I can guarantee you that they're all pretty much the same. I've had ASRock, Gigabyte, Biostar, ECS/Elitegroup and MSi. Other than the fact that the MSi board failed on me, I've been 100% satisfied with their features and performance levels because motherboards have a very small (if any) effect on overall PC performance. As far as actual PC performance was concerned, I never noticed a difference between any brand because, let's face it, the actual working parts of the motherboards (the chipsets) are all supplied by AMD or Intel (although at the time, AMD chipsets were ATi and nVidia also had their nForce chipsets) so a board's features were dictated by which chipset was used. That's still true today.
When I worked at Tiger Direct, I had the opportunity to really look at the difference between many motherboard manufacturers because we had ASRock, ASUS, Biostar, ECS/Elitegroup, EVGA, Gigabyte, Jetway and XFX. The differences were mainly cosmetic with the biggest differences being the number of USB and SATA ports, the number of PCI and PCI-Express slots and whether or not they had IDE and Floppy Drive connectors. There weren't even huge differences when it came to the BIOS because they were all by American Megatrends.
I honestly don't know how ASUS got the reputation that it has because I've never found them to be overly-impressive. In fact, I've never been impressed enough to pay the extra cost associated with them and so I've never owned one. My stepfather, the one who got me into computers at the age of 8, has owned several ASUS motherboards but, like most Baby-Boomers, he's a bit of a brand-wh0re because, in his day, brand-names actually mattered so, you know, old habits and all that.
He got an ASUS TUF X570 motherboard and he had audio issues with it. He had to RMA it but he had no motherboard to use with his R9-3900X. I lent him my ASRock X370 Killer SLI board and then went back to install his TUF motherboard when he got it back many months later. He lives 3 hours away from me so I ended up driving 12 hours total. I bought him a Unicomp keyboard a couple of years prior (bloody expensive) and I found it, mostly unused, in his basement. He said it was too loud (well, it IS an IBM model M, so yeah...) and gave it to me (I love that thing!). In the end, he asked me if I just wanted to take his TUF board and leave the Killer SLI. I refused because I didn't think that trading an X570 board for an X370 board was fair to him and put the TUF back into his PC.
So, here's a guy who swears by ASUS but was satisfied with an ASRock X370 board to the point that he was willing to trade his ASUS TUF X570 for it. That should tell you all that you need to know about being a brand-wh0re when it comes to motherboards.
Wow, that's one helluva jump! Congrats!
Different strokes, different folks I guess. My last two motherboards have both been ASRock (X370 Killer SLI, X570 Pro4) and I've been perfectly satisfied with them. They used to have a really cool feature where you could do a BIOS update online from the UEFI screen. Sadly, they discontinued it, but it was incredibly convenient. I've never really had an issue with their BIOS, but AFAIK, everyone's BIOS is made by American Megatrends (AMI) anyway.
You had me worried for a second because both my ASRock boards (X370 Killer SLI and X570 Pro4) have an Intel Gigabit NIC. I've had no problem with either but I checked the specs on them. Thankfully, they both use the Intel i211AT.
You know, it really makes you wonder... Intel's i211AT is a rock-solid gigabit NIC so why didn't they just leave it alone? The i225-V is also a gigabit NIC so it's not like there's any real performance difference between them, except for the fact that the i225-V is unstable.
I'll keep my eye out for that i225-V NIC and avoid boards with it. Thanks for this very valuable info. I'm sure that you've saved a bunch of people a lot of headaches with it.
Where do you get that from? Steve wasn't very complimentary of MSi in this article. I don't like MSi because of a bad experience but these are Steve's words, not mine:
"Starting with the MSI Pro B650M-A WiFi, at $200 this can be considered a mid-tier board for this roundup. In terms of features it's a well equipped MicroATX motherboard though I have to say there's nothing particularly noteworthy about it, as there's no PCIe 5.0 support, you get the standard two M.2 slots and three PCIe expansion slots."
"For an extra $20, there's an ATX version called the MSI Pro B650-P WiFi, though as of writing it was on sale for the same $200 price. This is more than a stretched out version of the Pro B650M-A, though they do look similar."
Steve is pretty clear that he is quite unimpressed with MSi's offerings:
"But those boards seemed fast compared to the 53 seconds the MSI boards took, and we saw these same sluggish load times with both BIOS revisions. So this is something MSI will have to work on and it's a disappointing result, especially when compared to the Gigabyte boards which were more than twice as fast to boot up."
