Building your very own rig can be a great hassle, sometimes, especially if you have no prior experience in the field, or not enough to judge the compatibility of the components without causing yourself too much trouble.
Getting major components to synchronize in performance without compromising any important detail is what we strive for, but this exactly is a great feat of its own, and believe me it never gets any easier. In most cases, what happens is that we almost always focus on the processor and as soon as we get one.
We are all out of options on what to pair it with, which motherboard would give you the optimal performance, without skimming off any other detail of importance.
Here’s is exactly why we are discussing Best Motherboard For i7 8700k, but first, we have to understand what is unfolding.
8 Best Motherboard For i7 8700k
The top of our list is the master grinder, ASRock Z370 Taichi. Released in October 2017, the ASROCK Z370 Taichi specifically offers support for the 8th generation Intel Core processors.
The extremely progressive design of the Z370 Taichi is a huge plus point, as the curvacious dual heatsinks connected through the heat pipe cover its power delivery area. Along with a unique placement of RGB lights under the chipset heatsink.
It certainly offers decent grounds for boosting as so the i7-8700k requires a premium performance, but it can only push up to the highest limit on single-threading, while with all cores at the power it only hits up to 4.3Ghz, which is still quite acceptable.
For a motherboard of this price range. Topping it off with the mighty overclocking performance of the Taichi that can easily hit a compelling 5.1 GHz without breaking a sweat.
Inside the house, we are presented with four dual-channel memory slots that can support a decent 64GB of RAM, with an impressive peak of 4333+(OC)Mhz powered by the Hyper DDR technology, but unfortunately, the 8th Gen Intel CPU only supports DDR4 up to 2666Mhz, which is quite disappointing.
For storage, it offers three high-speed M.2 slots as well as a total number of eight SATA ports. Despite the on-going lane sharing due to the lack of PCIe lanes on the CPU and board, it still leaves users with a decent capacity of ports to add SATA based drives or M.2 modules in PCIe NVMe or SATA zest as well.
The Taichi allows for a three-card crossfire and a dual card SLI with its full-length solid steel covered PCIe slots, while also presenting a couple of basic x1 slots powered by the chipset.
Going around the back, the rear I/O panel comprises of a single legacy PS/2 Keyboard/mouse port, An HDMI and 1.2 DisplayPort for video output, a pair of RJ-45 Lan ports with LED powered by two different chipsets, the Intel I219-V and Intel I211-AT, a sole USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-A port and another USB 3.1 Gen2 type-C port along with four USB 3.1 Gen1 ports.
A mandatory optical S/PDIF out port, with HD audio jacks, powered by the Realtek ALC1220 codec along with Purity Sound4 technology to provide HD 7.1 CH sound. There is also a nice little addition of two Antenna Ports and a blessed minute CLR_CMOS button at the corner.
The internal I/O support further expands the connectivity with three USB 2.0 headers with two USB 3.1 Gen1 headers and another Type-C USB 3.1 Gen2 header.
The additional support for the Turbo Boost Technology 2.0 gives a powerful spin to the performance. It also offers great wireless connectivity with the dual-band 802.11ac WiFi module that supports high-speed 5G connections and Bluetooth 4.2, making up for a decent range of features with great performance.
|Supported Memory||DDR4: 4 Slots, 64GB|
Next in line is one of the most affordable professional motherboard, the MSI Z370-A Pro. Released in September 2017, the Z370-A Pro is the cheapest in the lineup of MSI’s board categories.
It reflects the simplistic design and No RGB, but it provides plenty of features, fulfilling all the requirements for business users, and it is considered one of the best budget choices for the i7-8700k.
The MSI Z370-A Pro does its job without costing you extra for fancy design, heatsinks, and RGB, and instead gives you long-term reliability and excellent performance.
Paired with the Intel’s Coffee Lake 6 core processor, the Z370-A Pro is considered an outstanding choice for Content creators and professionals, and it offers exceptional potential for budget gaming just the same. They are even optimized for cryptocurrency mining.
I mean if that is something that interests you then the MSI Z370-A Pro should be right up your street.
Inside, we find four dual-channel memory slots offering a maximum speed of 4000+(OC)Mhz on DDR4, and supports up to 64GB of memory, at once.
