The 7 Best Z790 Motherboards In 2023

Now that the brand new Intel 13th Generation CPUs have hit the market, it is the ideal time to build a high-end gaming PC with these processors at heart. However, you should consider one of the new Z790 motherboards if you want to get the most out of your 13th Gen CPU.

The Z790 chipset is this generation’s flagship motherboard chipset, bringing some vital improvements over the outgoing Z690 platform. This makes Z790 the ideal choice for a new high-end gaming PC with an Intel 13th Gen Raptor Lake CPU.

We have also picked out the best motherboards for i9 13900K which you can consider, but in this roundup, we are focusing exclusively on the Z790 chipset.

Let’s jump right in.

The Best Z790 Motherboard – Our Picks

#PreviewProduct NameAwardDetails
1Gigabyte Z790 AORUS MasterBest Overall Z790 Motherboard
Check Price
2ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 ExtremeBest Premium Z790 Motherboard
Check Price
3ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 HEROBest Overclocking Z790 Motherboard
Check Price
4MSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFiBest Value Z790 Motherboard
Check Price
5ASUS ROG Strix Z790-E Gaming WiFiBest Looking Z790 Motherboard
Check Price
6MSI MAG Z790 TOMAHAWK WiFi DDR4Best DDR4 Z790 Motherboard
Check Price
7MSI Pro Z790-P WiFi DDR4Best Budget Z790 Motherboard
Check Price
#1
Preview
Product NameGigabyte Z790 AORUS Master
AwardBest Overall Z790 Motherboard
Details
Check Price
#2
Preview
Product NameASUS ROG Maximus Z790 Extreme
AwardBest Premium Z790 Motherboard
Details
Check Price
#3
Preview
Product NameASUS ROG Maximus Z790 HERO
AwardBest Overclocking Z790 Motherboard
Details
Check Price
#4
Preview
Product NameMSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi
AwardBest Value Z790 Motherboard
Details
Check Price
#5
Preview
Product NameASUS ROG Strix Z790-E Gaming WiFi
AwardBest Looking Z790 Motherboard
Details
Check Price
#6
Preview
Product NameMSI MAG Z790 TOMAHAWK WiFi DDR4
AwardBest DDR4 Z790 Motherboard
Details
Check Price
#7
Preview
Product NameMSI Pro Z790-P WiFi DDR4
AwardBest Budget Z790 Motherboard
Details
Check Price

Last Update on 2023-02-08 at 06:31 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Why you should trust us

We live, breathe, and eat motherboards here at appuals.com. Whether it’s the latest Intel or AMD chipsets, we know our way around a motherboard. We’ve been reviewing them for years, and our experience shows in our detailed, comprehensive reviews. Our leading PC hardware expert, Hassam Nasir, boasts a tremendous experience in the field of motherboard reviews which spans back to the days when Nvidia used to add an extra SLI chipset to motherboards!

One can say that he loves to get into the nitty gritty details of PC hardware such as PCB analysis, VRM performance, memory/core overclocking potential, cooling potentials of AIOs, and the list goes on and on. His expertise does not come as a surprise, since he has been obsessed with PC hardware from the era of Opterons and Smithfield Pentium processors.

However, we don’t just rely on our experience – we also put every motherboard we review through a rigorous testing process. We test for stability, compatibility, overclocking potential, and more. Our team’s key expertise lies in the area of VRM testing, both for quality and long-term reliability. Of course, we also take into account the user experience when writing our reviews. Whether you are looking for a budget-friendly option or the absolute best motherboard on the market, we can help you find what you need.

1. Gigabyte Z790 AORUS Master

Best Overall Z790 Motherboard

Pros

  • Superb Power Delivery
  • Robust 10 Gigabit Networking
  • Attractive Design Language
  • Packed Feature Set

Cons

  • Very Expensive

2,717 Reviews

Form Factor: E-ATX | Chipset: Z790 | Memory: 4x DIMM, 128GB, DDR5-8000 | Video Outputs: DisplayPort | USB Ports: 14x rear IO, 9x internal | Network: 1x 10 GbE LAN, 1x Wi-Fi 6E | Storage: 5x M.2, 4x SATA | VRM: 20+1+2 Phase

The AORUS family of motherboards from Gigabyte continues to deliver great premium products even with the introduction of the Raptor Lake CPUs. The Z790 AORUS Master board’s price tag may be off-putting, but its powerful power delivery system and amazing features are well worth the investment.

