There are tons of motherboards out there for various processors, and if you have recently bought, or are planning to buy a Core i7 6700k, then you definitely should read on. In this post, we will discuss how to choose i7 6700k motherboard, which is important if you are planning to build an excellent gaming PC. Before diving into the topic of Motherboards, it would be best to understand a bit more about the Intel Core processors. In the old days, some of the best desktops used to have Intel Pentium processors until the company released their first Core processors in 2006. In 2008, Intel released the Core i3, Core i5, and the Core i7. I can’t know when Intel will introduce Core i9, i11, etc but…
The Core i7 is the best choice if you are planning to play some of the latest games and experience them on their highest settings right now. However, there are so many motherboards out there to choose from, and there are certain factors to consider while choosing i7 6700k motherboard. We have narrowed the options for you into five of the best motherboards for your Core i7 6700k. Let’s find the best combo for you right here and right now.
|Asus ROG Maximus VIII Formula||A++||$$$||4.5/5|
|Asus Z170 Pro Gaming||A+||$$||4.5/5|
|Gigabyte GA-Z170X-Gaming 3||A||$$||4/5|
|Gigabyte ATX GA-Z170XP-SLI||B++||$||4/5|
|MSI Z170A Gaming Pro||A||$$||4/5|
**Below, you’ll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.
Which one is the best motherboard for i7 6700k processor?
A motherboard by itself is positively useless, but a computer totally has to have it to operate.
The motherboard’s primary job is to hold the computer’s processor (CPU), and then let everything else connect to it. On the motherboard has ports and slots to let user plugs other parts like VGA, Ram, HDD/SDD, etc. into it to run the computer or enhance its performance.
You can see, a motherboard is like a road that will connect everything parts with each other to make them work.
What to look for in i7 motherboard?
We don’t talk about how to find motherboard that fits for your PC in general here. In this post, we will focus how to find best motherboard just for Intel Core i7 processor, and here are some points you will look for while choosing motherboard for your Core i7 7600K device.
1. Overclocking Supports – Intel K version is the CPU version of overclocking, so the overclocking capabilities of the mother are what you should consider when choosing a right motherboard for your Core i7 6700k.
Look at their Bios Utility and their overclocking software. If you’re new to overclocking, the motherboard’s automate overclocking software will be your best friend, it’s very easy to overclock your CPU.
But if you are an expert of overclocking, you’ll see the motherboards automate overclocking software doesn’t give you the best result in term of performance so a handy and functional Bios Utility will rock on.
2. Features – No need to say but a feature rich motherboard will help you a lot and also improve your system performance, like the faster SATA Express ports will boost your data transfer rate of your high-end SSD or HDD, you will feel the smooth when using your computer. Or the built-in Wifi feature, you won’t need to buy a separate wifi card, etc
A high-end mobo even provides the high-quality sound solutions like Asus’s PremierFX that will make your game more amazing without a pricey sound card.
3. Appearence – This thing that I consider much as I hate to admit it is the board’s aesthetic. Look at the Asus ROG Maximus VIII Formula and see how beautifully red and black it is.
I was raised by maximum PC and own to focus on performance with PCs, but as the DIY computer building has evolved I can’t help, but emphasized making a system that is uniquely your own and aesthetic choices simply play a huge role in that I chose a sexy motherboard.
For example not just because either Gigabyte or Asus is a manufacturer that I trust, and it has all the features I need but also very much because I am setting up a build in the Corsair Graphite Series 780T Black Case which is cool metallic black and Asus ROG Maximus VIII Formula just matches perfectly.
4. Price – No comment here …
Top 5 Core i7 6700k Motherboards
ASUS ROG MAXIMUS VIII FORMULA
Perfect Your Build From Cooling To Color
The Asus ROG Maximus VIII Formula is one of the best and most expensive motherboard (Mobo) for both casual and hard-core gamers.
If you want no distractions when playing games, then the Asus ROG Maximus VIII Formula is one of the best i7 motherboard that you really need. It has minimal to no hardware dysfunction as it has the lowest reported hardware issues and refunds.
If you want to push your CPU beyond its limits, then you will be blown away by the overclocking capabilities of the Asus ROG Maximus Formula.
It has the “5-Way Optimization” feature that includes the Turbo Processing Unit (TPU) with Auto Tuning allowing you automatically overclock your Core i7 6700k up to 5.2GHz. This Mobo also comes with a dedicated base clock (BCLK) generator to let you try your own overclocking techniques.
