Last Updated on July 1, 2020 by Scott Krager
The i5 is just the brute force processor for hardcore gamers. They always offer that balance of price and speed that gamers desire. Rather than focusing on hyper-threading and other features content creators care about, you get a fast, powerful, affordable processor.
That’s why the new 10th gen i5-10600K is yet another phenomenal product that’ll help you push that FPS higher. The CPU is generally really important for gaming but takes a backseat to the GPU (Unless you are a CPU abuser like Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey).
So all that immense power your i9-10900K has for Media creation doesn’t translate well to gaming.
Best Motherboard For Intel i5 10600K
- ASUS TUF Gaming Z490-PLUS WiFi (Best Budget Motherboard For Intel i5 10600K)
- MSI MPG Z490 Gaming Carbon WiFi (Best Value Motherboard For Intel i5 10600K)
- ASRock Z490 Phantom Gaming Velocita (Best High-End Motherboard For Intel i5 10600K)
For those purist gamers, an i5 will do just fine and the i5-10600K is the best processor to get. But it is an upgrade that demands more than just dropping it into your old rig. Processor upgrades often last several generations but big technological leaps change the socket type.
The 10th gen Intel product line changes the socket type to LGA1200 meaning you’ll need a new mobo if you really want to upgrade your gaming rig.
Don’t worry though! I have you covered. Our hardware roundup is going to focus on the top three i5-10600K motherboards out there. We picked three of the best Z490 mobos.
The Z490 is the new designation for modern LGA1200 socket type motherboards and the best part is that they aren’t designed for the end of life of an old processor line. In fact, the Z490 is designed to be the foundation for what’s coming down the pipeline.
It’ll allow you to upgrade to the next Intel generation or longer (which will be a pretty huge tech jump). It’ll also allow technology such as PCIe 4.0. That means it’s important to think of what you want out of your new mobo.
Best Motherboards For Intel i5-10600K Review Guide
After all, you may be using it for the next five or so years! So read on and check out my picks, I’m sure you’ll find something you love.
ASUS TUF Gaming Z490-PLUS WiFi: Check Price On Amazon
Best Budget Motherboard For Intel i5 10600K
ASUS offers some really great affordable gaming motherboards like the TUF Gaming series. While this is a pretty standard seeming mobo, it has a couple neat features. One thing will set these motherboards apart if you’ve been living in the past. Wi-Fi! While it may feel standard for laptops, desktops have been slow to actually build in Wi-Fi.
Recent motherboards have offered the new Intel Wi-Fi 6 option which also comes with some fantastic bluetooth. Trust me when I say that nothing is more refreshing than dropping those cords for your peripherals and converting to quick, quality bluetooth. As a PC gamer this also allows you to dabble with products from Steve Jobs.
That might feel like a betrayal of ol’ Bill but using Airpods is just a joy with onboard Wi-Fi. It comes with the antenna as well which is nice because a lot of motherboards offer the ability to install Wi-Fi but don’t include it in the initial product kit.
I think the simple design and the hazard yellow with various black and steel colors makes this a really professional, well-designed motherboard and its not pricey at all. As Z490 products allow, this can eventually be used with newer upcoming PCIe standards.
It’s a cheap way to future proof and make sure you won’t age out your equipment quickly. That’s a pretty frustrating thing with modern desktops. So you can expect to see 4-5 years of use minimum and still be able to upgrade with a motherboard like this.
I recommend thinking through that whenever building a new rig. It’s just annoying when I have to replace a part because I didn’t buy at the beginning of a generation but the end of life!
- Very affordable for a Z490 motherboard
- Comes with a Wi-Fi antenna making setup a breeze
- Excellent VRM configuration
- Slightly less connectivity options
MSI MPG Z490 Gaming Carbon WiFi: Check Price On Amazon
Best Value Motherboard For Intel i5 10600K
MSI has put out a really solid motherboard with the MPG Z490 Gaming Carbon Wi-Fi. I can’t stress enough how nice it is to start shifting to more modern PCIe slots, newer long-term storage slots, and best of all onboard Wi-Fi.
