Whether you go for AMD or Intel, deciding on the best motherboard CPU combo for your PC can be a bit difficult. This due to there being so many possible motherboard CPU combinations out there at various budgets. Well, below we have included the best motherboard CPU combo for both AMD and Intel to help you make the right choice.
We have provided a few options from bothcamps. We have also provided motherboard CPU combos at all price points ranging from budget to high-end enthusiast options so you can choose accordingly based on your budget.
AMD Motherboard CPU Combos:
Ryzen 3 3200G + Gigabyte B450M DS3H
AMD’s four-core Ryzen 3 3200G isactually an excellent budget processor. It comes with a Radeon Vega 8 graphics,which means you can connect a display to your system immediately. The fourcores can boost up to 4.0GHz, and you’ve got 6MB of cache. And even if youdon’t push your system, you’ll get a pretty high 3.6GHz base frequency.
The processor supports up to2933MHz of RAM, which is actually pretty cheap so you’ll be saving a bit here,too. It comes with an included AMD Wraith Stealth cooler, which is more thanenough to keep it cool and stable under load, and is overall a great budgetpick.
The Gigabyte B450M DS3H, eventhough a budget board, is actually well-packed with features. It supports AMD’sAM4 socket CPUs, like the Ryzen 3 3200G, and it also has an HDMI port so youcan use the CPU’s integrated graphics card, as well as a DVI-D port.
You’ll get four DIMM slots fordual-channel DDR4 memory, and there’s a PCIe Gen 3 M.2 NVMe slot for a super-fastSSD. Add to this the decent audio section with an Audio Noise Guard, as well asthe Realtek Gigabit LAN, and the RGB Fusion support with up to 7 colors on theRGB LED strips you can connect, and this is a pretty versatile board. Definitelya good budget pick.
Budget to midrange:
Ryzen 5 3600 + MSI Arsenal Gaming (B450 Tomahawk)
Even though it’s priced very,very reasonably, the Ryzen 5 3600 by AMD is a real powerhouse. It’s a six-core,twelve-thread CPU that can handle both gaming and day-to-day tasks withimpressive ease, something not many CPUs at this price point can do.
With a base frequency of 3.6GHzand a turbo boost of up to 4.2GHz, you’re looking at a very fast CPU. Add tothis the 32MB of cache, as well as the support for PCIe 4.0 x16 speeds, andthis becomes an excellent processor for a variety of use cases. There is,however, no integrated GPU here, so you’ll have to get one for your build. Itdoes come with a very suitable cooler, though.
MSI’s Arsenal Gaming B450Tomahawk motherboard is a very interesting proposition. Even though it’s on theB450 chipset and it’s priced pretty reasonably. You’re getting an ATX boardwith four DIMM slots that supports up to 64GB of dual-channel DDR4 memory. Andto make things more impressive, you can run it at up to 3466MHz.
One thing we really didn’t expectto find here is two PCIe slots for AMD’s two-way CrossFire technology,something that’s usually reserved for higher-end motherboards. You also getMSI’s gaming features, such as Game Boost, X Boost, and GAMING Hotkey, as wellas the EZ Debug LED which makes troubleshooting a breeze. Overall, it’s animpressive motherboard for a price that’s more than reasonable.
Midrange to high end:
Ryzen 7 3700X + MSI MPG X570 Gaming PRO Carbon
For some people, four or sixcores just don’t cut it anymore. That’s where AMD’s Ryzen 7 3700X comes in,which is an eight-core, sixteen-thread powerhouse of a CPU. It’s an unlockedmodel, which means you can overclock it, and it has an excellent 3.6GHz baseclock. However, when that’s not enough, it can turbo up to 4.4GHz.
The processor supports highfrequency, dual-channel memory, and comes with fairly reasonable TDP of 65W.The Wraith Prism cooler with RBG LEDs that’s included is sufficient to keep itcool at stock temperatures, but if you’re overclocking, you’ll want to go foran aftermarket option. If you don’t mind the lack of GPU, go for it.
MSI’s MPG X570 Gaming PRO Carbon isa mid-range motherboard that is a part of MSI’s gaming lineup. It’s a greatmotherboard with features few, if any, of the competitors have. For example,you’re looking at four DIMM slots, which is standard. However, they support upto 4400+MHz, which you won’t find with the competition. Oh, and you can have upto 128GB of RAM.
