Mini-ITX B550 With PCIe 4.0 From The Right CPU
AMD has brought PCIe 4.0 back to their budget conscious motherboards, after an AGESA update removed support for it on 300/400 series boards. The new B550 series is able to use the CPU’s PCIe 4.0 lanes to provide the new standard to some of the peripherals installed ont he motherboard, but not all of them.
Gigabyte has designed the B550I AORUS Pro AX to make this obvious for users by moving one of the M.2 ports to the back of the motherboard. The one on the back is limited to PCIe 3.0 while the more easily accessed one on the front of the board supports PCIe 4.0. The same is true of the one and only PCIe 16x slot, which also makes use of your CPU to provide PCIe 4.0 connectivity.
The back of the board offers a decent mix of connectivity, with both HDMI and DisplayPort out as well as five USB 3.2 Gen1 Type-A ports and a single 3.2 Gen2 Type-C port. TechPowerUp were very impressed with the power delivery design, with a a 6+2 phase VRM design using top-tier 90 A power stages from Intersil. That design helped with overclocking, they saw 4.4 GHz on all cores with a minimum of tweaking.
The B550I AORUS Pro AX from Gigabyte comes with a lot of hardware packed into a small package. Among the features are 2.5 Gb/s Ethernet, WiFi 6, dual M.2 slots, and top tier 90 Amp power stages. Let's see just how good this new SFF option from Gigabyte really is!