What is Motherboard

System (motherboard) PC board

types of motherboard

What is motherboard – the second most important component in the device of a personal computer. In addition to the term “ System board ,” the name “motherboard” is used. The main purpose of the motherboard is to connect all the nodes of the computer into one device, so, by and large, this is just a set of wires between the contacts of the processor and the contacts of the memory modules and peripheral devices. All other elements located on it carry secondary functions, serving only for decoupling and matching signals. Of course, some unit on the motherboard may be proudly called the “controller”, but even in this case its purpose is to perform auxiliary functions.


General information about motherboard

Structurally, the PC motherboard is made in the form of a multi layer textolite printed circuit board. The number of layers can reach 12, but most often use 8 (except for paint and varnish). Between each layer there are printed conductors made of metal foil (the deposition or spraying method can be used), which connect the contact terminals of microcircuits, resistors, capacitors and connectors to each other. Below is a sectional view of a Gigabyte motherboard, which proposed increasing the thickness of copper layers for power and grounding to 70 microns.
As a rule, the thickness of the conductors is two times less, therefore, an increase in the thickness of copper buses improves the cooling of the system board elements, but a lot of technological difficulties arise. Since modern processors work with external devices at a frequency of several hundred megahertz, the length and location of printed conductors is now calculated according to the same principles as for microwave devices, when every extra centimeter of the conductor plays a huge role.

Between the processor, RAM modules and external devices there is a chipset (chip-set) – a set of chips that perform service functions to distribute signals between all blocks. When a voltage is applied, the chipset generates a specific sequence of commands that activates the processor. The processor, in turn, under the BIOS program tests and activates the remaining devices installed and connected to the motherboard. If the computer starts successfully, then the chipset chips connect the processor, memory and peripheral devices into a single unit – a computing device that is ready to execute user commands or respond in a certain way to the appearance of signals in the interface lines. The flow of information from the processor to the RAM and back passes through the electronics of the chipset. Even if the chipset has only buffer chains, then, alas, they introduce a slight delay in time, even if ideally in one clock cycle of the system bus. For modern computer systems, such a delay is already a lot, so at first AMD Corporation, and then Intel transferred the memory controller to the chip the processor . With this construction principle, the processor works with memory directly, and unnecessary links are eliminated, which increases the overall system performance. There are other options for building motherboards that depend on the processor architecture. For example, the transfer of the video card interface (for PCI-E) from the chipset to circuits located on the processor chip has recently become popular , which speeds up the graphics subsystem. In particular, it is permissible to mount all the controllers of external devices on the processor chip, note that a similar scheme has been used since the time of Intel 80186 processors, but it did not take root in desktop computers.

ATX Form Factor

Oddly enough, the most constant in PCs is the form factor (overall dimensions and arrangement of elements), which, as it were, makes the new and old models related. Due to the fact that all developers of motherboards and peripherals adhere to the same rules for mounting boards and the location of nodes in the case, users can independently upgrade their computer by installing the necessary peripherals, changing the old processor to a new one, etc. There are two main standards for motherboards – AT and ATX. The first, the AT form factor, is a board for a computer with a morally outdated processor. The second, the ATX form factor, is the standard by which new computers are developed. The difference between these two standards in the location of the processor and interface connectors, which necessitates the use of various enclosures. But everything else – fixing the system board to the case, the location of the slots, etc. – one way or another coincides. As a transitional option between AT and ATX, for example, motherboards were produced that could be installed both in a case with an AT power supply and in an ATX case.

The following is the location of the main elements of a personal computer according to the ATX specification, including version 2.2. In particular, one of the main differences of this version of the ATX specification is that the power supply unit is taken out of the circuit of the motherboard, which turned out to be necessary due to the huge size of the cooling system of the modern processor. Please note that in previous versions of the specification it was allowed to install a power supply unit above the processor, but this led to huge problems with cooling the processor.

motherboard chart

The situation is somewhat more complicated with small-sized and proprietary computers that use motherboards whose dimensions differ from standard ones (other form factors that are developed on the basis of the ATX form factor are used). To reduce the size, various techniques are used, for example, reducing the number of slots for peripheral devices, using various adapters to be able to arrange the peripheral boards not vertically, but horizontally, parallel to the plane of the motherboard. For such motherboards and cases, there is always a problem of modernization, often leading to the fact that it is easier to buy a new computer than to look for suitable elements for the old one. Below are the maximum dimensions of personal computer motherboards,

