Best Motherboards for i3 Processors – While any of these motherboards would be compatible with your quad core processor, you bought a quad core because you believe in having the best performance available. While all of the machines offer similar memory speeds and overclocking abilities, the most important feature is to keep your CPU cool while you game. The Maximus X Hero will give you the coolest machine, inside and out, and that’s why we are slotting it in as the number one motherboard here.
There are many, many that have stood the test of time and people are very passionate. However, when you start to look at reviews and test things for yourself, there are a few motherboards that stick out.
As someone who is using a non-K CPU, the requirements are not going to be overclocking or extreme gaming. In that case, you should be choosing the best i3 10100 motherboard according to its features and aesthetic preferences. To summarise, this list covers all the top performers from various budget segments and any of these is a solid choice for 10th gen chips. Let us know if we missed your favorite mobo in the comments section below.
1.Asus ROG Strix Z390-E
- Designed for 9th 8th Generation Intel Core processors maximize connectivity and speed with Dual M.2, USB 3.1 Gen 2, onboard 802.11AC Wi Fi and ASUS optimum II for better DRAM overclocking stability
- Revamped 5 way Optimization over clocks Intelligently based on smart prediction and thermal telemetry while FanXpert 4 delivers dynamic system cooling; Operating System Windows 10 64 bit
- Gamer's Guardian ensures component longevity with safe Slot, ESD guards and DRAM over current protection
- Pre mounted I/O shield ensures streamlined installation and represents ROG's attention to detail and quality
Motherboard makers often use secondary network controllers to set their features above budget-priced competitors, and Asus chooses Intel’s value-priced 1.73Gb/s W-Fi controller for this. Its low cost is made possible via the Z390 PCH’s CNVi integration, as are the integrated 10Gb/s USB 3.1 Gen2 ports that don’t require any third-party controllers.
Asus even includes two USB 2.0 and a PS/2 port, so that users can connect their keyboard and mouse without consuming any of the I/O panel’s 10Gb/s (red) or 5Gb/s (blue) connectors. DisplayPort and HDMI 1.4b allow users who care to tap into CPU integrated graphics, an i219V PHY adds Gigabit Ethernet, and an S1220A codec connects five analog jacks and a stereo optical output to fill remaining space
2.Asus Prime Z390-A
- Designed for 9th and 8th generation Intel Core processors to maximize connectivity and speed with M. 2, USB 3. 1 Gen2 and ASUS Optimum II for better DRAM overclocking stability
- Revamped 5-Way Optimization that has the intelligence to overclock a CPU based on smart prediction and thermal telemetry. OptiMem II: Careful routing of traces and vias, plus ground layer optimizations to preserve signal integrity for improved memory overclocking
- 5X Protection III Hardware-level safeguards with Safe Slot Core, LAN Guard, Over voltage Protection provide longevity, reliability. FanXpert 4 delivers advanced fan control for dynamic system cooling
- Patent-pending Safe Slot Core fortified PCIe slots prevent damage caused by heavyweight GPUs
- 8-channel HD Gaming Audio featuring Realtek ALC887 high definition audio codec
Professional gamers looking to have a good playing system know that performance is the key. And nothing determines performance more than the motherboard. If you have a good motherboard along with a nice PC, you can enjoy your favorite games.
The ASUS brand of motherboards has featured some of the best motherboard models in the market. This time, we will be looking at one of the ASUS Prime Series – the ASUS Prime Z390-A Motherboard.
Professional users looking to purchase an ASUS Z390 board without much of the cost-upping controllers and aesthetics will probably be looking towards the Prime series.
The Prime series offers an entry-level jump onto the chipset with bare minimum features, but like the rest of the Z390 chipset, they still support overclocking through the Z390 chipset and look to offer better value overall than the far-reaching gaming targeted boards.
- Supports 9th / 8th Gen Intel Core / Pentium Gold / Celeron processors for LGA 1151 socket, Supports DDR4 Memory, up to 2666 MHz
- MYSTIC LIGHT and Sync: Personalize your PC with 16.8 million colors / 10 effects controlled in one click with the Mystic Light APP or a mobile device
- Lightning Fast Game experience: TURBO M.2, Intel Optane Memory Ready. Intel Turbo USB 3.1 GEN2
- AUDIO BOOST with NAHIMIC: Reward your ears with studio grade sound quality for the most immersive gaming experience, VR Ready: Best virtual reality game experience without latency, reduces motion sickness
- In-Game Weapons: GAMING Hotkey, X-Boost, Voice Boost
We do remember a time when the cheapest boards to use an enthusiast-class chipset were priced around $120.
Regardless of how we define cheapness, this board still gets you a voltage regulator with eight 46A MOSFETs for the CPU core on a board that undercuts the other “value-priced models” we’ve tested by a wide margin. That voltage regulator should be adequate to run the full range of Ryzen 3000processors at stock settings.
Since our test CPU is a middle model, we’ll push it a bit with overclocking.