The Gigabyte Z790 AORUS Master is an excellent motherboard with many useful enhancements for gamers and PC enthusiasts. This one is a DDR5 version that is compatible with the latest Raptor Lake processors from Intel’s 13th Gen and can handle DDR5 memory speeds of up to 8000MT/s.

And if that weren’t enough, it can accommodate up to six SATA drives, has four M.2 ports, and a slew of speedy USB connectors. Not only does it support Intel’s latest Wi-Fi 6E standard for faster and more reliable networking, but it also has a 10 GbE LAN connector for wired connections.

More premium Gigabyte motherboards can be found in our list of the best motherboards for i7 12700K.

Best Z790 Motherboard
Gigabyte Z790 AORUS Master

Differentiating it from similar boards in its price range is the Marvell 10 GbE LAN capabilities. This feature makes this board an excellent option for both amateurs and skilled creators. In addition to an innovative UEFI BIOS and compatibility with Intel’s Extreme Memory Profile (XMP), the Z790 AORUS Master provides a comprehensive suite of features for fine-tuning and overclocking.

A small drawback is the lack of an HDMI output on the rear I/O, which may have been very helpful in diagnosing errors.

The voltage regulator module (VRM) arrangement on the Z790 AORUS Master board is the board’s crowning glory, and it has a stunning 23-phase design. Twenty of those phases are used to supply the central processing unit with clean, stable power in this setup. With 105A of available CPU power, even the high-end i9 13900K may be overclocked to provide a quality experience.

The VRM has an efficient cooling system, so high temperatures will never be an issue. Additional heat from the VRM components is dissipated by a collection of heatsinks without degrading performance. This is especially helpful when regularly using an overclocked Intel Core i9-13900K processor.

The Gigabyte Z790 AORUS Master caters to the aesthetic preferences of the many people who place a high value on a motherboard. With its clean design and subtle illumination, the board is a pleasure to look at. The use of RGB lighting is tasteful, and the color palette is eye-catching without being overpowering.

The board is a terrific complement to any gaming setup owing to its modern and aesthetically pleasing design. The new I/O cover design is stunning, although we would have preferred a more muted application.

We also selected this motherboard in our roundup of the best motherboards for i5 13600K, which shows the versatility of this particular option.

Finally, if you’re searching for the best Z790 motherboard for your new 13th Gen Intel processor, you should think about getting a Z790 AORUS Master. It has practically unequaled overclocking potential thanks to its comprehensive feature set and powerful power delivery mechanism.

The only real negative is that it’s very pricey compared to other available choices. If you want the best overall Z790 motherboard, however, you should prioritize the Z790 AORUS Master.

2. ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 Extreme

Best Premium Z790 Motherboard

Pros

  • Overpowered VRM Setup
  • Extremely Premium Features
  • 10 Gigabit LAN
  • Impressive RGB Lighting

Cons

  • Extremely Pricy

10 Reviews

Form Factor: E-ATX | Chipset: Z790 | Memory: 4x DIMM, 128GB, DDR4-7800+ | Video Outputs: 2x USB-C Display Output, HDMI | USB Ports: 10x rear IO, 10x internal | Network: 1x 10 GbE LAN, 1x 2.5 GbE LAN, 1x Wi-Fi 6E | Storage: 5x M.2, 6x SATA | VRM: 24+1 Phase

The ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 Extreme, in the premium segment of the pricing range, is one of the best premium Z790 motherboards available. It offers a fantastic overclocking experience and is jam-packed with features. Although it comes with a costly price tag, the product’s build quality is exceptional.

Keeping pricing to one side, we can safely say that the ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 Extreme is one of the best motherboards for gaming on the Z790 platform.

ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 Extreme is a stunning piece of hardware. The use of a striking red and black color palette, together with the use of luxurious RGB lighting, contribute to the design’s assertive tone. The aesthetic conveys strength and refinement; it will be a show-stopper in any gaming rig.

The new ROG vintage style is present in several RGB lighting locations, which we find quite appealing. ROG’s logo and writing have been pixelated to give this motherboard a unique look. You won’t be disappointed with the ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 Extreme, whether you’re for looks or performance.

Best Z790 Motherboard
ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 Extreme

The power distribution system is the main attraction on this board. The VRM on the ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 Extreme is among the finest you’ll find on a motherboard. The high-quality components used in this 24+1-phase VRM are among the best available. With the Maximus Z790 Extreme’s formidable VRM, you can even overclock the flagship Core i9 13900K to your heart’s delight.

Large metal heatsinks are paired with heat pipes to further enhance the VRM assembly’s cooling capabilities. Since it can handle whatever CPU you throw at it and provides consistently reliable power delivery, this motherboard is fantastic for overclocking and gaming.

