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7 Best Motherboards for Intel Core i7-12700K: Top Z690 Picks

December 10, 2021 0

7 Best Motherboards for Intel Core i7-12700K: Top Z690 Picks

In recent years, PC gaming has exploded in popularity. And so, the demand for computing power for gaming PCs has also surged. The Intel Core i7-12700K is one of Intel’s high-end processors designed to meet our computing demands. It promises excellent performance for gamers and power users alike.

The Core i7-12700K is built on the 10-nanometer production process and comes with a total of 12 cores (8 P-cores / 4 E-cores) and 20 threads. The P-cores run at a base clock of 3.60 GHz which can turbo up to 4.90 GHz, while the E-cores have a base/boost clock speed of 2.70 GHz/3.80 GHz. Though you can still reach 5.0 GHz using the Turbo Boost Max 3.0 technology, this will require a good third-party CPU cooler. However, you can check out our best aftermarket cooler for the Core i7-12700K if you plan on overclocking.

In terms of the overall performance, the Core i7-12700K is indeed impressive. It is 15% faster than the previous generation Core i7-11700K and only 5% behind the more expensive Ryzen 9 5900X. It also outperforms its direct competitor Ryzen 7 5800X by 10%. Add to this is the support for PCIe 5.0 and DDR5 technology, which makes it even more appealing and future-proof. So, all things considered, the Core i7-12700K is an excellent CPU choice for gamers and professionals alike looking to build a PC that can keep up with the demand today.

In order to get the most out of your Core i7-12700K, you will need a good motherboard. Below are some of the best motherboards that you can pair with the Core i7-12700K.

Core i7-12700K Motherboards List:

ROG Strix Z690-E Gaming WiFiASUS ROG Strix Z690-E Gaming WiFi

  • Chipset: Z690
  • Form Factor: ATX
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  • Chipset: Z690
  • Form Factor: ATX
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TUF Gaming Z690-Plus WiFi D4ASUS TUF Gaming Z690-Plus WiFi D4

  • Chipset: Z690
  • Form Factor: ATX
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Prime Z690-PASUS Prime Z690-P

  • Chipset: Z690
  • Form Factor: ATX
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  • Chipset: Z690
  • Form Factor: ATX
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ROG Strix Z690-G Gaming WiFiASUS ROG Strix Z690-G Gaming WiFi

  • Chipset: Z690
  • Form Factor: Micro ATX
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ROG Strix Z690-I Gaming WiFiASUS ROG Strix Z690-I Gaming WiFi

  • Chipset: Z690
  • Form Factor: Mini ITX
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ASUS ROG Strix Z690-E Gaming WiFi – Best Overall Motherboard

ASUS ROG Strix Z690-E Gaming WiFi

The Core i7-12700K deserves the best motherboard that has all the essentials that it needs, and the ASUS ROG Strix Z690-E Gaming WiFi is our top recommended motherboard on this list.

The ASUS ROG Strix Z690-E Gaming WiFi features the latest DDR5 and PCIe 5.0. The VRM comes with an excellent 18+1 power phase design that gives the Core i7-12700K enough power for overclocking and great stability while still maintaining a cool temperature. Add to this is the thermal design that features a VRM heatsink, double-sided M.2 heatsink, PCH fanless heatsink, and hybrid fan headers to keep your system running smoothly. There is also a Fan Xpert 4 utility that gives you complete control over your fans for customized cooling.

In terms of gaming networking and connectivity, the ASUS ROG Strix Z690-E Gaming WiFi comes out with flying colors. The motherboard has onboard WiFi 6E as well as Intel 2.5 Gb Ethernet providing the best-in-class networking for a motherboard. It also supports HDMI 2.0 and DisplayPort 1.4 output, USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 Type-C & Type-A, and Front panel USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 Type-C connectors allowing you to integrate your setup with ease and minimal clutter while getting the most out of each connection and port on your motherboard without having to jump around various connectors and ports that may or may not work together for what you need or want it to do at any given time due to limitations of the hardware itself or the lack of connectivity options. There are also 5x M.2 slots, so it provides enough room for an extensive and customizable drive setup.

