Are you a PC enthusiast and trying to build a new desktop? So, how much should you spend on a motherboard? This tutorial will help you to select the right motherboard for you. Generally, many PC builders think more about what processors they will use or which graphics card will be the best for their build. They never think of the best motherboard, they should use or what to look for in a motherboard.
We know, the motherboard is one of the most important parts of a computer. But still, we don’t spend a lot of time selecting the best option available in the budget. Motherboard basically plays a major role to establish the connection among the processor, the RAM, Graphics card, and all other capacitors and transistors. It also takes the power from the main power supply unit and delivers it to all the other components attached to it, in a proper and regulated way.
So, here we are going to answer as to how much you should spend on the motherboard or what to look for in a motherboard while building your dream PC. This blog is applicable to both budget motherboards as well as high end ones.
How To Choose A Motherboard?
Processors and Graphics cards take the lead role while testing the benchmark score or the real-world performance in video rendering or getting a higher frame rate in video games but the motherboard has no role in this scenario. Buying the perfect motherboard is one of the most complex tasks while building the PC.
You should avoid buying the most expensive motherboard just because it looks stylish, slim, and has some out-of-the-box features, which you will never use. You should also avoid the cheapest motherboard available in the market, as it is made of very low quality. Also, these are not future-proof.
When you try to upgrade some of the features in the future, you cannot do that because there are already some limitations like the VRM heatsink and other basic things like more than one M.2 port, and the latest PCIe 4.0 expansion slots, and the USB Ports are less. Also, the power delivery system is poor and can damage the other components in the motherboard.
So, you should prefer the best option available in your budget which will have a better VRM heatsink and CPU socket heatsink along with more than one M.2 slot and other PCIe slot upgradability.
How Much Should You Spend On A Motherboard?
You never understand the difference between a $600 and a $100 price range motherboard because both of them support the same processor and have the same number of dual-channel DIMM slots. Everybody has a limitation when it comes to budget while building a PC.
If you spend much on the motherboard, you cannot buy a better CPU, Graphics card, or the RAM for your build which affects the benchmark score or frame rate while playing games or takes more time to render a video after editing. If you are trying to buy Ryzen 9 3900X motherboard for your build, then you have a wide range from $100 to $999 or more. But you should pay only for the features that you need.
Features To Look For In The Motherboard Before Spending Your Money
When you read review blogs to choose the best motherboard or the expensive motherboard, you will notice some highlighted features. Decide, if the highlighted features are useful to you or not. If you find that they are not useful, then skip that option. You should also keep one thing in mind, that if you try to upgrade the PC in the future, then consider some future-proof things like more than one M.2 slot, newer 4.0 PCIe X16 slot, etc.
Memory Slots On Motherboard
One of the major things in a motherboard is the DIMM slot or the RAM slots. Generally, we find four RAM slots available in modern motherboards these days. It is a standard type. But, you will also find only two RAM slots motherboards which are basically for budget users. If you have a very tight budget then only you should buy two RAM slots motherboard and in this case, you cannot upgrade the RAM in the future.
VRM’s On Motherboard
VRM stands for Voltage Regulator Module, also known as Processor Power Module which is made by MOSFETs. It is one of the main components which provide the regulated and stable power delivery or the power phases to the CPU. In higher-end motherboards, you will get better VRMs which will help to increase the life of the CPU. If you are a power user or heavy user, then you might do overclocking to get more clock speed as compared to stock speed. To get extreme overclocking features, the CPU becomes power-hungry and a better VRM will help to fulfill the needs.
If you don’t have enough technical knowledge then you can simply visit any tech blog website or watch any YouTube video and understand what to look for in a motherboard. Usually, a better VRM is a bit overpriced.
When you are buying a new one make sure to check the motherboard model on the official motherboard manufacturer website and confirm if it has all the ports, fan connectors that you need. Suppose, you want to use a dual M.2 NVMe SSD, and if the motherboard does not have that dual-port connectivity option, then you will be disappointed.