Talking about storage, we have six SATA ports and one M.2 slot for high-speed storage which comes to Intel Optane ready for even better performance, along with the Xboost tool to boost-up and maximize your storage speed.
The cooling on the motherboard is ensured by six fan headers with full fan control options and support for both DC and PWM modes to keep the thing running smoothly and quietly.
The Z370-A Pro includes a total of six PCIe slots, two full-length, one of them is CPU connected while the other is along with four x1 slots are powered by the PCH. With multiple full-length PCI-e slots, the support for Crossfire is enabled, however, there is no mention of the SLI support.
The rear side I/O panel carries a compulsory legacy PS/2 keyboard/mouse port, a VGA, DVI-D, and a full-size DisplayPort for video output, about four USB 3.1 Gen1 Type-A ports and a pair of USB 2.0.
An RJ45 Lan port powered by the Realtek RTL8111H chipset and 6 HD audio ports, the on-board audio is powered by Realtek ALC892 codec for HD 7.1 Channels audio.
The isolated audio design with separate audio layers for right and left channel and the superior Chemi-Con audio capacitors give exceptional audio quality, along with De-pop protection to keep your ears safe.
The onboard I/O connectors include a pair of USB 3.1 Gen1 connectors and another pair of USB 2.0 connectors. The OC Genie 4 one-touch button can boost up the CPU speed up to an impressive 4.4GHz on all cores and a whopping 4.8GHz on a single core, the overclocking is also on-par with 5.1Ghz top but the cooling system pushes one a little back.
For a 110$ with simplistic design and no fancy showcasing, the Z370-A Pro gives exceptional and professional performance for a budget motherboard.
|Supported Memory||DDR4: 4 Slots, 64GB|
Another worthy addition to our list is the ASUS ROG Maximus X Apex. Released in November 2017, the ASUS ROG Maximus X Apex lives right up to its mighty name.
With it’s enthusiastic and curvaceous design, award-winning and groundbreaking overclocking performance, with the unmatchable memory speed limit and unique features, the Maximus X Apex stands tall for itself and proves itself worthy of the price.
which is honestly quite high. Designed specifically for the 8 Generation processors, the Maximus X Apex offers 5-Way Optimization with Auto-Tuning and FanXpert 4 which automatically tailors overclocking profiles to your unique build for peak overclocking performance and effective system cooling.
Looking Inside, the Maximus X Apex, unfortunately, offers only two DIMM slots that can only support up to 32GB of memory, which is not something expected from a motherboard with a premium price tag. Although, it does take the memory speed up to 4500+(OC)MHz with supreme stability and ease.
Looking at the storage support, Maximus X Apex removes M.2 connections on the motherboard and relies entirely on the DIMM.2 add-in-card to connect any M.2 devices (SATA, PCIe, Optane). The add-in-card has a bracket with it in order to attach fans for cooling the devices located beneath it.
IN SATA, the Apex provides only four ports, supporting RAID 0/1/5/10. Usually, the platform comprises of six SATA ports which are native to the chipset, but having only four in use enables the board not to share PCIe resources with any of the SATA ports, which is a good thing but with less storage capacity.
The Apex surprisingly comes with four full-length PCIe slots and two basic PCIe x1, one of the full-length slot is powered by the chipset at x4 speed, while the x1 also powered by the chipset at x1. The other three full-length slots are connected to CPU and run at a decent speed of x16, x8/x8, or x8/x4/x4. This enables 2-way SLI and massive 4-way crossfire support.
In the back panel, we are granted a ClrCMOS BIOS Flashback, separate legacy PS/2 mouse and keyboard ports, An HDMI 1.4b, and 1.2 DisplayPort for video output, a pair of USB 3.1 Gen2 ports, about four USB 3.1 Gen1 ports and USB 2.0 ports.
For LAN connection, we have the AQC108 5G and an Intel® I219V port. A necessary digital S/PDIF Optical out and 5 gold-plated audio jacks, the audio is powered S1220A codec which provides SupremeFX 8-Channel high definition audio with a little help from SupremeFX Shielding™ Technology. The internal header offers two USB 3.0 and six USB 2.0 ports.