As far as specifications go, the ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 Extreme is a top-tier motherboard with a plethora of special features that make it well-suited to gaming and other resource-intensive activities. To begin, it offers five M.2 slots for your high-speed NVMe SSDs, making it excellent for gamers that need to store enormous quantities of data.

The motherboard also has built-in WiFi 6E and LAN connections, so you can maintain an active internet connection at all times. Creative pros might benefit greatly from the 10 GbE LAN connection offered on this ASUS motherboard.

Also, it features ten USB ports on the back, so you can plug in as many devices as you like without worrying about running out of connections. This motherboard is perfect for both gaming PCs and workstations, as it doesn’t skimp on any essential features.

A similar ASUS option was selected in our roundup of the best motherboards for Ryzen 5 5600X as well.

In terms of premium Z790 motherboards on the market, ASUS’ ROG Maximus Z790 Extreme is a top pick. This one checks all the boxes in terms of premium features and performance.

The price tag is the sole detriment since it is among the highest you’ll encounter. The ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 Extreme is our pick for the best premium Z790 motherboard if you are prepared to spend a few extra bucks.

3. ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 HERO

Best Overclocking Z790 Motherboard

Pros

  • Robust Power Delivery
  • Loads of Connectivity
  • Unique Aesthetics
  • Excellent Storage Suite

Cons

  • Very Expensive

52 Reviews

Form Factor: ATX | Chipset: Z790 | Memory: 4x DIMM, 128GB, DDR5-7800+ | Video Outputs: HDMI, 2x USB-C | USB Ports: 12x rear IO, 9x internal | Network: 1x 2.5 GbE LAN, 1x Wi-Fi 6E | Storage: 5x M.2, 6x SATA | VRM: 20+1 Phase

Another high-end motherboard that you’ll find in our selection is the ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 HERO, which is a member of the prestigious Maximus series. ASUS has designed a variety of motherboards specifically with overclockers in mind, and the products in this series include some pretty solid and dependable options for users to choose from.

This motherboard was also one of our top picks in our roundup of the best motherboards for i7 13700K.

Our choice for the best overclocking Z790 motherboard currently on the market is the ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 HERO, and that is thanks to its superb VRM design. The power delivery of the ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 HERO is something that a lot of critics and reviewers find to be quite appealing.

It comes with an outstanding 20+1 phase Dr.MOS power stage design and is loaded with features that gamers and overclockers will like using. The VRM architecture of the motherboard is one of the most durable ones available on the market, and it should have no problem providing an overclocked Core i9 13900K with power that is both clean and reliable.

Best Z790 Motherboard
ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 HERO

In addition to this, it includes a powerful cooling system for the VRM, which helps to keep things cool regardless of how hot the VRM components become. When used in conjunction with a Core i9 13900K, the VRM temps of this motherboard are among the lowest that we have seen from Z790 motherboards.

The Maximus Z790 HERO motherboard also comes with a plethora of features that are worthy of note. Five NVMe SSDs can be supported by the motherboard simultaneously, which is a great boon to gamers and professionals who need to store a lot of data. The motherboard has a respectable number of SATA ports, with a total of six available for connecting extra hard drives to the system.

In addition, the Maximus Z790 HERO is equipped with a 2.5 GbE LAN port as well as WiFi 6E for all your networking needs. Moreover, the board sports a total of 12 rear USB ports, making a combination of connectivity options that are rather practical.

The ROG Maximus Z790 HERO’s eye-catching aesthetic will have people talking about your PC gaming system. The board has a color scheme of black and metallic red, and it also has sharp angles and RGB lighting accents, which provide a bit of elegance to the overall design.

The RGB lighting looks fantastic, and the colors have been carefully synchronized with one another. The use of sharp and aggressive accents is another beautiful touch that was added. The end result is one that is quite easy on the eyes overall.

The functionality of the board is described as being very simple and straightforward to operate. In addition to the fact that all of the connections and connectors are nicely labeled and simple to reach, The ASUS Aura Sync functionality for the board’s RGB lighting is also quite simple to configure.

Be sure to check out our selection of the best motherboards for Ryzen 9 7950X as well for more ASUS motherboards.

It’s worth noting that the ASUS ROG Maximus Z790 HERO is a top-tier motherboard that’s a perfect match for premium CPUs from Intel’s 13th Gen lineup. It not only has a fantastic VRM design, but it also has lots of bells and whistles that would go exceptionally well with a high-end gaming PC.