That is why, it is suggested to check, if all the ports, storage slots, and ethernet ports are available or not in the new motherboard. If you have more than one SATA drive and you want to connect all of these, then you should have more SATA 6 ports. Nowadays, USB Type-C ports are available in all motherboards, so you should consider all of these, along with USB Gen 3.1 or 3.2 ports also.
One of the most updated things about the expansion slots is that now you will get new Gen 4 PCIe ports. If you are able to pay a little bit more, then you can get the Gen 5 PCIe expansion port for a multi-GPU setup which is future proof.
In terms of network connectivity, the LAN or Gigabit connection port is more or less the same for all motherboards available in the market. But nowadays, you can easily find dual-band Wi-Fi along with Bluetooth for seamless network connectivity and sharing. It is a very useful feature and future proof also. If you don’t have any budget issues then you should consider these features when it comes to connectivity.
If you are a fancy guy then you will prefer to buy a good-looking motherboard that will have RGB LEDs and a smaller board in size. If you pay a little more, then you can get extra RGB headers. In terms of aesthetics, you have to pay more than usual to get RGB lighting in premium boards or modern boards. It is not recommended to pay more for this. You can simply check the motherboard reviews in any online content.
Why do people pick NVIDIA over AMD?
For power users, who switch between these two brands know, what each brand offers. But NVIDIA has a strong market share and is already well established. It’s a notion set among the customers that AMD’s card gets spoiled due to overheating or it has bad drivers. On the other hand, NVIDIA doesn’t have these types of issues, and it consumes less power and offers more compatibility in newly launched graphics-intensive tasks. This is why NVIDIA has a more market presence and better brand image than the AMD Radeon series.
Frequently Asked Questions
What pieces should I spend more money on in building a PC?
Ans. It basically depends on your needs. If you are going to build a PC for normal photo editing and normal daily tasks or basic use, then you should spend money on the Processors and RAMs slots.
If you want to build a PC for hardcore video editing or playing heavy games, then a Graphics card should be your first priority, followed by CPU and RAM.
How much money do you need to build a good gaming PC?
Ans. What do you mean by Good Gaming PC? You can build a decent gaming PC in between the $999 to $699 price category or less. But, if you want a console-like gaming experience then you can spend more on an RTX card along with the latest gen CPU and higher-end motherboards and at least in liquid or water cooling technology. Then, you can experience a better gaming experience and that should cost nearly more than $1999.
Are high-end motherboards worth it?
Ans. Yes, high-end motherboards are worth it. But if you don’t need those particular features, then don’t go for it.
Why is a motherboard expensive, like processors sometimes? What makes them expensive?
Ans. There are many components like VRM with heatsink, without heatsinks, DIMM slots along with dedicated heatsinks, extra RGB headers in the boards, better quality capacitors or transistor, better CPU socket heatsinks, and many more things, which make the motherboard expensive.
When building a PC what five parts are the most expensive?
Ans. The very first components will be the Video cards or the Graphics cards, CPU or the Processor, motherboard itself, RAM sticks and the last component will be the power supply. These are the topmost expensive parts of a PC.
We have already mentioned all the necessary points. If you read it carefully then you can clearly understand how much you should spend on a motherboard. Otherwise, buying a single motherboard is a very simple process. Just go and check out the official manufacturer website: Check the type of PCIe expansion slot, how many on-board storage ports the motherboard has, know more about the DIMM slots and the PWM quality, and select one for yourself.
It will be better if the PWM dedicated heatsinks help during overclocking. Basically, check if the motherboard is future-proof or not. Also, check if the features and technologies are really useful to you or not. You can get a very brief idea from the best intel motherboard for core i5-6600K. I hope you got an idea of how much should you spend on a motherboard.
If you still have any confusion regarding anything, feel free to comment down below and we will try to help you out with that. Thanks for reading.
Also, let us know in the comment section if this blog is helpful or not. Don’t forget to check out G-Prime every week for updates.