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MSI MPG B550I Gaming Edge Wi-Fi Review: A Tiny Take on B550

MSI’s Mini ITX MPG B550I delivers everything you’d expect, save for integrated RGB.

MSI MPG B550I Gaming Edge Wi-Fi
(Image: © MSI)

Software

MSI doesn’t offer an excessive amount of software, but it covers all the bases. The utility section of MSI’s support page for this board includes an MSI-skinned version of CPUz, Realtek Audio control and Dragon Center. Dragon Center (DC) is a one-stop-shop to monitor the system, control any RGB lighting (Mystic Light), LAN, and gaming highlights. DC is relatively comprehensive, though it is missing software-based overclocking and fan controls.

MSI Dragon Center

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Nahimic

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Firmware

To give you a taste of the Firmware, we’ve gathered screenshots showing a majority of the BIOS screens. MSI’s layout is informative and straightforward to use in EZ Mode or Advanced, with the latter separated into the more familiar sections on the main page. When overclocking, you’ll find the most frequently used options on the initial BIOS screen in the OC section. Overall, the MSI BIOS is easy to navigate and read, with plenty of options to tweak your system.

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Test System and Comparison Products

Our test system uses Windows 10 64-bit OS (1909) with all threat mitigations applied. The motherboard BIOS used is the latest non-beta available to the public unless otherwise noted. The hardware used is as follows: 

CPUAMD Ryzen R9 3900X
MemoryG.Skill Trident Z Neo 2x8GB DDR4 3600 (F4-3600C16Q-32GTZN)
GPUAsus ROG Strix RTX 2070
CPU CoolerCorsair H150i
PSUCorsair AX1200i
SoftwareWindows 10 64-bit 1909
Graphics DriverNvidia Driver 445.75
SoundIntegrated HD audio
NetworkIntegrated Networking (GbE or 2.5 GbE)
Graphics DriverGeForce 445.74

For this review, we’ll be comparing the MSI MPG B550I Gaming Edge Wi-Fi ($199.99) against the full-size B550 motherboards we’ve tested, the MAG B550 Tomahawk ($179.99), Gigabyte B550 Aorus Master ($279.99) and the Asus ROG Strix B550-F Gaming Wi-Fi ($209.99). As soon as we can get other Mini-ITX size boards from the B550 family, we’ll have better direct comparisons. 

Benchmark Settings 

Synthetic Benchmarks and Settings
PCMark 10Version 2.1.2177 64
Essentials, Productivity, Digital Content Creation, MS Office
3DMarkVersion 2.11.6866 64
Firestrike Extreme and Time Spy Default Presets
Cinebench R20Version RBBENCHMARK271150
Open GL Benchmark - Single and Multi-threaded
Application Tests and Settings
LAME MP3Version SSE2_2019
Mixed 271MB WAV to mp3: Command: -b 160 --nores (160Kb/s)
HandBrake CLIVersion: 1.2.2
Sintel Open Movie Project: 4.19GB 4K mkv to x264 (light AVX) and x265 (heavy AVX) 
Corona 1.4Version 1.4
Custom benchmark
7-ZipVersion 19.00
Integrated benchmark
Game Tests and Settings
The Division 2Ultra Preset - 1920 x 1080
Forza Horizon 4Ultra Preset - 1920 x 1080

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  • LaminarFlow
    A rating of 3.5/5 seems harsh, since for many people (myself included), having not RGB is a plus.
    I bought this board over the Gigabyte Aorus ITX for precisely one reason: USB type C header. Compare with ASRock and Asus ones, this board is cheaper with no sacrifice.
    Having said all this, a common complain people have with this board is its cpu back plate. It's not a problem for me since I'm using it with an AIO (NXZT H1), but it won't fit many others that require installation of custom back plate.
    Reply
  • Meru Otonashi
    Definitely an issue, I was almost tempted to start shopping for this until I saw that the configuration will not fit the Noctua NH-L9a-AM4 backplate because of the chips.

    People had to resort to cutting down the backplate with a dremel to fit. Definitely not great.
    Reply
  • mrv_co
    LaminarFlow said:
    A rating of 3.5/5 seems harsh, since for many people (myself included), having not RGB is a plus.
    I bought this board over the Gigabyte Aorus ITX for precisely one reason: USB type C header. Compare with ASRock and Asus ones, this board is cheaper with no sacrifice.
    Having said all this, a common complain people have with this board is its cpu back plate. It's not a problem for me since I'm using it with an AIO (NXZT H1), but it won't fit many others that require installation of custom back plate.

    The lack of RGB should add one full star to the rating.
    Reply