AMD's current flagship X570 chipset brings with it full support for PCIe 4.0, including devices connected to both its CPU-integrated and chipset-based PCIe controllers, and the transfer rate between the CPU and chipset is likewise doubled. We've tested several X570 boards, including some models refreshed for AMD's new Ryzen 5000 CPUs, from the likes of Asus, Gigabyte, and MSI, but only a handful of models stand out. The price premium for X570 models is a concern, as its X470 predecessors will not support the PCIe 4.0 integrated into the new CPUs.
If you want to save some money, consider a B550 motherboard, wich has PCIe 4.0 support, but generally only enough lanes for one fast SSD and graphics card. Note, though, that many higher-end B550 boards approach or exceed the price of X570 alternatives. So shop carefully based on the features you need or are likely to use in the future.
Best AMD Motherboards: B550, TRX40, X570, X470, B450 and X399
We don't get a chance to review many "mainstream" boards that cost over $500, so the X570 Aqua stands by itself. This limited-edition (999 retail units) product includes everything from Intel's top Thunderbolt 3 controller to 10GbE and, of course, the included liquid-cooling monoblock for which it's named. Labeled EATX for being slightly larger than standard ATX, its 10.5" depth is still short enough to fit many enthusiast-oriented ATX gaming cases. Our only reservation is a price that's over $200 beyond its specs: Such is the price for exclusivity.
Read: ASRock X570 Aqua Review
Asus’ ROG Strix B550-F Gaming Wi-Fi delivers premium features including SupremeFX Audio, Intel Wi-Fi 6 AX200, solid power delivery and more. It’s a good option around the $200 mark, though there are similarly specced boards that cost less. If you don’t need Wi-Fi capability, the non-Wi-Fi version of the same board costs $30 less with the same specifications, making it easy to recommend if you plan on using Ethernet or have your own wireless card.
NZXT’s first foray into AMD motherboards is a success. Coming in late to the game allowed the company to implement feedback from its Intel boards, adding more USB ports to the rear IO. The additional time also allowed NZXT to implement cutting-edge Wi-Fi 6E as well, alongside 2.5GbE. Outside of that, the appearance changed significantly from the company’s previous boards, with shrouds dominating the surface and an absence of on-board RGBs.
With an MSRP of $229, the NZXT N7 B550 costs about $15 more than our primary pick, but delivers a newer Wi-Fi chip, more and faster USB ports, and solid performance in a package that's visually distinct from all other B550 competition. If you can spend this much and don't need the extra PCI 4.0 bandwidth that comes with similarly priced older X570 motherboards, the NZXT N7 B550 is well worth considering.
Read: NZXT N7 B550 review
Packed with 12 USB ports (eight of which are USB 3.2 Gen 2 speeds), a 2.5G LAN port, eight SATA ports, and integrated Wi-Fi 6, he Asus ROG Crosshair VIII Hero Wi-Fi is a good base for a high-end build.
The Gigabyte X570 Aorus Ultra focuses on doing basic things very well, such as its twelve 40A core voltage MOSFETs and triple PCIe 4.0 x4 M.2 storage slots. With nothing more than a 2.4Gb/s Wi-Fi 6 module to add to its basic Gigabit Ethernet, the paucity of premium add-in features helps Gigabyte to maintain a sub $300 price despite the cost of PCIe 4.0 compliance.
The MPG X570 Gaming Plus is unmistakably cheap, yet it's eight 46A core voltage regulators still provide enough CPU power to cover the full range of AMD's recent AM4 processors. Fixed PCIe pathways follow a simplified rout to eliminate the need for costly re-drivers, and the board has only one pathway switch that enables its second x1 slot by disabling the first. Its included software couldn't even monitor our hardware, and the firmware menu that's supposed to display connected devices disabled our keyboard and mouse, but buyers who are satisfied by mere adequacy should be pleased by its exceptionally low price.
Alternative Budget X570: ASRock X570 Steel Legend WiFi ax
The Gigabyte X570-I Aorus Pro WiFi performed well at stock and when overclocking. Dual M.2 slots on the ITX form factor is its claim to fame, and it also includes two USB3 Gen 2 ports (one Type-C, the other Type-A) and four USB3 Gen1 ports on the rear IO. This tiny board offers users a great assortment of features and is a well-rounded solution for its small form factor, and comes at moderate price that undercuts the competition.
The Racing X470GT8 makes an excellent case for Biostar’s claim of performance and overclocking value supremacy. The company understands that some enthusiasts just want performance, and that the key to performance often lies with overclocking. Buyers with those goals don’t tend an overloaded features set. Their money is better spent instead on a higher-end CPU and a big cooler to help push clock speeds to their limits. The Racing X470GT8 gets AMD fanatics there, without the increasingly niche Nvidia SLI support, which they might also find anathema as they shop for an AMD-based card to complete their build.
Motherboard makers love to load up tiny boards with high-end chipsets, but those boards often lack the bonus features that would have made the flagship chipset worthwhile. The Fatal1ty B450 Gaming-ITX/ac takes the opposite approach, offering most of the features of AMD’s lower-cost B450 chipset while retaining the overclockability associated with high-end motherboard models. That makes it a great option for Mini-ITX overclocking enthusiasts on a tight budget--or those who would just rather spend more on a better CPU or roomier, speedier storage.
Sixteen 90A power phases under an enormous dual-fan heat sink prove that the TRX40 Taichi was built with 64-core CPU overclocking in mind, regardless of whether the forthcoming Threadripper 3990X even turns out to be overclockable. Additional features such as dual networking that includes 2.5GbE, a 20Gb/s USB3 2x2 header, 2.4Gb/s Wi-Fi, and an included four-drive M.2 expansion card push overall value up to its $500 price.
Power users will want to pick up the Gigabyte X399 Aorus Xtreme because of its impressive ability to manage higher-wattage workloads and parts when combined with custom loops and ample radiator space. The voltage regulator cooler alone eliminates the need for a monoblock, and could tip the high-wattage value proposition back in Gigabyte’s favor for a fully equipped motherboard.
If 10Gb Ethernet is not needed, we still recommend the Gigabyte X399 Aorus Gaming 7 for full-sized builds. And the ASRock X399M Taichi still opens the door for HEDT builders on the value front. Still, if overclocking high-end processors is your thing, it’s hard to look past the heatsinks on the Aorus Xtreme.