How to replace the motherboard of a computer

The computer I bought during the pandemic in 2020 had an entry level motherboard: an ASRock A320M-HDV R4.0 with limited tuning options in the UEFI  BIOS. There was nothing wrong with it (after I updated its BIOS to solve some random video games issues), but I had always wanted to replace it with a model with more tuning options. I didn’t want to spend a lot of money, so I ended purchasing a refurbished Gigabyte B450M DS3H motherboard (36€). I have documented step by step in this tutorial how I replaced the original motherboard of the computer  by the new one in case you need to do something similar.

Gigabyte B450m DS3H
Gigabyte B450m DS3H

Replacing the motherboard of a computer can be intimidating if you have never build a PC before but it is not difficult. It only requires a flat working surface, some screwdrivers and a bit of time.

Before considering replacing the computer motherboard, you should check what are the motherboards that are compatible with the components of your system: CPU, Graphics card, PSU, RAM and the size of the computer case. Please note that the computers made by major brands such as Acer, Apple, Dell, HP or Lenovo for example usually have motherboards made specifically for their computers and therefore they cannot be replaced by other models.

Please note also that you will certainly void the computer warranty if you replace its motherboard and that you could damage some components if you do not proceed carefully. If you feel unsure about reproducing these steps, ask someone with good computer skills to help you. As always, the author and the website decline any responsibilities about the consequences of trying to reproduce these steps.

Be aware that static electricity can damage computer components. The charges may build up on your body when you walk on carpeted floors or if you wear woolen clothes for instance. You can easily neutralize these static charges by touching any conductive material not isolated from the ground (any metallic furniture or appliance will do) before opening the computer case.

In order to reproduce the steps described in this tutorial you will need:

  • a Phillips cruciform screwdriver for the motherboard screws.
  • a small Phillips PM2.0 screwdriver for the m.2 SSD screw.
  • a flat scredriwer for the CPU cooler.
  • the new motherboard.

The tutorial was rather long so I decided to divide it into two parts.

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