Mainboard sizes: form factors of ITX to ATX Overview

For boards, or motherboard, there are many different form factors. What exactly does ATX, E-ATX, Micro-ATX, mini-ITX and Co.? In the article you will find all information about the different motherboard sizes which motherboard is designed for what purpose and how the different form factors look like.

Mainboard sizes: form factors of ITX to ATX Overview

A shape factor in a PC determines on what size and mounting options includes a hardware component. In addition to motherboards and hard drives have a form factor. Here is famous for its 2.5 and 3.5-inch. Besides the pure size specification as well as the holes for the fixtures play a role. As with hard drives, there are certain holes that allow mounting in a form factor compliant PC case even with motherboards.

Mainboard sizes: the correct form factor for each claim

In modern home user PCs motherboards are often used with the size or the form factor ATX. This is sort of the default size. Lately, attention but often fell on ever smaller PCs, so smaller housing and smaller motherboards. So also the size micro-ATX, but also ITX and Mini-ITX has become widespread. What is going on with the different sizes to be, learn it in the article.

mainboard-big-comparative

Different motherboard sizes in comparison: ATX is used in many home computers, but there are more and more often such computers that rely on micro-ATX or ITX. In this way, smaller PCs are still possible. Source: &# 8220; VIA Mini-ITX Form Factor Comparison&# 8221; by VIA Gallery from Hsintien, Taiwan &# 8211; VIA Mini-ITX Form Factor Comparison uploaded by Kozuch. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Commons

By the way: Only if a housing supports a specific motherboard size, one can safely assume that you really can mount as planned the motherboard too. So not only the holes between the motherboard and case must match and the motherboard from the size to fit the case. So there is always called a spacer between the motherboard and the actual case. This mainboard is placed and in this, the mounting screws are then screwed in.

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ATX &# 8211; the standard size

ATX is currently still the most common form factor, especially when to configure his PC even then. ATX stands for Advanced Technology Extended, dating back to a specification Intel from the year 1996th

The ATX form factor of 305 x know size 244 mm or 12 x 9.6 inches represents and provides for many users a good mix of size and amenities represents Smaller boards can accommodate fewer components of connections and features.

A motherboard in ATX form factor

A motherboard in ATX form factor

What about BTX?

The standard BTX also from Intel. It stands for Balanced Technology Extended, and was introduced by the chip manufacturer in 2004 in order to inherit the ATX standard. Really enforce it could, however, never. Differences were found, for example, in the arrangement of the hardware components on the motherboard. Thus connections and slots are arranged in mirror image in comparison to ATX. The aim was to lower energy consumption and less heat generation. ATX own way, goes back to AT (Advanced Technology), this standard was introduced by IBM in the year 1984th

Popular motherboard form factors compared: PC / 104 to WTX.

Popular motherboard form factors compared: PC / 104 to WTX. Click on the image to enlarge it. Source: "motherboard form factors" of GreyCat &# 8211; Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

microATX and ITX &# 8211; Small Form Factor Mini-PCs

Smaller form factors have the disadvantage that they are often less well equipped than their bigger brothers &# 8211; and there are also smaller packages to more problems with the dissipation of the heat generated. Especially with office PCs in the living room and now and then even in gaming computers these variables, however, are still to be found more frequently.

  • microATX motherboards are often referred to as uATX motherboards. They are somewhat shorter than the &# 8220; normal&# 8221; compatible ATX size, but as wide and with ATX enclosures. The dimensions are: 9.6 x 9.6 inches and 244 244 mm.

A microATX motherboard

A microATX motherboard

  • Also Mini-ITX experiencing an increased importance in recent times. The form factor is again smaller. Only 6.7 x 6.7 inches and 170 x 170 mm can be measured such a board.

    A mini-ITX board

    A mini-ITX board

  • An ATX case can also accommodate ITX motherboards and uATX often, but the spacers have at microATX case be set differently possibly because here other boreholes are needed.

    You can see the right side on which the motherboard is mounted a PC chassis. The spacers also ensure proper alignment. Drill holes in the motherboard must lie exactly above them. If you want to install a microATX board in an ATX case, you must position the spacers different circumstances.

    You can see the right side on which the motherboard is mounted a PC chassis. The spacers also ensure proper alignment. Drill holes in the motherboard must lie exactly above them. If you want to install a microATX board in an ATX case, you must position the spacers different circumstances. Has a housing no holes for the spacers, which are required for microATX, then you can not install a motherboard in this form factor. However, this happens rarely.

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E-ATX and other formats

In addition to smaller form factors, there are also larger motherboards, such as E-ATX motherboards. In addition, there are dozens of other form factors, but these are used less frequently.


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