To add to this, you’ve got twoPCIe 4.0 x16 slots, as well as 2 M.2 slots. Connectivity is great, with IntelGigabit LAN and a 2×2 Wi-Fi with MU-MIMO 802.11ax, and you’ll also get greataudio with Audio Boost 4. It’s an excellent motherboard and one that’sdefinitely worth its asking price.
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Ryzen 9 3900X + MSI MEG X570 ACE
If you’re going to be building areal powerhouse, AMD’s Ryzen 9 3900X is the CPU you should go for. This is areal beast, with twelve cores and 24 threads, all of which are unlocked so youcan push them even harder. It really can handle whatever you throw at it, fromgames to intense workloads that stress it quite a bit.
With a base frequency of 3.8GHz anda boost clock of 4.6GHz, you’re looking at an extremely fast CPU. Oh, did wemention it has 70MB of game cache and PCIe 4.0 support? It comes with the AMDWraith Prism cooler, which is quite enough to keep it at stock.
The MSI MEG X570 ACE motherboardis an excellent pick for a high-end build. It comes with all the features youwould need, and then some, but the price is actually pretty reasonable for whatyou get. The four DIMM slots support up to 128GB of memory at up to 4533+MHz,which is really good, and you have three PCIe 4.0 x16 slots for GPUs andexpansion cards.
There are a total of three M.2connectors on the motherboard, and you’re looking at a truly great networkingsection – Realtek 2.5G LAN, Intel Gigabit LAN, 2×2 Wi-Fi with MU-MIMO 802.11ax,it really has everything. If you’re after an ATX board that works well with ahigh-end AMD processor, the MEG X570 ACE is just excellent.
Ryzen 9 3950X + ASUS ROG X570 Crosshair VIII Hero (Wi-Fi)
If you’re going all out on acomputer build, there’s only one processor to go for (well, save for theThreadripper models) – the AMD Ryzen 9 3950X. This is the CPU you get if youwant your CPU to handle whatever you throw at it. With 16 unlocked cores and 32threads, as well as 72MB of game cache, this is a really powerful CPU,especially for multithreaded apps.
The base clock is a fairlyconservative 3.5GHz. However, push it harder, and you’re looking at a maximumclock of 4.7GHz, which is impressive, to say the least. Pair it with a good GPU,and you’ll easily see an excess of 100fps when gaming.
Even though there are moreexpensive motherboards to go for, we believe the ASUS ROG X570 Crosshair VIIIHero is actually a great pick for an enthusiast AMD build. It comes witheverything you might need from such a build, and then some, yet it’s pricedsimilarly to many other midrange boards.
It’s got four DIMM slots, as wellas two PCIe 4.0 M.2 slots to take advantage of the X570 chipset. You also haveRAID support, which is an interesting addition. With excellent cooling optionsand plenty of headers, you won’t be lacking in this regard either. And weshould definitely mention the SupremeFX S1220 codec, which ensures audio istruly impeccable if you’re using this board. If you need a high-end enthusiastmotherboard CPU combo, this is it.
Intel Motherboard CPU Combos:
i3-9100F + Gigabyte Z390 UD
Intel’s Core i3 processors havelong been a great pick for gaming, but at this point, the Core i3-9100F is theone to go for with a budget Intel build. It’s a four-core, four-thread CPU,which means there is no hyperthreading, but it’s still a great CPU at thisprice point.
You’re looking at a base clock of3.6GHz, but when pushed hard, the CPU can turbo up to 4.2GHz. This is actuallyquite a bit, and you’ll get some respectable performance out of it. And what’sinteresting is that with no integrated GPU and a TDP of 65W, this isn’t a power-hungryCPU either, and it won’t heat up too much.
Sure, there are cheaper boards,but getting a Z390 chipset at this price is excellent, so the Gigabyte Z390 UDis our pick for a budget Intel build. It comes with four DIMM slots for DDR4memory and supports both 8th and 9th generation IntelCPUs. You will also find support for Intel’s Optane memory which speeds thingsup significantly.