Form factorMax widthMax depth
Flexatx9.0 ″ (229 mm)7.5 ″ (191 mm)
Microatx9.6 ″ (244 mm)9.6 ″ (244 mm)
ATX, full-size12.0 ″ (305 mm)9.6 ″ (144 mm)
Mini ATX11.2 ″ (284 mm)8.2 ″ (208 mm)

BTX Form Factor

Intel Corporation published the BTX (Balanced Technology Extended) specification in 2004, which is the development of the ATX standard for new high-performance processors. The main purpose of the specification is to improve cooling and increase the mechanical strength of the motherboard; as defined by the BTX specification. In addition, the specification standardizes the methods for connecting input / output interfaces to the system board, as well as the case design. Since the appearance of computers made according to the BTX specification implies the development and release of new motherboards, then five years later the matter did not reach any significant industrial release. Here it can be noted that reworking the PC motherboard is a lot of work by developers and engineers, plus a huge amount of testing the product, fixing errors and problems. True today


Processors Sockets

Over the decades, many diverse processors have been released for use on PC personal computers. Some types of processors were so successful that they were produced for a wide variety of applications, for example, for installation in laptops and industrial devices. When changing the type of processor or its purpose, a silicon crystal with millions of transistors was mounted in a new case, which has other dimensions and methods of attachment to the system board. Unfortunately, the main path of modern microelectronics goes in the direction of increasing the number of contacts that the processor case is supplied with. Naturally, when the number of contacts changes, the design of the socket for the processor, which is installed on the motherboard, changes. If the ancestor of the current processors had only 16 contacts and was installed in a very simple socket – the “crib”, then the models of modern processors have overcome the limit of a thousand contacts. The socket for installing modern processors is called a socket. It is also called a connector for installing chips with zero effort (ZIF — Zero Insertion Force), and the numbers in the marking, starting with the Socket 370 model, indicate the number of contacts. In the recent past, the most popular socket for installing processors was Socket 7, designed for Pentium processors, and Socket 370, which installed Pentium III processors. It can be noted that in Socket 7 it was permissible to install both Intel processors and AMD processors. For some time, processors mounted on printed circuit boards, which were designed to be installed in special slots resembling slots for memory modules. For Intel processors, this socket was called Slot 1, and for AMD it was called Slot A. The earliest Pentium 4 processor models were designed to be installed in Socket 423. Later on, Socket 478 (mPGA478) was used for Pentium 4 processors.

Processors Sockets

Intel Core 2 processors and the latest versions of Pentium 4 are available with flat outputs (“legless”) and are installed in the Socket LGA 775.

Socket LGA 775

The new Intel Core i7 processors, released at the end of 2008, use the same pinout design for the processor and socket, only the number of contacts is significantly increased, and the name of the socket is LGA 1366. In 2009, the LGA 1156 socket was proposed for Intel Core i5 processors

LGA 1156 socket

Athlon processors are installed in Socket 462, aka Socket A. For Opteron and Athlon 64 processors, Socket 940 was developed (and its modernization is Socket 939), and the first Athlon 64 processors were released for Socket 754 (the release of processors for this socket is still ongoing). socket 940 and AM2, to clarify the socket mounted on the system board, it is better to look at the inscription on the plastic case of the socket.

Socket 940
Socket 940
Socket AM2
Socket AM2

In 2006, Socket AM2 was used for dual-core AMD Athlon 64 FX and AMD Athlon 64 X2 processors with a DDR2 memory controller, which differs from previous models in the arrangement of keys and an additional number of contacts (it has 940 of them); In addition, the cooler mount has changed. For Phenom processors, an upgraded socket called AM2 + is used, which is compatible with the AMZ socket. For processors that work with DDR3 memory, the AMZ socket is intended.

dual-core AMD

Currently, almost the same type of Socket AM2 / AM2 + / AMZ processors are on sale. In any case, in 2010, as in 2007-2009, users will have to make a difficult choice, including for a wallet, to select the optimal processor-socket-memory option, since it’s absolutely correct no solution is expected (we should not forget that new processors appear, and with them new sockets). For the powerful Opteron and AMD64FX processors, the 1207-pin Socket F connector is designed. Since the sockets look similar to each other, although they differ in the number of pins and their arrangement, it is imperative to study the documentation for the PC motherboard when selecting the processor-motherboard pair . The documentation always indicates which types of processors this motherboard supports. Installing the wrong processor very likely, it can disable the processor and motherboard. Of course, in some cases BIOS flashing can help, but this information should be sought on the motherboard manufacturer’s website.

