A motherboard is the foundation of your PC and the most important one in gaming because it handles all CPU overclocking! It hosts all the components of the PC and makes sure they perform together in synchronization. All the PC hardware such as CPU, Graphics Card, RAM, PSU etc, are connected through the motherboard. Since the motherboard is responsible for connecting the components and hosting them together, it should be able to provide support so that you can extract the maximum performance out of your components.
For all those enthusiasts who want to take their PC hardware to the limit, a good motherboard has become necessary to squeeze the maximum performance the hardware offers. The latest Z690 chipset comes packed with top-notch features and supports the latest hardware for that very purpose. As obvious, the letter Z indicates that this chipset fully supports overclocking and is capable of overclocking both the processor and the memory. We have listed the best motherboard for i9 12900K and other high-end 12th-generation processors.
We’ve already made a dedicated guide on Best Z690 Motherboards, where our team has tested a couple of options and picked the best among them. In case you want a graphics card, we’ve got the list of the best graphics Card for i9 12900K featuring some latest graphics cards.
|Best Value Motherboard ASUS ROG Strix Z690-F Gaming D5 Read More||See On Amazon|
|Best Overclocking Motherboard MSI MPG Z690 Carbon Wi-Fi D5 Read More||See On Amazon|
|Best Looking Motherboard Asus ROG Strix Z690-A D4 Read More||See On Amazon|
|Best Budget Motherboard MSI PRO Z690-A D4 Read More||See On Amazon|
|Best Mid-Range Motherboard Gigabyte Z690 Aorus Pro D5 Read More||See On Amazon|
|Best Overall Motherboard Asus ROG Strix Z690-E D5 Read More||See On Amazon|
|Best White Motherboard GIGABYTE Z690 AERO G D4 Read More||See On Amazon|
|Best ATX Motherboard Asus Rog Maximus Z690 Hero D5 Read More||See On Amazon|
|Best DDR4 Motherboard ASRock Z690 Steel Legend Read More||See On Amazon|
|Best ITX Motherboard ASUS ROG Strix Z690-I Read More||See On Amazon|
|Best Performance Motherboard ASRock Z690 Taichi D5 Read More||See On Amazon|
|Best Cheapest Motherboard MSI MAG B660M MORTAR DDR4 Read More||See On Amazon|
|Best DDR5 Motherboard GIGABYTE Z690 AORUS Xtreme Read More||See On Amazon|
The Intel Core i9-12900K is the flagship processor from the generation and is the renowned competitor of AMD Ryzen 9 5950X. The processor comes with eight performance cores and eight efficiency cores. Just like the other processors of the generation, the performance cores support Intel Hyper-Threading technology, while the efficiency cores don’t; so the overall thread count becomes twenty-four. The base frequencies of both the performance and efficiency cores are quite low, at 3.2 GHz and 2.4 GHz, and the boost frequencies are quite impressive, at 5.2 GHz and 3.9 GHz.
Even though other 600-series motherboard chipsets can be used with 12th-generation Intel Core i-series processors, the Z690 is the only feasible choice for a high-end processor like Intel Core i9-12900K. The Z690 chipset uses the LGA-1700 socket, which is the latest socket for Intel Core i-series processors, and that makes it incompatible with the previous-generation processors, as those processors are based on the LGA-1200 socket.
The B660 and H670 motherboard can be used for cheaper processors like Core i5-12600K, etc, as such a processor does not require powerful VRM. The Core i9-12900K, however, should only be used with top-quality motherboards that not only come with high-quality voltage regular modules but also provide suitable thermal solutions as well. Moreover, the high-end Z690 motherboards provide the latest I/O features, which are simply absent in low-end motherboards. In this article, we will check the best motherboard for Intel Core i9-12900K.
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How We Test Motherboard for i9 12900K
Intel Core i9-12900K is one of the finest gaming processors and the priciest of the 12th-generation processors. It is a processor with sixteen cores, so choosing a motherboard for this processor is not exactly an easy task.
That is why we have created this buying guide for those considering buying a powerful motherboard for the i9 12900K. Following are some major points that must be considered while purchasing a motherboard for this mighty processor.
Pricing of Motherboard
The first and foremost thing you do is to check your budget. Once you estimate your budget, you can go further in selecting a motherboard. Usually, low-end motherboards cost around 150 bucks, while flagship motherboards cost more than 400 bucks these days.
A good approach will be to consider the value motherboards, which come at around the $250 range but provide most of the features of flagship motherboards. However, the design of such motherboards is not good as the flagship ones.
Looks & Aesthetics
Another important thing to consider is the motherboard’s overall theme and design. Choose a color theme based on the color of your PC case and other components, and then you can further narrow down your search.
Mainly, motherboards come in a black, white, or grey color. Most manufacturers cover these color themes in their motherboard models, so you won’t have to leave your favorite motherboard manufacturer just because of a color theme issue.