If you are looking for the best overall motherboard that gives you everything that you need and wants out of a motherboard, whether it be overclocking performance, component integration, or excellent gaming networking and specifications in general, then look no further than the ASUS ROG Strix Z690-E Gaming WiFi.

MSI PRO Z690-A – Best Budget Motherboard


If you’re on a budget but still want to get something decent, the MSI PRO Z690-A is an affordable option. But don’t let its low price fool you, it’s still packed with great features!

The PRO Z690-A comes with a great power design, with a total of 14 digital CPU power phases. It’s enough to sustain heavy daily work. The thermal solution is also top-notch, with an extended PWM heatsink. The mixture of components and the 7W/mK thermal pad MSI used is pretty good, as we can expect to see lower temperatures than with other budget boards.

Connectivity-wise, the board comes with 4x M.2 slots, so you can install some really fast SSDs on this motherboard! There are also six SATA3 ports if you want to add additional HDDs or SSDs. The MSI PRO Z690-A even has a USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 connector, which is still rare on the budget range of motherboards. This motherboard also features the lightning PCIe 5.0 that gives you up to 128GB/s of bandwidth on a x16 interface.

In terms of build quality, the MSI PRO Z690-A is rock solid. It has a 6-layered PCB that’s made with server-grade material, and 2oz copper thickness on its layers. The only thing I don’t like about this motherboard is its aesthetics (might not be a problem for many), which can be improved by adding RGB strips or some other components to make it look more premium. Still, the design isn’t too bad for a budget board!

Overall, the MSI PRO Z690-A is an excellent budget motherboard that should meet most of your needs. It’s perfect for a gaming PC or a workstation. If you’re looking for something more affordable but still want great features, the MSI PRO Z690-A is a perfect choice!

ASUS TUF Gaming Z690-Plus WiFi D4 – Best DDR4 motherboard

ASUS TUF Gaming Z690-Plus WiFi D4

The Core i7-12700K works well even with low-frequency memory, which might be the reason why the demand for the DDR5 for these Intel processors isn’t that hype. So, here we have the ASUS TUF Gaming Z690-Plus WiFi D4 as the best DDR4 motherboard that works well with the Core i7-12700K.

The ASUS TUF Gaming Z690-Plus WiFi D4 comes with an enhanced power solution that consists of 14+2 DrMOS power stages providing enough power even for overclocking. The cooling for the Z690-Plus WiFi D4 is also great, it comes with a heatsink for the VRM, a PCH fanless heatsink, an M.2 heatsink, and hybrid fan headers.

The ASUS TUF Gaming Z690-Plus WiFi D4 also has impressive gaming networking features. It comes with an Intel I225-V 2.5G LAN, WiFi 6 AX201 (802.11 ax), TUF LANGuard, and Turbo LAN to make sure you get the best gaming experience. It also comes with some fast connectivity options such as 4x M.2/NVMe SSD, a front panel USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C header, and a USB Type-C and Thunderbolt 4 header.

The ASUS TUF Gaming Z690-Plus WiFi D4 features a new ID design, synchronizable LED effects across a wide range of compatible PC components, including ARGB strips with Aura Sync. Its built-in RGB headers allow you to directly control your system’s lighting.

Overall, the ASUS TUF Gaming Z690-Plus WiFi D4 is an excellent motherboard for gamers that want a well-rounded motherboard. It comes with great features such as excellent VRM, great cooling, impressive networking, and great aesthetics.

ASUS Prime Z690-P – Budget DDR5 Motherboard

ASUS Prime Z690-P

If you want to take advantage of the DDR5 but don’t want to spend too much, the ASUS Prime Z690-P is a great option. It supports memory speeds up to 6000 MHz (OC) and has four DDR5 DIMM slots for a maximum of 128GB.

The ASUS Prime Z690-P features an excellent power solution for the Core i7-12700K as it consists of 14+1 DrMOS along with alloy chokes and durable capacitors. This will ensure stable power delivery for the CPU and prevent any potential throttling. Add to this is the overall cooling solution for the whole motherboard (VRM heatsinks, PCH heatsink, and M.2 heatsink). The hybrid fan headers allow you to connect both PWM and DC fans, providing more flexibility when cooling your system.