It is a little bit on the pricey side, but for a Z790 motherboard of this caliber, the investment may be deemed to be worthwhile.

4. MSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi

Best Value Z790 Motherboard

Pros

  • Great for Overclocking
  • Nice Design Elements
  • Versatile Networking
  • Premium Storage Options

Cons

  • Relatively Pricy

15 Reviews

Form Factor: ATX | Chipset: Z790 | Memory: 4x DIMM, 128GB, DDR5-7600+ | Video Outputs: HDMI | USB Ports: 10x rear IO, 7x internal | Network: 1x 2.5 GbE LAN, 1x Wi-Fi 6E | Storage: 5x M.2, 6x SATA | VRM: 19+1+1 Phase

One of the finest all-around Z790 motherboards for the Intel 13th Gen processors is the MSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi. It is a high-end motherboard that provides a combination of excellent features and outstanding quality while overclocking. Even when paired with a premium processor like the i9 13900K, this motherboard’s price is not completely unreasonable, making it a great value for money.

A similar MSI option was also selected in our roundup of the best motherboards for i5 12600K.

Users have access to unrivaled networking and storage choices thanks to the MSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi’s extensive feature set. In addition to having Wi-Fi 6E for networking, it possesses five M.2 slots that are compatible with next-generation PCIe NVMe devices; this will take care of any storage requirements you may have. It also has a 2.5 GbE LAN connector for individuals who want to use wired connections in the event that you require more conventional capabilities.

In terms of connectivity, the board is replete with USB ports that come in a wide variety of configurations and speeds. Even though this is something that should be anticipated from a board in this price range, it is still really nice to see. The Clear CMOS button is another helpful small feature that may be used while debugging an issue.

Best Z790 Motherboard
MSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi

Having reliable power delivery is essential when using power-hungry processors from the Raptor Lake lineup. The MSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi motherboard has a 19+1+1 phase VRM architecture with quality components and a reliable cooling system. This voltage regulator module is more than capable of managing the premier Raptor Lake CPUs even when the voltages are boosted.

The VRM is cooled using three independent heatsinks that are linked to one another via copper heat pipes. As a consequence of this, the general VRM system that comes with the MSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi is of very high quality and ought to be able to deal with even the most demanding overclocking.

When it comes to selecting a motherboard, aesthetics are a crucial factor, and the MSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi doesn’t let you down in that regard at all. The board’s design is streamlined and black, and it features understated details that provide it with an air of sophistication. This particular motherboard deviates somewhat from the conventional design language used by MSI, yet it pulls off the departure rather successfully.

In spite of the fact that it is designed primarily for use in gaming PCs, the MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi motherboard would not seem out of place in a system intended for professional use. The MSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi has an extremely pleasant appearance overall, and it is certain to look excellent in whatever system you choose to install it in.

Our selection of the best motherboards for Ryzen 5 7600X also has more options worth checking out!

If you want to build a high-performance gaming rig around the Z790 chipset, the MSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi should be on your shortlist of motherboards to consider. The MSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi has a lot of great qualities, but some of the best ones are its excellent overclocking potential, its robust power delivery, and its top-tier networking.

The MSI MPG Z790 Carbon WiFi may be the answer for you if you are looking for the best value Z790 motherboard, thanks to its relatively reasonable price tag.

5. ASUS ROG Strix Z790-E Gaming WiFi

Best Looking Z790 Motherboard

Pros

  • Extraordinary VRM Design
  • Attractive RGB Lighting
  • Five M.2 Slots

Cons

  • Quite Expensive
  • No 10 GbE LAN Port

36 Reviews

Form Factor: ATX | Chipset: Z790 | Memory: 4x DIMM, 128GB, DDR5-7800+ | Video Outputs: HDMI, DisplayPort | USB Ports: 12x rear IO, 9x internal | Network: 1x 2.5 GbE LAN, 1x Wi-Fi 6E | Storage: 5x M.2, 4x SATA | VRM: 18+1 Phase

ASUS offers the ROG Strix Z790-E Gaming WiFi in a pricing range that falls between the highest-end models and the inexpensive ones. This motherboard’s best attraction is that it provides nearly all the high-end capabilities found on pricier Z790 motherboards at a more reasonable cost. In addition to being functionally excellent, its striking RGB execution and distinctive design language make it a visual delight.

This motherboard can also be considered one of the best motherboards for i9 12900K.

The ASUS ROG Strix Z790-E Gaming WiFi has a stunning design. The color palette is sophisticated and trendy, with black, silver, and red accents. The RGB illumination on this board is one of a kind since it is hidden behind a translucent overlay that sits above the I/O shield. In addition to enhancing the lighting, this also lends some flair to the board.