Voltage Regulators Module
Since we are talking about a motherboard for i9 12900K, you must buy a motherboard with a powerful VRM. VRM, aka Voltage Regulator Module, is responsible for providing power to the processor and memory. As i9 12900K is a power-hungry processor, if you couple this processor with a motherboard with weak VRM, you will have a lot of issues, especially in the case of overclocking.
Thankfully, most Z690 motherboards come with a powerful VRM, although make sure that you check it before finalizing your selection.
A great thing about the Z690 motherboards is that they provide many future-proof features, where the DDR5 RAM and PCI-E 5.0 slot are the most prominent. Unfortunately, not all the Z690 motherboards come with these features, and if you buy a motherboard without these features, you may have to change your motherboard shortly due to the added benefit of these features.
Therefore, buying a motherboard that supports these features will be better, so you don’t have to upgrade the motherboard later.
One of the basic use of a motherboard is to provide connectivity, whether with USB ports, LAN ports, audio ports, WiFi, or whatever.
Usually, low-end motherboards tend to cheap out on ports and slots, so you should ensure that the motherboard you are buying provides enough ports and slots that cover your daily usage.
The 13 Best Motherboard for i9 12900K Reviews
ASUS ROG Strix Z690-F Gaming D5
Asus has always oozed quality when it has come to delivering PC components to gamers and the ROG series aka Republic of gamers, always contains products of the highest standards, whether it be GPUs or PSUs. Asus delivers products of the highest standards.
The ASUS ROG Strix Z690-F Gaming is a quality motherboard whose release date goes back to November 2021 and it offers the best value when it comes to choosing a motherboard capable of running a Core i9 12900K. The board features the LGA 1700 socket along with a 16+1 VRM design and it contains four DDR5 RAM slots as well as multiple PCIe 5.0 slots. Other features include; high-quality components such as the 2.5 Gb LAN, multiple USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports, and a BIOS flashback button.
The board offers support for hosting DDR5 RAMs which are capable of reaching up to 6400MHz which is downright crazy if you ask me. There is no SLI and crossfire support as these technologies have pretty much become obsolete. The board also features 6 SATA 6 Express ports. It also comes packed with features like Two-Way AI Noise Cancelation, M.2 slots with heatsinks, and many more. There are a lot of features, and that all makes it the best motherboard for i9 12900K in 2023.
The aesthetics of the board feature a black and silver color scheme which becomes a treat to watch with the presence of the Asus logo on the VRM heatsink. The design seems quite premium and there are a lot of RGB options, especially with the presence of the proprietary Asus Aura Sync software which lets you choose the color scheme of your choosing. With these many features, the price tag of the motherboard is justified as it comes with multiple storage options, great thermal solutions, and a lot of RGB which gamers just love.
The motherboard offers you flagship performance that will give you a premium and trouble-free experience that will give you that competitive edge that you need whether its gaming or content creation, a PC built around this motherboard won’t let you down when you pair it up with a Core i9 12900K.
MSI MPG Z690 Carbon Wi-Fi D5
Reasons to Buy
- Five M.2 slots give ample storage.
- Excellent overclocking options.
- Great value for the price.
- Lots of high-speed USB ports on rear IO.
- 128 GB RAM with overclocking up to 6666 MHz.
Reasons Not to Buy
- Slightly overpriced and a power cut will be amazing.
- On-board audio controller is very basic.
We’ve already discussed that this gen of boards are more expensive than the previous one, and MSI MPG Z690 CARBON is the same. It falls in the upper mid-range class but sits below the high-end options like MEG in features.
Its features are better than the company’s MAG-series boards, and thus it’s more expensive. This motherboard will be appealing to you if you are looking for something cheaper but similar to the AORUS MASTER or ROG MAXIMUS in overall performance.
If you are looking for enthusiast features like Thunderbolt4, premium networking, and an overbuilt voltage regulator, you may need to spend a bit more.
However If you are looking to run your system with a high-end processor, graphics card, and storage drives, this motherboard will tick all of these boxes. It looks quite similar to the Z590 CARBON, and the dark-colored PCB with the grey accent looks appealing thanks to the RGB lights.
There is a 20-phase power delivery in this motherboard, which comes in an 18+2 configuration and 75A MOSFETs. It can handle anything you will throw on it, and this is why we’ve put it on our list.
However, it’s not as powerful as other high-end motherboards that offer 105A MOSFETs like ASRock TAICHI. The upper part of the motherboard has four memory slots which allow you to install 128GB of DDR5 RAM, while with the XMP profiles, you can enhance the memory speed up to 6400 MHz.
There are three PCIe X16 slots on this motherboard, where two come with MSI PCI Steel Armor. Also, the two PCI slots on this motherboard run at the Gen5 interface, while the remaining one is PCIe 4.0 slot.