The Maximus X Apex however expensive is laced with long-list of latest features and tools. The Apex primarily, like the rest of the line-up, focuses on overclocking abilities, which are record-breaking, but with i7-8700k it could only easily push up to 5.1GHz and anything beyond that created a voltage wall.
So, the final verdict would be that no matter how much heavily featured the Maximus X Apex is, it is quite expensive for an i7-8700k, unless price does not concern you, then it might just be a powerful companion.
|Supported Memory||DDR4: 2 Slots, 32GB|
Next up, we have another simple, yet powerful entry, the EVGA Z370 Micro. Released in February 2018, the Z370 Micro, however, simplified is still priced quite high.
Providing specific support for Coffee Lake and 8th generation processors, the Z370 Micro is an excellent choice for overclocking, along with a list of other features. Against other versions of the Z370, the Micro-ATX version does not offer much in the design, it is simplistically shaded in black and lacks native RGB LEDs.
On the memory side of the thing, the Z370 Micro, like our previous feature, also offers only two DIMM slots, which are of course re-inforced. The memory support is not quite satisfactory for the price tag, with 32GB maximum supported size and support up to DDR4-4133+(OC)MHz. For storage capacit.
We are offered six SATA ports and a single M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 slot between the PCIe slots that will fit up to an 80mm module, leaving fair space for six 4-pin PWM headers around the board for maximum cooling operation.
There are three reinforced PCIe slots, two full-length supports up to x16 or x8/x8 speed, while the third is a PCIe x4 slot powered from the chipset. This enables support for 2-way SLI and crossfire, rendering great visual power.
On the backside of the board, the I/O panel comprises a complementary legacy PS/2 Keyboard/mouse port, up to six USB 3.0 (5 Gbps) ports, and a pair of USB 2.0. An Intel I219 Ethernet LAN port, five HD audio ports with optical S/PDIF out, the onboard audio is powered by the Realtek ALC1220 providing High definition 7.1 CH audio.
There is also a nice addition of a Clear CMOS button and a slot for the M.2 E-Key device, which normally takes the form of a Wi-Fi module. The onboard panel support offers a USB 3.1 header and a pair of USB 2.0, overall the range of connectivity is fair enough, but could have done with a little more high-speed connectors for the price tag.
The Z370 Micro features a high-speed intel® 802.11AC WiFi module, along with support for Bluetooth 4.2. The other features, listed by the manufacturers, include 100% Solid State Capacitors, 150% increased socket sold content, EVGA E-LEETX tuning support, external clock gen. and a highly-efficient 11 phase digital VRM.
The Z370 Micro is a quite capable motherboard that can easily push the 8th gen processor to 5.1GHz, but it is indeed highly-priced besides skimming the fancy design features.
|Chipset||Intel Z370 Express|
|Supported Memory||DDR4: 2 Slots, 32GB|
Next up is ASRock Z370 Extreme4, released in October 2017, ASRock Z370 Extreme4 is among one of the most ideal budget motherboards with decent performance, making up for perfect price value.
It is a moderately-priced ATX form factor motherboard with unmatched overclocking capabilities and enhanced temperature control for gaming. Designed like a super-car with artistic curves, the MPG Z390 renders excellent performance with its core boosting and an absolutely attractive look through color customization with MSI Mystic Light RGB.
MSI MPG Z390 Gaming Pro Carbon is a perfect match for i7-9700k for it provides ultimate overclocking abilities, pushing the given base clock speed up to almost 5GHz. The board is built using high-density material, stretching its life and reliability.
The audio unit of this motherboard is known especially for its high-end noise cancellation capabilities and excellent quality audio channels with help of a Realtek ALC1220 chip enhanced with Nahimic. The rear panel offers a variety of USB ports, including two USB 2.0 ports and one USB 3.0 Gen2, Type C, and three USB 3.0 Gen2, Type A, powered up with the lightning-fast transfer speed of up to 10/GBs, along with a legacy PS/2 port.
It even offers a port for Type-C reversible connector to step up the I/O range. For Lan, it offers a fairly fast 10/100/1000 gigabyte ethernet jack, however, it does not offer Wifi on default but still comes with a Key-E/CNVi slot for the -AC model’s Wi-Fi module in an empty space adjacent to the audio jacks, for video, on the other hand, it only offers a 1.2 DisplayPort and a 1.4 HDMI.