Furthermore, the Aura Sync application allows you to modify the lighting effects and select from a number of different predefined options. It’s our pick for the best looking Z790 motherboard thanks to its novel layout and eye-catching RGB lighting.

Best Z790 Motherboard
ASUS ROG Strix Z790-E Gaming WiFi

In spite of its good aesthetics, the ASUS ROG Strix Z790-E Gaming is more than meets the eye. The sturdy 18+1 phase power supply system gives it solidity to go along with its sleek design. Even an overclocked Core i9 13900K with this VRM configuration is a non-issue. Considering the motherboard’s mid-range pricing, the power delivery system is outstanding.

Similarly, ASUS has ensured the VRM remains stable and cool with the use of sufficient cooling and heat dissipation methods. For better heat transfer, heat pipes connect the two VRM heatsinks. With the ASUS ROG Strix Z790-E Gaming WiFi, you can stop caring about the temperature of the VRM components.

The Strix Z790-E has several premium features, of course. With the storage suite, you can store your files on five M.2 drives and four SATA drives. A 2.5 GbE LAN port and WiFi 6E handle networking, which is par for the course at this price point. Although a 10 Gigabit LAN port on this motherboard would have been welcome, we know that such an expectation is impractical given the product’s cost.

There are several outputs and inputs, as well as a Thunderbolt header, on the device’s rear. As one would expect from a high-end ASUS product, the motherboard’s connectivity features are first-rate.

The ASUS ROG Strix Z790-E Gaming WiFi is an excellent choice for gamers and meets most of their expectations. It’s a solid motherboard overall, with no major flaws to speak of. Overall though, it’s still a somewhat pricey motherboard, especially when compared to the alternatives.

Still, it’s loaded with useful amenities and runs as well as any of the finest in its category. This is a great option to consider if you’re in need of a versatile Z790 motherboard.

6. MSI MAG Z790 TOMAHAWK WiFi DDR4

Best DDR4 Z790 Motherboard

Pros

  • Value Oriented Option
  • DDR4 Support
  • Excellent Power Delivery

Cons

  • No RGB Lighting
  • Plain Looks

14 Reviews

Form Factor: ATX | Chipset: Z790 | Memory: 4x DIMM, 128GB, DDR4-5333 | Video Outputs: HDMI, DisplayPort | USB Ports: 10x rear IO, 7x internal | Network: 1x 2.5 GbE LAN, 1x Wi-Fi 6E | Storage: 4x M.2, 7x SATA | VRM: 16+1+1 Phase

Even though Z790 motherboards and DDR4 memory do not make a lot of economic sense together, we figured we’d include one in our motherboard roundup for the sake of completion. The MSI MAG Z790 TOMAHAWK WiFi DDR4 is the best DDR4 Z790 motherboard, in our opinion. Despite the board’s rather quirky branding style, it packs quite a punch and can hold its own against boards that cost far more.

MSI has chosen a unique route in terms of design. To make a more modest and stealthy statement, they’ve given the Tomahawk series an all-black look. This variation, like the others that use the same design language, is sleek and sophisticated. There are no flashy features or excessive RGB lighting, yet the board still has an appealing look.

This motherboard would be a great choice for the fairly widespread all-black or covert PC designs. However, given your stance on the issue, the fact that it lacks RGB lighting may be a contentious decision. Nonetheless, we found its clean lines and understated elegance to be aesthetically pleasing.

Best Z790 Motherboard
MSI MAG Z790 TOMAHAWK DDR4

The 16+1+1 phase VRM configuration stands out as a particularly attractive proposition due to the impressive robustness it provides at such a minimal cost. This is why Tomahawk motherboards, and the Z790 version in particular, have become so popular. Even the Core i9 13900K works wonderfully with this motherboard since it can be overclocked to a certain extent, provided you are realistic with your expectations.

MSI has also given a lot of thought to the effective cooling of the VRMs. The gigantic heatsink assembly features a number of fin stacks and a heat pipe. The VRM system on this board is kept cool and stable even while under extended loads, demonstrating that the cooling solution is more than sufficient for the power distribution components.

Given that it is a Z790 motherboard, the Tomahawk is equipped with all the cutting-edge features. For storage, the board provides four M.2 slots, and for networking, it supports both WiFi 6E and a 2.5 GbE LAN port. As was previously stated, this specific type is compatible with DDR4 memory operating at speeds up to 5333 MT/s, representing an excellent balance of performance and cost.