Yeah, I honestly never could tell where ASUS got their reputation from because I've owned motherboards by ASRock, Biostar, ECS/Elitegroup, Gigabyte and MSi and the only motherboard that I've been unsatisfied with was my MSi K9A2 Platinum. The rest never failed on me.
Have you been reading the same articles that I have? Steve has said the exact opposite
of that in more than one article. In The Best AMD X670E Motherboards: 22 Board Roundup, VRM Thermal Test
, Steve had this to say about the ASRock X670E PG Lightning:
"For those of you looking at spending $300 or less on an X670 motherboard, there are over half a dozen options. The most affordable one is the Asrock X670E PG Lightning and it also happens to be an X670 Extreme motherboard. As far as entry-level X670 motherboards go, the Asrock X670E PG Lightning and Gigabyte X670 Gaming X are in our opinion the best options."
So, you're saying that people should avoid
a board that is, in Steve's opinion, one of the best options? Then, in the current article, Steve praises the ASRock PG Riptide, specifically over the MSi board.
"Moving on to Asrock, the B650M PG Riptide WiFi is on offer at $180, making it one of the most affordable AM5 motherboards. For the money it appears well equipped. Asrock has squeezed four PCIe expansion slots onto a Micro ATX board, along with two M.2 slots and one of those M.2's supports PCIe 5.0, a feature missing from both MSI models."
That's the exact opposite
of "MSi is the way to go" and "Avoid ASRock PG motherboards".
Steve does say that the best high-end X670E motherboard is the MSI MEG X670E ACE but then he goes on to say that the Godlike is ridiculously overpriced. So, that's praising MSi on one hand and panning them on the other:
"The best high-end X670E motherboard is simply the MSI MEG X670E ACE. The stupid expensive Asus ROG Crosshair X670E Extreme and MSI MEG X670E Godlike are excellent motherboards, but we can't justify the asking prices, especially in the case of the Godlike."
Your post is very pro-MSi and anti-ASRock PG for no apparent reason. You then try to support your claim by talking about getting this "impression" from articles that say the exact opposite
. Sure, the best high-end X670E motherboard is an MSi board, but that's the only one that Steve seems to like. He certainly isn't a fan of their B650 offerings based on this article so maybe you're confusing different reviews here.
I don't have an axe to grind as the only motherboard brand that I've never owned is ASUS (unless you count the motherboard in my ASUS craptop). If you have any real information about why MSi is the way to go, by all means, reveal it. If you're right, you'll have helped a lot of people. The problem is, from what Steve says, it sure doesn't look like you're right.
I have no love for Intel but the i211AT Gigabit NIC used on my ASRock X370 Killer SLI and ASRock X570 Pro4 has been rock-solid over nearly six years of near-constant use. I've had no issues with it on either board, it just works. Intel was just being their stupid selves by not leaving well-enough alone. Their management "team" is so incompetent that they'e been shooting themselves in the foot left and right over the past ten years so them managing to royally screw-up something that just works would just be par for the course. I agree that RealTek is the way to go in most cases because their chips just work without any frills or fanfare and there's a lot to be said for that.
Excellent! I'll avoid that one too.
Actually there is mention of it. The primary M.2 slot of these boards are PCIe5:
ASRock B650M PG Riptide WiFi
ASRock B650 PG Lightning
ASRock B650 Pro RS
ASUS Prime B650M-A WiFi
All other boards in the roundup only have PCIe4 M.2 slots.
This is a roundup of the "Most Affordable AMD B650 Boards Tested"
. Gigabyte's AORUS motherboards don't qualify as "affordable". AORUS is a premium motherboard line so it wouldn't be included here. You would find the AORUS name in a motherboard roundup that includes other premium lines like ROG and Taichi.
Who was doing that? I've never seen it (doesn't mean it hasn't happened) and I sure haven't been badmouthing Gigabyte in any way, quite the opposite actually.
When I make a recommendation to people who want an affordable way to adopt the AM5 platform, I tell them to get an R5-7600 on a Gigabyte B650 DS3H with 16-32GB of either DDR5-4800 or DDR5-5200. Back when I thought that I had bricked my X570 Pro4, it was the DS3H that I was going to replace it with. Thankfully, it turned out that it was just a bad SATA cable but if it wasn't, I would have a DS3H right now.
The only bad product that I've ever seen or heard about with the Gigabyte name on it was their first-gen PSUs that caught fire. Their PSU division is completely separate from their PCBoard division (motherboards and video cards) and had some bad actors involved. Gigabyte didn't take long to sort them out though.