It all starts with your CPU, a chipset that is the heart of your gaming rig. In essence, your CPU needs all the compatible components to function correctly. The significant and foremost element is the hub of your gaming system: motherboard. On the motherboard, you slot in all the critical components. Now imagine the motherboard as the soil on which you’ll plant a seed. If the soil is corrosive and withering away day by day, what will happen to your seed? It will die out, right? That’s how delicate the central processing unit is. Do not worry! In this article, we will be enumerating all the best CPU motherboard combos that you can cherry-pick for your gaming system.
It’s also worth mentioning that compatibility doesn’t entail high price factors. I know you must be wondering, “Oh, I want my CPU to be 100% efficient and compatible with the MOBO. How about I spend 1000 bucks on that”. You don’t have to spend much, considering hundreds of working combos for your gaming system. Although, you will come across absurd motherboards and CPU combos, the rivalry between AMD and Intel, and marketing gimmicks. Your foremost step should be to count in all the various features of that particular combo and cross-check it with today’s standards to tackle these problems. For instance, expensive CPU combos for gaming will have a myriad of gaming-related options. In contrast, the other ones will provide watered-down versions that might not befit the notion of “gaming.”
We will be walking you through a good and detailed product review so you can unravel all the mysteries that reside within each combo. So, let’s begin the guide to finding the best CPU motherboard combos without any further ado.
Prime 5 Best CPU Motherboard Combos (Overview)
|Best high-end CPU motherboard combo||Ryzen 9 3950X||ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII Hero X570|
|Best gaming CPU motherboard combo||Core i9 10900K||ASUS ROG Maximus XII Formula Z490|
|Best Enthusiast CPU motherboard combo||AMD Ryzen 7 3800X||MSI MAG B550 Tomahawk Gaming motherboard|
|Best budget-friendly CPU motherboard combo||AMD Ryzen 5 2600||MSI performance gaming B450 MAX|
|Best CPU motherboard combo for overclocking||Intel Core i9-9980XE Extreme Edition||ASUS Prime X299 Deluxe II|
Best high-end CPU motherboard combo
Ryzen 9 3950X + ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII Hero X570
The notion of high-end gaming entails all the top-tier components, whether it be CPU, motherboard, GPU, or SSD. In the end, you aim at getting the maximum possible performance from all of your components, and that’s only possible if you have Ryzen 9 3950X as a processor. This CPU motherboard combo will allow you to reach the soaring heights. For the specifications, the processor brings in a whopping 16 cores and 32 processing threads. Let me remind you; we are not reviewing mediocre AMD processors but a processor that belongs to a threadripper lineage. In effect, all these cores and threads are there to help you achieve seamless gaming experience, advanced overclocking profiles, and ultra-fast processing timings when multitasking.
Not to mention, with this processor, you can achieve up to 100+FPS on games like Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey and Final Fantasy XV. Unfortunately, with this processor, you don’t get Wraith Prism because such coolers are not subject to cooling threadrippers at their finest. That’s the reason you would need one of the best CPU coolers to reduce the rising temperatures. Other than that, the maximum possible overclocking profile can reach up to 4.7 GHz, which is praiseworthy. Not to mention, for the majority of the time, you will be running Ryzen 3950X on the base clock (3.5 GHz), which can be tweaked to higher levels as per your will.
ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII Hero X570 is compatible with 3rd generation AMD processors. It’s one of the reliable and robust motherboards you can slot with your Ryzen 9 3950X processor-no wonder why it’s the best motherboard processor combo in the list. For the specifications, the motherboard offers a myriad of gaming options to explore. For instance, you get to house in M.2 drives, USB 3.2 Gen2, AMD StoreMI for maximized connectivity. Not to mention, the design and layout are ergonomic and aesthetically pleasing. In my opinion, ASUS ROG takes both performance and looks together. On top of that, the MOBO pitch in a delicate lining of M.2 aluminum heatsinks. It ensures that the temperatures remain at bay.