The PCIe connectors haveGigabyte’s Ultra Durable Armor, so they’re strengthened and made of stainlesssteel – excellent if you’ve got a heavier GPU. You also get an M.2 slot forstorage, which is a nice addition, as well as Gigabyte’s exclusive 8118 GamingLAN module. Add to this RGB light strip support, and you’re looking at a greatmotherboard.
i5-9400F + MSI MPG Z390 Gaming Edge AC
When four cores aren’t reallyenough and you want a bit more from your CPU, the Intel Core i5-9400F is theright option for you. It comes with six cores and six threads, andunfortunately, there’s no hyperthreading. However, you have a reasonable 2.9GHzbase clock that can boost up to an impressive 4.1GHz when necessary.
It does come with dual-channelmemory support, but just like any other Intel processor that ends with an F,you don’t have an integrated GPU. The TDP is very reasonable at 65W, and you’relooking at up to 40 PCIe lanes, which should be enough. Honestly, it’s a greatmid-range CPU by Intel that performs well in a variety of scenarios.
For a midrange Intel build, wewould definitely suggest going for MSI’s MPG Z390 Gaming Edge AC. It’s a verywell rounded out board that doesn’t cut corners where you don’t want it to, yetcomes at a pretty reasonable price. It’s a Z390 chipset, so it supports 8thand 9th gen Intel processors, and it has dual-channel memory supportat up to 4400MHz.
On the motherboard, you will findtwo Turbo M.2 slots, as well as support for Intel Optane memory to speed thingsup a bit. It has an extended heatsink to keep things cool and comes with MSI’sMystic Light RGB lights. Not only do you have them on the motherboard, butthere’s also no shortage of addressable headers either.
i7-9700KF + ASUS ROG Maximus XI Hero (Wi-Fi)
Even though the i7 CPUs did havehyperthreading up until the 8th generation, the 9th geni7-9700KF doesn’t. Still, it’s a very, very good high-end CPU with eight coresand eight threads, that performs more than admirably in a variety ofsituations. As is the case with any F processor by Intel, the i7-9700KF doesn’thave an integrated GPU.
What it does have, however, aresome impressive frequencies. Even though the base is a fairly reasonable3.6GHz, you’re looking at up to 4.9GHz with turbo. Yes, you read that right.And this is an unlocked CPU, so you can even overclock it if necessary. Add tothis a reasonable 95W TDP, and it’s really an excellent processor.
ASUS has a lot of nice high-endmotherboards, but it’s their ROG Maximus XI Hero that we think is the right fitfor a high-end Intel build. It’s a very reasonable price, but it doesn’tcompromise on any critical features. It’s made for 8th and 9thgeneration Intel CPUs using the LGA1151 chipset.
With two M.2 slots, as well asUSB 3.1 Gen 2, you’re pretty much set in terms of connectivity. There’s also802.11ac Wi-Fi onboard, as well as ASUS’s Optimum II for stability when DRAMoverclocking. The 5 Way Optimization will give you suggested overclockingprofiles when necessary, and you have Aura Sync RGB lights, too. The ROGMaximus XI Hero is really an excellent motherboard for this scenario.
i9-9900K + MSI MEG Z390 GODLIKE
There’s only one CPU that’s partof Intel’s mainstream lineup, that’s worth being in an enthusiast CPU – theIntel Core i9-9900K. It’s an eight-core CPU that does have hyperthreading, soyou’re looking at sixteen threads in total, making it a great choice formultithreaded applications.
It’s also a great choice forgaming, thanks to the 3.6GHz base clock. However, if you’re going to be pushingthings a bit, you’re looking at a maximum turbo of up to 5.0GHz, something thatwas previously impossible without overclocking. Since this is a K-series CPU,you can certainly overclock if you want to. Even though somewhat expensive,it’s definitely the go-to for an enthusiast Intel build.
When you’re going for an all-outIntel build, you do need to get a good motherboard. And few are as good asMSI’s MEG Z390 GODLIKE. It’s very expensive, we’re not going to deny that.However, it’s got a lot of things going for it. It has four DIMM slots that cansupport memory at up to 4600MHz, which is really impressive.
Networking is impeccable – Killer Wireless-AC1550 Wi-Fi and dual Killer E2500 LAN keep things at bay. You also have threeTurbo M.2 slots with M.2 Shield Frozr heatsinks, as well as dual front USB 3.1Gen 2 Type C ports. Add to this MSI’s Mystic Light Infinity, and you’re lookingat a very high-performance board that looks really stunning, too.
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