From ASUS Press Release: ASUS is announcing new motherboards featuring the AMD B550 chipset which brings the potential of PCIe 4.0 to mainstream builds everywhere. AMD B550 motherboards enable 20 general-purpose PCIe 4.0 lanes from 3rd Gen AMD Ryzen™ desktop processors. The primary PCIe slot on all new ASUS B550 boards offers 16 lanes of Gen 4 connectivity, and 3rd Gen AMD Ryzen™ parts feature as many as four USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports running at up to 10Gbps direct from the CPU itself. ASUS also has exciting features to enhance their B550 motherboards like Wi-Fi 6, robust power delivery, increased DRAM speed, 2.5Gb Ethernet, BIOS Flashback and AI Noise Cancelling support. Their new AI Noise Cancelling technology works by applying advanced filters to ensure background noise is cleanly filtered out. The B550 chip itself gets an upgrade to PCIe 3.0 for its built-in lanes. These upgrades make B550 a tantalizing platform for mainstream builders throughout the world.
ASUS engineers and designers have produced a grand total of 11 B550 motherboards across three families. ROG Strix boards fill out the top end with innovative features like efficient and cool-running VRMs, enhanced audio, and 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet and Wi-Fi 6 connectivity by way of Intel controllers. TUF Gaming boards blend high-end features with a battle-tested, reliable, and attainable package, while the Prime series rolls up all the features needed for all-around builds. A complete motherboard guide with specifications and images is located in the Edge Up Article.*
“We are seeing increasing user demands for flexible systems that perform well in a multitude of tasks from gaming to content creation more than ever before,” said Chris Kilburn, corporate vice president and general manager, client component business unit, AMD. “AMD is excited to bring the power of 3rd Gen AMD Ryzen™ desktop processors and cutting edge PCIe® 4.0 support to the mainstream users with our latest AMD B550 chipset. From Strix to Prime and everything in-between from our partners at ASUS, AMD is confident these new B550 platforms will provide flexibility and power never seen before on a mainstream platform.”
*Edge Up Article - https://edgeup.asus.com/2020/b550-motherboard-guide-asus-rog-strix-tuf-…
The ROG Strix B550-E Gaming
ASUS built the ROG Strix B550-E Gaming with an eye towards AMD’s high-performance processors and dual or triple expansion card setups. The AM4 socket is flanked by a 14+2 power stage VRM for reliable performance under sustained loads from many-core CPUs, while reinforced PCIe x16 SafeSlots support multi-GPU action in two-way SLI or three-way CrossFireX setups for gamers and creators alike.
The B550-E’s six fan headers and dedicated AIO and pump headers allow for setups as simple or intricate as a given build requires. Q-Fan software controls with automatic fan speed detection and multiple presets make it easy to keep both temperatures and noise levels down. Dual M.2 slots can take in SSDs up to 110mm long, both covered by heatsinks to prevent thermal throttling under intense I/O loads. The ROG Strix B550-E features an Intel-powered 2.5 Gb Ethernet and Wi-Fi 6 controllers. There’s also Bluetooth 5.1 support on tap for wireless headsets, phones, and tablets.
USB connectivity is particularly plentiful on the ROG Strix B550-E: you get three USB 3.2 Gen 2 connectors (one Type-C and two Type-A), along with a smattering of USB 3.2 Gen 1 and USB 2.0 ports. ASUS has included a USB 3.2 Gen 2 front-panel connector for the latest crop of cases.
The high-end SupremeFX S1220A audio chip comes with a handy companion in the form of an Audio Type-C port for connecting headphones and headsets. A total of four strip headers are available—two standard headers and two Gen 2 addressable hook-ups with individual LED control, reduced latency, and automatic configuration support. All those diodes can be turned off with one click to give the board a stealthy black-ops look. Additional touches include BIOS FlashBack for updating firmware without a CPU and FlexKey reset button remapping.
The ROG Strix B550-F Gaming (Wi-Fi)
The ROG Strix B550-F proves the point for builders who want a performance-oriented board with a healthy dose of luxury. The 12+2 power stage VRM is ready for top Ryzen™ chips, and 8+4-pin ProCool auxiliary power connectors with solid pins ensure steady and stable power delivery to those power stages.
This model includes Intel I255-V 2.5Gb Ethernet connectivity and Wi-Fi 6 support from an Intel AX200 adapter. The B550-F features SupremeFX S1220A audio codec and follows the distinctive visual standard of the ROG Strix family and looks plenty sharp on its own thanks to lighting zones and an integrated I/O shield. For customization, a user can add plenty of lights with RGB LED strip headers in both regular and Gen 2 addressable flavors—all with Aura Sync support for easy configuration.
