B450 vs X470: Which is Better? – 2021 Comparison

Austin
| Last Updated: April 13, 2021

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When it comes to motherboard competition, the type of motherboard matters a lot. Just like choosing a vehicle based on fuel consumption, the winner depends entirely on the driving habits of the buyer.

Each motherboard has specific features that users prefer depending on their performance and PCI-E slot requirements. 

The B450 and X470 motherboards are both a quality component for your PC, but with varying features and capabilities. In this article, we will compare the two in-depth to find out which goes best with what.

TL; DR: B450 vs X470

B450

X470

Pros

Pros

  • Affordable price point

  • Has an extended heat sink to reduce the temperature

  • Supports out of the box compatibility

  • Stable BIOS
  • Has more features than B450

  • Offers SLI support

  • Good enough power delivery

  • Better VRM solutions

Cons

Cons

  • Does not have multiple graphics card support

  • Lower overclocking potential
  • It has no out of box compatibility with 3rd gen

  • Most need compatible CPU to flash Bios

  • High temperature under load

  • Expensive for users on a budget

Best For

Best For

Best for budget-conscious gamers who want to play high-level games on their PCs

Best for gamers who want to have the best hardware to play games at the highest level

What is a B450?

A B450 is an AMD motherboard. It was designed by AMD for its 2nd generation Ryzen processors that rely on the AM4 socket. It is one of the chipsets in the AMD 400 series.

The B450 offers some of the same features as the more expensive X470 chipset, so it provides good value for money. All Ryzen CPUs are compatible with the B450 motherboard, and even support overclocking with low-end motherboards.

The B450 is an improvement from the B350 series. It has lots of superior features like store MI support, precision boost, and sense MI. Such advanced features are usually standard in the more expensive X470 chipsets and uncommon in entry-level motherboards. B450 brings high-end utility to the mainstream users.

Photo credit: bhphotovideo.com

The addition of the Store MI feature in the B450 allows inter-using and matching the SSD, HDD, and RAM combination for faster data access. 

The B450 allows overclocking on supported Ryzen CPUs. Intel, as a competitor, only supports overclocking on some of its high-end chipsets. However, with AMD, even the relatively low-end B450 motherboards get overclocking support. Memory overclocking is supported even by AMD's lowest level chipset, A320. 

In contrast, Intel's H300 series will only overclock memory to as high as 2400 MHZ when combined with an unlocked 'K' series CPU.

B450 chipsets are available in varying form factors with different price points, making the B450 motherboard a good option for all users who want to have a mainstream performance on a budget.

What is an X470?

X470 is the newest chipset from AMD. It supports faster RAM speeds, works with Ryzen 2 chips with no BIOS update required, and adds Store MI – a feature that allows you to transform any drive into a cache drive. The X470 was released in March 2018 as a successor to the X370 chipset and a high-performance alternative to the B450 chipset.

Photo credit: msi.com

The X470 chipset supports the store MI technology. The thermal design power in this chipset was reduced compared to that in the X370 to make the chipset dissipate less and be cooled with a simple heatsink. TDP is the maximum power produced by the chipset that can be powered away at any workload by its cooling mechanism. Lowering this number means lower chances of overheating.

The X470 motherboard supports AMD Athlon processors right through to any AMD Ryzen processor of the future fourth generation based on the future Zen 3 microarchitecture. The X470 supports two additional PCIe 2.0 lanes – 8 in total – and two other 6 Gpbs SATA III ports – 4 in total. The X470 has 6 USB 3.1 Gen 3 ports, which is four more than the B450. Maximum DDR4 speed has also been increased in the X470.

Relevant Characteristics Between B450 and X470

B450

X470

PCIe 3.0 x4

Chipset PCIe Lanes

PCIe 3.0 x4

Zen 2 (Including BIOS updates for Zen 3)

Processor Support

Zen 2 (Including BIOS updates for Zen 3)

0

Usable PCIe Gen 4

0

0

Usable PCIe Gen 3

0

6

Usable PCIe Gen2

8

2

SATA III (6Gbps)

4

2x(or 4x SATA)

(or x4 NVMe Gen 3)

SATA Express

2x(or 4x SATA)

(or x4 NVMe Gen 3)

2

USB 10Gbps

2

2

USB 5Gbps

6

6

USB 480Mbps

6

Similarities and Differences

The B450 and X470 are two different chipsets of the same generation. Being of the same generation, they have a lot of similarities. Either is a serviceable gaming motherboard, and mainstream users mostly choose one or the other, although that market dominance may be short lives after the new generations are released. Let's explore further the similarities and differences between the two.

B450 and X470 Differences

PCIe Lanes

A PCIe lane is the connection link to your motherboard that attaches expansion devices like SSDs, sound cards, GPUs, and HDDs. Each lane is made up of two-wire pairs – one for data transmission, and the second one for reception. Each slot for PCIe is divided into lanes within the ranges of 1, 4, 8, and 16.

