PC Components

What Is VRM on Motherboard?

Motherboard Voltage Regulator Module

You must have heard about a VRM while appreciating the construction of a motherboard or reviewing your perfectly designed GPU. But what exactly is it? Valid question.

Quick Answer

A VRM is an abbreviated form of a Voltage Regulator Module. It is used to control the voltage levels in a CPU or a GPU (Graphics Processing Unit) so that they do not reach the maximum voltage and burn out. They are also important when trying to overclock your CPU or the GPU.

In this blog, we will discuss how a VRM works on a motherboard and how it affects the computer. So, let’s start!

What Is a VRM?

VRMs are an essential part that most people do not know about. It resides in the CPU or GPU motherboard and works to maintain the power of the system at a consistent rate. In other words, it helps provide clean power to the system by altering the voltage at the desired level.

How Does a VRM Help a Computer?

You may not even have to worry about a VRM and its performance unless you are overclocking the CPU or the GPU because a basic VRM works adequately to provide enough clean power to the system.

But with overclocking, you are trying to increase the system’s efficiency. So, with the benefit of a CPU or a GPU running at speed better than the one it was designed to do, it can push the limits of a VRM. This is where it becomes crucial to make a VRM of the best quality.

Keep in Mind

A poor VRM can affect your gaming experience badly, and it may create unexpected shutdowns and lag the system when it is under load. But the condition is worsened when a CPU or a GPU is overclocked.

What happens is that with a CPU demanding more power, the VRM supplying the power needs to be of exceptional quality too. Hence, it is recommended that for overclocking, a good VRM is used on the motherboard for improved performance.

How Does a CPU Use VRM?

The average voltage in a CPU is around 1.5V. The VRM works to maintain this voltage and ensures that it does not drop down or, worse, go high enough to burn the CPU down.

Often, in a modern CPU, you will find the VRM attached to the motherboard through the help of some intricate soldering. However, other types of CPUs come attached to the voltage regulator components. So, there is no need for a separate VRM there.

How Does a GPU Use VRM?

A GPU requires far more power than a CPU, so it is no surprise that they need a high-quality VRM to do this job. The maximum voltage that a GPU may need is up to 12V, which is a lot if you compare it with the mere 1.5V of a CPU.

However, the mechanism is the same for both the CPU and the GPU. The power is sent from the power supply unit to the VRM and then to the CPU/GPU, and the VRM ensures it is not above the maximum voltage limit

Since the VRM is the regulator, it may break down the GPU if the current is too high to control.

Tip

If you want to prevent GPU overheating, enable the Wattman that will keep you updated with the GPU temp. Open your PC and right-click on the desktop. Next, tap on “Radeon Settings” > “Gaming” > “Global Settings” > “Global Wattman“.

Conclusion

A VRM is an integral part of the motherboard. Without it, a CPU or a GPU may not be able to function correctly. On top of it all, if you are overclocking your CPU or GPU, it may not be possible without a high-functioning VRM. We hope this blog was helpful and easy enough to guide you towards understanding a VRM.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does VRM matter if not overclocking?

Absolutely. Even if the system is not overclocked, the VRM can affect the performance of a computer. Plus, it may lead to an early breakdown if not maintained properly. You can do a few things to maintain the temperature of the VRM and install fans within the CPU.

Where is the VRM located in the motherboard?

It is a set of three components; capacitor, MOSFET, and chokes. You can find this on the motherboard right above the processor’s socket on your left side. 

How hot can a VRM get?

In a CPU, the standard temperature of the VRM can rise to 80 degrees and sometimes even 100 degrees. As for the GPU, the VRM temperature may go as high as 120 degrees.

What happens if the VRM overheats?

The component inside the VRM may become damaged. Moreover, the CPU’s functionality will decrease and start lagging.

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