MSI MAG B550 Tomahawk Review

👤by Matthew Hodgson Comments 📅16-06-20
Conclusion
MSI are a mammoth within the PC gaming industry, particularly well known for their GPUs and motherboards. Their MSI MAG B550 Tomahawk is a cracking first look at the B550 range of motherboards but it could do with shaving a few pounds, and we donít mean weight.

Kicking off with appearance, the board looks good, itís not overdone with RGB lighting with only 3 or 4 RGB LEDs illuminating the underside of the chipset heatsink, so you end up with quite an understated and functional-looking motherboard thatís set out to the task at hand.

The Tomahawk arrives to market with a solid assortment of features, largely aimed towards offering the best possible stability with overclocking performance thrown in for bonus. 2.5G ethernet will boost intet-network transfers of large files, while a couple of USB 3.2 Gen. 2 ports, one Type A and one Type C, as well as USB 3.2 Gen. 1 on the front panel, will enable high-speed device connectivity. The NVMe 4.0 and PCI-E 4.0 x16 slot will also help with futureproofing your system when everyone gets up and running on the latest specification.

The chipset and VRM temperatures were of absolutely no concern, at all, with our 3600X equipped, even after 20 minutes in a powerful stress test the temperatures were more than in control. Thereís also the large heatsinks strapped onto the M.2 slots, these have been proven to help extend M.2 performance by preventing thermal throttling.

Thereís a few omissions that arenít here, one of which is WiFi connectivity, the other being SLI support, with only 2-way AMD CrossFire being present. We feel these wonít be deal-breakers for most people, but itís also a £180 motherboard that doesnít have WiFi.


The MSI MAG B550 Tomahawk features very capable heatsinks, looks classy and is fairly well future proofed. We reckon itís definitely worthy of consideration within the B550 market, but there are X570 motherboards at this price point.

Pros
+ Understated military-style appearance
+ Performs well
+ USB 3.2 Gen. 2 connectivity
+ 2.5G and 1G LAN connectivity
+ USB 3.2 Gen. 1 front panel connectivity

Cons
- No WiFi connectivity
- No SLI
- Gets awfully close in price to some of the X570 options out there


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