The front of the motherboard also offers a variety of USB ports including one Gen2, Type C, and four Gen1, Type A USB 3.0 ports along with a single serial port.
The MPG Z390 Gaming Pro Carbon comes with six SATA 6 GB/s storage ports Combined in here is are M.2 PCI Express slots using x4 PCIe lanes, thus 32. GB/sec of performance. It is presented with a DD4 dual memory channel and four DIMM slots which can support up to 4400MHz (OC) and a total of 128GB in memory, at once.
Two power connectors 4+8 are present to power up the processor, just using one 8-pin connector does the job, so, you do not need to use both of them. it might be okay without using the other.
|Supported Memory||DDR4: 4 Slots, 64GB|
Another excellent addition from the ASUS lineup is the ASUS ROG Strix Z370-I Gaming. Released in October 2017, the ASUS ROG Strix Z370-I Gaming is another high-end mainstream board with a lot of powerful features and a decent price tag.
Providing specific support for Intel 8th Gen processors, the Z370-I is an aesthetically designed board with infused RGB support, immense overclocking power, and maximized cooling operation to keep everything in line. The Z370-I gaming, as the name suggests is a perfect choice for a gaming companion with its unmatchable speed threshold and a long list of premium features.
The power delivery heatsinks provide unbeatable support for overclocking, keeping things cool at all times, with an excellent boot speed thanks to the ASUS Pro Clock technology, the Z370-I can hit up to 4.3GHz on all cores and 4.7Ghz on a single core, which is fair enough.
With its supreme overclocking ability, it can boost things up to a decent 5.1GHz with an i7-8700k. The impressive thing is the automatic overclocking, which along with 5-way optimization can boost all cores speed up to 4.7GHz, at ease, with four of the cores taking it up to a whopping 5GHz without breaking any sweat and of course with constant support from the heatsinks.
The number of DIMM slots is only two instead of four where only 32GB of RAM can be added across the slots, that can go up to an optimal speed of 4333+(OC)MHz, giving ultimate strength and stability for overclocking with ASUS OptiMem.
On the storage side, things are looking up with not one but two high-speed M.2 slots, the primary slot is located up-front by the chipset, sharing the same double-decker heatsink, and the other lies to the rear. Along with four SATA 6GB/s ports located around the DRAM slots, with Raid support 0, 1, 5, 10.
The board is rendered with an integrated Intel HD graphics support, catching up to 4k on native video outputs. surprisingly, for peripherals connection, there is only one PCIe 3.0 full length reinforced slot that supports up to x16, so apparently, there is no support for SLI or crossfire.
The rear panel IO gives a decent range of USB ports – four USB 2.0, and four USB 3.1 Gen1. For video output, there is an HDMI and a DisplayPort. The audio stack is powered by an upgraded ASUS exclusive Realtek ALC1220A codec along with Premium Nichicon™ audio capacitors and Dual Op Amplifiers for a crisp audio quality, the stack has five output jacks, and a SPDIF out as well.
The ASUS Sonic Studio III support provides immerse audio experience. There is also an RJ45 anti-surge LAN port that uses an I219-V GbE chipset providing high TCP & UDP throughput and an antenna connector via ASUS Wi-Fi 802.11 module with dual-band frequency up to 5GHz and a Bluetooth 4.2. The onboard headers give three more USB connectors, a USB 3.1 Gen2, a USB 3.1 Gen1, and a USB 2.0.
Z370-I Gaming is a superb choice for gaming enthusiasts with an i7-8700k. With the super curvaceous and heavily featured design, along with double-decker heatsinks, the perfect companions for regular and overclock cooling operation and native RGB support. The Z370-I Gaming competes with the Maximus X Apex in functionality with a much better price tag giving it additional points.
|Form factor||Mini ITX|
|Supported Memory||DDR4: 2 Slots, 32GB|
The Gigabyte Z390 UD motherboard is an ATX form factor motherboard. Released in October 2018, the Gigabyte Z390 has dropped all of the gaming bulk and went with a cleaner and more standard look.