The X470 chipsets take the trophy for the number of PCIe Gen 2.0 lanes available. An X470 motherboard has eight usable PCIe Gen 2 lanes, while the B450 has only 6 Usable PCIe Gen 2 lanes.

SATA III Functionality

This is one more field where X470 motherboards give the B450 a run for their money. B450 motherboards only have two SATA III connections available. On the other hand, with four SATA III connections, the X470 doubles that, which means they have better support for faster SATA systems.

An X470 can take up two extra 6 Gbps SATA connections unlike the B450 for individuals still using SATA SSDs, HDDs, or optical drives.

USB Ports

Both the X470 and B450 have three USB ports: USB 10Gbps, USB 5Gbps, and USB480 Mbps. The only difference in the USB ports comes in the USB 3.0 Superspeed 5Gbps. Where the X470 has six ports, the B450 only has two ports. An X470 wins in this scenario since it's advantageous for users with many external devices to connect to their PC.

B450 and X470 Similarities

Processor Support

Both the B450 and X470 support Ryzen 100, Ryzen 2000, and Ryzen 3000. However, neither will support future generation processors. Unlike the more recent X570, these two motherboards cannot support the new Ryzen 4000 processors.

Chipset PCIe Lane Support

PCIe determines the gadgets that can be paired or plugged into the motherboard, so PCIe configuration places limits on how your PC can be upgraded and customized. The links between each system are established, a traffic map is generated, and each connection's width is negotiated. Both B450 and X470 have the same chipset PCIe support called Zen 2, including BIOS updates for Zen 3.

SATA Express Access

A network bus interface serving SATA and PCI Express devices is Serial ATA Express and is often unofficially shortened to SATA. Both the B450 mobo and AMD X470 mobo come with the same SATA express access of 2x (or 4x SATA) (or x4 NVMe Gen 3. The SATA Express connector on the host side is backward compatible with the regular SATA data connector. It also provides two PCI Express lanes to the storage device as a pure PCI Express link.   

Advantages of B450

There are some things that make the B450 stand out:

1. Lower Price Point

A B450 motherboard is cheaper than the X470, at the expense of some of the high-end features included on the X470. It allows mainstream users to use or create excellent gaming computers at a lower price point. 

2. Store MI

For PC enthusiasts wishing to boost load times, boot times, file management, or device responsiveness, AMD Store MI technology is a powerful tool. You may have Windows installed on your hard drive, but you don't want to reinstall anything to get SSD-like performance, or maybe you wish the hard drive could get you into the match at SSD speeds with all your games: Store MI will help.

3. Precision Boost Overdrive

Based on the number of cores that need boosting, a new linear algorithm in Precision Boost 2.0 ensures boost clocks scale better. Compared to the older AMD chipsets, the Extended Frequency Range 2.0 makes the chipset much more aware of the temperature. The mixture of these dual technologies helps higher-end cooling systems to improve clocks much better. Besides, since this is an 'automatic overclock' of sorts, there is absolutely no end-user intervention needed! Unlike Intel's mid-range chipsets, AMD's inexpensive B450 chipset enables users to overclock as they please.

4. Flash BIOS Button

One of a PC user's most frustrating encounters is running into trouble upgrading your BIOS. However, all MSI B450 motherboards come fitted with a flash BIOS button, enabling you to flashback almost instantly to an older, working BIOS edition. What's more, even without an installed CPU, memory, or graphics card, it works!

Advantages of X470

The X470 does have some things over the B450 though. 

1. Multiple GPU Support 

The X470 supports more graphics cards than the B450 motherboard. This could be ideal for gamers that want to use more than one graphic card when playing games. The use of two or more graphic cards helps the PC to support faster animation in video games.

2. Flexible Air or Liquid Cooling Controls

In the X470, using Fan system Xpert 4 or the UEFI, you have complete control over fans, water pumps, and even all-in-one coolers. Auto-tuning mode seamlessly configures different aspects with one press, whether you're cooling with air or water. The Extreme Quiet system still exists and lowers the speeds of the fans to levels lower than the default optimum. This helps keep your system super quiet when you are carrying out light tasks.

3. Improved M.2 Heatsink

To reduce the temperatures of M.2 SSD, the X470-Pro has an ultra-efficient heatsink, which implies maximum storage performance and enhanced SSD durability. The best choice is an operating system or application drive, providing easy data access.

4. Outstanding Audio

X470 uses an enhanced audio codec developed through a collaboration with Realtek. It keeps your SSD cooler and prevents overheating. M.2 supports up to 32Gbps data-transfer speeds. The stereo line-out also has a 120dB signal-to-noise ratio and a 113dB SNR for the line-in, offering pristine audio efficiency. A new hindrance-sensing circuit adjusts the gain automatically to ensure your headphones have the optimum volume range.

What About X570?

