Top 5 best Chinese motherboards on AliExpress in 2021

Image of the Huananzhi X99 motherboard

Motherboards tie everything together in a computer. The best ones cost an arm and a leg, and if you’re here, I’m guessing you’re searching for a budget motherboard on AliExpress that’s easy on your pockets.

Read my AliExpress shopping guide if you’re new to shopping on AliExpress

Well, you’re in luck. AliExpress motherboards are famous for their drop-dead prices and bang for buck factor.

This piece is a buying guide for those motherboards. In it, I talk about all you need to know when shopping for a motherboard on AliExpress and then round it off with a selection of the best motherboards to buy on AliExpress right now.

What to look out for in an AliExpress motherboard

Motherboards come in different shapes, sizes, and forms, each produced to satisfy a particular computing need. If you’re buying one from AliExpress, here are the core things to consider in relation to your needs and the kind of computer you plan on setting up

Processor socket

The processor socket is the housing for whichever processor you plan on using for your build. There are two major types LGA and PGA. LGA processor sockets are for Intel-based CPUs, while PGA works with AMD CPUs. They are not cross-compatible. A PGA socket will not work with an Intel processor and vice versa. Also, note that even on a platform level, there are variations, with several versions of, say, LGA sockets supporting different Intel CPUs

Form factor

The form factor of a motherboard is essentially its size and build configuration. This is important because it, to a large extent, determines which native components come with the motherboard and which extra components will fit on the motherboard.

Based on form factors, motherboards are classified into;

  • Standard ATX (Advanced Technology Extended), or ATX for short which is the largest motherboard by size
  • Micro ATX or MATX, which is a bit smaller than the standard ATX but more popular for its portability
  • Micro mini ATX, which is even smaller than the micro ATX
  • Micro Nano ATX. One of the smallest motherboard configs you’ll see

Which one should you choose?

The best motherboard form factor for you is the one that works best for your needs and is compatible with your other components, specifically your CPU and Chipset. As I said, Micro ATX motherboards are the fan favorites, but if you’re building a living room PC, for instance, it makes more sense to go with a Mini or Nano ATX motherboard.

PCIe slots

PCIe stands for peripheral component interconnect express, and it’s basically a motherboard interface for communicating with external (extra) computing components (RAM, Graphics cards, storage).

Obviously, the more PCIe slots you have, the better since that means more room to plug in extra components onto the motherboard. However, it’s important to note that there are different types of PCIe slots – PCIe x1, PCIe x4, PCIe x8, PCIe x16.

Larger numbers are better, and in most motherboard builds, you’ll see more of PCIe x8 and x16 slots, with the latter being the default slot for performance-oriented extras like high-end GPUs. Keep that in mind if you’re planning on building a high-performance PC.

SATA ports

Serial Advanced Technology Attachment ports or SATA ports are somewhat like PCIe slots because they allow you to plug in external components into a motherboard.

This time, however, the external components are almost exclusively storage-based, like HDDs and SSDs. Note that a PCIe port can also fit a storage device, and it’s generally faster (if the drive connects via an NVMe interface) plus more aesthetically pleasing than SATA ports which require a cable.

RAM allocation

The RAM capacity of your motherboard will determine just how much RAM you can load up on your PC build. If you’ve got four 4GB Ram cards and your motherboard only has support for 12GB, then only three will be useful. The general convention among PC builders is to have as much RAM support as is possible, so you have room for improvement (RAM expansion) in the future if there’s a need.

Extra features

Some motherboards come in a bare-bones format with just ports and a processor. But to use a motherboard in a fully functional computer, you’ll need a couple of other extra features. Extra features could be anything from onboard audio to wifi adaptors, RGB lighting (for that extra bit of flair), wifi and connectivity cards.

Some other motherboard manufacturers will include these features while conversely charging more. If you know what you’re doing, bare-bones works, as it’s relatively cheaper, and you get more control over which features to implement. If you’re new to this, I’d say sticking with a motherboard that has all the extra features you need to get you up and running is a better choice.

Since you’re now up to speed with what you should be looking out for in a motherboard, let’s quickly cover the best motherboards you can buy on AliExpress right now.

The best motherboards on AliExpress

AliExpress is unique in that there’s a huge variety of motherboards on the platform, with so many of them in the not too expensive category. However, being priced in the budget category means these boards come without some of the ‘flair’ features you’d see on stuff like the ASUS ROG Strix. Nevertheless, they’re motherboards that are well and truly capable of doing all kinds of heavy performance lifting.