There are also a lot of connectors on the rear, including 10 USB ones of varying speeds and types. As an added bonus, MSI has included HDMI and DisplayPort outputs on the rear I/O, which can be handy in specific scenarios. This motherboard comes quite close to having all the features you may want.

In essence, the MSI Z790 TOMAHAWK WiFi DDR4 is a fine choice for gamers. There aren’t any glaring issues, and the value you get for your money is excellent. The DDR4 memory generation and the absence of RGB lighting might be seen as drawbacks, but they are very insignificant when weighed against the benefits of the entire package.

7. MSI Pro Z790-P WiFi DDR4

Best Budget Z790 Motherboard

Pros

  • Quite Affordable
  • Acceptable Power Delivery
  • Good Networking Options

Cons

  • No RGB Lighting
  • Few Rear USB Ports

13 Reviews

Form Factor: ATX | Chipset: Z790 | Memory: 4x DIMM, 128GB, DDR4-5333+ | Video Outputs: HDMI, DisplayPort | USB Ports: 8x rear IO, 9x internal | Network: 1x 2.5 GbE LAN, 1x Wi-Fi 6E | Storage: 4x M.2, 6x SATA | VRM: 14+1+1 Phase

MSI Pro Z790-P WiFi DDR4 is an alternative that comes at a price that won’t break the bank and ought to be considered as a potential purchase. It is one of the few Z790 options accessible at a lower cost, and in light of the fact that it is so inexpensive, it offers a great deal of utility.

Another budget offering from MSI was also selected in our shortlist of the very best B550 motherboards on the market.

Despite its modest cost, this board’s VRM is designed using high-quality components and is set up for decent power delivery performance. The board’s 14+1+1 phase VRM design is not the most overpowered or complicated of the bunch, but it gets the job done fairly well. If you pair this board with a flagship Core i9 13900K CPU, you can expect flawless stock operation and even a bit of overclocking.

In addition, it features not one but two huge heatsinks for the provision of adequate cooling, which allows it to maintain its performance even when the installed CPU is overclocked. The VRM’s default configuration is commendable for its price segment.

Best Z790 Motherboard
MSI Pro Z790-P WiFi DDR4

In terms of the features it offers, the MSI Pro Z790-P WiFi aims to go above and beyond what is expected. The storage suite on the motherboard is exceptional for the price, as it is equipped with four M.2 slots and six SATA ports for your various types of storage devices. The networking is taken care of by a 2.5 GbE LAN connector as well as WiFi 6E, which is an impressive combo considering the cost.

Since the eight rear USB ports that are currently available may be used up very quickly, we had hoped to see more of them included in the layout. However, taking into consideration the cost, we do not have any major complaints about the general feature set. Given that there are not many Z790 motherboards in this price range, this particular model packs more functionality than you may expect given its price point.

The board has a sleek and modern appearance owing to the black and white color scheme, and the angular form gives it a sense of aggression that complements its overall aesthetic. A lack of RGB lighting on the board is likely to dissatisfy some gamers, at least to some degree. These days, some form of RGB lighting is almost required for integration on a modern gaming motherboard.

On the subject of value-oriented motherboards, don’t forget to check out our selection of the best B450 motherboards as well.

When everything is taken into consideration, the MSI Pro Z790-P WiFi DDR4 motherboard is one of the finest motherboards on the Z790 platform in terms of value. In comparison to its cost, it possesses a competitive feature set and power delivery that is remarkable. If you plan to build a low-cost gaming system employing the Raptor Lake platform, you should certainly give serious thought to purchasing this board.

Even though it’s not required, we’ll say it anyway: this motherboard is what we consider to be the best budget Z790 motherboard on the market.

How we picked and tested

The Z790 chipset adds a new degree of difficulty to the already complicated chore of choosing the optimal motherboard for any given chipset. These motherboards must be capable of supporting one of the most resource-intensive CPUs currently available, the Core i9 13900K.

However, we have a highly experienced team of hardware specialists that are more than up for the challenge of determining which motherboards are ideal for this CPU.

Obviously, we begin with the VRM architecture of the relevant motherboards. As we have seen, the 13th Gen Raptor Lake lineup boasts some powerful processors, and they require top-notch VRM components if you want to get the most out of them.

Also important were the capabilities of the Z790 motherboards on offer, especially the feature set. No modern Z790-based PC would be complete without cutting-edge connectivity and storage options.

Even though aesthetics can be interpreted in different ways and are subjective in nature, we gave special attention to them. Nevertheless, we monitored user reviews of various motherboards and made any necessary adjustments to our rankings.

