For our first X670 motherboard review, after careful consideration (literally a coin toss) we started with the X670E Taichi. As many know from previous generations, the Taichi is an upper-midrange model, but until we see the Aqua, this is the flagship X670E board in ASRock’s product stack. In addition to the basics (AM5 LGA socket, DDR5 and PCIe 5.0 support), the X670E Taichi sports a slew of connectivity, including two USB 4 Type-C ports, robust 27-phase power delivery, a high-quality audio section, and Killer based networking. For $499.99, it’s a well-equipped and good-looking base for AMD’s new platform.
At the time of this writing, ASRock’s website listed 14 AM5-based motherboards. There are five high-end X670E boards (Taichi/Taichi Carrara, Steel Legend, PG Lightning and Pro RS) and nine B650E/B650 boards (Taichi, Steel Legend, PG Riptide, PG-ITX, Pro RS, and the PG Lightning). Mixed in among the B650 SKUs are two MicroATX options and a new SKU called LiveMixer that looks like a throwback to the old colorful DFI boards from back in the day. Prices range from $529.99 (Taichi Carrara) to $259 (PG Lightning) for X670E, while the price range for B650 boards starts at $169.99 (PG Riptide),up to the B650E Taichi at $449.99.
Moving back to the Taichi, the board includes everything the new AM5 platform offers. On top of that, it’s arguably one of the more classy-looking motherboards on the platform. The chipset heatsink sports the familiar gears/cogs that make it a Taichi, with the rest of the board oozing premium vibes. Performance on our Taichi was average, with nothing sticking out as unusually slow or fast. Over time, this may change as the number of datasets we have grows with each review. But for now, there’s nothing abnormal here, and you can expect to squeeze every MHz worth of performance out of your AMD Ryzen 7000 processor with this board.
Below, we’ll take a detailed look into the features and specs to better understand how this motherboard stacks up against the competition. For details about platform differences, please refer to the X670 Motherboard Overview article. After we see a few of these AM5 boards, we’ll see if any earned a spot on the best motherboards list. Before we get into all the details, here is a complete list of specifications from ASRock’s website.
Specifications: ASRock X670E Taichi
|Voltage Regulator||27 Phase (24x 105A SPS MOSFETs for Vcore)|
|Video Ports||(1) HDMI (v2.1)|
|USB Ports||(2) USB4 Type-C (40 Gbps)|
|(5) USB 3.2 Gen 2 (10 Gbps)|
|(3) USB 3.2 Gen 1 (5 Gbps)|
|Network Jacks||(1) 2.5 GbE|
|Audio Jacks||(2) Analog + SPDIF|
|PCIe x16||(2) v5.0 (x16, x8/x8)|
|DIMM Slots||(4) DDR5 6000+(OC), 128GB Capacity|
|M.2 Sockets||(1) PCIe 5.0 x4 (128 Gbps) / PCIe (up to 80mm)|
|(2) PCIe 4.0 x4 (64 Gbps) / PCIe (up to 80mm)|
|(1) PCIe 4.0 x4 (64 Gbps) / PCIe + SATA (up to 110mm)|
|Supports RAID 0/1/5|
|SATA Ports||(8) SATA3 6 Gbps (Supports RAID 0/1/5/10)|
|USB Headers||(1) USB v3.2 Gen 2×2, Type-C (20 Gbps)|
|(2) USB v3.2 Gen 1 (5 Gbps)|
|(2) USB v2.0 (480 Mbps)|
|Fan/Pump Headers||(8) 4-Pin (CPU, CPU/Water pump, Chassis/Water pump|
|RGB Headers||(3) aRGB (3-pin)|
|(1) RGB (4-pin)|
|Diagnostics Panel||(1) Dr. Debug LED|
|(1) POST LEDs|
|Internal Button/Switch||Power and Reset buttons|
|SATA Controllers||(2) ASMedia ASM1061|
|Ethernet Controller(s)||(1) Killer E3100G (2.5 GbE)|
|Wi-Fi / Bluetooth||Killer AX1675 Wi-Fi 6E (2×2 ax, MU-MIMO, 2.4/5/6 GHz, 160 MHz, BT 5.2)|
|HD Audio Codec||Realtek ALC4082 (ESS SABRE9218 DAC)|
|DDL/DTS||✗ / ✗|
Inside the Box of the ASRock X670E Taichi
Inside the box along with the motherboard, ASRock throws in a decent collection of accessories designed to get your system up and running without an additional trip to the store. Of particular note included with the Taichi (and for sale alone for compatible ASRock boards) is the Blazing M.2 Gen5 Fan Heatsink. The device has a lot more mass, surface area, and an included fan to help keep the hot-running PCIe 4.0 (and 5.0 when they release) SSD modules cool. Below is a complete list of the included accessories.
- (4) SATA cables
- Wi-Fi antenna
- Wireless Dongle USB Bracket
- Blazing M.2 Gen5 Fan Heatsink
- (1) M.2 standoffs
- (4) screws for M.2 sockets
- Custom keycap
- Velcro strops
- User Guide
Design of the ASRock X670E Taichi
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As noted earlier, I like the appearance of the Taichi boards, and this model in particular. From the ground up, the all-black 8-layer PCB has several heatsinks and shrouds covering all the bits that get hot, as well as otherwise unattractive parts of the board you probably don’t want to look at. The VRM heatsinks surrounding the twelve and nine o’clock sections of the LGA-1718 socket have a lot of mass and use a tiny fan hidden inside to keep the air moving across the metal surface. The PCIe and chipset area is also covered with heatsinks, with the latter sporting the unique gears/cogs design familiar to the Taichi. A gold strip with branding and the Taichi motto (Philosophy of Infinite Potential) runs from the bottom to the top of the board.
