Skip to main content

Gigabyte's B550 Motherboard Is PCIe 4.0 Heaven

(Image credit: BenchLife)

AMD B550 motherboards won't touch ground until June 16. However, Chinese news outlet BenchLife has already given us a sneak peek of one of Gigabyte's more premium offerings. The B550 Aorus Master motherboard appears to bring many interesting features, one of which is the ability to house three PCIe 4.0 SSDs

The B550 Aorus Master comes equipped with AMD's budget B550 chipset and perennial AM4 socket. The power delivery subsystem on the motherboard looks very potent with what appears to be a 16-phase design. On the power side, there's a combination of a 4-pin and 8-pin EPS power connectors. 

One thing is clear. Gigabyte engineered the B550 Aorus Master to house even the most demanding Ryzen parts, such as the 16-core AMD Ryzen 9 3950X and future Zen 3 CPUs.

Remember, PCIe 4.0 support doesn't come from the B550 chipset itself. Instead, it comes from the CPU, namely AMD's Ryzen 3000-series (codename Matisse) processors. 

As spotted by BenchLife, the B550 Aorus Master seems to arrive with three PCIe 4.0 x4 M.2 ports. That's a pretty big deal since most B550 motherboards only bring PCIe 4.0 support on the primary PCIe x16 slot and M.2 slot. Therefore, the primary M.2 slot is likely linked to the Ryzen chip, while the other two M.2 slots share bandwidth with the PCIe x16 connection. There's a good possibility that the PCIe switches partition the PCIe x16 slot and secondary and tertiary M.2 slots to run at an x8, x4 and x4 configuration, respectively.

On another note, AMD enabled dual-graphics card support with the B550 chipset. The B550 Aorus Master supplies three PCIe x16 slots. The primary slot is probably PCIe 4.0, while the remaining expansion slots are likely to be PCIe 3.0 and wired x4 electrically.

Other features on the B550 Aorus Master include a debug LED, four DDR4 RAM slots, six SATA III ports, eight 4-pin fan headers, two USB 2.0 headers and one USB 3.2 Gen 1 header. Sadly, BenchLife didn't share an image of the motherboard's rear panel, so we're uncertain of the layout.