Micro ATX vs ATX???

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Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Wed Aug 17, 2011 9:45 pm

I have seen a lot of people moving towards microATX lately. Is there any advantages micro has over standard? I'm thinkin of putting one in my next desktop build.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Wed Aug 17, 2011 9:58 pm

Smaller. Easier to move around in your case. It does have fewer expansion slots, but for the vast majority of people, you get more than enough.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Wed Aug 17, 2011 10:45 pm

It depends on what you want to do. If expansion and/or SLI/CrossFire are not on the agenda, then going Micro ATX is probably a good idea. I would recommend a very good case for your mATX such as this one.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Wed Aug 17, 2011 11:10 pm

My last 2 builds have used mATX boards , I rarely use more than one PCIe slot so I have no need for multiple PCIe or PCI slots on a board. Since boards today are " full featured" I really havent found a need to use a ATX board since a Q6600 build so many years ago. YMMV. I still seem to use mid tower cases though, go figure.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Wed Aug 17, 2011 11:50 pm

Back in the day, the only mATX boards used the i810 chipset. This relegated you to a world of truly horrid integrated, or PCI graphics. This hasn't been an issue since i815, which came out over 10 years ago. In other words, get off my lawn! And go mATX unless you for some reason need those extra slots, there's no reasonable reason for most builds not to.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2011 12:20 am

As everyone else has noted, these days you only need a full-size board if you need the extra expansion slots for something. There are fewer reasons to need expansion slots these days -- onboard gigabit Ethernet has been standard for a few years now (no need for a discrete NIC), onboard sound has gotten a lot better (no need for discrete audio unless you're fairly picky about sound quality), most boards include at least 5 SATA ports and a buttload of USB ports (so little need for additional I/O cards), and micro-ATX boards still have a PCIe x16 slot (so you can throw a high-end GPU in there if you're not happy with the onboard GPU).

Micro-ATX also tends to be more affordable, since -- being smaller -- they cost less to manufacture.

5 of the last 6 motherboards I've bought were micro-ATX. And the one full ATX one was purchased because it was on sale, not because I really needed the extra slots.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2011 4:19 pm

greenmystik wrote:I have seen a lot of people moving towards microATX lately. Is there any advantages micro has over standard? I'm thinkin of putting one in my next desktop build.

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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2011 5:01 pm

Thanx for the advice guys. I think I might just try out mATX on my next build.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Sat Aug 20, 2011 12:16 am

Micro-ATX can do everything that you need, including SLI/Crossfire-X. I bought the P8P67-M Pro in January.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Sat Aug 20, 2011 2:12 am

Today using mATX board is not what used to be. mATX share d same chipset with ATX sibblings. So ur rear ports will be same. Dimm slots, check. U can put in a smaller case. Even sli or cf there are some able to.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Sat Aug 20, 2011 3:31 am

The main problem I had with my last build (mATX) was finding a mATX case (that is, not as tall as a ATX midi-tower) that could also host a decently large cooler.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Sat Aug 20, 2011 9:36 am

On the counterpoint I went mATX and now think I should've gotten regular ATX instead. I bought a 30in LCD screen after computer build and a single videocard is barely adequate to run it in games.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Sat Aug 20, 2011 11:00 am

Firestarter wrote:The main problem I had with my last build (mATX) was finding a mATX case (that is, not as tall as a ATX midi-tower) that could also host a decently large cooler.

There's no reason you can't put a mATX board in a mid (or even full) tower, unless you're trying to fit the case into a desk, entertainment center, or other space-constrained area. The motherboard mounting holes and rear panel cutouts are still compatible.

Synchromesh wrote:On the counterpoint I went mATX and now think I should've gotten regular ATX instead. I bought a 30in LCD screen after computer build and a single videocard is barely adequate to run it in games.

Yes, SLI is the single biggest reason to avoid mATX. If you think you might ever want to run two video cards, go full ATX.

I've never used SLI, and have no plans to do so. So mATX is fine by me.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Sat Aug 20, 2011 11:03 am

There are a pretty decent selection of micro-ATX motherboards that will handle SLI or Crossfire-X. However, with double-slot graphics cards, you could run out of space for other cards.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Sat Aug 20, 2011 11:04 am

just brew it! wrote:
Firestarter wrote:The main problem I had with my last build (mATX) was finding a mATX case (that is, not as tall as a ATX midi-tower) that could also host a decently large cooler.

There's no reason you can't put a mATX board in a mid (or even full) tower, unless you're trying to fit the case into a desk, entertainment center, or other space-constrained area. The motherboard mounting holes and rear panel cutouts are still compatible.

Yes captain obvious, but we still wanted a smallish case anyway. It currently sits on top of a desk in plain view, and a regular ATX case would have been bigger than we'd have liked, even though space was of no real concern.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Sat Aug 20, 2011 11:20 am

Firestarter wrote:Yes captain obvious, but we still wanted a smallish case anyway. It currently sits on top of a desk in plain view, and a regular ATX case would have been bigger than we'd have liked, even though space was of no real concern.

Obvious to you and me; but possibly not to everyone else reading this thread.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Sun Aug 21, 2011 1:16 pm

just brew it! wrote:Obvious to you and me; but possibly not to everyone else reading this thread.

Well, the webshop were I ordered was very thorough in listing the mounting options for each case. So it was pretty obvious to me :lol:
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Sun Aug 21, 2011 2:19 pm

Would putting mATX impact airflow at all? I want to find a good balance between air and sound in my build. It seems like putting a smaller motherboard would help airflow. Anybody have different experiences???
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Sun Aug 21, 2011 2:32 pm

Using a larger case probably has more impact on airflow than putting in a smaller motherboard, since larger cases typically have more places to mount case fans. The extra area of a full ATX board is mostly expansion slots and other low-profile components, which aren't going to have much impact on airflow. I suppose moving the southbridge away from the other heat-generating components (as many full ATX boards do) may improve your temperatures a little bit, but IMO that's a pretty minor consideration.
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Re: Micro ATX vs ATX???

Postposted on Mon Aug 22, 2011 12:20 am

Smaller case means a smaller cooler most likely. The mATX case that I ended up using couldn't fit any 120mm tower cooler.
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