Product on Review: X370 Taichi
Manufacturer & Sponsor: ASRock
Street Price: £229 GBP / $239 USD
The X370 Taichi which is priced around £225-230, positioning it as the second cheapest in our line-up. This is ASRocks 'All Rounder' motherboard that is essentially a cut down 'Fatal1ty X370 Professional Gaming', so it features premium components and robust design considerations such as Dual Stack Mofsets (DSM), 60A chokes in a 16 phase power design, 2oz copper PCB, and the various other inclusions falling under the 'ASRock Super Alloy' umbrella. As an 'all-rounder', it has been made with simplicity and stability in mind, and this is somewhat reflected in its stylish but neutrally toned aesthetic.
Out the box it features wireless connectivity supporting 2.4/5GHz WiFi and Bluetooth 4.2, and of all the motherboards we are looking at today, the X370 Taichi has 10x SATA 6Gb/s (2 more than natively supplied) along with 2x M.2 slots (1x compatible with M.2 SATA3 6.0 Gb/s module and M.2 PCI Express module up to Gen3 x4 (32 Gb/s), and 1x M.2 PCI Express module up to Gen2 x4 (20 Gb/s) (use of the second M.2 slot will disable the PCIe5 slot)).
The overview of the X370 Taichi shows us an attractive black/white Yin-Yang inspired design. There is a plastic shroud covering the Rear IO and the audio circuitry along with large heatsinks surrounding the AM4 socket.
ASRock have implemented a 16 phase power design using 60A chokes to ensure stable power delivery and cool operating temperatures.
From the right moving left, we find 2x 4pin fan headers, of which the CPU OPT_ doubles as a water pump header outputting 1.5A. Next to the 24pin ATX plug there are 2x USB 3.1 G1 headers followed by another 4pin fan header. Behind the DIMMS on the left you will find the RGB AMD fan headers.
ASRock aren't messing around here, no SATA Express, No NVMe U.2, just straight up 10x SATA 6Gb/s ports.
The front panel connection headers have been separated from the PLED/SPEAKER headers. There are some empty spaces with contacts that would be otherwise used for onboard buttons as featured on the X370 FATAL1TY Gaming Pro motherboards. Beneath the chipset heatsink there is a clear CMOS jumper, debug LEDs, and 2x USB 2.0 headers.
The X370 Taichi looks a little empty again, offering up just front panel HD audio, 2x RGB LED strip headers and an additional 4pin fan. There are contacts for COM and TPM pins, but they have not been used. There are 5x PCIe slots, the bottom most of which (PCIe G2 x4) is shared with the adjacent M.2 slot.
As high speed M.2 storage cards can generate quite a bit of heat, some prefer them to not be tucked underneath their graphics cards, so ASRock as situated it above the graphics card, this will also give some additional room for large CPU coolers.
At the back, the X370 Taichi afford a dedicated clear CMOS button, a universal PS/2 port, 6x USB 3.1 G1, WiFi and Bluetooth antenna connectors, 1x USB 3.1 G2 Type A, 1x USB 3.1 G2 Type C, 1x RJ-45 LAN, HD audio jacks and optical SPDIF optical out.
LED lighting is fairly straight forward on the Taichi, with a selection of RGB LEDs behind the chipset heatsink which can be customised with various simple effects, the software extends to controlling the additional LED strips if you connect them via the onboard RGB headers.