Intel Core i7-11700K is the fastest octa-core processor by Intel, and it is a fair competitor of AMD Ryzen 7 5800X. The processor offers around 20 percent improvement from the 10th-generation Core i7 processor, which is reasonably good. Eight cores are more than enough for any personal workload, whether gaming, streaming, or content creation. Many users don’t want to shift to the AMD Ryzen platform even if the latest Ryzen processors are slightly better.
Now, handling eight cores is not an easy job for a motherboard, especially when the processor supports Intel Hyper-Threading too, which makes the total number of threads to be sixteen. Since it is a K-series processor, it can be overclocked using supported motherboards. There are many chipsets that can support this processor, such as B460, B560, H410, H510, H570, Z490, and Z590; however, we recommend using only the Z590 or Z490 motherboard for this processor because you would be wasting a significant part of processor’s potential if you use other motherboards.
Choosing a suitable motherboard can get tiring, especially when looking for a motherboard that’s compatible with a processor like Intel Core i7-11700K. That is why we have created this buying guide to help those who need aid in buying the perfect motherboard for their processor.
Exclusive Features: There are dozens of motherboard manufacturers these days that design a dozen more motherboard variants. Now, most motherboards have pretty similar specifications when they use the same chipset so comparing these should be pretty easy. Since I previously mentioned that you should buy a Z590 or Z490 chipset motherboard for this processor, it’s better if you look at the more exclusive features of these motherboards in order to differentiate between various models. For example, the ASUS motherboards are mainly known for their top-notch BIOS interface; that makes it very easy for overclocking, ASROCK motherboards are known for having the best value in the market, and MSI motherboards are known for having the best VRM components. Learn how to check if CPU is overlocked by reading this article.
Design and Aesthetics: The design of motherboards are improving with each generation of chipsets, and the latest motherboards come with unique-looking VRM heat sinks, I/O covers, and RGB lighting. In fact, there is barely any motherboard in the market, for modern processors, that do not use RGB lighting in it. The design of the motherboard can also play a role in its cooling performance, where some motherboards use beautiful heat sinks for M.2 devices, which not only improve thermal performance but look fantastic as well.
I/O Ports, Slots, and Other Specifications: The I/O of almost every motherboard is designed differently. Some motherboards provide lots of USB ports, but don’t provide WiFi, while some motherboards provide minimal rear I/O ports, and some motherboards tend to provide a lot of everything. Usually, high-end motherboards come with more ports and slots than cheaper motherboards. The specifications of high-end motherboards are also better than low-end motherboards, where you will be able to overclock the memory to higher clock rates. The same goes for the processor, as the motherboard VRM can drastically affect the overclocking performance of the processor.
So now you know what to look for when it comes to picking out a good motherboard, to make things easier I’ve listed four motherboards of varying specs and prices, including the one which I believe is the best for an i7-11700K. Without further delay, let’s get into it.
Well, it took XII heroes to get here, but the ASUS ROG Maximus XIII Hero is the best Hero, for now. If you've managed to obtain a small loan of a million dollars from your father, you could easily afford this motherboard along with a Core i7-11700K. The features on this mobo are insane, but it’s worth it. A larger-than-life mobo for a larger-than-life CPU.
2×2 Tri-Band Intel Wi-Fi a/b/g/n/ac/ax/az + BT5.2 (Wi-Fi and Bluetooth)
14.57 x 12.28 x 4.25 inches
For me, the ASUS ROG Maximus XIII Hero is slightly overkill, I mean who needs all those M.2 slots? Not me, I’ll take the pain and suffering of sitting through HDD loading times because I want to read those loading screen tips.
All that ranting aside, this motherboard is top-notch. It’s got a ton of cool features such as Artificial Intelligence. This is just a fancy way of saying that a ton of if-statements have been written to make sure that this motherboard is able to properly adjust itself during overclocking, cooling, networking and even noise cancellation. (I’m kidding, A.I is really cool) This is a really awesome feature and one that I have still not seen in many other mobos.
