Components of a Motherboard

motherboard, circuit board, technology
A motherboard is the main printed circuit board found in technological systems and is the platform for all components of a system to communicate. All parts are connected to the motherboard. The components of a motherboard are the expansion slots, random access memory (RAM) slots, central processing unit (CPU) socket, the basic input output system (BIOS), the complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) battery, power connectors, the integrated drive electronics (IDE) connector, the serial advanced technology attachment (SATA) connector, the co-processor, and the cabinet connections. 

The expansion slots come in a few forms. The industry standard architecture (ISA) slots are the oldest expansion slots— conventional display cards or sound cards are installed in them. The ISA is a 16-bit bus. The peripheral component interconnect (PCI) slots are used to install add-on cards and are often important in modern motherboards. They support a 64-bit high-speed bus. PCI expresses are the upgraded version of the PCI slots and are the quickest component of the motherboard to support add-on cards. It supports a full duplex serial bus. The accelerated graphics port (AGP) slot is used to install a graphics card; it is 32-bit bus.
RAM slots are temporary memory slots that get erased once the power is turned off. CPUs use RAM to access information quickly; once information is saved, it is stored permanently in something like a hard disk. The single in-line memory module (SIMM) slots are older and they support 32-bit bus. The double inline memory module (DIMM) slots are more current and run on a 64-bit bus.
The CPU socket is used to install the processor on the motherboard. The CPU retrieves commands from the memory unit, performs arithmetic and logic operations, and stores the processed data back to memory. The components of a CPU include the control unit and the arithmetic logic unit (ALU). The ALU receives three types of inputs: control signal from the CU, data to be operated, and status information from previous operations. The data in the output is stored in memory and the status information is stored in the internal register. The sockets include the socket-7, socket-370, socket-775, socket-1156, and the socket-1366.
The BIOS is an integrated chip that contains the information and settings of the motherboard. These can be modified. The CMOS battery is responsible for storing information in BIOS. Power connectors are used on motherboards in order for the system to receive power from the switched mode power supply (SMPS). The AT connector is found on older motherboards while the ATX connector is used on modern motherboards and are either 20 or 24 pin female connectors. The integrated drive electronics (IDE) connectors allow disk drives to interact with each other. Hard disk drives use 40-pin male connectors and floppy disk drives use 34-pin male connectors. Serial advanced technology attachments connectors allow SATA hard disks to interact with each other. They operate faster than IDE connectors. The co-processor supports the main processor in mathematical calculations and computer graphics. The cabinet connections include the power switch, reset switch, front USB, front audio, power indicator (LED), and HDD LED.
At Just IT Hardware, owned and operated by ASAP Semiconductor, we can help you find all the motherboard components you need, new or obsolete. As a premier supplier of parts for the aerospace, civil aviation, and defense industries, we’re always available and ready to help you find all the parts and equipment you need, 24/7x365. For a quick and competitive quote, email us at or call us at 1-714-705-4780.


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