There are five M.2 slots from which one is PCIe 5.0 slot, while the remaining four use PCI 4.0. There are six SATA III ports on the motherboard with at least ten USB 3.2 slots at the rear I/O panel, which includes both Type-A and Type-C ports.
The price of this motherboard is slightly higher relatively, but if there is a discount, it will be amazing for most users. This motherboard has plenty of connectivity options, and it offers solid overclocking performance.
The VRM of this motherboard has 75A MOSFETs, which ensure great overclocking performance, but if you compare it with some other competitors, they are offering slightly better performance. This solid performance and great features make it one of the best motherboards for i9-12900K builds.
Asus ROG Strix Z690-A D4
Reasons to Buy
- Great pricing.
- Good overclocking performance.
- Lot's of option for connectivity.
Reasons Not to Buy
- Nothing to mention.
The ASUS ROG Strix Z690-A is a budget-friendly motherboard in the series, and it’s similar to the afore-mentioned ROG Strix Z690-E but with a few features cut off and a slightly lower price tag.
To simplify things, this motherboard is ASUS ROG Strix Z690-F, but instead of dark colors, the company shifted to white and silver brushed aluminum heatsinks. There is a graffiti-like design on the chipset heatsinks and the I/O cover, and it has RGB lights to look appealing in modern builds.
We are listing this motherboard in place of the ASUS TUF GAMING Z690, but that doesn’t mean we don’t like that board, as I was much impressed with ASUS’s improvements in the TUF series.
If you are looking for a white motherboard for your i9-12900K, there are countable options at your fingertips, but this ROG series motherboard is the best. There are 17 phases for power delivery here, which come in a 16+1 phase configuration and have a lot of metal around the VRM section for efficient heat dissipation.
The black-colored PCB with silver brushed aluminum heatsinks looks appealing on this motherboard, and the RGB lights make it even better.
This motherboard is covered with heatsinks, including an I/O cover, voltage regulators heatsinks, and M.2 heatsinks. There are four DDR4 memory slots on this motherboard which accepts 128 GB of RAM clocked at 5333 MHz.
There are two PCIe X16 slots on the motherboard, where the primary slot runs at PCIe 5.0 mode and the second slot runs at 4.0 mode. The top slot comes with PCIe Steel Armor so that you can install any graphics card, including RTX 3090, and you will not have to worry about the bending of slots.
The bottom slot runs at the PCIe 4.0, supporting multiple graphics card configurations. There are four PCIe 4.0 M.2 slots on the motherboard for high-speed storage devices, all of which come with their dedicated heat spreaders.
The rear side of the motherboard has 10+ USB ports, including USB 3.2 Type-A and Type-C ports with data transfer speed up to 10 Gbps. A BIOS FlashBack button at the rear panel of this motherboard means that you can easily update the BIOS.
The overall features of this motherboard are interesting. Still, it’s a budget motherboard, and I would recommend if you can afford to go with the ROG Strix-E variant to enjoy the premium features.
MSI PRO Z690-A D4
Reasons to Buy
- Budget pricing with basic features set.
- 14+1+1 Phases VRM 50A MOSFETs.
- Memory overclocking up to 5200 MHz.
- PCIe 5.0 slot with Steel Armor.
Reasons Not to Buy
- Only recommended for budget builds.
- Not aesthetically appealing.
MSI Z690-A PRO is an entry-level motherboard for the Intel Alder Lake processors, and the only reason it’s here is to cover the best entry-level motherboard for the i9-12900K spot. At a very affordable price, this motherboard is quite similar to the MAG series while having modest features compared to the MPG motherboards.
This motherboard comes in a dark-colored PCB with a white accent on it, which gives professional look. It lacks RGB lights and even the I/O cover is missing, which is a bit disappointing.
There are two variants of this motherboard, one comes with integrated Wi-Fi, while the other one lacks it, and you can save some bucks on it. Looking at the lower part of the motherboard, there are three PCIe X16 slots where one is PCIe 5.0 support, while the other two are PCIe 3.0 and a PCIe X1 slot for expansion cards.
There are four PCIe 4.0 M.2 slots on this board from which one comes with its heat spreader, while the other lacks it, and for further storage, it has six SATA III ports.
The chipset heatsink of this motherboard is black-colored with white PRO Series branding on it. There is a 14-phase VRM used here with an extended heatsink over them to overclock any Alder Lake processor and 55A power stage capacitors. The price and features of this motherboard makes it appealing to users and this is why we are calling it the best motherboard for i9-12900K.
The top right section of this motherboard has four memory slots which allow you to install 128 GB of DDR4 memory clocked at 5200 MHz and is compatible with XMP profiles for excellent data rates on memory modules.
The networking side of this motherboard is powered by an Intel I225-V 2.5Gbps LAN controller, while the audio side uses the Realtek ALC897/ALC892 Codec. Both of these controllers are budget-friendly, and thus they don’t affect the price of this motherboard much.