In terms of connectivity, the ASUS Prime Z690-P features 2.5 Gb Ethernet, PCIe 5.0 x16, USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 Type-C, USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C for the front panel, and supports the Thunderbolt 4. There are also 3x M.2 slots and 4x SATA 6Gb/s ports providing plenty of storage options.

The motherboard has a sleek design which is perfect if you are looking to build an aesthetically pleasing system that performs well. Overall, the combination of great performance and future-proof connectivity makes the ASUS Prime Z690-P one of the best motherboards for the Core i7-12700K.

GIGABYTE Z690 AORUS Xtreme – Best High-End Motherboard


The GIGABYTE Z690 AORUS Xtreme is specifically designed for enthusiasts Core i7-12700K PC build. With all the features this high-end motherboard has (robust power, extreme thermal design, and DDR5 OC Functions), it’s no wonder how it got its title as being the “Best High-End Motherboard” on this list.

The GIGABYTE Z690 AORUS Xtreme features one of the best power designs with 20+1+2 phases direct VRM design with 105A power stage. This allows your motherboard to handle intensive overclocking, or any type of stress work easily, as well as providing superior stability. The VRM’s also utilize high-quality MOSFETs and tantalum polymer capacitors which results in lower voltage ripple and temperature.

What really makes this board a powerhouse is its cutting-edge thermal design. The thermal reactive armor with nanocarbon fins-array heatsink, nanocarbon baseplate, and direct touch heatpipe work together to keep your system running cool under any circumstance. You’ll never have to worry about your motherboard overheating and shutting down on you.

This motherboard also provides all the best connectivity options with built-in Intel Thunderbolt 4, 802.11ax 2T2R & BT5 (with 2 x AORUS Antenna), AQUANTIA 10GbE BASE-T LAN, and Intel 2.5GbE LAN. You’ll be able to connect all your high-end devices with no problem. In terms of storage options, it’s equipped with 4x SATA 6Gb/s connectors as well as support for up to 4x Ultra-Fast NVMe PCIe SSDs via M.2 slots.

For overclocking enthusiasts, the GIGABYTE Z690 AORUS Xtreme comes with all the high-end features you’d expect from the best high-end motherboard for Core i7-12700K. It has an easy-to-use UEFI BIOS that provides absolute control over your system allowing you to fine-tune your overclock settings easily. There is also EasyTune software which is an exclusive feature for GIGABYTE motherboards. It provides you with a simple way to fine-tune your system in a Windows environment.

Overall, the GIGABYTE Z690 AORUS Xtreme is an excellent motherboard for those who are looking for a high-end option that has all the bells and whistles. It provides great stability, power, and thermal design while still being able to keep up with the latest technology standards. So, if you’re looking to build the absolute best PC possible with a Core i7-12700K, the Z690 AORUS Xtreme is the best motherboard for you.

ASUS ROG Strix Z690-G Gaming WiFi – Best Micro-ATX Motherboard

ASUS ROG Strix Z690-G Gaming WiFi

The ASUS ROG Strix Z690-G Gaming WiFi is a great choice for mATX builders looking for space savings. This motherboard supports the 12th gen Intel Core processors including the Core i7-12700K. The ASUS ROG Strix Z690-G Gaming WiFi is equipped with special features such as AI Overclocking, GameFirst VI (AI networking) for lag-free online gaming, enhanced memory overclocking capabilities, and AI noise cancellation for the perfect, distraction-free gaming experience.

This motherboard is also equipped with a robust power design with 14+1 power stages providing support for multi-core processors like the Core i7-12700K. The high-quality alloy chokes and durable capacitors ensure a stable power supply and lasting performance. The motherboard is not lacking behind in terms of cooling performance either. The VRM heatsink and PCH fanless heatsink keep your components cool even under heavy loads, while the double-sided M.2 heatsink optimizes heat dissipation. In addition, it comes with hybrid fan headers and Fan Xpert 4 utility for customizable cooling options. You can fine-tune your system to achieve the perfect balance between performance and silence or choose from preset modes like Silent, Balanced, and Turbo.

