Question Replacing mobo - looking for recommendations

Tyrlaan

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Apr 12, 2019
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HI all,
So I had a long drawn out troubleshooting post (here) that seemed to conclude with the problem being the RAM. Well, tl;dr it appears to actually be a bad mobo.

My current setup is this: https://pcpartpicker.com/list/xTCkNQ

You'll see it's an MSI B450M Gaming Plus micro ATX mobo. It's under warranty. However, they refuse to send me a fresh one upfront; they want me to send the mobo to them, wait for them to assess if they can repair it or not, and wait for them to send me something back. This is insanely unacceptable to me - my computer may be intermittently crashing, but it's better than absolutely no computer for days/weeks/months.

So I'm on the market for a new mobo that is specifically not made by MSI.

At the moment there are 3 I'm eyeing but I could use some input to hone in on the best choice. I'm trying to get something comparable in price and features (and of course compatibility). I paid $80 for my MSI mobo. Here are the 3, but I'm open to any other suggestions. I'm also curious about brand quality and support. Thanks in advance!

Gigabyte B450 Aorus M
ASRock B450M Pro4
Asus Prime B450M-A/CSM
...some other thing?
 

Eximo

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Well, MSI is usually the go to for B450 boards. Tomahawk is considered one of the best budget and enthusiast boards available.

ASUS here is a cheaper board, no heatsinks.

I would probably pick the Gigabyte over the ASRock (ASRock is an offshoot of ASUS, from way back)

However, if you look at those boards, you may want to consider wiring positions. USB 3.0 port and 8-pin CPU power specifically, and check your fan header locations closely with your case's cutouts. Gigabyte seems a closer match to your old one on the USB 3.0 header, but it has the 8-pin power a lot closer to the CPU, so if your cable was a stretch now, it would be worse.



ASUS and Gigabyte are the two largest motherboard/PCB makers on the planet. I've had both with almost zero issues. Currently 2 Gigabyte and 1 ASUS active systems. With another two ASUS still more or less operational but not in use. Just shipped my only slightly faulty ASUS board off to someone that wanted it. It worked for many years, but is now having memory issues. Athlon X2 6000 system with an ASUS M2N SLI Deluxe is still kicking around. Haven't fired up my old Athlon 2500/2800 systems with Gigabyte boards in a while, assumed working.
 

Tyrlaan

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Apr 12, 2019
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Thanks for the advice!

Yeah, I'm really put out with MSI not meeting me halfway on this, but I kind of can't bring myself to give them more money in light of it.

Stupid follow up question - the CPU 8-pin power connection you're referring to is the power line from the PSU to the mobo that's up "top" on the MSI one and slightly "lower" and, er, sideways in comparison on the Gigabyte model, right? If so, I've got ample slack on the cable so no worries there.
 

Eximo

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Yes, it was just a minor concern. But the placement of connectors is something to look at if you want a clean interior, or don't want to undo your existing cable management too much.

I like the Gigabyte BIOS for what that is worth, though as most people, I don't spend much time in there after everything is set up to my liking.
 

BogdanH

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Sep 21, 2020
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I doubt there's any brand that will replace board in advance. And I can understand that.. too many try to build new PC without having basic knowledge.
What I'm trying to say is, I understand you're upset about your motherboard, but don't let your "pride" influence your decision. Buy what you think suits you best for the money you pay.
 

Tyrlaan

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Apr 12, 2019
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Yes, it was just a minor concern. But the placement of connectors is something to look at if you want a clean interior, or don't want to undo your existing cable management too much.

I like the Gigabyte BIOS for what that is worth, though as most people, I don't spend much time in there after everything is set up to my liking.
Aye, pretty much.

I doubt there's any brand that will replace board in advance. And I can understand that.. too many try to build new PC without having basic knowledge.
What I'm trying to say is, I understand you're upset about your motherboard, but don't let your "pride" influence your decision. Buy what you think suits you best for the money you pay.
Hm, interesting. I guess I get that but it still seems like a really bad business decision to me. Either way, I guess if I looked at MSI it would be the B450M PRO-VDH MAX? I don't think my current mobo is available anymore.

What appreciable difference is therebetween the MSI pro-VDH Max and the Gigabyte Aorus M? Functionally they look the same to me other than some tiny differences. Is MSI considerably better than other brands?
 

BogdanH

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Sep 21, 2020
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From reputable reviews, MSI seems to made some good boards at good prices in last few years.
Me personally, I either used Asus or Gigabyte in past 25 years or so (needless to say, they served me well). But a year ago, when I decided to switch to AMD, I noticed I get more features with MSI (at similar pricing) than with my "favorite" brands. So I decided for MSI and I don't regret at all.
Of course, features I'm after may not be of your interest.. so, you pick board that suits your needs.
If I'd need to choose between Gigabyte Aorus M and MSI PRO-VDH, I would get Gigabyte because:
-it has 6 hi-speed USB in back, while MSI only has 4 (not that important maybe),
-VRM (CPU power delivery) kinda looks being better (than on MSI),
-visually more appealing board, where MSI has more basic look (which can be deceiving, though)

Just sharing my thoughts.
 

Tyrlaan

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Apr 12, 2019
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Thanks all!

I decided to go with the Gigabyte mobo. Ordered and will arrive Sunday which can't be soon enough - this thing is crashing close to 10 times a day! ugh
 

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