The only downside of this motherboard is that we are considering it for a flagship processor. While its features and performance make it a great motherboard for i5-12600K, there are no flaws in this motherboard even for i9-12900K.
The PCB of this motherboard has six layers that ensure the product’s durability and long-lasting stability without any compromises. There is 1 x USB 3.2 Gen2 Type-C (10 Gbps), 1 x USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A (10 Gbps), 2 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A and a few USB 2.0 ports.
It doesn’t make sense to compare this motherboard with the options mentioned above but still, it’s offering everything you need in your build. If you got some extra money to spend, we’ve some premium options from MSI on this list.
Gigabyte Z690 Aorus Pro D5
Reasons to Buy
- Excellent power delivery with 90A MOSFETs.
- 13 USB ports including Type-A & Type-C.
- Budget-friendly pricing.
- Four M.2 slots with dedicated heat spreaders.
Reasons Not to Buy
- Grey heatsinks are not appealing.
- Comes with Wi-Fi 6 not 6E.
- No integrated RGB lights.
GIGABYTE Z690 AORUS PRO is an upper mid-range motherboard that costs slightly more than three hundred bucks and is packed with all features that an enthusiast love. When you compare this motherboard with other mid-range options from ASUS or MSI, you will find it much cheaper with similar features.
Even though those companies have released some two hundred buck motherboards but they are all entry-level options, so in my opinion, you should spend some more money to get this one instead.
GIGABYTE has released twenty-five different motherboards with a Z690 chipset to cover the budget and premium market, but this one makes a fine balance between price and features.
Four M.2 slots, a powerful voltage regulator module, a 2.5G NIC, Wi-Fi 6, and a premium audio controller are the key features of this motherboard.
This motherboard looks quite similar to the previous generation board in looks, but there are few improvements, and I’m a fan of grey-on-black heatsinks, which looks appealing in RGB builds.
There are 19 power phases on the motherboard which comes in 16+1+2 phases configuration and 90A MOSFETs for the Vcore. This motherboard has four DDR5 memory slots that support 128 GB memory, and you can overclock it up to 6200 MHz.
Premium chokes and capacitors ensure a long life, and the PCIe 5.0 slots on this motherboard offer 128 Gbps bandwidth and three times less loss than PCIe 4.0. All these features makes it the best motherboard for i9 12900K.
GIGABYTE has introduced a fantastic thermal solution on the board to keep the temps down, including High Coverage MOSFET Heatsinks and Enlarged Thermal Guards which were missing in previous gen board.
Smart Fan 6 features multiple temperature sensors, and hybrid fan headers with FAN STOP provide you with complete control over the parameters. There are four M.2 slots on the motherboard with a PCIe 4.0 interface and six SATA III ports for further expansion of storage.
There are three PCIe X16 slots on the motherboard from which the primary slot runs on PCIe 5.0 configuration, while the other two are running on PCIe 4.0. The rear side of the motherboard has a good-looking I/O plate, painted in black with white labels on it.
There is a couple of USB 3.2 Type-A and Type-C ports with a 2.5G LAN port and more, while it lacks the BIOS flashback or CMOS reset button.
Asus ROG Strix Z690-E D5
Reasons to Buy
- Four PCIe 5.0 slots & 6x SATA3.
- 18 phases + 90A MOSFETs.
- USB 3.2 Gen2x2 Type-C (20 Gbps).
- Premium Audio Codec.
- Q-Release for graphics card.
Reasons Not to Buy
- Performance similar to DDR4 motherboards.
- Mid-Range motherboards costs 400 bucks.
ASUS ROG Strix Z690-E D5 is a high-end motherboard and is quite similar to the MAXIMUS models. The Z590-E Gaming costs around $299.99, while the one we are reviewing has a price tag of $469.99. If you compare it with other Z690 motherboards that offer similar features, you will find that its price is quite justified.
In our best B550 motherboard review, we’ve discussed the same price increase with these motherboards. There is a lot of changes in this motherboard from the previous generation other than the DDR5 memory and PCI-E 5.0 slots.
There are five M.2 slots, better overclocking performance, better audio chipset, better networking features, and much more. The motherboard comes with an 18-phase VRM, while the previous generation offered 14 phases, and MOSFETs have improved from 70A to 90A to overclock the latest Alder Lake processors.
This motherboard has every premium feature a gamer needs, but the high price is the only problem, and if it costs a bit less, it will be the best gaming motherboard .
This motherboard supports 128 GB DDR5 memory with up to 6400 MHz overclock support. There is one PCIe 5.0 M.2 slot on this motherboard and two PCIe 4.0 slots with a dedicated heat spreader.
Two additional PCIe 4.0 M.2 drives can also be installed on the motherboard using the bundled Hyper ROG M.2 card.
There are eight layers on the PCB, which help the motherboard against humidity. There are three ARGB headers, one RGB header, and eight PWN fan headers on the motherboard.
