Motherboards are one of the most crucial components in a computer system, despite having very little to do with the overall performance. Two very differently priced motherboards can end up providing the same performance, which is why you must have a detailed look at motherboards when buying one.
In this article, we are going to discuss are all motherboards the same size or if they are different than what sizes are available. If you are interested in reading out what are the differences between ATX vs m-ATX vs ITX motherboards don’t forget to check them out.
Since motherboards are the largest component in a computer system apart from the case, it performs tons of functions. It not only connects all the parts but also provides lots of functionalities such as audio, networking, ports/slots, etc.
Is All Motherboards the Same Size?
Now, when it comes to the size of a motherboard, there are many sizes in motherboards, however, there are four common motherboard sizes, namely; Extended ATX, ATX, Micro-ATX, and mini-ITX. All of these motherboards are explained below.
Extended ATX motherboards are the largest and most powerful motherboards available and you would only see these motherboards in High-End Desktop Systems, also known as HEDT systems.
The best thing about these motherboards is that you get tons of ports and slots, which is great for someone who has got a lot of I/O work daily.
Usually, there are eight DIMM slots, eight SATA ports, five or six PCI-E slots, and two to three M.2 slots. The large size of these motherboards makes them compatible with large PC cases only.
Mostly, full tower cases are used for these motherboards, although some high-end mid-tower cases might be able to host these motherboards too.
The design of these motherboards is also much better than most of the daily use motherboards and the price of these motherboards is mostly above three hundred bucks.
ATX motherboards are the most common gaming motherboards in the market and that is why most people go for these motherboards.
The best thing about these motherboards is that you get a lot of choices to choose from and you can easily select a motherboard based on your taste and requirements.
There is another question on this topic that are all ATX motherboards the same size? The answer is yes there is a general size of ATX motherboards and all of them follow that size.
The size of ATX motherboards is less than Extended ATX motherboards. These motherboards come with four DIMM slots, which is why the width of ATX motherboards is lower than E-ATX motherboards, although their heights are pretty much the same.
The configuration of other ports and slots on ATX motherboards is quite the same as on E-ATX motherboards.
Micro-ATX motherboards are less common than ATX motherboards but they do exist because some small cases are not capable of hosting ATX motherboards.
Moreover, the price of micro-ATX motherboards is lower than the ATX motherboards, which is why they are great for budget users, who are looking at various ways to minimize the cost of the components while keeping the overall performance of the system good enough.
Now, the configuration of the micro-ATX motherboards is quite interesting. The width of these motherboards is roughly the same as the ATX motherboards but the height is much less. That is why these motherboards host fewer PCI-E and M.2 slots.
Other than that, you might not see many changes in these motherboards. Now, these motherboards are great for budget users, as such users barely use more than one PCI-E or M.2 slot.
The designs of Micro-ATX motherboards, however, are not as attractive as ATX motherboards, as they are targeted toward budget users.
Mini-ITX motherboards are the smallest motherboards available in the market and there are very few mini-ITX motherboards for each chipset. The best thing about mini-ITX motherboards is that despite having a small size, they are designed so that they can deliver top-notch performance.
That is why the price of most mini-ITX motherboards is more than an average ATX motherboard.
The configuration of mini-ITX motherboards is quite different from other motherboards. These motherboards are smaller than micro-ATX motherboards in both width and height and that is why these motherboards are compatible with all the cases in the market unless they have a proprietary design.
Mini-ITX motherboards come with two DIMM slots and usually, there is a single M.2 slot on the motherboard in combination with a single PCI-E X16 slot. These motherboards are designed for people who want to design the smallest-sized rigs due to portability issues or placement issues.
As long as the case of the system has a performance-oriented design, there is no difference in the performance of a system with an ATX motherboard and one with a mini-ITX motherboard.