Aside from the CPU overclocking capability, Asus Maximus also provides an incredible Ram overclocking technology called 2nd-Gen ASUS T-Topology that will boost your DDR4 Rams up to 3733MHZ with all memory slots populated.
With this much frequency, heat will be one of the biggest factors to consider since higher voltage would be required. But with the Asus ROG Maximus VIII Formula, heat is not a problem as it has its built in CrossChill EK Extreme-performance cooling block in its RM heatsink.
To bring air and liquid hybrid solution to this Mobo, Asus collaborated with EK Water Blocks, which is a company that has a reputation as the cooling masters in the industry.
Even the armor of this mobo is an excellent cooling system, aside from a unyielding protecting capability, it can block heat from other parts and ensures lower system temperature for better performance.
Not only bring a killer cooling solution to your system, Asus Maximus VIII Formula even helps you to save money by reducing energy waste
The design is as beautiful as it is functional. It has sleek gray/black shield with some silver, which won’t be seen very easy when this Mobo is installed in the case, but the word “FORMULA” in the center and its ROG Logo lights up with RGB LEDs.
Just like most gamers, you probably want to choose your own color theme for your Mobo. That’s exactly what the Asus ROG Maximus VIII Formula brings with its ROG Aura RGB Strip Header, which allows you to choose from over 1.6 million colors from its three-zone RGB illumination feature. You can do all this without using any inconvenient RGB controller.
When it comes to its performance, we can only go on and on with all the myriad of incredible features it has. Aside from its overclock capabilities and great design, it also offers top of the line audio implementation with its SUPREME FX, which is like the Z170 Pro Gaming from Asus. It also spots the Sonic Sense Amp which allows it to adjust to your headphone or speakers capability easily.
It has Intel GB LAN and MU-MIMO 2T2R 802.11ac, which makes sure that you won’t experience lag when playing. Its Dual U.2, M.2, and SATA Express provide you incredible storage speed.
ASUS Z170 PRO GAMING
Designed For Gamer
If you don’t want to go crazy with the spending, the Asus Z170 Pro Gaming is the best mobo for i7 6700k on a tight budget.
The ROG Maximus may have the top spot when it comes to features and overall performances, but the Asus Z170 Pro Gaming doesn’t lag far behind it considering its affordable price of about $170.
Like Asus Maximus VIII Formula, It also has the PRO clock technology, 5-Way Optimization and 2nd-generation T-Topology that makes overclocking a breeze, especially for the overclocking noobs.
It has a dedicated base-clock (BLCK) generator that can bring overclocked base clock frequencies up to as much as 400MHz. The Asus Pro Clock can reduce boot up time, decreases jitter in extreme conditions for better overclocking, and increases stability if you are planning massive overclocking
Meanwhile, its second-generation Asus T-Topology allows DDR4 memory overclocking to reach over DDR-3400MHz even with all memory slots used.
Asus Z170 Pro Gaming also comes with the “SUPREME FX” system for those who value their audio when playing.
This audio technology gives you near-lossless audio quality with the excellent signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of 115dB. It’s Sonic Radar II technology lets you locate enemies even before they know you were there.
DESIGN & CONNECTIVITY
Its design makes it a smart-looking board with its south-bridge hidden under a beautiful Asus Pro Gaming logo.
The heatsinks at the top of this mobo have black metal and red colors. Right under the mobo’s name is a row of LEDs will glowing pattern.
Meanwhile, it has customizable lighting around its audio circuitry.
It also comes with several USB ports that can support the fastest type, which is the USB 3.1. This mobo also has the Top Speed Protected Networking system and RAM Caching. Although its four SATA connectors aren’t that high, they have strengthened with M.2 and SATA Express connectivity.
Gigabyte GA-Z170X-Gaming 3
Most Gorgeous-looking Motherboard
The Gigabyte GA-Z170X-Gaming 3 almost has all the features you can find in the Asus. But one of the major reasons to choose this mobo is its beautiful design.
This is perhaps the most gorgeous-looking motherboards out there with its white, red, and black colors. It also has several customizable lights with a broad range of colors.
You can also even choose a separate color for its panel and its label.
Plus, it is slightly smaller in size, which fits just right for smaller computer cases. It may be an ATX-sized motherboard, but it can still support 2-way NVIDIA’s SLI Technology, as well as the 3-way AMD Crossfire. If you have several graphics card, then this feature is perfect.
SATA Express can boost the data transfer rate up to 16Gb/s, it’s an incredible number, comparing with 6Gb/s of SATA 3.