On the RGB front, ASRock again chose to go the more classy route, with RGB areas on the chipset and the right edge of the board by the SATA ports. The RGB lights are saturated and plenty bright enough to illuminate the inside of your chassis, but this isn’t an elaborate implementation. The X670E Taichi is happy to either let your other parts stand out or be the focal point of your new build.
Focusing on the top of the board, we get a good look at the oversize VRM heatsinks, reinforced DRAM slots, and more. Starting in the upper-left corner, we spy a vented shroud that reaches over the VRM heatsink to allow cool air to pass through the fan hidden below and onto the heatpipe-connected heatsinks. The fan is barely audible at load and blends in with other fan noise coming from the case, so no worries there. Above the VRM heatsinks are two 8-pin EPS connectors (one required) to power the CPU.
To the right of the socket, we run into four reinforced DRAM slots with locking mechanisms on both sides. The board supports up to 128GB of DDR5 with speeds listed up to DDR5-6000+(OC). This isn’t the highest supported speed you’ll see from motherboard vendors, but the board worked with our DDR5-6000 kit; we expect headroom to increase over time as the platform matures.
We run into our first two (of eight) 4-pin fan headers just above (and also below) the DRAM slots. The board supports both DC and PWM fans, with each header capable of outputting at least 1A/12W. For high-powered pumps, the CPU_FAN2/WP_3A header outputs up to 3A/36W. You’ll manage airflow through the BIOS or in Windows via ASRock’s A-Tuning application (in the FAN-Tastic Tuning section).
To the right of the DRAM slots is the first M.2 socket, in this case, M2_2. This socket supports up to 110mm SATA and PCIe-based modules with speeds up to PCIe 4.0 x4 (64 Gbps). The other three, including the PCIe 5.0 connected socket, are located around the PCIe slots.
Finally, along the top-right edge, we run into another 4-pin fan header and two 3-pin addressable RGB headers. Continuing down the PCB, we spy the 24-pin ATX connector to power the board, another fan header, and USB 3.2 Gen 1 and 3.2 Gen 2×2 front panel headers. Something that you’ll see on many of these boards is USB count and/or speed going up on this platform. With the additional lanes and bandwidth, motherboard partners have a lot of flexibility with how their boards are configured.
Power delivery on the X670E Taichi is one of the more well-built we’ll likely see on the platform. Power comes from the EPS connector(s) to a Renesas RAA229628 controller. The Vcore portion runs into 24x 105A Renesas RAA22010540 SPS MOSFETs setup in a teamed configuration (one signal for two MOSFETs, no phase doubling). Overall, there’s plenty of VRM to support the flagship AMD Ryzen 9 7950X. Be it stock or overclocked (for what little the latter is worth these days), the power delivery won’t hold you back. Your cooling will.
Moving to the bottom half of the board, we’ll start on the left side that houses the audio section. Hidden under a shroud is a premium Realtek ALC4082 codec along with an ESS SABRE9218 DAC designated for front panel duty. Poking out from under the shrouds and heatsink are a few red WIMA audio caps, while several other dedicated audio caps are hidden. The ALC4082 codec is one of the best integrated options available.
In the middle of the board are two reinforced, full-length PCIe slots for graphics and other peripherals. Both slots source their bandwidth from the CPU and run PCIe 5.0, with the top slot running up to x16 and the bottom slot running up to x8. With both slots occupied, it splits to PCIe 5.0 x8/x8 for each slot. There’s plenty of bandwidth to support SLI, but ASRock only lists Crossfire support with this configuration.
Sprinkled among the PCIe slots are three more M.2 sockets. The top socket, M2_1, connects directly to the CPU and is your “Blazing” PCIe 5.0 x4 (128 Gbps) socket. M2_3, and M2_4 get their PCIE 4.0 x4 (64 Gbps) lanes from the chipset. All three sockets support up to 80mm PCIe modules only (only M2_2 supports SATA M.2 modules).
Moving across the chipset heatsink to the right edge, we run into eight SATA ports. Four are native to the chipset, while the others come from two ASMedia ASM1061 chips. That said, some lane sharing occurs between the M2_2 socket and SATA3_A1 port. If a SATA-type M.2 module occupies the M2_2 socket, SATA3_A1 will be disabled. With seven other SATA ports and three other M.2 modules available simultaneously, this shouldn’t be an issue for almost anyone.
Across the bottom of the board are several exposed headers. You’ll find the usual, including additional USB ports, RGB headers, and more. Below is a complete list from left to right.
- Front panel audio
- 4-pin chassis fan header
- 3-pin ARGB header
- 4-pin RGB header
- (2) USB 2.0 headers
- USB 3.2 Gen 1 header
- (2) 4-pin fan headers
- Power and Reset buttons
- System panel header
The rear IO area comes with a pre-installed IO plate that matches the Taichi theme with a black background and grey labels/designs. There are eight USB ports on the rear IO, which should be enough for most users. You’ll find the two USB4 Type-C ports, five USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports (10 Gbps) , and three USB 3.2 Gen 1 (5 Gbps) ports. Two Gen 2 ports (in yellow) are the lightning USB ports for lower latency for your keyboard and mouse. Video output consists of a single HDMI (v2.1) port and the two USB4 ports. For networking, the X670E Taichi has one Ethernet port and Wi-Fi antenna connections next to CMOS Reset and BIOS Flashback buttons. Lastly, the audio stack is a simple 2-plug analog (mic-in, line-out) and SPDIF.
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