Intel launched their eighth-gen Core i CPUs some months ago, and these processors proved to be excellent choices for gaming computers, workstations, and most desktop PCs. But a good CPU needs a good motherboard, so which one to choose? We compared some models and here we have a compilation of its features to help you to choose.
We already tested some of the eighth-gen Core i3 CPUs, codenamed Coffee Lake, like the Core i7-8700K, the Core i5-8400, and the Core i3-8100. All of them proved to be good CPUs at its price level, improving performance when compared to the earlier generations.
But even using the same physical socket (LGA1151,) Coffee Lake processors are not compatible with previous motherboards, that use 200-series and 100-series chipsets. They are only compatible with motherboard with 300-series chipsets. The first chipset launched was the Z370, which is the high-end chipset for these CPUs. Until today, all the motherboards for Coffee Lake CPUs were based on this chipset.
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Newer chipsets (H370 and B360) are being launched this month, but we decided to make a roundup of the motherboards we analyzed so far, to help you decide which one is the best choice for you. The motherboards are listed below, click on the name to read the complete article where we analyze each one.
- Gigabyte Z370 AORUS Ultra Gaming
- ASUS PRIME Z370-A
- ASRock Fatal1ty Z370 Professional Gaming i7
- Gigabyte Z370N WIFI
- ASRock Fatal1ty Z370 Gaming K6
- ASUS TUF Z370-PLUS GAMING
- ASRock Z370 Taichi
On the table below, we compared the key features of each motherboard.
|Model||Gigabyte Z370 AORUS Ultra Gaming||ASUS PRIME Z370-A||ASRock Fatal1ty Z370 Professional Gaming i7|
|PCI Express x16 slots||3||3||3|
|PCI Express x1 slots||3||4||2|
|Memory support||4, DDR4-4000||4, DDR4-4000||4, DDR4-4333|
|USB 3.0 ports||7||6||6|
|USB 3.1 ports||2||2||3|
|Gigabit Ethernet ports||1||1||2|
|10 Gbps Ethernet||no||no||yes|
|Phases on VRM||7||10||14|
|Model||Gigabyte Z370N WIFI||ASRock Fatal1ty Z370 Gaming K6||ASUS TUF Z370-PLUS GAMING||ASRock Z370 Taichi|
|Form Factor||Mini ITX||ATX||ATX||ATX|
|PCI Express x16 slots||1||3||2||3|
|PCI Express x1 slots||no||3||4||2|
|Memory support||2, DDR4-4400||4, DDR4-4333||4, DDR4-4000||4, DDR4-4333|
|USB 3.0 ports||9||7||7||8|
|USB 3.1 ports||no||2||2||3|
|Gigabit Ethernet ports||2||2||1||2|
|10 Gbps Ethernet||no||no||no||no|
|Phases on VRM||6||12||7||14|
Researched at newegg.com on the Day We Wrote This Article
As you can see, even using the same chipset, there are many differentes between the seven motherboards we tested so far.
First, and probably most important, is price. The analyzed models vary from USD 145 to USD 284, which means the less expensive costs around half the price of the most expensive one.
The ASUS TUF Z370-PLUS GAMING has the lowest price, so it is a good choice if you have a limited budget. However, it uses the simpler audio codec, don’t support SLI, and don’t bring useful overclocking features like display and buttons.
The ASRock Fatal1ty Z370 Professional Gaming i7 is the only one that brings a 10 Gbps Ethernet port, but it is the most expensive one. Therefore, it is only the best buy if you will actually use this high-speed network port.
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The Gigabyte Z370N WiFi is the only Mini-ITX motherboard on the list; so it is a great choice if you are building an SFF (small form factor) desktop computer, using a Mini-ITX case. Its price is also similar to the most inexpensive model.
So, your choice will depend on what is important to you. Do you intend do use more than six SATA HDDs or SSDs? So you can exclude the models with four or six ports only. Do you want to make an extreme overclocking? So, choose one with a high number of phases on the voltage regulator circuit, buttons, and a POST error code display.
In short, there is not a single motherboard that is the best one for all users. Different people have different needs, so you can use this table, and the articles where we analyze each motherboard, to find out which one is the best for you.
Newest Updates About the Topic of Best Motherboard for Coffee Lake CPUs
As of writing this update, the newest generation of Intel CPUs is the Alder Lake generation. Coffee Lake is still somewhat sought after these days due to its ever-decreasing price tag and the fact that some people want to build a PC on a budget. However, as you can imagine, a 5-year-old CPU generation isn’t meant to handle extreme tasks such as gaming, 3D modeling, and so forth.
So, if you’re still looking to build a PC centered around the Coffee Lake generation, you should understand that it will mostly be able to handle last-gen games. You might not be able to max out all of the video games that have come out in the last two or three years, and you might have a lot of trouble running games that will eventually come down the line.
Once you accept this, then you can start looking for the best motherboard for Coffee Lake CPUs and built your PC from there, knowing full well that you’re probably going to sacrifice performance in the future for an otherwise good price.
What Brand of Motherboards Is Usually the Most Reliable?
ASRock is a reliable manufacturer that produces quality motherboards even in the lower/mid-tier category. However, as far as most users seem to agree from our research, ASUS and Gigabyte seem to produce the most reliable motherboards overall.
Either way, you’ll want a motherboard that is compatible with all of the components that you want to put into your PC. And be careful, as motherboards are usually not forward-compatible with later hardware generations, so get one that you know can support the best possible hardware that your pocket can afford.
With all of this said and done, we wish you the best of luck in building your next PC and we hope that this guide has helped you out.