Additionally, Crosshair VIII also offers alloy chokes and 10K Japanese-made black capacitors to enhance VRM control. It’s worth mentioning; you also get on-board 2.5 Gbps ethernet and GameFirst V support. Other than that, the MOBO also offers 5-way optimization for overclocking and temperature-controlled profiles. Surprisingly, the same motherboard brings in beautifully dancing RGB lights, channeled on and off from BIOS settings. Moreover, you also get to bask in DIY friendly design, which means that there are enough I/O ports at the back for better connectivity.
Last but not least, the motherboard can be slotted inside the ATX motherboard without any problem. All in all, it’s a refined and outstanding motherboard CPU combination to get in 2020.
Best gaming CPU motherboard combo
Core i9 10900K + ASUS ROG Maximus XII Formula Z490
I am not an Intel fan, but when I say with this processor, Intel has smashed every boundary. The “K” version makes it more worth it. Well, in layman terms, the letter stands for “Unlocked.” So basically, you can overclock your processor to extreme ends. It’s commendable that Intel core i9 10900K is the only processor so far to reach the 5.3 GHz threshold on extreme overclocking with ten cores and 20 threads. Not to mention, the same processor also offers a thermal velocity boost, which is a needed feature that helps in reducing thermal energy through passive cooling mode. You also get to hold 20MB Intel Smart Cache, TDP of 125W, memory support of up to DDR4-2933, and PCI Express lanes up to 40.
It’s worth mentioning that the chipset has a size of around 14nm and an exceptional transistor density for enhanced performance. It was reported that the users experienced around 70 percent faster data tending rates. On top of that, the same processor could render 3D models and Ray tracing particles within 10 minutes. In comparison, older models took around 15+ minutes. That’s a huge difference! Additionally, the overall max memory bandwidth pitched in by intel is 45.8GB/s. The processors also come with an integrated GPU (Intel UHD graphics 630) for at least turning on the system if you don’t have an external GPU.
Last but not least, the maximum shrouding temperature provided by the Intel Core i9 10900K is around 100 degrees Celsius, which makes it perfect for high-end overclocking- no wonder why the processor is best for 4k gaming.
With Core i9 10900K, ASUS ROG Maximus XII Formula Z490 will be the perfect match because of the proprietary options. Well, ASUS ROG is the motherboard with all the upper echelons of gaming and overclocking; thus, making it the best gaming motherboard available in the market. Not to mention, the motherboard offers a custom liquid cooling solution, which means that the temperatures will stay at bay. Well, ASUS ROG Maximus was designed to pump in all the component’s potential and present you with something out-of-this-world. The motherboard has been sprinkled with aluminum heatsinks that allow it to radiate heat at a sufficiently larger rate. It’s worth mentioning that the motherboard has a wonderful VRM that ensures resistance against sparks and electrical fluctuations.
On top of that, the design and layout are ethereal and aesthetically pleasing because the MOBO is from the top-tier lineage, hence making it accessible to the rich peeps. Moreover, the motherboard ensures automatic A.I. overclocking tuning, which means that the MOBO will change overclocking profiles depending on the current temperature. It’s surprising to see A.I. working at its finest on the motherboard, as the A.I. controls probably everything; hence, reducing manual tweaking from the user. For the specifications, you get PROCOOL II power connectors, 16 power stage, multiple GPU slotting, DDR4 x 4 DIMM slots, 3 x M.2 sockets, and a plethora of USB connectors at the back.
Last but not least, you also get hold of 5-way optimization for enhanced performance.
Best Enthusiast CPU motherboard combo
AMD Ryzen 7 3800X + MSI MAG B550 Tomahawk Gaming motherboard
For AMD lovers, there’s something special waiting for them. It’s the best enthusiast CPU motherboard combo, which entails two golden components to sustain gaming for years to come. Not too expensive, not too cheap, just the average seasoning. For the processor it belongs to the “X” lineage, which means it’s a threadripper. Well, threadripper processors are way better in terms of overclocking, multitasking, gaming, and rendering. Although Intel pitches in their hyper-threading processors, in my opinion, AMD’s threadrippers are solid and refined. From the recent reports, it was apparent that the game achieved high FPS numbers in games like Red dead redemption two and Battlefront 2.