Expansion slots

To expand the functions of a personal computer, connectors are installed on the system board, called expansion slots. Since the interface for video cards is currently being changed, motherboards with two options for slot sets are available: AGP or PCI-Expres x16, plus a set of regular PCI slots and PCI Expres x l. Additionally, a slot option with Wi-Fi functions (for creating wireless networks) can be installed. Other types of slots are found only in obsolete computers or on special-purpose boards.

PCI slots (Peripheral Component Interconnect) are designed to install most types of peripheral devices in a modern personal computer. Most often there are 2-3 PCI slots on the system board, but there are variants with 5 and 6 PCI slots. In small-sized designs, the number of PCI slots can be reduced to one or two. Despite the fact that there are several options for PCI slots that differ in supply voltage for peripheral boards, clock speed and bit depth, in practice, in most cases, only one option is used, which is designed for 5-volt boards with a clock frequency of 33 MHz. True, sometimes there are motherboards with PCI slots with a clock frequency of 66 MHz, but in such slots it is quite acceptable to install ordinary peripherals.

The AGP slot is designed to install video cards with an AGP (Accelerated Graphics Port) interface. When using the AGP slot, users should be aware that to securely fasten the board, you need to use a special plastic latch so that the AGP board does not come out of the slot when installing the PCI cards. It makes sense to buy a motherboard with an AGP slot only to upgrade an old computer. ATTENTION! There are three options for the AGP slot, differing in electrical parameters and keys (jumpers on the slot). Unfortunately, a number of video cards with an AGP interface are not compatible with motherboards of their own version of the AGP specification. In severe cases, not only the video card, but also the motherboard can burn.

In 2004, Intel began introducing the PCI Express slot specification, which proved to be very convenient for developers and users. Accordingly, at present, most motherboards come with PCI Express slots. For this type of slots, there are several options: x16, x8 or xl. The PCI Express x16 slot is designed to install a high-performance graphics card. Differs from its assignee, AGP slot, extended bandwidth and direct bidirectional data transfer. Together, these two parameters increase the bus throughput at least twice. Recently, 2 PCI Express x16 slots (or 2 PCI Express x8 slots) are beginning to be installed on the motherboard, which allows you to use two video cards in synchronous mode, for example, for NVIDIA SLI (Scalable Link Interface) technology. The PCI Express xl slot is designed to install other peripherals. The PCI Express x8 slot is designed to install peripheral devices demanding for bus speed, such as RAID controllers, as well as video cards. .

According to the AC97 specification, a single AMR (Audio / Modem Riser) or CNR (Communications and Networking Riser) slot for installing sound cards or internal modems can be mounted on a number of motherboards. Its location is not particularly specified. In some cases, such a slot is installed close to the PCI slot, which is not always convenient for the user. True, it should be noted that this type of slot has not received any wide distribution, and now it is quietly “dead”.

Slots ISA (Industry Standard Architecture), which should still be mentioned, because until now users have many boards with this interface, appeared in the very first IBM PC computers. For a long time, ISA slots were the most popular among all categories of users, but thanks to the efforts of Intel Corporation this type of slot today has become a “persona non grata” in a modern computer.

Of course, motherboard manufacturers are experimenting with the location of the slots on the board, staying within the limits of the ATX specification. For example, below is a Gigabyte motherboard. It has 1 PCI Expres x16 slot and 2 PCI Expres x8 slots, which allows you to use two video cards for collaboration (in .CrossFire mode from AMD, or NVIDIA SLI). Such systems are characterized by increased energy consumption and dissipated heat output. For external devices, there are two PCI Expres xl and x4 slots, and one traditional PCI slot is modestly crowded among its “young descendants”. At the bottom there are connectors for miscarriages (cables designed to transfer the interface connector outside the motherboard) of various interfaces. If you read the documentation, you can find

Expansion slots

Of the new products that introduced the new Intel Core i7 processors, three-channel memory can be noted, which allows you to mount 6 slots for installing memory modules. In addition, we can say that, oddly enough, the FDD interface remained for the floppy drive, although now only a few users use it, but for compatibility with old equipment, the board is equipped with only one IDE connector. But in the near future, it will likely be difficult to find a new motherboard with a connector for connecting a floppy drive.


