ASRock B550M Steel Legend motherboard arrived in a retail package which well described as all ASRock motherboards. ASRock decided to use silver and other metallic colors for this product what suppose to remind about the robust design. I feel like Steel Legend motherboards are designed for demanding users who still wish to save some money and don’t want to pay for additional features that they won’t use.
Inside the box, we will find a well-protected motherboard, user’s manual, drivers and software DVD, SATA data cables, cable strips, and M.2 screws. All new motherboards also include a set of stickers and labels which we can use on our PC or any other gaming hardware. It’s quite cheap while it gives that extra touch as we can find in the top and most expensive products.
As in all new higher series motherboards, the I/O shield is pre-installed. It makes installation easier and has no disadvantages.
The B550M Steel Legend looks quite typical for a micro ATX form factor, so it should fit every ATX and micro ATX PC case. The motherboard has everything we may need to build a gaming computer. There are two M.2 PCIe x4 sockets, two PCIe x16 slots from which one is PCIe 4.0, and we can install up to 128GB of RAM what would be way too much for most users but still a good option for the future.
The motherboard is equipped with large VRM, chipset, and M.2 heatsinks. Even though B550 motherboards are not heating up so much and don’t require additional fans as the X570, then it’s still good to see large heatsinks, which are helping to keep everything cooler. This motherboard is designed for overclocking and supports all available Ryzen processors, including a 16-core, 3950X. To keep it fully stable, it requires a robust power section and additional cooling, which ASRock delivered. The B550M Steel Legend is based on a 10-phase power design that is hiding under these large heatsinks. This is more than enough, and more than most competitive micro ATX motherboards have to offer.
I won’t hide that I’m not a fan of an additional M.2 socket for the WiFi module as the WiFi 6/AX module itself is quite cheap and can find it for around $30 in the Amazon store so that built-in would be much less expensive. It works both ways. On the one hand, we can choose what WiFi module we wish to install, but we have to buy it on our own. On the other hand, for many users, it can be a problem as purchasing the module requires some knowledge and hardware availability. At the same time, these products usually have the wrong description, so it’s easy to make a mistake. There is also a group of users who don’t need a wireless connection and don’t want to pay additionally for that, so ASRock gives them a choice.
The B550M Steel Legend supports up to 128GB RAM in four 32GB memory modules. On the market, we can already find fast memory kits at such high capacity, and some were previously reviewed on FunkyKit. Most users won’t need more than 16GB for gaming, while this lower capacity gives us a chance to set higher memory frequency or tighter timings so additional performance. The motherboard officially supports memory up to DDR4-4733, and actually, it was working with two 8GB memory modules, overclocked at DDR4-4800 but also four 32GB memory modules overclocked at DDR4-4000. It’s more than we can ask for from the B550 motherboard.
On the PCB, we will find both RGB and ARGB connectors, which we can synchronize with already built-in chipset and VRM area lighting. Below you can see some photos of the lighting with Enermax AIO cooler. Everything works excellent due to well-designed ASRock Polychrome Sync software.
One more great feature is ASRock’s BIOS/UEFI, which I will describe on the next page of this review.