Overall best motherboard on AliExpress – Huananzhi X99 F8

Image of the Huananzhi X99 motherboard
The Huananzhi X99 is an all rounder of a motherboard with practically all you’ll ever need to float a full-on performance intensive PC

Specifications

  • Form factor ATX
  • Socket LGA 2011-3
  • CPU support
  • Chipset Intel X99
  • Memory capacity DDR4 up to 256GB

Extras

  • USB support 6x USB 3.0, 8x USB 2.0
  • Expansion slots 2*PCI-E 3.0 16X  2*PCI-E 1X 1*PCI-E 4X
  • Storage 2x M.2 NVME, 8x SATA 3.0
  • Video ports
  • Integrated network chip yes Gigabit ethernet

The Huananzhi X99 F8 motherboard is what I’d call a well-rounded motherboard at a very reasonable price. An ATX form factor means this is a somewhat large motherboard, but for all that real estate, you get an assortment of features that rivals some of the pricier, more established motherboard variants.

This thing ships with 2 M.2 NVME slots for faster, better storage, RAM support of up 256GB via 8 RAM slots, and five PCIe ports, two of which are X16.

The Chipset is an Intel X99 type, so this will be compatible with most of the Intel Core i7 and Xeon processor subtypes.

That’s an obvious drawback since this won’t support the latest-gen Core i9 processor, but the Core i7 and Xeon processor range should be more than enough, except you’re doing some otherworldy gaming or server business.

Pros

Well-rounded motherboard with all you’ll probably need

Decent Chipset

Great build quality

Cons

Large form factor might not be ideal for all PC builds

1st runner up – the Jingyue X99

Jingyue X99
The Jingyue X99 is a lot like the Huananzhi X99, with the major difference being that this is an full ATX motherboard

Specifications

  • Form factor ATX
  • Socket LGA 2011-3
  • CPU support Intel core i7, Xeon E5, V3, V4
  • Chipset Intel X99
  • Memory capacity DDR4 up to 256GB via four slots

Extras

  • USB ports 3x USB 3.0, 7x USB 2.0
  • Expansion slots 3x PCI-E X16 2x PCI-E X1
  • Storage 2x M.2 NVME, 4x SATA 3.0, 2x SATA 2.0
  • Video ports 1x VGA 1x HDMI
  • Integrated network chip yes Gigabit ethernet

The Jingyue X99 is a more than capable alternative to the Huananzhi X99 F8. Spec-wise, both are basically the same motherboard, with the main differentiating factor being that Huananzhi is a more established motherboard brand than Jingyue. In the AliExpress motherboard market, reputation matters.

Put that aside, however, and the Jingyue matches the Huananzhi X99 fair and square. It’s an ATX motherboard with an Intel X99 chipset that supports Intel Core i7 and certain Xeon processor series. There are five PCIe ports onboard, just like that on the Huananzhi X99; however, three of those are PCIe X16 ports compared to two on the latter.

One place where Jingyue outrightly overshadows the Huananzhi X99 is in the build quality and design department. This motherboard feels solid and looks great, way better than the Huananzhi X99. Right now, it’s also cheaper than the Huananzhi X99, but I bet that’s bound to change with time since this is a new motherboard on the market.

Pros

Solid build quality and design

Fully spec and performance-oriented

Great for the price

Cons

Large ATX form factor

MSI B450M Mortar Max

Image of the MSI B450M Mortar Max
When money is not an issue, the MSI B450M Mortar Max is the motherboard to get for AMD PC builds

Specifications

  • Form factor MATX
  • Socket AM4
  • CPU support AMD series up AMD Ryzen 9
  • Chipset AMD B450
  • Memory capacity DDR4 up to 64GB

Extras

  • Multi Graphics card support via AMD Crossfire technology
  • Extended heatsink design
  • Manufacturer warranty included
  • Audio Realtek Audio Codec ALC662
  • 1x I/O Shield
  • 1x SATA cable
  • USB ports 2x USB 3.2 (Gen 2), 6x USB 3.2 (Gen 1), 6x USB 2.0
  • Expansion slots 2x PCI-E 3.0  X16 1*PCI-E X1
  • Storage 2x M.2, 4x SATA 3.0
  • Video ports 1x VGA 1x HDMI
  • Integrated network chip yes Gigabit ethernet

Much like the Huananzhi, the MSI B450M is a perfect all-round motherboard system, only this time it’s meant for anyone running an AMD setup. It’s an M-ATX motherboard, so the build is more compact than the Huananzhi setup; however, it doesn’t lack anything performance-wise when compared to the former.

Onboard the MSi B450M, you get three PCIe 3.0 ports, with two of those being the larger and more preferred X16 form factor. Storage expansion is via two M.2 NVME ports and four SATA 3.0 ports, with RAM support being a healthy 64GB DDR4 variant.

The MSI B450M allows you to run practically all AMD processors leading to the Ryzen 9 chip, and while you’re at it, you could also plug in two compatible graphics cards because this comes pre-fitted with AMD Crossfire technology. Build quality is also excellent (and cool looking too). This thing will power your setup through the most performance-intensive tasks without breaking a sweat.