In order for the processor in the personal computer to work at full strength, it needs the help of specialized microcircuits that take on the routine of working with RAM and peripherals. A set of such chips is called a chipset. The chipset may include a different number of microcircuits, but recently, the most popular solution of 1-2 microcircuits.

For two basic microcircuits of the modern chipset, purely conditionally, the names South Bridge (south bridge) and North Bridge (north bridge) were invented, which came from the location of the microcircuits in the block diagrams: top-north, bottom-south. Most curious, such names have taken root and began to be widely used not only by specialists, but also by users.

From the point of view of specialization, the north bridge lays down the exchange functions between the processor and high-speed devices, for example, memory and the PCI Express bus or AGP. The south bridge is designed to work with low-speed interfaces. For the exchange of information between the north and south bridge, modern computers use different types of high-speed buses, which are different for each chipset developer, for example, for VIA chipsets it is V-Link, SiS is MuTIOL (Multi Threaded I / O Link). Previously, the connection between the bridges was carried out via the PCI bus, but the data transfer speed through it was simply insufficient for modern technologies.

When exploring the capabilities of chipsets, users should pay attention that if earlier the development of a new chipset was marked by a significant increase in computer performance and the emergence of new features, then developers are currently professing the ideology of “creeping” modernization, when the next type of chipset differs little from its predecessor. In other words, the new chipset improves one function or adds support for one or another standard, for example, working with one or another memory. In addition, there is a development within the framework of one type of chipset of a whole chipset (several options for the south and north bridges), which manufacturers of motherboards can arbitrarily combine. In particular, microchips designed for the previous type of chipset can be used as a south bridge.

Here is a block diagram of the third generation of Intel G35 chipsets designed for the new Intel Core 2 Duo processors. The north bridge is the G35 GMCH (MCH) chip, and the south bridge is the ICH8R (ICH).

block diagram Intel G35 chipsets

As you can see, the most productive units are connected to the north bridge: the processor, memory and video card, and the rest of the periphery to the south. Communication between bridges is carried out at a speed of 2 GB / s. Please note that motherboard manufacturers are offered the choice between one PCI Express x16 slot or two PCI Express x8.

Recently, manufacturers of high-tech products have begun the epic of introducing high-frequency television, which will allow in the future to quite energetically empty users’ wallets. In the world of computers, this technology also begins its journey, for example, here is a block diagram of the VIA P4M900 chipset, where new blocks for television are connected to the north bridge. In addition, VIA Corporation has contributed to the development of improving the quality of sound reproduction on a computer by introducing VIA Vinyl Audio technology (this node connects to the south bridge).

The development of new Intel Core i7 processors necessitated the release of new types of chipsets to ensure their operation

all the new products introduced by Intel, only the memory modules are now directly controlled by the processor, bypassing the intermediary in the form of a north bridge. Instead of FSB, QPI is now used, similar to AMD’s HyperTransport technology. . It should be noted that only nodes were upgraded, however, without revolutionary changes.

Chipset Manufacturers

If x86 processors are made by three or four manufacturers (we consider only those who have a sufficient market share), then a bit more companies are engaged in chipsets for these processors, though not as many as in other areas of microelectronics. And this is due to very difficult problems in the development of high-performance microcircuits, which are not inferior in complexity to the processors themselves. In addition, we have to keep up with the leaders of Intel and AMD, who every year upgrade their processors. The chipset market for x86 processors is held by Intel, NVIDIA, VIA and AMD.

Intel has traditionally been developing chipsets for the entire range of its processors; introduces new ideas and technologies into the circuitry of the descendants of the IBM PC. But very often, third-party chipsets are more attractive to users in one way or another. True, recently the release speed of new processors has become so fast that third-party manufacturers simply do not have time to offer original ideas.

AMD Corporation until mid-2006 released a limited number of chipsets for its processors. In 2006, AMD acquired the famous Canadian manufacturer of chipsets for video cards – ATI Corporation, inheriting chipsets with proprietary CrossFire technology. AMD currently offers chipsets for both its processors and the competing Intel platform.

NVIDIA Corporation, famous for its chipsets for video cards, also produces chipsets for motherboards. Original technologies, especially graphic ones, allow her to be a very serious player in the market. For example, chipsets for Pentium 4 processors were most preferred by many users.

