Ever Wonder What the Motherboard does?
If so you’re in the right place. We’ll explain what a motherboard is and what it does in simple terms and hopefully help you have a better understanding of your computer. The motherboard is the base to any good computer and controls how all the components interact.
If you have ever looked inside a computer the motherboard is the large circuit board in the back of the case that everything connects to. Easily noticeable in a desktop but a laptop works the same, just on a smaller scale. The motherboard is there to provide communication between all the other components. You have likely seen and plugged things into the motherboard if you have upgraded your RAM.
Since laptop motherboards are mainly fixed and specific to the model, we will base our discussion around the desktop motherboard which has many options and sizes. Sizes of motherboards are called form factors. Form factor is also used for the size case you have which relates to what size motherboard will fit inside the case. For a great overview on the different motherboard form factors check out this wiki. There are many different forms and most modern cases will accept most modern form factors, but you always want to check when buying a case and motherboard that they are compatible.
The most important part of the motherboard is the socket type, or the processor socket. The processor (CPU) socket needs to match the socket type of the motherboard to be compatible. The socket is specific and will change every few years as technology advances in processors. You also have 2 main brands of processors that will determine the socket type of the motherboard, Intel and AMD. Older socket types will remain available even when newer once are released, and some motherboards will have the ability to accept multiple different types of processors.
Modern motherboards will typically have 2 or 4 memory slots depending on size, and expansion slots for you to plug in a video card or other to expand the capability of the system. Most motherboards will have some functionality built on to the motherboard like audio, video, and USB connections. This keeps you from having to purchase expansion cards for these functions and incur more expense, Motherboards have several connections for disc or hard drives. A typical motherboard will have at minimum 2, but up to 8 hard drive connections. The case fans and other case features, such as front usb ports, will also have connections on the motherboard.
When building a computer from scratch you will want to select your processor first. Based on the brand and socket of the processor you will then want to select a motherboard. This can be a daunting task with all the options out there. I always base my recommendations on what you’re building the computer to do. For basic home use, look for a motherboard that has on board graphics as this will simplify your build. If you’re a gamer or into video editing, you may want to opt for a motherboard without on-board graphics since you plan on installing a more robust graphics card anyway.
For a more in depth read and a guide on how to choose a motherboard hit the source below. If you have any questions, let us know in the comments.
Soure: Tom’s Hardware