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It's not the most expensive Z390 board available, but the Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Ultra has nearly everything you could want in a motherboard. One of the big things this product has going for it is durability. The RAM and PCI-E sockets all have metal slot protection, which should low stress on the connectors themselves.
The board also supports DDR4-4133 RAM, which is amongst the speediest enthusiast-grade memory available. The triple M.2 slots are one of the Aorus Ultra's unique features, and it has support to run all three in Raid 0, which allows for insane read/write performance.
Just because Intel has switched chipsets twice since Z270 debuted doesn't mean these boards aren't worth taking a look at. Even at two years old, 6th and 7th-generation Intel CPUs are still great performers when it comes to gaming, video production, and general computing.
The Asus ROG Maximus IX Hero is one of the best Z270 boards produced and is loaded with features that still make it a great product today. If you're into air cooling, but you like to control your fans, this board is impressive. It has eight 4-pin headers and a breakout header for a four-fan adapter. This means you could control up to twelve fans with this bad boy with minimal work.
The Gigabyte Z390 UD is dirt cheap at $120 but still manages to drive Intel's latest processors well. You're not getting any frills here, though. There's no USB 3.1 or Wi-Fi, and don't you dare expect any RGB. However, it has everything you need to drive the basics.
The top, metal-shielded PCI-E port is a full x16 slot, and you've still got stables like gigabit LAN and USB 3 ports available. The Z390 UD even has an M.2 port available, which is fantastic for the price. If you're looking to overclock, or you want fancy sound or more connectivity options, the Z390 UD might not be for you. If you just need a board that provides the basics, you won't find a quality board for any cheaper than this.
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If you're rocking an X299 CPU, then you're going to want a motherboard that can utilize the massive power of Intel's high-end processors. The Gigabyte X299 Designaire EX motherboard is one of the few boards that lets you fully utilize the advantages of the chipset.
High memory capacity, Thunderbolt 3 capabilities, and dual-Gigabit LAN ports make this a versatile board, and it functions equally well for building a workstation or gaming PC. The I/O panel offers a ton of options for connectivity with three USB 3, two USB 3.1 Type-C, and two USB 2.0 ports and the built-in Wi-Fi lets you connect to a network wirelessly without taking up any valuable PCI-E or USB slots with an adapter.
The Gigabyte X470 Aorus Gaming 7 Wi-Fi is a fantastic board for Ryzen users and is both feature-packed and aesthetically pleasing. This motherboard features Gigabyte's signature style and quality and bumps it up a notch to get that "gamer" aesthetic. RGB LEDs surround both the RAM and top two PCI-E slots, and there's some tasteful RGB on the I/O shield as well.
While there's no crazy innovation to be had with this board, all the solid touches, like individual heatsinks on both M.2 slots, speak to its quality. This board also makes a good candidate for CrossFire or SLI with its reinforced PCI-E slots with wide spacing.
If you're looking for a fantastic budget AMD board, look no further than the Gigabyte GA-AB350 Gaming (not to be confused with the GA-AB350 Gaming 3). A little over $100 gets you a board with features you wouldn't think were available for that price. The GA-AB350 Gaming features 2 USB 3.1 Type-A ports, an M.2 slot, and a PCI-E x16 slot running at full speed.
Of course, because of the low cost, there are some compromises made here. The other x16 PCI-E slot only runs at x4 speed, which is shared with the PCI-E x1 slots. You also won't find premium features like RGB on the GA-AB350. However, the board gets the job done, and does it admirably for the price.
Threadrippers are massive CPUs, and the Asus ROG Zenith Extreme Alpha is a giant motherboard to match. E-ATX isn't for everyone, but those who swear by the form-factor can attest that these motherboards are among the most feature-packed and robust. The Zenith Extreme Alpha's aggressive styling is a perfect match with AMD's marketing for the Threadripper, and it's not all for show. This board can harness the performance of the giant CPU with gusto.
The x16, x8, x16, x8 (shared) configuration of the PCI-E slots, along with the considerable clearance between these ports, make this an excellent board for Crossfire or SLI without suffocating your GPUs. The one lousy mark against this board is that removing RAM in an already built system is a pain, one which you won't typically find on other products.
The Mini-ITX form factor brings its own sets of concerns, one of the most prominent being space-to-feature ratio. Many Mini-ITX boards, unfortunately, can't match up to their big brothers, but the Asus ROG Strix Z390-I and Asus ROG Strix X470-I make great strides in changing that.
These motherboards pack two USB 2.0, two USB 3 Type-A, one USB 3 Type-C, and one USB 3.1 Type-A ports into the rear I/O. It also features built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, which is a massive bonus for a Mini-ITX PC since they're expected to be portable. This board can be used to craft a PC every bit as capable as their larger peers, as the PCI-E x16 port runs at full speed, and there's more than enough room for a full-size GPU to plug in without cramping the other components.