When I first received this motherboard I did not look it up or see any of the features and being B550 I expected a cut-down budget mini-ITX motherboard. Boy was I surprised once I started getting into the review! Gigabyte has really put together a fully-featured mini-ITX motherboard that checks all of the boxes, there really is not anything missing on this board!
One of the biggest things I was surprised with with the VRM on this board. Gigabyte has gone with Intersil ISL99390 power stages, which can handle up to 90A of continuous power. These are some of the best out there so if you wanted to overclock on this board you won’t have to worry about lower-end power delivery components. We were able to achieve an all-core overclock on our Ryzen 9 3900X of 4.2 GHz at only 1.33V.
On top of the great power delivery components you get WiFi 6, 2.5G LAN, dual M.2 slots, USB 3.2 gen 2 support, RGB lighting, and much more. If you think about it, this board basically gives you the same thing you would get on a mini-ITX X570 board, but for a lot cheaper. You are still going to get Gen4 speeds on PCI-Express slot and main M.2 slot. The only thing you are really missing out on is that second M.2 slot. Given the price trade-off and the fact you are getting two M.2 slots having the second slot being Gen3 is not all that bad. Having two slots also means you could build a system using those two slots and you wouldn’t even need any SATA drives.
Other premium features you see on this board are the metal backplate, M.2 heatsink on the Gen4 slot, and integrated rear I/O shield. Again everything about this board is premium and I really can’t seem to find anything missing, maybe a heatsink on the Gen3 M.2 slot?
Right now you can pick this board up at our favorite online retailer for $179.99, which again is a great price! Overall ThinkComputers gives the Gigabyte B550i AORUS PRO AX Motherboard a 10 out of 10 score and our Editor’s Choice Award!
– WiFi 6 & 2.5G LAN
– Intersil ISL99390 power stages
– Two M.2 slots
– Metal backplate
– Really don’t lose anything compared to X570
– No heatsink on second M.2 slot