The drumbeats for the launch of AMD's Ryzen 3000 series are growing louder as we approach Computex, with Asus joining the group of motherboard makers releasing new BIOS updates to enable AMD's 7nm Matisse processors. In all, Asus's cadre of Ryzen 3000-series compatible boards will span its X470, B450, X370, and B350 lineup.
The recent Ryzen 3000 BIOS updates have come with a bit of scandal, though, as several motherboard vendors haven't listed backward-compatibility with the lower-end A-series models. That breaks AMD's promise to support all new chips on its AM4 socket motherboards until 2020.
Asus's list of supported motherboards also doesn't include any A-series chipsets, furthering speculation that these value-oriented chipsets won't support AMD's latest chips. That also lines up with recent leaks emanating from China that the Matisse processors won't be backward compatible with the A320 chipset. Asus, like MSI, is working to broaden its list of compatible chipsets, citing ongoing testing, so this could be subject to change.
Most speculation points to the lesser power delivery subsystems on A-Series motherboards as the culprit, but for now, it's anyone's guess why lower-end chipsets presumably won't be able to support the 7nm processors that should have lower power consumption than existing models.
We do know that compatibility is limited by several factors, including the size of the BIOS chip. Motherboards with 128Mb BIOS chips cannot hold enough data to enable support for all chips, hence the recent removal of Bristol Ridge support from some motherboards. Whether or not this is the underlying factor for Ryzen 3000 support for A-Series motherboards remains to be seen.
It is possible that some previous-gen motherboards could support PCIe 4.0 through BIOS updates, but Asus hasn't announced whether or not these motherboards will operate at PCIe 4.0 speeds. We've pinged the company for comment.
|X470||ROG Crosshair VII Hero||2302|
|ROG Crosshair VII Hero (Wi-Fi)||2302|
|ROG Strix X470-I Gaming||2302|
|ROG Strix X470-F Gaming||4801|
|TUF X470-PLUS Gaming||4801|
|B450||ROG Strix B450-E Gaming||2301|
|ROG Strix B450-F Gaming||2301|
|ROG Strix 450-I Gaming||2301|
|TUF B450M-Plus Gaming||1201|
|TUF B450M-Pro Gaming||1201|
|TUF B450M-Plus Gaming||1201|
|TUF B450-Pro Gaming||1201|
|Prime B450M Gaming/BR||1201|
|X370||ROG Crosshair VI Extreme||7002|
|Crosshair VI Hero||7002|
|ROG Crosshair VI Hero (Wi-Fi AC)||7002|
|ROG Strix X370-F Gaming||4801|
|ROG Strix X370-I Gaming||4801|
|B350||ROG Strix B350-F Gaming||4801|
|ROG Strix B350-I Gaming||4801|
|TUF B350M-Plus Gaming||4801|
Updates to existing motherboards aside, Computex promises to open the floodgates on the next wave of new AM4 motherboards. Biostar recently announced that it plans to launch the fourth generation of its Biostar Racing boards (presumably X570) to support AMD's new chips, so there is little doubt we will learn more about the new motherboards, and processors, at Computex.