When it comes to overclocking, it has a built-in advanced performance TURBO B-Clock Tuning IC to let you change your BLCK Frequency to your desired level.
It’s Tuning IC brings new linear range adjustment option that could reach up to 90MH to 200MHz, and not just the 5% limitations of ordinary straps.
Meanwhile, it’s Smart Quick Boost lets you automatically overclock your system with just one click.
GIGABYTE ATX GA-Z170XP-SLI
Budget-friendly High-end Motherboard
The Gigabyte ATX GA-Z170XP-SLI has all the features of an ordinary Z170 motherboard.
But if you have plenty of graphic cards, then this mobo has little bit extra slots for you. It has three PCIE X 16 slots that can support up to 2-way NVIDIA SLI and the 3-way AMD Crossfire X. This is one of its advantages, as the lower priced mobos are limited to only 2 Way AMD Crossfire X that is not compatible to SLI.
Ready For Overclocking
The Gigabyte ATX GA-Z170XP-SLI offers a lot of overclocking, which makes it also one of the best motherboards for i7 6700k. Just like the Gigabyte Z170-X Gaming 3, it also has a built-in advanced performance TURBO B-Clock Tuning IC and Smart Quick Boost that lets you overclock your Core i7 6700k easier and at higher frequencies.
Some reviews, however, claim that the aesthetics of this mobo isn’t that impressive, especially when it comes to its color themes.
Its design is quite basic with red accents added to its heatsinks, metallic shield on its clock generator, and audio section spruced up.
Its audio PCB divide has yellow lights, which doesn’t go well with its red heatsinks. You can choose to turn off the audio LEDs using the Bios Setting.
This mobo spots an eight pin CPU power port that will let you draw up to 91 watts worth of power. With all that power and overclocking capabilities, you will need liquid CPU coolers, this mobo doesn’t have that; it only 3 system fan ports.
Speed Up With SATA Express
On the other hand, this mobo has several PCI Express slots, PCIE X 16 slots, and PCI-X 1 slots. This feature significantly increases its compatibility with other components. These slots are for SSD, Wi-Fi cards, and sound cards.
Besides these slots, the Gigabyte ATX GA-Z170XP-SLI also has SATA Express ports. It also has the M.2 connector under its CPU socket for faster speed. Moreover, it gets more bandwidth.
With the Realtek ALC115, this mobo can bring users the best audio experience from their PC. Gigabyte did also upgrade it’s High-Quality Audio Capacitors to deliver the highest quality sound resolution and sound expansion to create the most realistic sound effects for professional gamers.
MSI Z170A Gaming Pro
Modest Motherboard With Mystic Lights
The MSI Z170A Gaming Pro is one of the best-looking motherboards in a minimalist way.
However, its modest look reflects in its performance and features, which is a step below other Mobo in its price range.
Using its Game Boost and Gaming Hotkey, you can do your overclocking with just one push of a button.
It doesn’t have certain extras found in other mobos like the power switches, overclocking buttons, and LED post readouts.
Also, its audio chip is not that impressive. Cable management won’t be easy with this mobo as well with its SATA ports going to the wrong angles from the PCB.
MSI Z170A Gaming Pro concentrates its color themes in a centimeter of its right side area with multi-color LEDs.
With it’s Mystic Light, you can change these colors to match your entire PC lighting scheme. These lights, however, compromises the design for the SATA Ports.
It can support three graphics cards for 3-way Crossfire or quad-SLI. It also has the three x1 PCI-E slots if you plan to fit in expansion cards. For those who still have the old sound cards, this motherboard still has the old PCI slot. It has the USB 3.1 support, but no Type-C connector.
Have You Decided Which Mobo Is The Best?
Just remember there are no one-size-fits-all when choosing i7 6700k motherboards. One motherboard may have everything you need and everything you dreamed of, but it’s not quite budget friendly.
Moreover, just because it is expensive, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s what’s for you. You may have to weigh what you really need from a motherboard to satisfy your best gaming experience without going overboard budget-wise. Gigabyte can give you some of the best mobos without actually breaking the bank.
If money is not a thing for you because you’re a baller, then you can go for the Asus and MSI mobos. Ultimately, it is the ROG Maximus and Z170 motherboards that can offer you the best gaming experiences you want, especially when it comes to overclocking limits.
If you have a favorite motherboard that didn’t make it on the list, you can comment below. If you like what you read, share it with some of your friends who are also looking for the best motherboard for their i7 6700k.