The controllers on this motherboard are also expensive; the Ethernet is controlled with Intel I-225V, and there is Intel AX210 Wi-Fi 6E for integrated Wi-Fi. Realtek ALC4080 is used for enhanced audio, and all these features greatly affect the price of the motherboard.
The rear side of the motherboard has integrated I/O with a black background and white labels which makes it very easy to read. A BIOS Flash and CLEAR CMOS button along with twelve USB ports are notable at the rear.
However, if you are thinking it’s expensive we’ve got some budget-friendly options too like the MSI Z690-PRO costing only $200 and is good for budget users.
GIGABYTE Z690 AERO G D4
Reasons to Buy
- Very affordable price.
- Four M.2 slots.
- Solid VRMs.
Reasons Not to Buy
- Performance loss with DDR4 memory.
- Vcore overvolts when manually set.
GIGABYTE Z690 AERO G D4 is targeted at content creators and professionals because of its features for the price. However, if you are looking for a budget-friendly motherboard for i9-12900K, no doubt it’s a considerable option for you.
Compared to the previous generation Z590 Vision G, the VRM heatsinks are quite improved. The plastic over the VRM section is gone, so now it looks much better and also offers better thermal performance.
Other than these things, I’ve not seen many changes in this motherboard as it still keeps the white and silver brush aluminum theme. This motherboard’s performance is no different from the ASUS TUF Z690 PLUS.
Though we’ve reviewed a lot of other Z690 motherboards, in our experience, some other DDR4 motherboards perform better than Aero G.
There is a 16-phase VRM on the motherboard, which is configured in 16+2+1 phases with 70A MOSFETs for Vcore. It’s better than many mid-range motherboards, but many of them offer 90A MOSFETs, which undoubtedly give an exceptional overclocking performance.
The top right part of the motherboard offers four memory slots that accept 128 DDR4 memory up to 5333 MHz with overclocking. There is some performance loss with DDR4 memory on this motherboard, but it is not so noticeable in real-world applications.
There are three PCIe X16 slots on the motherboard, where one runs at PCIe 5.0 and X16 mode, while the remaining two slots run at Gen4 X4/X4 mode. This motherboard supports AMD Quad and 2-Way CROSSFIRE, while it doesn’t have any PCIe X1 or X4 slot.
There are four M.2 slots on this motherboard having individual heat spreaders, where the top slot directly connects with the CPU. There are six SATA III ports on this board for further storage expansion.
The great thing about this motherboard is that it comes with many USB Type-A and Type-C ports, including USB 2.0 and USB 3.2 ports. There are two ARGB headers and two RGB headers on this motherboard to make your build more appealing.
Overall it is a great option for budget users, and I would recommend it as the best motherboard for i9 12900K system for those with a low budget.
Asus Rog Maximus Z690 Hero D5
Reasons to Buy
- Five M.2 slots.
- Two Thunderbolt Type-C ports.
- Push button to release GPU.
Reasons Not to Buy
- Very expensive.
ASUS ROG MAXIMUS is the company’s flagship motherboard series which offers enthusiast-class features. The motherboard we are reviewing is ASUS ROG MAXIMUS Z690 HERO and it is the mainstream model of the series.
We’ve already reviewed a mid-range motherboard from this company, so that’s why picking a high-end option. There are some other motherboards in the high-end series, including EXTREME, APEX, and FORMULA, and depending upon their features, you can consider one for your build.
In our review of the motherboard for i9 12900K, it did well, and it was clear that ASUS has put a lot of work into this motherboard.
There is a 21-phase power design on this motherboard which comes in 20+1 phase configuration, and 90A MOSFETs for Vcore, and this will give an exceptional overclocking performance. There is a lot of stuff in the box of this motherboard, like an ARGB extension cable, ROG GPU holder, and many other things.
GIGABYTE AORUS MASTER has an advantage over it as it’s less expensive, has better voltage regulators, and looks aesthetically appealing. Though it also looks appealing with its dark-themed PCB and heatsinks, ROG branding on the heatsink, and I/O cover with RGB lights.
You can install 128 GB of DDR5 memory on this board and can overclock up to 6200 MHz with different XMP profiles.
There are three PCIe X16 slots on this motherboard, where the top two slots come with ASUS Safe slot to protect the slot from bending or any other damage. Both of these slots are PCIe 5.0 ready and run at X16 or X8/X8 mode, and you may already know about the bandwidth of PCIe 5.0.
Also, the bottom PCIe X16 slot uses Gen4 and runs at X4 or X4/X4 mode, and this motherboard is compatible with both CROSSFIRE and SLI technology. There are five M.2 slots on this motherboard, from which three are integrated into the board. This makes it a good consideration even for upcoming 13th generation processors.
The motherboard comes with a bundled ROG M.2 card which allows the users to install two additional M.2 drives. There are two Thunderbolt Type-C ports on this motherboard that offer a data transfer speed of 40 Gbps.