Not to mention, Ryzen 7 3800x is one of those processors which offer dual graphics and storage bandwidth. It’s also worth noting that the processor also offers a massive 36MB GameCache and advanced on-chip boosted gaming performance. Moreover, the processor is cool, quiet, and uses a 7nm chipset with double the transistor density. Furthermore, the processor’s maximum frequency is 4.5 GHz on the base clock, which is applaudable. Do you know what I love about this processor? You get a dedicated wraith prism cooler, which helps in reducing the soaring temperatures.
Last but not least, the processor also offers aggressive overclocking profiles, which you can take advantage of in gaming.
To pair up your AMD Ryzen 7 3800X, you would need MSI MAG B550 Tomahawk Gaming motherboard, which is one of the best variants for B550 to date. From the recent reports, people experienced a seamless gaming experience on the MSI variant as compared to others. For the installation, it’s relatively easier to connect the motherboard inside the case. Use the cables, and bingo, it’s done. For the specifications, the motherboard offers Turbo USB modules, which means you can connect Gen 2, and Type-C connectors without any problem. The motherboard also offers extended heatsinks, which are sprinkled all over the motherboard for reducing the temperatures.
It’s worth mentioning that the motherboard also has a DDR4 boost, which means that you can connect high power RAM modules for enhanced gaming performance. Moreover, the M.2 Shield Frozr helps in lowering the M.2 SSD temperatures, which means now you have the liability of switching to SSD modules without having a fear of short-circuiting them due to high temps. Furthermore, the motherboard ensures that the fan support remains all-time high, which means that you can connect as many RGB headers with the motherboard for high airflow series. You also get the support of turning on mystic lights, USB connectors, Audio support, and an enhanced networking system (2.5G plus Gigabit LAN).
Last but not least, you can overclock your GPU, CPU, and RAM modules (up to 5100+ on O.C. mode) without fearing that you might kill the components. All in all, it’s a beautiful enthusiast gaming motherboard that can be decently paired up with AMD Ryzen 7 3800x.
Best budget-friendly CPU motherboard combo
AMD Ryzen 5 2600 + MSI performance gaming B450 MAX
If you are looking forward to something budget-friendly and optimized, then AMD Ryzen 2600 should be your resort. Why? Because people have been playing all the latest AAA titles on the processor without any issue. There were no lags, delays in timings, or anything that promotes degrading performance. For the specifications, you get a dedicated wraith prism cooler, making you spend less on your overall gaming budget. Since the AMD processor uses Zen architecture, the performance gain is nearly 150% compared to Intel’s flagship models. That’s humongous and lovely at the same time. Not to mention, the processor has 6 cores and 12 threads, which is enough to sustain medium-range gaming, and multitasking at the same time.
On top of that, the maximum temperature pitched in by the processor is 95 Degrees, which is enough to sustain high overclocking profiles. It’s worth mentioning that the base clock for the processor is 3.4 GHz, and can be reached up to 3.9 GHz on overclocking profiles. Last but not least, you can pair up DDR4 memory modules without hesitation because the Zen architecture is compatible with the DDR4 type.
All in all, it’s a magnificent budget-friendly processor which also offers a VR-ready experience. What else would one want?
MSI performance gaming B450 MAX is a motherboard that brings in the notion of “budget-friendly” at its finest. For the specifications, you can slot in 2nd and 3rd generation processors without any known issue. Not to mention, the motherboard supports DDR4 memory 4133 MHz (overclocked), lighting fast Turbo M.2 slots, 3.2 Gen2 USB modules, and StoreMI technology. This means that the motherboard ensures that the versatile factor remains paramount. It’s worth mentioning that the motherboard offers decent VRM, which means that you shouldn’t be afraid of any short-circuiting or sparking. On top of that, the motherboard provides immersive sound and audio compatibility for an enhanced surround system. This is applaudable considering how cheap the motherboard is.