VIA Corporation designs and manufactures chipsets not only for its processors, but also for processors manufactured by Intel and AMD. Often her ideas in “chipset building” are more interesting than those of competitors.

Silicon Integrated Systems Corporation – SiS – manufactures chipsets and motherboards based on them. During the reign of Socket 7.

Intel chipset specifications
The crisis year of 2009 was not rich in new chipset industry, as in the previous two years. Basically, users are offered products that are modified in one or another functional part. The only exception is the output of the long-awaited P55 Express Chipset chipset, in which there are no two bridges now, as new versions of Intel Core i7 / i5 processors have a PCI Express x16 bus controller integrated on the chip, designed to connect a video card.

In 2007, Intel continued to release a series of new third-generation chipsets and slowly began to curtail the production of old products (both chipsets and processors). In the third generation of chipsets, support for old technologies and interfaces was rejected, and new solutions were proposed in their place. Today, for the most advanced solutions, X58 / X48 / X38 chipsets are offered. The new chipsets officially no longer support outdated Pentium 4 processors (this line of processors has finally sunk into oblivion). For mass personal computers, a whole fan of options is offered not only on the basis of new developments, but old designs that have been tested by time and gained recognition among users are still popular. The most successful chipsets of the old generation are being modernized, introducing support for new processors.

Intel Express chipsets have advantages over previously released chipsets due to some of the latest enhancements and technologies. For example, the Intel X38 Express chipset, which is also advertised at the end of 2009, supports the following technologies:

  • The 1333/1066/800 MHz system bus supports Intel Core 2 Duo and Intel Core 2 Quad processors with Intel Virtualization Technology (Intel VT), a dual-core Intel Pentium processor, and an Intel Celeron processor.
  • The PCI Express 2.0 interface provides bandwidth up to 16 Gb / s per port, which is twice the PCIe 1.0 bandwidth. The PCI Express 2.0 interface is used in all new chipsets, and is fully compatible in electrical and mechanical characteristics with the previous version 1.0.
  • Intel Fast Memory Access technology (advanced backbone architecture of the memory controller-hub, Memory Controller Hub, MCH) improves system performance by optimizing the use of available bandwidth and reducing the delay time when accessing memory.
  • Support for dual-channel DDR3 memory modules provides bandwidth of up to 21.2 GB / s (DDR3 1333 RAM with a bandwidth of 10.6 GB / s, operating in dual channel mode) and memory addressing of up to 8 GB for faster system response and support 64 -bit computing.
  • Support for dual-channel DDR2 memory provides bandwidth up to 12.8 GB / s (DDR2 800 RAM with a bandwidth of 6.4 GB / s, operating in dual-channel mode) and memory addressing up to 8 GB for faster system response and 64- bit computing.
  • Intel Flex Memory technology provides ease of upgrade by supporting dual-channel memory modules of various sizes.
  • Intel High Definition Audio (Intel HD Audio) technology is a built-in audio subsystem that provides the highest quality digital audio and advanced features, for example, support for playing multiple audio streams and changing the assignment of connectors.
  • Intel Matrix Storage Technology (Intel MST) with the addition of an additional hard drive provides faster access to digital photos, audio and video files using RAID arrays of levels 0, 5 and 10, as well as increased protection of hard drive data using RAID arrays of levels 1, 5 and 10. Support for an external eSATA interface provides external bandwidth of up to 3 Gb / s.
  • Intel Rapid Recovery technology to protect information involves the creation of a recovery point that will be used to quickly resume the system in the event of a hard disk failure or damage to a large amount of data. To restore selected files, the backup disk can be connected in read-only mode.
  • Disabling the SATA port allows you to enable and disable SATA ports if necessary. This feature provides additional data protection by preventing the illegal removal or insertion of data through SATA ports. This feature will be especially useful for external eSATA ports.
  • Disabling the USB port allows you to enable or disable the USB ports, as needed. This feature provides additional data protection by preventing the illegal removal or insertion of data via USB ports.