And that audio codec still feeds five rear-panel audio jacks and a front-panel HD Audio header, because there wouldn’t be much value to crippling it with cheaper connecto
[content-eg module=Amazon template=custom/compact_extra next=1 hide=price]
Rear panel connections wise the MSI Z390-A PRO has a USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-A and Type-C port and four USB 2.0 ports; up to two USB 3.0 and four USB 2.0 ports can be made available through the use of internal headers. A total of six 3.5 mm audio jacks are powered by a Realtek ALC892 HD audio codec and a single LAN port controlled by an Intel I219V Gigabit networking chip.
The Z390-A PRO is the only MSI board to include a D-Sub video output which seemingly replaces the HDMI and also included is a DisplayPort and DVI-D output.
The MSI Z390-A PRO is the cheapest Z390 motherboard from MSI at launch with a suggested retail price of which all things considered is still quite expensive for chipsets entry-level model.
- Supports 9th i9-9900K, i7-9700K, i5-9600K and 8th Generation Intel Core / Pentium Gold / Celeron processors for LGA 1151 socket
- Supports dual channel ddr4 memory, up to 4400(oc) MHz
- Turbo M.2: PCI-E gen3 x4 interfACe maximizes performance for NVME SSDS
- Core boost, 8+4 pin CPU power connector, ddr4 boost
- Built for reliable operation
- Operating system - Support for windows 10 64-bit
- Intel turbo USB 3.1 gen2: powered by intel USB 3.1 gen2 controller, turbo USB ensures an uninterrupted connection with more stability and fastest USB speeds
- Multi-gpu: With steel armor pci-e slots. Supports 2-way amd crossfire
- Extended heatsink design: msi extended pwm and enhanced circuit design ensures even high-end processors to run in full speed.
MSI Arsenal Gaming AMD is a solidly built board compatible with most gaming components, boasting an amazing speed, excellent stability, and one of the best overclock capabilities. It is fitted with heavily plated heat sinks, an audio boost, and has in-game weapons.
It is compatible with 1st and 2nd Gen Ryzen processors. It also supports two way and crossfire technology. Temperature control is greatly enhanced, thanks to the MSI PWM and the unique circuit designs that guarantee it works flawlessly on high-end CPUs, even under full speed
6.MSI H310 LGA 1151
- Supports 1st, 2nd and 3rd Gen AMD Ryzen/ Ryzen with Radeon Vega Graphics and 2nd Gen AMD Ryzen with Radeon graphics/ Athlon with Radeon Vega Graphics desktop processors for socket AM4
- Supports DDR4 memory, up to 4133(OC) MHz
- Extended heatsink design: MSI extended PWM heatsink and enhanced circuit design ensures even high-end processors to run in full speed.
- Lightning fast game experience: 1x turbo M.2, amd turbo USB 3.2 gen2, store mi technology
- Core boost: With premium layout and digital power design to support more cores and provide better performance.
While the marketing rhetoric attempts to make this sound like a premium motherboard, make no mistake: As it’s built around the entry-level H310 chipset, the H310M Gaming Plus is designed for gamers and builders opting for mainstream CPUs who would prefer to spend the majority of their money on other components, like the CPU, graphics, and storage.
The H310M Gaming Plus supports the latest 8th and 9th gen Intel Core, Pentium Gold, and Celeron processors with DDR4 memory support up to 32GB with speeds up to 2666 MHz (the speed limitation here is baked into the chipset).
The Micro-ATX board includes a single M.2 slot and the full chipset complement of four SATA ports, along with an Intel-based Gigabit NIC rounding out some of the basic features.
7.ASUS ROG Maximus XII Hero
- Supports 8th Gen Intel Core/ Pentium gold/ Celeron Processors for LGA 1151 socket
- Supports DDR4 Memory, up to 2666MHz
- DDR4 Boost: advanced technology to deliver pure data signals for the best gaming performance and stability
- Audio Boost: reward your ears with studio grade sound quality
- M.2 and NVMe support, up to 20 GB/s Using PCI-Express Gen2 x4
The Maximus XII Hero (MXIIH) is from its Republic of Gamers (ROG) line that targets the gaming and enthusiast communities. Asus currently has 17 different Z490 SKUs, with the Hero Wi-Fi sitting above the Z490-E Gaming , priced the same as the overclocking minded Apex , and below the Formula Extreme , and Extreme Glacial (pricing unavailable, but if you have to ask…).
And just like the Aorus Master, the MXIIH also came in $100 higher than the Z390 version — get used to higher-priced boards, folks. The same thing seems to be happening on the AMD side with B550.
