The motherboard is the main component of a PC, Server, Laptop, Tablet which is used to connect different devices, components, and peripherals to the system. It holds many of the crucial components of the system like CPU (Central Processor Unit), RAM (Memory), HDD (Hard Disk Drive), NIC (Network Interface Card), Graphical Processing Unit (GPU). The motherboard also called as Mainboard which is an interchangeable term.
Motherboard Form Factor
Mainboards have different sizes and structures designed for different types of devices like mobile, desktop, embedded, etc.
Advanced Technology Extended or ATX is the modern PC mainboard which is the predecessor of Baby AT design.ATX introduced in 1995 provide an extensive range of ports, sockets, etc.
Extended ATX provides more functionality then ATX. E-ATX supports PCI-E x16 slots which are small and provides a lot of extensibility.
Micro ATX design will take less space then ATX design. It is mainly used for rugged or embedded systems. Also, home and entertainment systems generally use Micro ATX.
Chipset or Socket Type
The chipset is a very important part of a mainboard where it connects northbridge and southbridge simply CPU to the other parts of the components. Currently, there are two main CPU vendors that uniquely produce CPU.
- Intel is the most popular CPU vendor in the world for the desktop, laptop, and server market.
- AMD is the second popular CPU version in the world for the desktop, laptop, and server market.
These vendors use different connection types for CPU and motherboard parts so the motherboard should be compatible with the given CPU. There are also other differences between CPU types which are listed below.
- AM3 for AMD
- AM3+ for AMD
- FM2+ for AMD
- AM4 for AMD
- Socket 478 for Intel
- LGA775 for Intel
- LGA11XX series for Intel
- LGA2066 for Intel
Slots and Ports
Motherboards provide different types of slots and ports in order to extend the given motherboard. These slots and ports are used to extend the mainboard with different components like GPU, NIC, HDD, RAM, etc.
- Peripheral Component Interconnect PCI is used to connect video, sound and network cards
- Accelerated Graphics Port AGP is dedicated for video cards
- Integrated Drive Electronics interfaces for hard disk drives
- Serial ATA SATA interfaces for a hard disk drive with better performance
- Universal Serial Bus- USB is used for external peripherals like camera, joystick, flash disk
- Memory slots for RAM
As stated previously Mainboard is the main component which is used to connect different parts or components of a system. Here we will list some of them which are connected to the direct mainboard.
Central Processor Unit or CPU is the heart of the PC, computer, or a system. CPU connection to the mainboard needs to be very fast because all data will be processed by the CPU.
Random Access Memory or RAM is used to store data as volatile during work. RAM data processed, set, changed, and deleted by the CPU.
Hard Disk Drive or HDD is used to store data permanently event the computer shutdown.
Graphical Processing Unit or GPU or Graphics card is used to process visual representation of the given software, operating system, etc, and display on the monitor.