Chipsets with an integrated graphics subsystem, which is still suitable only for office computers, are characterized by the following:

  • Intel Graphics Media Accelerator X3500 – This enhanced support for three-dimensional graphics provides compatibility with the latest games and high realism, thanks to vertex shader hardware, support for Microsoft DirectX 10, Shader Model 4.0 and OpenGL 2.0. Intel Graphics also supports Aero on Microsoft Vista and Windows 7 with maximum detail settings.
  • Intel Clear Video Technology – This hardware and software for video processing allows you to use advanced high-resolution video playback capabilities, clear images with improved line rotation and rich color.
  • High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) with support for HDCP copy protection technology is used to transmit uncompressed HD video stream along with uncompressed audio stream over a single cable and supports all HD formats, including 720p, 1080i and 1080p.

The new chipsets abandoned the old AC’97 technology in favor of HDA (High Definition Audio).

Intel’s High Definition Audio Technology is an integrated audio subsystem that delivers the highest quality digital audio and advanced features, such as support for playing multiple audio streams and changing the assignment of connectors. It supports High Bandwidth Digital Content Protection copy protection technology for playing paid content (you should be careful not to get problems …). For the new Intel Core i7-800 and Core i5 processors, in which the video adapter control circuit (PCI Express x16 bus) is integrated on a chip, a new type of P55 chipset has been developed, the block diagram is shown here. In fact, the chipset only controls the low-speed nodes that were previously assigned to the south bridge, so only one chip remains in the chipset, and there is no division into the south-north bridge. To communicate with the processor, the chipset chip uses a high-speed DMI bus. And, despite the “revolution” in chipset building, the new chipset does not bring any technological innovations to users, and all the most interesting functions for working with memory and video now relate directly to the processor architecture.

VIA Chipset Features

VIA Corporation designs and manufactures a series of chipsets for its now-known Nano processors, as well as processors manufactured by Intel and AMD. The following series are intended for the North Bridge (VIA North Bridge Solutions): for K8 processors manufactured by AMD Corporation,

NVIDIA Chipset Features

NVIDIA Corporation releases a large range of chipsets for processors manufactured by Intel and AMD with support for its original technologies.
a brief description of the technologies that are used in motherboards based on NVIDIA chipsets is given below:

  • NVIDIA ActiveArmor Technology — Enhances network security while providing the highest level of security by removing the burden of packet filtering from the CPU, which ensures a fast and reliable network environment. Supported on NVIDIA nForce Professional, nForce4 SLI and nForce4 Ultra MCP processors.
  • NVIDIA SLI Technology – Scalable Link Interface (SLI) technology utilizes increased PCI Express bus bandwidth and special software and hardware solutions to deliver amazing PC performance in products based on multiple NVIDIA GPUs. NVIDIA SLI is only supported on certain GeForce PCI Express GPUs and nForce4 SLI / SLIxl6 / SLI XE MCPs.
  • NVIDIA LinkBoost Technology (NVIDIA nForce 590 SLI MCP) – automatically increases the bandwidth when working with certain NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards.
  • DiskAlert system – in case of a disk failure, MediaShield users will see on the monitor which disk is faulty so that it can be easily replaced or restored.
  • NVIDIA FirstPacket Technology — With NVIDIA FirstPacket Technology, you get crystal-clear phone calls and the gaming performance you want. NVIDIA FirstPacket technology ensures that your game data, VoEP conversations and large files are transferred according to your preferences.
  • NVIDIA nTune 4.0 Utility — More settings are now available through this Windows-based utility. NVIDIA nTune Performance Manager supports automatic tuning of optimal performance and the ability to tune to your needs. Once configured, nTune will always automatically select the correct system settings for the running application according to your profiles and rules.
  • RAID Morphing (MediaShield) – Allows users to instantly change the current RAID configuration, eliminating the need to back up data and perform numerous actions. Support for RAID and SATA drives. MediaShield automatically selects RAID 0, 1.0 + 1, or 5 configurations to suit your needs. Advanced users can directly change RAID options.

AMD Chipset Features

AMD currently offers chipsets for all classes of computers.

  • AMD Seventh Series chipsets designed specifically for the new AMD Phenom quad-core processors and next-generation graphics devices. Performance, scalability and personalization are combined with an innovative and effective design solution that implements new technologies.
  • The AMD 580X CrossFire chipset, the fastest single-chip 2 × 16 PCI Express platform for AMD AM2 processors, offers the following advantages: the broadest possibilities for overclocking enthusiasts, full system controllability, and a functionally saturated ATI SB600 south bridge.
  • AMD 480X CrossFire is AMD’s massive chipset for multi-GPU platforms. Combined with ATI Radeon’s external graphics accelerators, this chipset delivers superior performance.
  • The ATI Radeon Xpress 1100 series chipsets for AMD processors have a faster graphics subsystem and are ready for use with Windows Vista Premium and Windows 7. When used on desktop personal computers, these chipsets provide extensive peripheral connectivity and support secure data management.
  • The ATI Radeon Xpress 200 series desktop chipsets are built using the integrated ATI Radeon graphics chipsets based on PCI Express technology.