The AMD X570 is an advanced, high-end motherboard; it has more functionality and a higher price than the B450 or X470. In case you want to use an extremely fast NVMe, X570 comes with PCIe Gen 4.0, and in most cases even comes with much better VRMs as X570 was made with the expectation that a 12-core processor could be mounted on the board. As a high-end chipset, X570 motherboards have superior aesthetics to entry-level sets.

Photo credit: vortez.net

More USB 3.1 GEN2 ports and better wireless options (WIFI 6 + Bluetooth 5.0) can also support Thunderbolt 3. X570 has integrated 10Gb & 5Gb Ethernet ports. Most X570 model motherboards have a chipset fan specifically for cooling the board. The B450 motherboards have very low power consumption hence do not have a chipset fan.

More SATA and USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports support X570. Exactly how many more depends on the particular model in question, but X570 allows more of those ports to connect more devices. As with almost all of these differences between B450, X470, and X570, this is not going to matter to most users but is worth noting for some use cases. X570 supports the most recent AMD APUs, though that's hardly going to matter to many out there as the chances of combining the high-end X570 platform with a budget APU are slim.

When and Why Would I Use a B450?

The B450 is a capable motherboard that provides good value for money. They have fewer features than X470 motherboards but still retain the most important functionality for common use-cases. For mainstream users looking to build an affordable gaming machine that can keep up with demanding titles, this is a big win. The B450 delivers high-level output at a nearly entry-level price. A B450 motherboard is ideal for gamers with a limited budget who wish to experience great gaming.

One usually agonizing experience for a PC user is running into trouble while updating your BIOS. To bail you out of this, MSI B450 motherboards have a flash BIOS button that allows you to flashback to a previous, functioning BIOS edition almost immediately. What is more, it works even without a CPU, memory, or graphics card installed!

The B450 is a pretty good motherboard, and a lot of people from the gaming world with a low budget would benefit much from its perfect features and low price.

When and Why Would I Use an X470?

The X470 motherboard is the successor to the X370 and offers unique features compared to the 'B' series. Its standout feature is support for multiple graphics cards. This could be perfect for players who want to play very demanding games on Ultra settings. When using the same PC with two or more graphics cards, video games support quicker animation. 

The X470 has versatile cooling controls, and with this motherboard, you have complete control over fans, water pumps, and even all-in-one coolers through Fan Xpert 4 or the Media-acclaimed UEFI. The Auto-tuning mode smartly configures all parameters with a single button, whether it's air or water cooling. The X470 has an ultra-efficient heatsink, which keeps your SSD cooler and minimizes overheating.

The X470 is a combination of powerful motherboard features, and the advanced features will come at a price. It's a good choice if you have a generous budget for a top-of-the-line PC.

Bottom Line

When it comes to buying a PC, the machine's performance output is your main concern; no one wants to spend big on a motherboard that can't keep up. 

The AMD B450 will deliver solid performance at a reasonable price, while the AMD X470 will provide more advanced features at a higher price. When it comes to choosing between these two motherboards, it all narrows down to performance requirements and how much you are willing to spend.

People Also Ask

Every day more and more people are choosing to build a PC rather than buy one fully assembled. This is because of the urge to have personalized performance and the overall value of money. Many people ask questions on B450 and X470 motherboards, and we've answered them below.

Are X470 Motherboards Worth It?

If you already have a B350 or the X370 motherboard, there is no need to upgrade to X470. The performance and compatibility gains aren't significant enough to be worth the upgrade cost. If you are building and want a top of line functionality and the ability to use multiple graphics cards, then you should go for the X470 motherboard.

Is B450 Future Proof?

Going to your construction base with one of our refreshed B450 boards gives you more versatility in how you distribute resources in your next Ryzen framework. A faster processor, a boosted graphics card, a larger, future-proof power supply, and a thorough, quieter CPU cooling might be your preference.

Why Are X470 Motherboards So Expensive?

When the 1st generation came out, OEMs were not sure that Ryzen would sell well. The price gap is only slightly over $40 for the X370 and X470 Asrock Taichi system boards. That's the price after a year, though the X370 Taichi was probably costlier. The extra cost is due to the more superior features of the X470 in comparison to earlier versions like B450.

Can B450 Run Ryzen 7 3700x?

The Ryzen 7 3700X is compatible with the B450 motherboard, but make sure you use dual-channel memory for maximum performance.

Do All B450 Motherboards Support Ryzen 3000?

Look for a badge that says "AMD Ryzen Desktop 3000 Ready" when purchasing a new motherboard. X570 motherboards should all fit if you have a Ryzen 3000-series processor. BIOS updates are likely to be needed for older X470, B450, X370, and B350 motherboards. A320 motherboards will not work at all with Ryzen 3000.

Austin

When the tech company I worked for restructured and I ended up jobless, I decided to put the wealth of knowledge and management skills to use somewhere new. I’d checked out a few buyer’s guides on the site in the past and reached out to the previous owner. A few months later, here we are. Now, I get to be behind the scenes, helping people find the best tech.