The Gigabyte Z390 UD has a black PCB with a gray pattern, sweeping straight across most of the PCB, and also combines it with the heat sinks as well. The Gigabyte Z390 UD has three full-lengths PCIe 3.0 slots. The topmost PCIe slot supports x16 while the other two support x4.
The motherboard also has three PCIe 3.0 x1 slots as well. The Gigabyte Z390 UD also has 8-pin and 4-pin 12V ATX power input.
The Gigabyte Z390 UD motherboard has six SATA ports in total which have two right-angled connectors, while the remaining four have straight angled connectors and are just below.
Just above the PCIe slots, there is a single M.2 slot that supports both SATA drives and PCIe 3.0 x4. The Gigabyte Z390 UD motherboard can support up to 64 GB of RAM in total. The Gigabyte Z390 UD motherboard’s rear I/O panel has six USB 3.0 Type-A ports, a pair of PS/2 ports and, an HDMI video output.
The Gigabyte Z390 UD motherboard does not have any USB 3.1 Gen2 ports in order to lower the cost of the motherboard. This motherboard also features a cheaper Realtek ALC887 Audio Codec.
If you want a modest list of features and don’t care much about the “gaming” aesthetics on the motherboard and have a smaller budget standing, then the Gigabyte Z390 UD motherboard is a great choice for you.
Especially if you’re looking to pair up the Core i7-8700K with a motherboard. This motherboard has some of the latest features while it is quite reasonably priced.
|Supported Memory||DDR4: 4 Slots, 128GB|
8. MSI Z370 M5
Last but not least is another grand entry from the MSI line-up, the Z370 M5. Released in October 2017, the Z370 M5 is a master level gaming board with an incredible aesthetic and technical design, mystic RGB lighting.
The signature curvacious VRM heatsinks add a lot to the beauty and functionality. Additional RGB strip support can be found throughout the board.
With specific support for Coffee ALke and 8th Gen Intel processors, the Z370 M5 is built for hardcore gaming with its 6 core optimization, certified by the e-sports gaming leagues, the Z370 M5 is a fully customizable personalized gaming rig companion.
Four fully reinforced DIMM memory slots that can house in 64 GB at a decent maximum speed support of 4000+(OC)MHz. The board has the accustomed balance of six SATA ports all located on the right side of the board next to the chipset heatsink to shelter under a good cooling spot.
The SATA 1/5 will be unavailable when an M.2 SATA SSD module has been installed in the first M.2 slot, while SATA 5/6 will be unavailable when an M.2 SATA SSD is used in the second M.2 slot. RAID 0, 1, 5, and 10 support is enabled for all SATA device. Six 4-pin fan headers are located around the motherboard for additional cooling operation.
There are three full-length reinforced and three x1 PCIe slots, which is quite sufficient. Two of the full-length slots are connected to the CPU while the final one along with the x1 slots is connected to the chipset. With support for x16/x0/x4 or x8/x8/x4 configurations, it also enables up to three-way AMD crossfire and two-way SLI installation.
The rear I/O panel has a great connectivity coverage, including four USB 3.1 ports, of which one is Gen2, Type A, another is Gen2, Type C, and a pair of Gen1, Type A. About three USB 2.0 ports. An HDMI and DisplayPort for native video output.
A LAN port with a Rivet Networks Killer E2500 gigabit Ethernet controller. An optical S/PDIF output and 5 audio jacks, all handled with the latest Realtek ALC1220 codec along with Chemicon audio caps, Nahimic 2, audio boost 4, isolated sound design, and separate layers for High definition and immersive sound experience.
The internal headers extend the connectivity further with four USB 3.1 Gen1, Type A, and four USB 2.0 ports.
The Z370 M5 is a powerful board, that holds a great value-for-price. With 11 Phase power design that allows for endless tunning. High-quality components with a gaming optimized BIOS. The Z370 M5 fires up efficiency with its latest technologies and digital apps, along with exceptional boost and overclocking capabilities.
|Supported Memory||DDR4: 4 Slots, 64GB|
Among the best choices for 8th Gen Coffee Lake processor, the i7-8700k, the most suitable in our calculation is the MSI Z370 M5, due it’s excellent value for the price, and the long list of features and exceptional functionality, along with fantastic gaming design and Mystic RGB Lighting, there is nothing better to ask for.