In terms of connectivity, it comes with a plethora of options including USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 Type-C, HDMI 2.0 & DisplayPort 1.4 for high-resolution/high-refresh-rate displays, and three M.2 ports for fast SSD storage. The ASUS ROG Strix Z690-G Gaming WiFi even comes with onboard WiFi 6E and Intel 2.5 Gb Gigabit Ethernet connectivity, so you can choose the best connection for your needs. Also, the latest technology such as DDR5 and PCIe 5.0 is also present on this motherboard.

With the distinctive features which are available on this motherboard, the ASUS ROG Strix Z690-G Gaming WiFi is definitely one of the best motherboards for the Intel Core i7-12700K. It offers great performance, overclocking capabilities, and cooling options in a small and sleek form factor. So, if you are looking for a high-quality micro-ATX motherboard for your next build, the ASUS ROG Strix Z690-G Gaming WiFi should be at the top of your list.

ASUS ROG Strix Z690-I Gaming WiFi – Best Mini ITX Motherboard

ASUS ROG Strix Z690-I Gaming WiFi

For SFF Core i7-12700K builds, the ASUS ROG Strix Z690-I Gaming WiFi is one of the best options. Despite its compact size, this motherboard comes equipped with everything necessary to support your Core i7-12700K. It packs plenty of features including the latest DDR5 and PCIe 5.0 technology.

Digging at the specification, it comes with an impressive power solution. There are 10+1 power stages. This will ensure that your Core i7-12700K has all the power it needs to run at its best. The VRM heatsink is also a nice touch, as it helps to keep temperatures under control. You’ll also find triple-decker M.2 heatsinks and hybrid fan headers onboard. These help to improve cooling performance even further.

For sure, ITX motherboards come with lesser connectivity options but this is hardly a problem with the ASUS ROG Strix Z690-I Gaming WiFi. You’ll find 2x M.2 slots, front panel USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 Type-C connectors, and ITX expansion card that can accommodate 4 SATA ports, Front Panel headers, Front Speaker header, and one ARGB port.

On top of all this, I also love the design. It has several RGB lighting zones with customization options through AURA Sync software.

So, everything considered, the ASUS ROG Strix Z690-I Gaming WiFi is an awesome ITX motherboard for the Core i7-12700K builds. There’s no way getting around the fact that this motherboard will still give you almost all of what you’ll need to build a high-performance compact PC.

DDR5 VS. DDR4 Memory for Core i7-12700K

In order to know whether DDR5 memory is worth it when paired with an Intel Core i7-12700K, we’ve been testing several high-speed sticks from various vendors. Our findings showed that there is very little extra performance when using DDR5 memory, as opposed to DDR4 when paired with the Alder Lake CPUs. In most cases, the difference was negligible.

What this tells us is that most potential 12th Gen PC users should simply stick with DDR4 rather than looking into buying expensive DDR5 kits that offer little in terms of performance increases when paired with the Alder Lake CPUs. However, it also means that if someone already has DDR5 memory, then they might as well go ahead and use the RAM with their Core i7-12700K, as it would be good to future-proof your build.

Motherboard Compatibility

The Core i7-12700K is only compatible with LGA 1700 socket and 600 series chipsets. All motherboards included in this guide comes with the right socket and chipset to support the Core i7-12700K out-of-the-box. So, regardless of which motherboard you choose on this list, you can be assured that there will be no compatibility issue.


The best motherboard for you will depend on your budget, what type of activity you will be doing on the computer, what your aesthetic preferences are, and the size of your case. For these reasons we can’t definitively say which is the right motherboard for you, though we hope this article has given you some ideas to work with. In fact, all motherboards in this guide are excellent choices for the Intel Core i7-12700K, so you can’t go wrong with any of them.

If you are still struggling and you need help determining which one is right for you or want some expert advice on what else would make a good match, feel free to comment down below. Fulogic Hardware team of experts are always happy to help.

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