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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  • Ghan - Tuesday, June 16, 2020 - link

    Right now, it seems more like B for Backordered. They may be priced a bit high, but the demand still seems to be there. Reply
  • yannigr2 - Tuesday, June 16, 2020 - link

    This is a great article but it needs a follow up with a table for every motherboard explaining how they use the PCIe lanes in conjunction with M2 and SATA slots. It seems that motherboard makers are totally f up(sorry for the expression) the more reasonably priced models in that area. Reply
  • romrunning - Tuesday, June 16, 2020 - link

    Does anyone know if the boards that have the Intel i225-V are shipping with the fixed hardware (v2)? Reply
  • R3MF - Tuesday, June 16, 2020 - link

    +1 Reply
  • mooninite - Tuesday, June 16, 2020 - link

    Wow, another broken Intel NIC? I wish motherboards would stop using Intel NICs. Reply
  • mooninite - Tuesday, June 16, 2020 - link

    After Googling it looks like v2 is not fixed either... a v3 is coming out. Time to buy Realtek. Reply
  • romrunning - Wednesday, June 17, 2020 - link

    Which is hilarious - I remember when Realtek was the worst when it came to NICs, and Intel/3Com was the standard. :) Reply
  • WaltC - Wednesday, June 17, 2020 - link

    Yes, indeed...;) My x570 Master has an Intel gigabit & a realtek 2.5gb. It's amusing because my interface is an EWAN that tops out at 1Gb, but I thought I'd try the realtek just to see and then I forgot about it...;)...Seems every bit as stable as the Intel--still on it, lol...;) Six of one, half-dozen of another. Reply
  • eastcoast_pete - Tuesday, June 16, 2020 - link

    Thanks Ian and Gavin! One question, related to a likely use case for B550 mini ITX or mATX Boards: is it true that AMD will, at least initially, limit Ryzen 4000 APUs to OEMs? If that is so, I am definitely not interested in a B550 board in those form factors, and I don't think I am alone here. An answer is appreciated - thanks! Reply
  • mrvco - Tuesday, June 16, 2020 - link

    I'm just here for the Next mini-ITX boards. I'm liking the Aorus Pro AX quite a bit. Reply

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