8.Gigabyte Z390 AORUS MASTER
- Intel LGA 1200 socket: Designed to unleash the maximum performance of 10th Gen Intel Core processors
- Robust Power Solution: 14+2 power stages with ProCool II power connector, high-quality alloy chokes and durable capacitors to provide reliable power even when push the CPU performance to the limit
- Optimized Thermal Design: Except comprehensive heatsink, heatpipe and fan headers, features low-noise AI cooling to balance thermals and acoustics by reducing fan speeds and maintaining a 5 Celsius delta
- Fastest Gaming Connectivity: Dual Ethernet with 5Gb and gigabit Ethernet , LANGaurd, dual M. 2, USB 3. 2 Gen 2, and Intel WiFi 6 AX201 (802. 11 ax)
- Industry-leading Gaming Audio: High fidelity audio with the SupremeFX S1220A codec, DTS Sound Unbound and Sonic Studio III draws you deeper into the game action
- Unmatched Personalization: ASUS-exclusive Aura Sync RGB lighting, including RGB headers and Gen 2 addressable headers
- DIY Friendly Design: Pre-mounted I/O shield, BIOS Flashback, Q-Code and FlexKey
The GIGABYTE Z390 Aorus Master is a full-sized ATX motherboard and is advertised to have a large 12-phase power delivery. The board has a trio of PCIe 3.0 full-length slots with the top two slots operating at x16/x0 and x8/x8 from the CPU and the third slot wired directly to the Z390 chipset which runs at x4; all three full-length slots feature metal slot reinforcement and offers support for three-way CrossFire and two-way SLI multi-graphics configurations.
In addition to this is are three PCIe 3.0 x1 slots which sit above each full-length slot. Along the bottom side of the motherboard is an LED debug and the Z390 Aorus Master benefits from dual BIOS with the selector switches located along the bottom full-length PCIe slot.
9.MSI MAG B460 Tomahawk
- Supports 9th and 8th Intel Core processors
- Dual Channel Non ECC Unbuffered DDR4, 4 DIMMs
- Intel Optane Memory Ready. I/O Controller is iTE I/O Controller Chip
- 12 phases IR digital VRM solution with power stage. Bluetooth 5
- Advanced thermal design with Fins Array heatsink and direct touch Heat pipe
- Onboard Intel CNVi 802.11AC 2x2 wave 2 Wi Fi
- 125dB SNR Amp Up Audio with ALC1220 & HIGH END ESS Sabre 9118 DAC with WIMA Audio Capacitors
- USB turbocharger for mobile device fast charge support
- Intel Gigabit LAN with cFosSpeed. Intuitive UI for Fan Control
B460, as a chipset, is a lot more limited than its ‘Z’ series counterpart. They don’t usually allow for overclocking of any kind, and, possibly more importantly, have a hard limit on your memory speeds, at either 2666MHz for the mid to low end chips, or 2933MHz for the higher end ones. You can’t bypass this with XMP, nor setting it manually, it’s a hard limit.
Strangely, this MSI board does seem to let you overclock your CPU though, assuming you are using a K series chip like the 10900K – that’s not something I was expecting on this board.
You also get a little more limited PCIe and general I/O support, but for the average user I can’t imagine it’s a massive problem. You actually still get 2.5G ethernet even on this budget board, along with the usual USBs, display outputs and 7.1 audio powered by the all-too-common Realtek ALC1220.
10.MSI MAG B550
- Supports 10th Gen Intel Core / Pentium Celeron processors for LGA 1200 socket
- Supports DDR4 Memory, up to 2933MHz
- Premium Thermal Solution: Extended Heatsink Design and M. 2 Shield Frozr are built for high performance system and non-stop works
- Lightning USB 20G: Powered by ASmedia 3241 USB 3. 2 Gen2x2 controller, offering never before seen USB speeds up to 20Gb/s with USB Type-C
- Latest Network Solution: Onboard 2. 5G LAN plus Gigabit LAN and latest Wi-Fi 6 solution deliver the best online experience without lag
MSI opted to color the MAG B550 Tomahawk in a mixture of black and gray. Black is the more prominent color, but there’s a good amount of gray that adds contrast and keeps the board from looking too dull. MSI also put some RGB LEDs around the chipset heatsink that add some much-needed color to the board when it’s powered up.
The chipset heatsink itself is average-size for a midrange motherboard, and smaller than you would expect to see on a high-end board. MSI configured this board with 10 digital power phases for the CPU, and three additional phases for other components. These are cooled by two relatively large heatsinks and should work well enough for everyday use and a bit of overclocking.
Best Motherboards for i3 Processors – BUYER’S GUIDE
While your motherboard isn’t going to have any kind of direct impact on your in-game experience, it will play a large role in determining what components you can put into your build. The cheaper the motherboard you choose, the more limited you will be.
However, if you are working with a tight budget, you can definitely choose a less-expensive motherboard. And, if all you are planning on doing is building a single video card setup then you don’t necessarily have to spend hundreds of dollars on an extreme motherboard.
Ultimately, though, your motherboard is an important part of your computer and you should definitely take the time to choose one that will serve your needs and even will give you upgrade options in the future.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Are The Best Motherboards For i3-8100?
For most people, they want to pair a motherboard with i3-8100 that will help with their gaming capabilities. If you don’t have the budget for certain things, you need to have the best motherboard that you can get to bridge together more of the budget parts.
Best Motherboards for i3 Processors – So you’re in the process of building your computer because that’s what people do. Unless you’re prepared to spend thousands of dollars to buy a pre-built machine with top of the line processors, motherboards, and graphics cards – building your own machine gets you more bang for your buck.