The design and aesthetics of this are amazing. ASUS ROG is no stranger when it comes to designing beautiful PC parts that appeal to most gamers. The futuristic design is always welcome, and it goes great with RGB and other components. They’ve also managed to hide away most of the electronic components and M.2 slots under heat sinks that look straight out of a “carbon-fiber punk” universe. (I just made that up to make Carbon Fiber look even cooler).
Couple this amazing design with Aura Sync, and the RGB options at your disposal are limitless. You can make sure that this mobo will fit the theme of your PC no matter what color scheme you intend to use.
So far we’ve gathered that this is an expensive motherboard, but does it perform as well as it looks? Yes, it does. The 2 PCIe 4.0 x16 slots are great for dual GPU setups and it has an extra PCIe 3.0 x16 and a PCIe 3.0 x1 slot. Along with a ton of other specs that makes this mobo, the most future-proof one on this list.
What We Like
Performance - For a motherboard that touts itself as a hero that stands with the help of its predecessors, this mobo has grown, especially in terms of performance. The multi-GPU support, higher memory speeds and efficient power delivery makes it one of the top dogs that’s capable enough of supporting an i7-11700K.
Aesthetic - Honestly, what else can you expect but a stunning design. This motherboard looks as well as it performs. The layout is very clean and the Aura Sync RGB pattern is very nice, it gives the entire mobo a sharp look; one that will definitely turn heads.
Know Before Buying
Price - The price is, as most gamers say, “Not very optimized”. This is a high-end mobo for a high-end CPU. We can understand the reasoning for this, but for most casual gamers this can be a bit overkill, even if they were to use an 11th gen i7. Most gamers won’t utilize the extra M.2 slots and the extra x16 PCIe. For typical gamers I don’t recommend it, but for content creators it’s alright.
An affordable yet reliable motherboard enters the room, what will you do? The ASUS PRIME Z590M-PLUS is a nice motherboard that’s packed with enough features for a simple and efficient PC build. It doesn’t have any fancy bells or whistles but it gets the job done. For budget gamers, I highly recommend it.
I can’t believe that the budget entry on a list has more than 4 DIMM slots. It really surprised me and threw me off my game, but hey, if you live the fast-paced life of an 11th generation Intel Core i7 processor these mobos are the lowest you’re gonna have to get. Anything lower than that is not worth the effort.
The specs are really impressive for a budget entry. It’s got PCIe 4.0 x16 with onboard graphics support. Although you won’t get to use a dual-GPU config, there’s still the backup provided by the integrated graphics. In the most rare scenario where your GPU just decided to commit sudoku (or is it called seppuku? I really don’t know) the onboard graphics will support you just enough so that you can order a new GPU.
But make sure that the Intel Core CPU does not have the suffix F, those ones do not come with an in-built GPU. For a more detailed guide on the Intel Core series’ numbering system, check out my other guide on best LGA 1150 Socket CPU.
With the graphics part out of the way, this mobo also supports a ton of USB ports; both on the front and rear, 5 SATA ports, 4 DIMM slots, a Key E M.2 slot. All of these features are jam-packed in an affordable Micro ATX. Quite impressive!
What We Like
Price - Affordability is the name of the game and the ASUS PRIME Z590M-PLUS seems to be winning, especially over our previous entry, the ASUS ROG Maximus XIII Hero. The PRIME Z590M-PLUS is a very affordable option, it may not look like the cheapest mobo with a LGA 1200 socket but in our case we are considering a more high end CPU, so for an i7-11700K I highly recommend this.
Versatility - There’s a lot of utility in this mobo, the 4 DIMM slots and 6 SATA ports are more than good enough for most budget builds, they are a cheaper alternative that provides a little more legroom for future updates. The lack of proper M.2 slots can be off-putting for some but with SATA SSDs you could easily remedy this.
Know Before Buying
Performance - With low budget comes lower performance. Despite its many likeable features, this mobo doesn’t have a lot of overclock potential. Since the processor in consideration is an i7-10700K, a safe environment to perform overclocking is essential, and unfortunately this mobo doesn’t guarantee that.
The MSI MEG Z590I UNIFY is a Mini-ITX motherboard that’s ideal for a mini-PC build. Who would want to install an 11th gen i7 on it? I have no idea, but it’s possible and I won’t judge you for it. Despite its physical limitations, this motherboard is just as capable of performing as many other entry-level builds. Just don’t try to include DIY water cooling if you happen to get a case that’s also the same form factor.