In addition, there are seven USB 3.2 ports, including Type-A and Type-C ports, and two USB 2.0 ports. The price of this motherboard might not be appealing to all users as it’s a high-end option in the series, but still, the features and performance justify it.
ASRock Z690 Steel Legend
If you’re looking for a motherboard that gives you great value for money then I would like to bring your attention to a company that thrives on delivering value-to-money products for budget gamers without compromising on the quality, of ASRock.
The Z690 Steel Legend by ASRock features the Z590 chipset which runs the LGA 1700 socket on which the 12th gen processors are hooked on. The board features a 13-phase Dr. MOS Power design which will be able to deliver uninterrupted power to your processor, the Core i9 12900K. It also has 4 DIMM slots which can host up to 128 GB of DDR4 memory capable of reaching the 5 GHz mark, and there is also the presence of PCIe 5.0 slots thus making sure that it performs up to par with the competition and doesn’t bottleneck the hardware.
While it doesn’t have the top-end features but it comes with just enough features that will help you in running your PC with enough functionality that you wouldn’t feel like something is missing in it. You won’t be able to get the high-end experience but you won’t miss out on anything either.
It comes with ample USB 3.2 gen 2 type A and types C ports, 2 m.2 slots with a heat sink on the primary slot, speaking of storage options it comes with 8 SATA 3 6 Gb/s ports which will let you hook in a large number of HDDs if you want to thus take care of your storage needs. Other notable features include the XXL Aluminum Alloy Heatsink, Premium Power Choke, I/O Armor, High-Density Glass Fabric PCB, etc.
The aesthetic feel of the board doesn’t make you feel like it lacks in the visual department. It comes with a white-black color scheme with some RGB thrown in on the Steel legend logo present on the VRM heatsink. It comes with the Polychrome RGB Sync which will let you choose the color scheme that appeals to you thus ensuring that it’s a motherboard that will give you great value for money!
ASUS ROG Strix Z690-I
Asus has firmly cemented themselves in the PC community and ROG is just one part of their versatile product lineup. The ROG series from Asus has become a brand, among the PC builder’s community, that screams quality and premium products.
The ASUS ROG Strix Z690-I is designed for those PC enthusiasts who love building PCs in compact spaces. It’s a Mini ITX board that despite its small size goes head-to-head with a lot of bigger boards because it doesn’t compromise on the features despite its small form factor. It has all the features integrated into a nice style that make it look like a work of art.
Featuring the Z690 chipset, it contains the LGA 1700 socket which is compatible with the latest 12th gen processor series by Intel. Asus has included an Optimal power solution on the ASUS ROG Strix Z690-I so that it contains 10+1 power stages with ProCool II power connector, high-quality alloy chokes, and durable capacitors which are perfect for running multi-core processors in extreme conditions so that you can take advantage of every last bit of performance that the processor has to offer.
The board contains dual DIMM slots which are capable of hosting 64 GB of DDR5 RAM which can reach clock speeds of up to 6400 MHz, with the XMP mode, turned on. The thermal design of the board is also optimized for maximum performance as it comes with VRM heatsinks with high conductivity thermal pad, an L-shaped Heat pipe, two onboard M.2 heatsinks, and backplates, making it perfectly capable of hosting the higher end processors such as the Core i7 12700K and Core i9 12900K without any problems.
Other notable features of the board include PCIe 5.0, Two-Way AI Noise Cancelation, AI Overclocking, AI Cooling, AI Networking, WiFi 6E (802.11ax), Intel 2.5 Gb Ethernet, two M.2 slots with heatsinks and backplates, two Thunderbolt 4 USB Type-C ports making it a board that despite its small size doesn’t come lacking in the performance department and making sure that it doesn’t bottleneck the hardware nor thermally throttles them so they perform at the optimal level even in extreme conditions.
ROG series products are always a visual treat and the ASUS ROG Strix Z690-I is no different. It comes with a black and silver color scheme with the ROG STRIX logo further adding to the aesthetic value of the board. The board also comes with Mystic Aura utility that gives you great control over setting the color scheme of your PC so that it looks as visually pleasing as possible.
ASRock Z690 Taichi D5
Reasons to Buy
- Overbuilt voltage regulators.
- Multiple Thunderbolt ports.
- No Torx screws.
Reasons Not to Buy
- Six USB Type-A ports.
- Three M.2 ports.
ASRock TAICHI series is the flagship series by the company, and if you don’t know, the word “TAICHI” means “the philosophy of absolute potential”. For five hundred bucks, this is one of the best motherboards that provides lots of features, great power delivery, and excellent connectivity options.
The ASRock product stack includes around thirteen different motherboards, including all form factors, and covers all types of audiences, but as we are looking for the best motherboard for i9 12900K, we’ve picked this option.
