What Is System Board (Mother board)?

A system board is the main board of the computer; a system board is commonly called mother board.

Form Factors of System Boards:

The shape and size of system boards have changed over time. Here are some of the different form factors of system board.

  • ATX (Advanced technology Extended) – processor and memory are at right angle to the card slot
  • Micro ATX – like ATX but smaller, has some limitation
  • New low profile Extended (NLX) – expansion cards are placed sideways on a riser
  • Balanced Technology Extended (BTX) – introduced in 2003 by intel and designed to replace ATX.

Components of System Board:

Various components of system board include:

  • Memory slot (e.g RIMM, DIMM)
  • Processor sockets
  • External cache memory
  • Bus architecture
  • Bus slot
  • Chipset
  • BIOS/CMOS/ Firmware
  • Riser card

Latest System Board Components:

Most system boards these days are integrated with

  • Sound
  • Video
  • USB & IEEE 1394/Fireware
  • Serial/parallel
  • Network interface card
  • Modem
  • Disk controller – SATA, SCSI

Slots on System Board (Motherboard):

All system boards have some combination of expansion slots. These slots are used to insert card that increase the capabilities of the computer.

  • ISA: industry standard architecture, made before 1997, not used much these days
  • AGP: accelerated graphic port, used to insert video cards.
  • PCI: peripheral components interconnect, most popular slots used today
  • PCIe: PCI Express, faster than PCI.
  • AMR: audio modem raiser