ASRock B550 Taichi

The ASRock B550 Taichi is the top-end model from the company, with the key highlight being the use of Intel’s 2.5 gigabit Ethernet controller as well as the Intel AX201 module for Wi-Fi 6 capabilities. As with other ASRock Taichi models, the focus is always on all the cogs working together, and for this motherboard the company has splashed a good amount of brushed metal around the heatsinks. The chipset heatsink is an extended affair across most of the bottom half of the motherboard, also covering the two M.2 slots.

This motherboard is also unique among other B550 boards by offering dual 8-pin CPU power connectors, along with sixteen power phases on board. Despite this being a B550 ‘mid-range’ motherboard, ASRock wants users to push the system, as right in the middle is enscribed ‘Philosophy of Infinite Potential’.

The socket area has four easy-to access 4-pin fan headers, and the power delivery heatsink extends through a heatpipe into a more solid mass on the rear panel. The system has single sided DRAM slots, suggesting users need to push hard on the modules to make sure they are in properly. On the right hand side of the motherboard are two USB 3.0 front panel headers, a USB Type-C header, another 4-pin power connector, and eight SATA ports.

Another unique thing about this board is that this is the only B550 board we have seen with eight SATA ports. In this case, ASRock uses the four SATA ports on the chipset and adds another four from an ASMedia ASM1061 controller.

The top two full-length PCIe 4.0 slots from the CPU can run at x16 or x8/x8, while the bottom full-length slot is a PCIe 3.0 x4 from the chipset. Each of these three slots use extra protection for heavy graphics cards.

On the bottom of the motherboard are additional fan headers, RGB headers, two USB 2.0 headers, and power/reset buttons with a two-digit debug LED.

Audio on the right hand side of the motherboard comes from a Realtek ALC1220 codec, which also has an NE5532 amp in the setup.

From left to right, the rear panel has the two antenna for the Wi-Fi 6 module, a BIOS flash button, a Clear CMOS button, DisplayPort and HDMI, four USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports, Intel’s I225-V 2.5 gigabit Ethernet, two USB 2.0 ports, a Type-A USB 3.2 Gen 2 port, a Type-C USB 3.2 Gen 2 port, and the audio jacks.

B for Budget ASRock B550 Steel Legend
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  • Savikid - Tuesday, August 25, 2020 - link

    But the new oculus stuff only uses 1 usb port, so that right there is a drop. I use 2 for keyboard and mouse, one for a wireless controller, and one for my HMD. Reply
  • Gigaplex - Tuesday, June 16, 2020 - link

    "On that one I added a USB PCI card to get enough ports."

    That's not really helpful to the user who said they can't add in a card on their mITX system.
    Reply
  • eye4bear - Wednesday, July 1, 2020 - link

    Must be nice to have no external hard-drives, I have 3 all needing their own USB 3 port, along with a Logitech dongle that runs both my mouse and keyboard, finally a Bluethooth dongle as my computer has none built-in. Yes I would need 6 USB ports (one open for USB sticks) just to keep even. Reply
  • consolessuck - Friday, November 6, 2020 - link

    No, I have 3 usb ports on my laptop and i only use 1 for my mouse. As it turns out, the most amount of usb ports i use at once is two when i am making a wired data transfer with my mouse plugged in. Actually, I almost never transfer data to my phone with a wire, instead just sharing them via bluetooth. and considering i never make large data transfers to my phone, this works out just fine. as for a desktop, however, i'd like a minimum of 3 as i'll always have not only a mouse, but a keyboard plugged in all the time. Reply
  • taz-nz - Thursday, June 18, 2020 - link

    The Asrock B550M Steel Legend has 8 port on the back:
    4x USB-A 3.1 ports
    1x USB-A 3.2 port
    1x USB-C 3.2 port
    2x USB-A 2.0 ports

    And you still have two USB 2.0 internal header, plus two USB 3.1 internal headers.
    So that allows you to have another
    4x USB-A 3.1
    4x USB-A 2.0 ports.

    so that's 16 Ports
    Now if you like me and need Internal USB 3.2 USB-C header, you can use the PCIe 3.0 x2 m.2 slot to add one of these:
    https://www.delock.de/produkte/S_63998/merkmale.ht...

    or if you want two more USB 3.1 internal header you could add one of these:
    https://www.delock.de/produkte/G_62843/merkmale.ht...

    So if you can live without a second m.2 slot you have four more USB-A 3.0 ports.
    That gives you 20 USB ports without giving up a PCIe slot.
    Reply
  • taz-nz - Thursday, June 18, 2020 - link

    oops, just noticed you said mITX not mATX Reply
  • desii - Tuesday, June 16, 2020 - link

    Do any of these motherboards support ECC RAM (either buffered or unbuffered)? Reply
  • drSeehas - Wednesday, June 17, 2020 - link

    Socket AM4 CPUs support only unbuffered RAM. Reply
  • PixyMisa - Wednesday, June 17, 2020 - link

    I did a quick look on ASRock's site, since they're pretty good on ECC support, and every B550 board I checked lists ECC as supported. Reply
  • Samus - Tuesday, June 16, 2020 - link

    I think AMD screwed up here with pricing their platforms appropriately. I understand the push for PCIe 4 but they can't have average motherboard prices hovering between $200-$300. There has to be $100 motherboards to be taken seriously especially by OEM's if they want 4000 parts to become mainstream.

    But maybe they don't...maybe they plan to milk the 3000 parts for a few years. After all, there isn't much reason not too. They have no competition from Intel in the budget segment right now.
    Reply

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