Listings and early benchmarks involving Intel's 10th Generation Comet Lake-S processors have been popping up more frequently. Usually, that's a sign that the launch is looming. As many probably know by now, Comet Lake-S will only fit into LGA1200 socket, meaning it's time for new motherboards.
Ukrainian retailer ITbox has posted a plethora of Z490 motherboards from MSI and Gigabyte on its online store. Naturally, it's impossible to verify the accuracy of ITbox's pricing since the motherboards are not officially out yet. The motherboard prices are listed in hryvnia, which is the official currency in Ukraine, and include 20% VAT (value-added tax). For the sake of convenience, we've converted the prices over to dollars.
It's known that computer hardware often costs a lot more outside of the U.S. Therefore, ITbox's prices could be higher than what we might expect here. For an apples-to-apples comparison, we've also used the pricing from ITbox for the previous generation of Z390 motherboards.
Gigabyte Z490 Motherboard Pricing
|Gigabyte Z490 Aorus Xtreme WaterForce||$1,072||N/A||N/A|
|Gigabyte Z490 Aorus Xtreme||$757||N/A||N/A|
|Gigabyte Z490 Aorus Master||$537||$369||45.5%|
|Gigabyte Z490 Aorus Ultra||$409||$306||33.6%|
|Gigabyte Z490 Vision D||$393||N/A||N/A|
|Gigabyte Z490 Aorus Pro AX||$358||$234||53%|
|Gigabyte Z490I Aorus Ultra||$318||$197||61.4%|
|Gigabyte Z490 Aorus Elite AC||$288||N/A||N/A|
|Gigabyte Z490 Vision G||$277||N/A||N/A|
|Gigabyte Z490 Aorus Elite||$267||$208||28.4%|
|Gigabyte Z490 Gaming X||$217||$160||35.6%|
|Gigabyte Z490 UD AC||$202||N/A||N/A|
|Gigabyte Z490M Gaming X||$207||$153||35.3%|
|Gigabyte Z490 UD||$187||$131||42.7%|
For contrast, Gigabyte released 17 different Z390 motherboards in total. ITbox listed 15 Gigabyte Z490 models, so that's only two less than the prior generation. As usual, Gigabyte will offer different form factors, ranging from mini-ITX to E-ATX.
It appears that Gigabyte might have reworked some of the branding with the Z490 series as well. The lineup includes two new Vision-series motherboards and lacks a Designare model.
In terms of pricing, Gigabyte's motherboards show price hikes between 27.6% and 53%. Unfortunately, ITbox doesn't have Gigabyte's complete Z390 portfolio so it wasn't possible to compare all the models, especially the more luxurious models, such as the Gigabyte Z490 Aorus Xtreme or Gigabyte Z490 Aorus Xtreme WaterForce. For reference, the Z390 Aorus Xtreme WaterForce debuted at $900.
MSI Z490 Motherboard Pricing
|MSI MEG Z490 Godlike||$858||N/A||N/A|
|MSI MEG Z490 Ace||$504||$317||59%|
|MSI MEG Z490I Unify||$430||N/A||N/A|
|MSI MEG Z490 Unify||$338||N/A||N/A|
|MSI MPG Z490 Gaming Carbon WiFi||$303||$260||16.5%|
|MSI MPG Z490M Gaming Edge WiFi||$277||$198||39.9%|
|MSI MPG Z490 Gaming Edge WiFi||$247||$191||29.3%|
|MSI MAG Z490 Tomahawk||$232||$171||35.7%|
|MSI MPG Z490 Gaming Plus||$202||$145||39.3%|
|MSI Z490-A Pro||$192||$140||37.1%|
MSI's Z490 offerings seem pretty consistent with last generation's Z390 lineup. Only the Mortar model is missing, but MSI could release it later. The Z490 Unify motherboards are the point of interest here.
If you recall, MSI introduced the Unify moniker with the MEG X570 Unify, which features an all-black design devoid of RGB eye-candy. It seems that the concept might have hit it off with enthusiasts, so MSI will carry the Unify series over to the Intel side as well. Apparently, MSI will offer the Z490 Unify in the standard ATX form factor as well as mini-ITX.
As far as MSI Z490 motherboards go, ITbox's prices reveal an increase in prices between 16.5% and 59%, depending on the model. Once again, the Ukrainian retailer doesn't list the over-engineered MEG Z390 Godlike. The debut price for the MEG Z390 Godlike was $599.99.