Moreover, you can flash your BIOS settings to slot in higher generation AMD processors. All you have to do is learn about flashing beforehand because if something erroneous happens, there goes your whole system down the drain. Furthermore, MSI B450 Tomahawk offers a lot of sprinkled aluminum heatsink for reducing the temperatures. All in all, it’s a breathtaking budget-friendly gaming MOBO you can get in 2020.
Best CPU motherboard combo for overclocking
Intel Core i9-9980XE Extreme Edition + ASUS Prime X299 Deluxe II
For overclocking, Intel’s Core i9-9980XE is the best processor you can get in the market. Yes, indeed, “X.E.” lineage doesn’t spring up from the “K” version, but it’s still somewhat the same in overclocking. The processor offers 18 cores and 36 threads, which means that multitasking and gaming at the same time are possible. All these numbers of cores and threads work together to give your system a kiss of life for working efficiently. It’s also worth mentioning, that the I9-9980XE version brings in the notion of hyperthreading, which means that the overall time taken for rendering at 4k is lowered by two folds. The processor’s base clock is 3.0 GHz, which can be stretched to 4.5 GHz for overclocking purposes. With this new frequency, you can do wonders, especially in all the latest AAA titles.
From the recent reports, it was apparent that the “Minecraft,” which is basically a highly CPU intensive game, was running @60 FPS on 4k. That’s a breathtaking sight because now you can run shaders and different modification tools to render Minecraft for beautiful and generous graphics. You would need around 165W to run the processor without any issue. All in all, it’s a majestic processor for high overclocking profiles.
With Intel Core i9-9980XE, ASUS Prime X299 Deluxe II is what you should be rooting for. It’s an ATX-based motherboard, which means you would at least need an ATX form factor casing to slot in the motherboard without damaging it physically. Surprisingly, the motherboard offers enhanced VRM, M.2 heatsink for reducing SSD’s temperatures, DDR4 RAM support (4266 MHz O.C.), and 802.11ac Wi-Fi high-end gaming. It’s worth mentioning; you can slot up to 3 M.2 SSDs on the motherboard, and have fun with Type-C Thunderbolt 3 ports. On top of that, the motherboard offers a 5-way optimization toolkit for delivering optimized performance on overclocking profiles for CPU and GPU. Not to mention, this 5-way optimization can be used as a cooling solution for your advanced and hybrid gaming system.
Moreover, the motherboard offers enhanced and well-thought-out cooling options for your system. For example, you can slot in as many fans as possible with the option of having a liquid cooler. Simply use the RGB headers for lighting up your motherboard. In effect, you can also set up different curves for housed-in fans. Furthermore, at the rear side, there’s a dedicated I/O shield for safeguarding your motherboard against electrical sparks and discharges. In conclusion, it makes a perfect match with your Core i9-9980XE processor.
Which combo should you go for?
PSA: The list is not finite, and can go lengths considering the bazillion combos available.
The combos mentioned above were tested inside gaming systems, and their performance was recorded. Well, Ryzen 9 3950X + ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII Hero X570 was the perfect combo out of them because the observed latency and FPS drops were minimum with this setup. But if you are looking forward to getting something in your range or budget, you can always go for Ryzen 5 2600 and B450 Tomahawk. Other than that, you have all the options at your disposal; thus, choose wisely. It’s worth mentioning that you will be the one using the gaming system at the end of the day, so it’s your foremost duty to have all the dice available on the board.
If you think my list was biased towards any of the brands, correct me in the comments. I always appreciated constructive criticism from my fellow readers. Happy shopping!
Frequently Asked questions
Which is better: AMD or Intel?
There’s no concrete answer to it, as both processors are best fitted in their respective fields. For example, with AMD, you can render high-quality 3D models but might not achieve the same seamless gaming experience that you can with an Intel processor.
Which is better: B450 or B550?
Perhaps, both? You can use B450 for slotting in 2nd and 3rd generation processors, whereas B550 can be used for housing in 3rd generation processors with all the possible gaming options. I would say there’s no competition between the two models. They both are excellent.