The ROG Strix B550-I Gaming
The ROG Strix B550-I was designed for small builds with big ambitions. By design, Mini-ITX makes room for a single PCIe 4.0 x16 slot, but the compact form factor has other advantages. The B550-I can drive compatible DIMMs at speeds up to 5100MHz and beyond by taking advantage of the shorter trace length between the memory slots and the CPU. The 8+2 power stagevoltage regulator module is a fine fit for 3rd gen Ryzen™ chips. Active cooling on the VRM and an eight-pin connector with our ProCool II design ensures that power delivery remains stable in the tight confines of Mini-ITX enclosures.
The preinstalled I/O panel is kitted out with USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C and Type-A ports, an Intel I225-V 2.5Gb Ethernet connector, and an Intel AX200 Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1 adapter. Small machines are more likely to have fast external storage attached, so ASUS added a front-panel USB 3.2 Gen 2 connector for the latest cases. The 3.5-mm connectors are all LED lit in unique colors to allow for easy identification when connecting analog speakers, headsets, or microphones. There’s a companion noise-filtered Audio Type-C port for corresponding microphones and headsets, too.
The TUF Gaming B550-Plus
The TUF Gaming B550-Plus features 8+2 DrMOS voltage regulator module and the multiple generously sized heatsinks atop the VRM, chipset, and M.2 slots ensure all primary components stay cool under load. The main PCIe 4.0 x16 slot is backed by SafeSlot reinforcement for extra-heavy graphics cards, while a ProCool auxiliary connector with solid-core pins offers added peace of mind when using power-hungry CPUs.
The two M.2 slots both accept devices as long as 110mm, while the duet of PCIe x16 slots supports CrossFireX configurations. The rear panel includes USB ports of every modern type, and that loadout can be further expanded with Thunderbolt 3 connectivity thanks to an onboard header. A BIOS FlashBack button rests near one of the ports for CPU-less UEFI upgrades.
The TUF B550-Plus comes with 2.5 Gb Ethernet connectivity and there’s an M.2 E-key slot available for a Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1 upgrade. The Realtek S1200A audio codec in this model is further enhanced by DTS Custom support for headset 3D surround sound virtualization, making movies and compatible games come alive with pinpoint-accurate positional audio.
The gray-and-black TUF Gaming aesthetic and its yellow accents is distinctive on its own, but this color palette also makes for a great canvas for additional lighting. A Gen 2 addressable RGB LED header and two standard headers can be wired to additional strips for easy visual customization.
The TUF Gaming B550M-Plus (Wi-Fi)
The TUF Gaming B550M-Plus (Wi-Fi) takes many of the features of the B550-Plus above and reconfigures them for the smaller microATX footprint. This board keeps the same pairs of PCIe x16 and M.2 slots as its ATX sibling. The main difference is that one of the M.2 slots takes in standard 80mm devices instead of longer 110mm units. In exchange, this model offers a more attractive price tag to go with its trimmed dimensions.
The B550M-Plus comes in two variants: with or without an Intel AX200 Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1 controller and antennas. No matter which you pick, you still get 2.5 Gb Ethernet connectivity, Realtek S1200A audio with DTS Custom support, and a host of fan and RGB LED headers that includes Gen 2 addressable strip connectors.
The Prime B550-Plus
This top of the line Prime motherboard is ready to power a mid-range gaming rig or serve as a solid foundation for an AMD-powered productivity system. This model is right at home powering midrange Ryzen™ chips, and it comes fitted with heatsinks atop the VRM and chipset to ensure stability.
The dual PCIe x16 slots support CrossFireX if a user needs dual-GPU action for their system, while the duo of M.2 slots accepts 110 mm drives. If the USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports around back aren’t enough, you can add an optional ThunderboltEX 3 card and hook it up to the provided header for even more peripheral bandwidth. The Prime B550-Plus’ neutral palette is understated enough to fit into any build, but it’s also a fine canvas for deployment under colored case lighting.
The Prime B550M-A (Wi-Fi)
Space in offices and bedrooms is often at a premium, making the Prime B550M-A (Wi-Fi) a better option to go into places where an ATX build might not. This variation on the B550-Plus offers nearly the same specs but uses the compact microATX form factor.
Due to the Wi-Fi 6 standard, this motherboard is now perfectly viable to use the airwaves in situations where users would previously need a cable. For that reason, ASUS offers the B550M-A with Gigabit Ethernet only or in a version with an Intel AX200 Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1 adapter.
The Prime B550M-K
A compact microATX form factor lets builders save on space without sacrificing expandability, and both the main PCIe x16 slot and M.2 slot are wired directly to the processor with latest-gen PCIe 4.0 connectivity for maximum bandwidth with next-gen devices.
The board can take in two M.2 devices, one of them of the longer 110 mm variety. The rear I/O panel contains two USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports along with four USB 3.2 Gen 1 connectors, ensuring that your peripherals enjoy plenty of bandwidth. HDMI, DVI-D, and D-sub ports give the B550M-K plenty of versatility for processors with integrated graphics.