When you compare this motherboard with Z590 TAICHI, there are few improvements apart from the appearance, where power delivery is the most notable. Like the previous generation motherboard, there are two Thunderbolt USB Type-C ports (40 Gbps), Killer network and audio controllers, three M.2 slots, and a robust voltage regulator module.
The 20-phase power delivery comes in a 19+1 configuration, and there are 105A MOSFETs for Vcore, which will give you exceptional performance for Intel Core i9 12900K. The motherboard comes in a dark-colored theme and suits most of the RGB builds as it has a black-colored PCB with black heatsinks.
There is RGB lighting on the chipset heatsink and the I/O cover with TAICHI branding. Most of the motherboard is covered with heatsinks, especially the M.2 slots and the VRM. The upper part has four memory slots which allow you to install 128 GB DDR5 memory with a maximum memory clock support of 6400 MHz.
ASRock Z690 TAICHI D5 is excellent in all aspects, but the biggest drawback I’ve seen in it is the low number of USB ports at the rear. There are six USB Type-A ports, while there is an add-in-card that you can install to get two more USB Type-A ports, we were expecting more USB ports at the rear I/O.
At the same time, there are only three M.2 slots on this motherboard, while we’ve reviewed a few motherboards for Alder Lake before, where they were four or even more slots.
We’ve discussed a few drawbacks of this motherboard, but the most important factor is its high price, so it will be much better if it is available at a discount.
The TAICHI X570 and other old-generation motherboards from this series come with Torx screws which are a headache for most users but not anymore with this one. Overall, I would say it’s the best gaming motherboard for i9 12900K if you are not worried about the budget.
MSI MAG B660M MORTAR DDR4
MSI knows all about the versatile range of PC builders that exist in the PC community such as the Budget builders, the mid-rangers, and the enthusiast class. Over the years, after excessive research and feedback, MSI has been catering to all the classes of PC builders from entry to the top end.
The MSI MAG B660M MORTAR DDR4 is a Price to performance product that can be used to power a PC containing a high-end processor as the Core i9 12900K. But it’s a mid-range product so you will have to ease off the Overclocking, but that doesn’t mean it lacks in the features department or can’t run the processor at all.
The MSI MAG B660M MORTAR DDR4 comes with a 12+1+1 Duet Rail Power system which means that it can handle multi-core processors just fine and combined with the Core Boost tech, the processor will have an uninterrupted and stable power supply so that you don’t feel any difference in performance. It comes with an optimal thermal solution that will make sure that the temps stay as low as possible even under tweaked conditions, it comes with an extended heatsink design, M.2 shield Frozr tech, Frozr AI Cooling, and its ready for an AIO pump as well.
The 4 DIMM slots on the board can host 128 GB of DDR4 RAM which can be overclocked to 4800 MHz with the XMP mode on, there is also a DDR5 variant of the board which can OC the DDR5 RAM up to 6200 MHz, although there is a small price difference between them and there is no difference of features between the two variants.
Just because it’s a budget offering doesn’t mean that it lacks in the features department as it comes with features like PCIe 5.0 steel armor slots, 2.5G LAN, dual M.2 gen 4 slots, USB 3.2 Gen 2x2 ports, Audio Boost, and AMD Crossfire capability making it quite feature rich.
The board is a mid-range offering and while it doesn’t look like a high-end board it doesn’t look cheap either. While the board comes with RGB headers it doesn’t come with a software utility which means that you will have to manually set a color scheme that you enjoy. Nonetheless, in the performance department, it won’t let you down and make you feel like you are bottlenecking and thermal throttling because of this board, making it a solid choice for building a PC that performs at a high level.
GIGABYTE Z690 AORUS Xtreme
Gigabyte has cemented its place in the market by dishing out high-quality products that gamers regularly choose to build their PC with. So if you’re an overclocker and love to tweak and twiddle with the voltages and frequencies and require a motherboard that gives you all the OC headroom you need then look no further.
The GIGABYTE Z690 AORUS Xtreme is quite an expensive board and comes with top-end features that are designed to satisfy the enthusiast class of PC builders. It comes with a robust VRM 20+1+2 configuration unit that will let you jack up those frequencies to the max that your Core i9 12900K is capable off.
Moreover, the board comes with 4 DIMM slots capable of hosting 128 GB of DDR5 memory which can be overclocked to 6600 MHz along with a DDR5 auto booster feature accessible from the BIOS. It comes with multiple USB 3.2 gen 2 ports along with 4 M.2 ports with their dedicated heatsinks as well. There is no shortage of connectivity and storage options and given the premium you have to pay then that amount of cash is justified for these features to be present on a top-end board like this.
Other features include Thermal Reactive Armor with NanoCarbon Fins-Array III Heatsink, Direct-Touch Heatpipe II and NanoCarbon Baseplate, Intel® WIFI 6E 802.11ax 2T2R & BT5 with 2 x AORUS Antenna, 4 x Ultra-Fast NVMe PCIe 4.0 / 3.0 x4 M.2 with Thermal Guards XTREME, Smart Fan 6 Features Multiple Temperature Sensors, Hybrid Fan Headers with FAN STOP and Noise Detection.