This motherboard I particularly love the MSI MPG gaming line and rock a Z390 Gaming Plus in my PC Gaming Rig. One of the best features with these boards is the very easy to use BIOS that makes overclocking a breeze.
For those using thunderbolt in all it’s various forms, this comes equipped with Thunderbolt 3 support and Gen 2 Type-C USB support.
If you spend all the dosh to upgrade to a newer generation processor, you should really consider running some nice M.2 drives on your motherboard. Nothing competes with the speeds of NVMe and you’ll see load times just melt (Sometimes shaving minutes off from a traditional HDD).
The MSI MPG Z490 Gaming Carbon WiFi has you covered with enough slots to load your OS on one and snag a drive just for gaming. Like all our picks, this motherboard supports up to 128GB of RAM. With only four slots that means you could technically jam 32GB into it with one RAM slot (We don’t recommend that as running Dual-Channel is real important).
That’s just to say this motherboard will allow you to really push the RAM count. For those who are purist gamers but do want to use a bit of media, you can still use Adobe Premiere Pro and get your design on. It comes with the standard RGB and is overall a pretty awesome motherboard.
Using this also allows you to hit 32 GB/s with the M.2 drives. That’s outrageous. Irresponsible levels of speed. You’ll see those Open-World Games load up ever so quick with M.2 drives.
- Really neat looking design
- Thunderbolt header
- Loads of room for SSD and NVMe drives.
- Comes with a Wi-Fi Antenna already in the box
- No onboard buttons
ASRock Z490 Phantom Gaming Velocita: Check Price On Amazon
Best High-End Motherboard For Intel i5 10600K
ASRock released a really interesting motherboard with the Z490 PG Velocita. It’s actually focused more on the future with a lot of initial emphasis on PCIe 4.0.
If the fancy new i5-10600K is less a permanent solution and you expect to go all in with new Intel gens, then this is the motherboard for you. Compared to the others on this list, the PG Velocita has some things it needs to change. It lacks Wi-Fi out of the box but can be upgraded.
It doesn’t look the best. But it offers some of the best support for those using AMD GPU solutions (4x Crossfire). That alone is a pretty good selling point if you are one of those SLI loving fanatics who wants to beat 4K records.
The ASRock PG Velocita has some decent RGB support for those who want a really cool glowing case. The cooling on this motherboard is actually really nice. It even comes with its own app shop which is a bit bizarre but occasionally a manufacturer offers a really great software product like MSI Afterburner so it’s worth paying attention to.
While the gains from an overclocked i5 aren’t the largest, you still might encounter heat in a build and this just helps lower it on a foundational level. I hate that feeling of trying to cool a system down but being unable to find the culprit.
Excellent cooling solutions from the motherboard up help and this is especially important if you do take advantage of the CrossFire support.
The worst part of the ASRock Z490 Phantom Gaming Velocita has got to be the color scheme. It’s not my speed but perhaps someone likes it. It has a sort of Megatron the Decepticon feel that brings you right back to the 1980’s.
- Sturdy design with reinforced steel PCIe slots
- You can get ready for the future with a lot of foundational parts on this mobo
- XXL Aluminum Alloy Heatsink makes your system run cooler than ever
- Kind of 1987 retro look but some might like it
- No Wi-Fi module included
The new 10th gen Intel processors are beasts. They help you push your games to new FPS levels and the best processors will crush 4K games. It’s important though to also think about what your processor needs to be successful.
It absolutely needs an LGA1200 slot so a motherboard is not just crucial, you need a new one. The good news though is that the LGA1200 will probably see service for a few years as well as offers some awesome upcoming future tech upgrades.
That new i5-10600K is going to make you feel like you are on top of the world so treat it right! We recommend any of these motherboards as they balance price and features really well for the i5 gaming crowd.
They don’t skimp on features either like some of the cheaper mobos are known to do. Once again thank you joining us as we review some of the best hardware around. Keeping coming back for more of the latest and greatest on PC Hardware.