The chipsets are designed with ATI SB600 Southbridge in mind, providing superior performance, support for advanced data access features, compatibility with Windows Vista Premium and Windows 7, and advanced power management features to create the most energy-efficient platforms. The seventh series chipsets designed specifically for AMD Phenom multi-core processors and next-generation graphic devices are most interesting: AMD 790GX, AMD 785G, AMD 780V, AMD 780G, AMD 760G and AMD 740G. Introduced in 2009, the AMD 785G chipset takes up! an intermediate position between a gaming platform based on the AMD 790GX chipset and AMD 780V, which is intended for the conservative part of users. The specifications for the 7 series chipsets are listed here .

The new chipsets use the latest technology, such as PCI Express 2.0 and HyperTransport 3.0. For professional use, the AMD 790FX chipset is designed, which supports three or four graphics devices with ATI CrossFireX technology on one motherboard. For the gaming segment, AMD 790 series chipsets are positioned, which are optimized for high-resolution games and HD-video. Today it is very difficult to talk about which platform from AMD, Intel or NVIDIA is the best, because this term refers to a complex of a processor, chipset, motherboard, memory modules, a video card and a hard drive, as well as an operating system. A simple comparison of individual characteristics, such as the core and bus frequencies or memory size, does not reflect the real situation. To some extent, you can focus on various synthetic tests,

Motherboard manufacturers

he production of motherboards is associated with less technical difficulties and requires less financial opportunities than the production of microcircuits; therefore, firms that design and manufacture motherboards are an order of magnitude larger than manufacturers of processors and chipsets. Based on the same system logic – the chipset – it is possible to produce a wide variety of motherboards that will differ in their functionality and reliability. Accordingly, the same type of motherboard (for a specific type of processor and on a particular type of chipset) from different manufacturers can have very different consumer qualities. Moreover, even well-known companies may have unsuccessful motherboards, and a little-known manufacturer is sometimes able to develop and release a motherboard that will have technical characteristics, superior samples of leading companies. Since there are a lot of manufacturers of motherboards, it is simply impossible to bring technical specifications of even the most popular motherboards in a small book. Therefore, when choosing a new motherboard, you should be guided by the information on the manufacturers’ websites, as well as user reviews that can be found on the Internet.to help you choose the best motherboard we wrote this article with all that you need to look from when buying new motherboard ” How to choose the right motherboard ” Choosing a motherboard, it should be borne in mind that now generations of processors and sockets are regularly changing, therefore motherboards are made for a wide variety of combinations of sockets and processors. In addition, a number of companies produce motherboards for Socket 370. From time to time, a number of companies offer motherboards for desktop computers that use mobile versions of Intel and AMD processors. Respectively, in the specification, you can find unfamiliar names of chipsets, for example, Socket P for Intel processors. In particular, the Taiwanese company AOrep, founded in 1996, offers a fairly large selection of ITX form factor motherboards.

When choosing a motherboard, it should be borne in mind that all companies can be divided into two groups.

The first group is the most famous manufacturers, whose motherboards are popular with a large number of users.

The second group is manufacturers whose products rarely appear in stores for various reasons. Based on the foregoing, the following are the addresses of the sites of the most popular manufacturers of motherboards.

  • Asus
  • Arep
  • Chaintech
  • EPOX
  • Gigabyte
  • Intel
  • Microstar (MSI)
  • Acorp
  • Albatron
  • ASRock
  • Biostar
  • Dfi
  • Jetway
  • Silicon Integrated Systems Corporation (SiS)
  • Supermicro
  • VIA
  • Formosa

1 thought on “What is Motherboard”

  1. A typical desktop computer has its microprocessor, main memory, and other essential components connected to the motherboard. Other components such as external storage, controllers for video display and sound, and peripheral devices may be attached to the motherboard as plug-in cards or via cables; in modern microcomputers it is increasingly common to integrate some of these peripherals into the motherboard itself.


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