The aesthetics of the board feature a premium look that also screams durability. The color scheme has been set to black and silver with RGB thrown in on the Aorus Logo and the Eagle trademark present on the VRM heatsink. The RGB Fusion 2.0 gives you the choice of setting a color scheme for your PC that is visually pleasing to look at. Overall, it comes packed with features and it’s the favored choice of motherboard for overclockers and PC tweakers who want to tinker with the flagship processor by Intel the Core i9 12900K.
Things to Know About 12th Gen Motherboards
AMD gave Intel a hard time with their Ryzen 5000-series processors, but the Blue team made a great comeback with 12th-generation Core i-series processors. Intel Core i9-12900K is the finest processor of the bunch and comes with eight performance cores and eight efficiency cores. It is a power-hungry processor with a base TDP of 125 watts but can consume as much as ~240 watts with turbo clock rates.
Now, when it comes buying the i9 12900K motherboard, you will have to look at lots of things. That is why we have made this guide for those looking for a suitable motherboard for their processor.
The main chipset for 12th-generation processors is the Z690 chipset. Even though there are other chipsets too, like the H670, B660, or H610, for a high-end processor like Intel Core i9-12900K, most people would opt for the Z690 chipset.
The Z690 chipset motherboard is the latest flagship chipset for Core i-series processors; and comes with many new technologies and features. The most notable features of this chipset are DDR5 RAM and PCI-E 5.0, although not all Z690 motherboards come with these features. As for the other 600-series chipset, Intel’s decisions stayed the same as the 500-series chipsets. The H670 and B660 motherboard do allow memory overclocking, but unfortunately, the processor can only be overclocked with a Z-series chipset, i.e. Z690.
The H610 is the cheapest chipset for the current generation of Core i-series processors, but it comes with a lot fewer features, and even memory overclocking is not supported here.
DDR4 vs DDR5 Memory?
It is true that DDR5 RAM is much faster in theory than DDR4 memory kits, with motherboards supporting up to 6600 MHz, which is astoundingly fast for memory. However, the difference in real-world performance is not much. It highly depends on the software application you are using.
On average, there is roughly a 5 to 10% improvement in the performance of an average DDR5 memory kit compared to an average DDR4 memory kit. Overall, if you don’t care about the budget at all, the DDR5 memory is a no-brainer.
PCI-E 4.0 vs PCI-E 5.0 Slots
Unlike the DDR4 vs DDR5 RAM, the case is somewhat different when we compare PCI-E 4.0 and PCI-E 5.0. Theoretically, there is a 100% improvement with PCI-E 5.0, as it offers a raw bit rate of 32 GT/s, compared to 16GT/s with PCI-E 4.0.
However, as for usability, there is no computer hardware, as of now, that can saturate the PCI-E 4.0, especially the X16 slot. So, PCI-E 5.0 is good for future-proofing, but there is little advantage over PCI-E 4.0 with current-generation SSDs and graphics cards.
Now that you have gone through the list of motherboards you can get for your Core i9 12900K, the motherboard choice is much easier. I have tried to include all the best options from all budget ranges.
However, if things are still unclear, I have some insight that will help you choose a motherboard for your PC. If you want the absolute best of the best, then you should go for the ASUS ROG Strix Z690-E Gaming, as it contains all the necessary features and more that will help you draw the maximum performance out of your hardware. It will give you the ultimate premium experience that a PC enthusiast desires and deserves.
Although you can never go wrong with any motherboard, provided it has all the features necessary for your use case, it is future-proof, compatible with different technologies, and provides value for money.
Also, you don’t need to jump the bandwagon of buying every new piece of hardware that comes out as it might not fit your needs, so choose wisely and decide accordingly. Let this list be your guide in choosing a suitable motherboard that fits the criteria that comes with your PC’s use case (content creation or gaming).
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best motherboard for 12900K?
If you are looking for something that makes a fine balance between price and features, I would suggest you get the Asus Rog Strix Z590-E Gaming for i9 12900K. This motherboard has a solid VRM section and offers PCIe 5.0 M.2 slots and many premium features, all under five hundred bucks.
Is DDR4 Ram supported by LGA 1700 socket?
LGA 1700 motherboards come with both DDR4 and DDR5 memory slots, and even there are some motherboards like Asus Tuf Z690 Gaming that come in both variants with a little price difference. The rest of the features in both variants of these motherboards are the same.
Is DDR5 memory sticks backward compatible with DDR4?
The DDR5 has a different pin and cut arrangement than its predecessors. Installing DDR4 RAM on a DDR5 motherboard is physically and logically impossible. You can use DDR4 RAM on a DDR5 motherboard by using a DDR4 to DDR5 converter or adapter.