick the best motherboard.

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


Although there room a couple of other form-factors external of micro-ATX and ATX, these space the 2 most famous sizes of motherboards the are supplied in gaming computer builds. Both mATX and also ATX motherboards have actually their separation, personal, instance pros and cons, mATX board are an excellent for saving room but often skimp top top features, ATX boards have actually lots the features however cost a little more.

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Which form-factor you at some point decide on is entirely up to her plans for your build and how much you have actually in her budget.At the finish of the day, both ATX and also mATX motherboards serve their purposes, neither one is measurably much better than the other assuming they’re giving the same features.

There’s no performance difference in between an mATX or ATX motherboard, no difference in overclocking capabilities (on similar boards), and also ultimately no factor to pick one end the other exterior of your own an individual needs!

Just make certain that your motherboard supports her processor’s socket and also runs on the appropriate chipset, and also make certain that your motherboard and also case will certainly be compatible together!

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

If you have any type of questions, comments, or something else, feel free to leaving them below!