Pros

  • Well rounded, top performance for the price
  • Incredible build quality and design
  • AMD crossfire support

Cons

Will run hot

Only for AMD builds

Machinist X99

Image of the Machinist X99 motherboard
The Machinist X99 strips off a few core features to retain a performance oriented build at a pocket friendly price

Specifications

  • Form factor M-ATX
  • Socket LGA 2011-3
  • CPU support Intel core i7, Xeon E5, V3, V4
  • Chipset Intel X99
  • Memory capacity DDR4 up to 64GB via four slots

Extras

  • M.2 NGFF wifi card support
  • USB ports 2x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0
  • Expansion slots 1*PCI-E 8X 1*PCI-E 4X
  • Storage 2x M.2 NVME, 4x SATA 3.0 
  • Video ports 1x VGA 1x HDMI
  • Integrated network chip yes Gigabit ethernet

Top performance on a motherboard doesn’t have to go beyond the $100 margin, and if you’re willing to sacrifice a few features, you can get that with the Machinist X99 motherboard. Like the MSI B450M, this is an M-ATX setup.

However, unlike the latter, the Machinist X99 comes with just one PCIe X16 port and two other X1 ports. USB ports are also scaled down to two USB 3.0 and two USB 2.0 ports.

The overall theme here is obvious; you still get all the important features and components you’ll need on a motherboard, albeit on a smaller number scale.

This motherboard comes with two M.2 NVME ports, onboard audio, and SATA 3.0 and USB 3.0 – basically all you’ll need if you’re planning to create a decently specced PC build. Build quality is also excellent, with a dual radiator set up to pull off extra heat when you go hard on performance.

The Machinist is an X99 setup, so it only supports Intel processors, specifically the Intel Core i7 and Xeon processors. This won’t fit with an AMD processor.

Pros

Bang for buck factor

Solid and portable build

Cons

Compactness might limit the number/type of external devices that can be plugged into this

Jinsha HB61B

Image of the Jinsha H61B motherboard
The Jinsha H61B is a budget friendly motherboard with a little bit of everything

Specifications

  • Form factor MATX
  • Socket LGA 1155
  • CPU support Intel core i7, i5, i3
  • Chipset Intel B75
  • Memory capacity DDR3 up to 16GB

Extras

  • Audio Realtek Audio Codec ALC662
  • 1x I/O Shield
  • 1x SATA cable
  • USB ports 4x USB 3.0, 4x USB 2.0
  • Expansion slots 1*PCI-E 8X 1*PCI-E 4X
  • Storage 1x SATA 3.0, 3x SATA 2.0
  • Video ports 1x VGA 1x HDMI
  • Integrated network chip yes Gigabit ethernet

If you’re working on a very tight budget, then you’d love the Jinsha B75M. It’s a motherboard that comes with just about all you need to run a fully-fledged desktop PC without the auxiliary, sometimes unnecessary stuff.

So out of the box, this comes with just two PCIe ports, two SATA storage expansion ports, and a max RAM support of 16GB. Those are not high-flying numbers by any margin, but if you’ve been building PCs for long, you’d agree with me that it’s enough to float a pretty decent PC. But what makes the Jinsha B75M amazing is that you get all this and more at a sub $50 price point.

It’s terribly hard to find a better budget motherboard deal than this especially considering the build quality of the Jinsha B75M and the fact that, like the Huananzhi X99 F8, it supports Intel Core i7, i5, and i3 processors via an Intel B75 chipset.

Pros

Very affordable

Decent features and specifications

Great build

Cons

Limited ports

Not for high-performance builds

Lacks a PCIe 16X slot

That about sums it up for the best motherboard available on AliExpress. Note that this is just a selection of what I think is the best in terms of bang for buck and performance.

There’s a whole lot of other motherboards on AliExpress, some intently designed for specific purposes. This motherboard, for instance, comes with two sockets for two processors.

This guide is just a generalist overview if you’re looking to build, say, a gaming PC, home, or maybe enterprise server.

Frequently asked questions

Are AliExpress motherboards good?

Absolutely, there are several excellent motherboards on sale on AliExpress from several brands known for durability and performance. You just need to pay due diligence when shopping for a motherboard on the platform. This guide is a good starting point.

Can I return a motherboard if I’m not satisfied with the purchase?

Yes, much like Amazon and eBay, AliExpress runs a buyer protection program that allows you to return defective, damaged, or fake products after purchase. It’s easy to file a dispute, and once the dispute is processed, you should get a full refund of your money.

Is AliExpress trustworthy for buying a motherboard?

AliExpress is a fully-fledged e-commerce platform that has been in operation for well over 12 years now. Many items (including motherboards) on the platform are legit, and provided you do your buying homework – much like you would on Amazon or eBay – you shouldn’t run into any issues.

I earn commissions at no extra cost to you when you use my Affiliate links. Affiliate commissions help keep my reviews unbiased.