The cost of the motherboards, or more especially the price-to-performance ratio of the boards, was the final obstacle to overcome. Although all of the new Z790 motherboards are costly, some are better deals than others.

Our diligent group of hardware professionals did not miss a single detail during the testing process. To establish an objective and fact-based assessment, the team carefully examined every aspect of the motherboards.

For the purposes of this analysis, we overclocked a Core i9 13900K and ran it in an enclosed chassis for prolonged periods of time, during which we monitored the VRM temperatures of the boards.

Using the results of our tests, we’ve compiled a list of the very best Z790 motherboards currently available for your consideration.

Z790 vs. Z690 – What’s New?

Although Z790 is the flagship chipset to be specifically made for 13th Generation Raptor Lake CPUs, it does not provide many major advancements over its predecessor. This is an incremental improvement over Z690 and should not be seen as a reason to switch if you are happy with your current system.

Like the Z690 platform, the Z790 chipset is compatible with Intel’s 12th and 13th-generation CPUs. In particular, the two motherboard chipsets’ connectivity and rear I/O advancements stand out as noteworthy upgrades. More USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 20 Gbps connectors and four additional PCIe Gen 4 downstream lanes are only two of the improvements made by the Z790 over the Z690.

Most of the enhancements are to do with the storage and network capabilities of the device. Z790 motherboards may include an extra M.2 slot and a few extra USB ports here and there, but these improvements are minimal in the grand scheme of things.

DDR5 vs. DDR4 RAM

As with the Z690 chipset, the Z790 supports both DDR5 and DDR4 memory. Actually, Intel did not alter much with regard to memory compatibility between the Z790 chipset and the Z690 chipset from the last generation.

Therefore, customers of 13th Generation Raptor Lake processors still have to decide between DDR4 and DDR5 memory. There is no simple solution to this topic, as both generations of memory have their benefits and drawbacks.

DDR5 memory is not just the way of the future, but also the present. DDR5 memory kits are currently significantly more costly than DDR4 memory kits, but the performance difference between the two is widening with each passing month. DDR5 memory kits will also work with future Intel (or AMD) processors.

DDR4 memory, on the other hand, is more cost-effective. Since purchasing a brand-new DDR5 memory kit for brand-new computers isn’t in everyone’s budget right now, reusing older DDR4 modules is a terrific method to cut costs. As of this writing, the performance of new DDR4 memory is almost equivalent to that of DDR5 memory, although the former is far more affordable.

Thus the customer is faced with the choice of value or future-proofing.

Buyer’s Guide

You’ll want a powerful Z790 motherboard to go with your new 13th Gen Raptor Lake processor if you’re one of the fortunate few who managed to get their hands on one. Motherboards are notoriously tricky to shop for, but with some careful consideration, you can find the perfect one for your setup.

When looking for a new Z790 motherboard for your 13th Gen Intel build, keep the following points in mind.

Power Delivery

Buying a new motherboard on a premium chipset like Z790 requires careful consideration of the motherboard’s VRM arrangement. How successfully a motherboard can overclock the CPU depends heavily on the VRM’s ability to provide the CPU with power.

When the VRM on a motherboard is well-designed, it can supply more power to the CPU without getting too hot, enabling greater and more stable overclocks. On the other hand, a motherboard with a subpar VRM is more likely to overheat the CPU and throttle it, resulting in a lackluster performance.

The VRM is more crucial than ever since modern CPUs can consume up to 250W of power during stock operation alone. If you don’t want to risk performance loss in stock conditions, investing in a high-end motherboard with a solid power delivery system is a must.

Without testing, it’s tough to say whether or not a VRM is any good, but there is plenty of data online that may help you make an educated guess. Numerous professional and user VRM evaluations of every major motherboard are accessible online.

Form Factor

When picking a Z790 motherboard, the form factor is one of the most crucial considerations. The amount of area a motherboard will take up in your case is determined by its “form factor”, which refers to the motherboard’s size and shape. The three most common case sizes are ATX, micro ATX, and mini ITX.

The ATX form factor is the most common and widely used, as it is the largest and provides the most space for a selection of expansion cards and other components. Micro ATX is an even more compact form factor than ATX, yet it retains ATX’s ample expansion potential. Mini ITX, at the other end of the spectrum, is the smallest form factor and is designed for compact cases or projects with limited room.

There has been a recent increase in the popularity of E-ATX, or “Extended ATX” motherboards, which are significantly larger than traditional ATX motherboards. Premium motherboards that boast a wide range of features and capabilities often use this form factor.