Curious is the Mini-ITX maker’s art, his efficacy unwitnessed by his own eyes. Nobody will ever witness the true artistic potential of a Mini-ITX, myself included. Only those that built it and chose to hide them away, will only be able to determine if putting a powerful CPU in such a tiny motherboard will ever be worth it.
The specs are impressive, the dual channel DIMM slots could support upto 5600 MHz of overclocked potential and despite having only a single PCIe x16 slot, it has HDMI and display ports in case you needed to utilize the onboard graphics.
There’s also a lot of choice in the USB section, enough ports in the front and back along with a couple of USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports. The M.2 slots are a most welcome addition. Unlike our budget entry, this mobo did it’s homework.
What We Like
Aesthetics - This motherboard looks very compact and the layout is very tidy. MSI did a great job of hiding most of the electronic components under heatsinks. The embossing and the slots cut out to let out hot air looks very nice. I’m quite surprised to see such a small motherboard displaying such flair. Overall the design is amazing.
Performance - Despite the 2 DIMM slots and no multi-GPU support all the other specs are a good combination. Although an i7-11700K is underutilized for this motherboard, it is still compatible and provides a good enough environment for the CPU. The Wi-Fi is also a very welcome feature and the four SATA III ports make it very useful for most applications.
Know Before Buying
Price - Despite its size, this motherboard touts a hefty price tag, it’s more expensive than our budget entry so don’t make the mistake of thinking smaller equals fewer dollars. This motherboard has better specs along with a higher price to justify it. For mid range gamers I suppose it’s okay but there’s not a lot of room to upgrade. For budget gamers however I recommend staying away.
Finally we come across the best of the bunch, the quintessential middle child. The ASUS ROG Strix Z590-E has enough premium features for your 11th gen i7 without going too far overboard with the budget. I highly recommend this CPU.
In the famous words of Gordon Ramsey: “Finally a good f****** mobo!” The ASUS ROG Strix Z590-E Gaming motherboard is the best you will ever need for your 11th gen i7 for years to come.
The specs are amazing. It’s got all that I,Robot thingy going for it, just like the Maximus XIII Hero, (For those of you that don’t know: I’m talking about the AI feature) along with a ton of similar features along with that the RGB is amazing and I love the overall design.
In terms of specs, unfortunately, only NVIDIA SLI support is provided; so no AMD dual setups. There’s Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, a ton of USB ports and more than enough M.2 slots. So that’s pretty good. I could keep going on and on but, I know you’re going to buy this.
What We Like
Performance - This motherboard provides the most safe and balanced environment for the unlocked Intel Core i7-11700K. You build a mid-high range PC with this motherboard without any issue. It’s got a lot of room for future upgrades and will not let you down.
Aesthetics - The design is amazing, I love the Aura Sync feature along with the integrated RGB. Just like the Maximus they have organically introduced the RGB to go along with any theme of your choice.
Know Before Buying
Price - I know this is the best and all but, it’s a little on the expensive side, now don’t get me wrong it’s nowhere near as expensive as the Maximums or the Z590I UNIFY but still, it could burn a hole in your wallet. However, for budget gamers, I consider this to be a worthwhile investment, it’s very future-proof so I’d recommend it for anybody.
Intel Core i7-11700K is the latest addition by Intel to the Core i7-series processors, and it features eight cores and sixteen threads. This processor’s performance is very similar to the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X, but so many users prefer buying i7-11700K, as it is cheaper than Ryzen 7 5800X. Intel’s processors have a lower efficiency than Ryzen processors, which is another reason for getting a good motherboard.
The motherboard requirements for this processor are pretty intense, and you surely don’t want to get something that limits the performance of this processor. The mainstream motherboard chipsets that are more widely used, for this processor, are the Z490 and Z590. The Z590 chipset provides newer technologies and better overall features, while Z490 chipset motherboards are usually cheaper. You don’t want to end up with a B-series or H-series motherboard for this processor because that would be a big waste of this processor’s potential.
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