Before deciding on a form factor, you should consider the available space in your case and the components you want to use. So, if you want to run several graphics cards in SLI or CrossFire, you’ll need an ATX or E-ATX motherboard. If you need a compact computer system that won’t take up much desk space, a mini ITX motherboard is the way to go.

Ultimately, it is critical to select a form factor that provides the best tradeoff between size and features for your needs.

Aesthetics

It’s not just the motherboard’s performance that matters, but also its aesthetics. In the end, no one wants their powerful gaming setup to seem like a tangled mess of metal and cables. Those who care about aesthetics will be pleased to know that they have a plethora of motherboard selections to choose from.

These days, motherboards may be found in a wide variety of colors and with a variety of RGB lighting patterns that can really set off any system. Additionally, several manufacturers provide personalization choices via downloaded software, allowing customers to select their own color combinations and lighting effects.

Thus, while selecting a motherboard, functionality does not have to take a backseat to design. There has never been a better time to build a PC that is as aesthetically pleasing as it is powerful.

Value for Money

When looking to purchase a new motherboard, price is a factor like any other. Although pricing is crucial, it’s equally necessary to think about the value you’ll get for your money. Finding a middle ground between cost and output is crucial.

It’s easy to get carried away while shopping for a motherboard because there are so many to choose from. Even so, that doesn’t guarantee it’s the most cost-effective option. Nowadays, motherboards are loaded with features and extras that only 5% of average gamers would ever utilize.

You need to zero in on the optimal pricing point, where the number of available features is ideal for your budget. Most likely, it won’t be the most expensive or the cheapest possibility, but it will be ideal for your build.

Finding the perfect balance between cost and performance on a motherboard requires some research. There is a wide variety of motherboards out there, so you should be able to find one that works for your budget.

Upgrade Path

When deciding what Z790 motherboard to buy for your new 13th Gen system, the platform’s upgradeability is an important factor. When building a system on any platform, the upgrade route is crucial, but it is more so with this generation of CPUs.

The Z790 chipset is a platform for Intel’s Raptor Lake family of processors, the company’s final official CPU family for the LGA 1700 socket. You can’t upgrade your Z790 motherboards to newer CPUs since Intel has ceased supporting CPUs for that socket (and hence the chipsets).

Using a 13th-generation Intel CPU with a current Z790 motherboard is essentially a dead end in terms of upgrades. If you plan on upgrading your CPU to a newer model (like Intel’s 14th Gen) in the future, you will also need to replace your motherboard.

Moreover, DDR5 memory is expected to be used exclusively in the next Intel generation. In relation to future-proofing, this is still another factor. Investing in a DDR5 memory kit for your 13th Generation PC now should spare you the trouble of making a swap in the future.

Before settling on a motherboard, it’s crucial to think about the system’s future possibilities for upgrades. If you still can’t land on the ideal motherboard, don’t worry. With the help of our comprehensive motherboard buying guide, you can be sure to find a motherboard that fits both your budget and your needs.

Best Z790 Motherboard - FAQs

Does Z790 support 12th Gen?

Z790 motherboards do support Intel 12th Gen processors. Both Z790 and Z690 have support for Intel’s 12th and 13th Gen desktop CPUs. These motherboards and CPUs are compatible with the LGA1700 socket.

Is Z790 better than Z690?

Z790 is better than Z690 because it brings a few key improvements in the areas of storage and connectivity. Z790 adds a few extra downstream PCIe 4.0 lanes as well as more USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 USB connectors.

Is Z790 future proof?

The Z790 chipset cannot be considered future proof. It can only support up to 13th Gen Intel processors, which will be the last family of CPUs to be released on this platform. The next generation (14th Gen) will use a brand new socket as well as new chipsets.

What is the best chipset for 13900K?

The Z790 chipset is the best chipset for Core i9 13900K since it provides support for CPU and memory overclocking. Moreover, Z790 motherboards have the best features and powerful VRM setups for reliable overclocking.

Does Z790 support PCIe 5.0?

Z790 does support PCIe 5.0 technology. You can get PCIe 5.0 lanes directly to the main PCIe x16 slot as well as multiple M.2 slots on a Z790 motherboard. However, there are very few PCIe 5.0 devices on the market that can take advantage of this new technology right now.

We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links. Learn More

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Hassam Nasir


As a managing Editor, I run, operate, and implement a substantial amount of work at Appuals.com. I supervise a team of enthusiastic geeks and also create content strategies. Whenever I am not at my work desk you'll find me tinkering around PC hardware and retro gadgets.
Back to top button