The recent release of the X570S chipset update (eliminating the need for a chipset fan) allowed motherboard partners to update their product stacks and release something new for AMD builders ahead of Zen 4’s release sometime next year. We’ve seen a number of announcements along these lines in recent weeks, including one from Gigabyte targeting high-end X570s models. But ASRock was the first company to get an X570S board with us for testing. And interestingly enough, the ASRock X570S Riptide leans more towards the affordable end of the spectrum, with a suggested retail price of $185.
In terms of features, the main difference with the X570S Riptide compared to ASRock’s X570 series is the lack of a chipset fan. The Riptide looks like a budget board, with most of the PCB exposed, outside of the chipset and M.2 heatsink, but it’s far from unappealing. Furthermore, the Riptide includes two PCIe 4.0 M.2 sockets, Killer-based 2.5 GbE, six SATA ports and VRMs that can support the standard and overclocked flagship AMD Ryzen 9 5950X processor.
Performance-wise, the Riptide held its own against all the other, more expensive (and louder), X570 motherboards we tested. The Riptide boosts our CPU to 5GHz plus, so you get exactly what you should if you use this stock board. When overclocked, the board’s VRMs were on the hot side, but still well within spec. Read on as we delve into the details and performance results of the X570S Riptide.
Specifications – ASRock X570S Riptide
|Voltage regulator||10-phase (50A MOSFETs for Vcore)|
|Video ports||HDMI (v2.1)|
|USB ports||(1) USB 3.2 Gen 2, Type-C (10 Gbps)|
|(3) USB 3.2 Gen 2, Type-A (10 Gbps)|
|(4) USB 3.2 Gen 1, Type-A (5Gbps)|
|(2) USB 2.0|
|Network connections||(1) 2.5 GbE|
|Audio connections||(5) Analog + SPDIF|
|PCIe x16||(1) v4.0 (x16)|
|(1) v4.0 (x4)|
|(1) v4.0 (x2)|
|PCIe x1||(3) v4.0 (x1)|
|CrossFire/SLIE||AMD Quad CrossfireX and CrossFireX (2-way)|
|DIMM slots||(4) DDR4 5000+(OC), 128GB capacity|
|M.2 slots||(1) PCIe 4.0 x4 / PCIe only (up to 80mm)|
|(1) PCIe 4.0 x4 / SATA + PCIe (up to 110mm)|
|SATA ports||(6) SATA3 6Gbps (RAID 0, 1, 5 and 10)|
|USB headers||(1) USB v3.2 Gen 2 (Type-C)|
|(2) USB v3.2 Gen 1|
|(2) USB v2.0|
|Fan/Pump Heads||(7) 4-pin (2A/24W each)|
|RGB headers||(2) aRGB (3-pin)|
|(2) RGB (4 pin)|
|Diagnostic panel||Post Status Checker (4 LEDs, CPU/RAM/VGA/Boot)|
|Internal Button/Switch||CMOS reset|
|Ethernet controller(s)||Killer E3100G (2.5GbE)|
|Wi-Fi / Bluetooth|
|HD audio codec||Realtek ALC897|
The bundled accessory stack that comes in the box with the X570 Riptide is quite thin on this budget-friendly board, but should still contain most of what you need to get started. A great added value to this stack is the graphics card holder. With the best graphics cards seemingly increasing in size by generation, this unique (patent pending) motherboard-mounted device should be useful for those with oversized GPUs. Below is a full list of the included accessories from the ASRock website.
- (2) SATA cables
- Graphics Card Holder
- (3) screws for M.2 sockets
- Spacer for M.2 connection
- Manual/User Manual
- IO board
After removing the motherboard from its packaging, we are greeted by a semi-gloss black PCB along with gray accent lines swirling around the board – perhaps like a Riptide?. There is a large heatsink covering the left VRM bank, with the ASRock name and Phantom Gaming branding at the top. Only one of the two M.2 sockets has a heatsink, and in another effort to save money, the audio and PCIe areas aren’t covered in a veil like most more expensive boards are today.
The only integrated RGB elements hide under the chipset heatsink and illuminate the Phantom Gaming symbol on the fanless heatsink. If you want more, there are ARGB and RGB headers for expansion. In general, the board should look good in most builds. That said, it probably won’t be the centerpiece as some premium motherboards often are, but it certainly won’t detract from the aesthetic.
Starting with the top half, let’s take a look at the “XXL” heatsink for the left VRM bank and the fully visible top of the VRM bank. The power supply to the CPU is a required 8-pin EPS connector and an optional 4-pin connector. While the temperatures in our open-air test system were good, I’d still like to see both VRM banks with heatsinks.
Just below is the first of several (seven to be exact) 4-pin fan headers. Different headers (CPU_FAN2/WP, CHA_FAN1/2/3/4/5/WP) automatically detect three (DC) or four-pin (PWM) configurations. The CPU fan connector supports up to 1A/12W, while the CPU/water pump header and chassis/water pump connectors support up to 2A/24W. This should be enough power for most fans and pumps.
To the right of the socket area are four unpowered DRAM slots. The Riptide supports 128 GB RAM, with speeds up to DDR4 5000+(OC). As usual, your mileage will vary there, as achieving those speeds requires a processor with a great integrated memory controller (IMC) and a suitable memory kit to do it. We ran our DDR4 3600 kit at 1:1 with ease in both 2x8GB and 4x8GB configurations. Way beyond that and you’re deviating from the performance-cost ratio.
Above the DRAM slots are two more fan headers and the first 3-pin ARGB and 4-pin RGB headers. Between these two functions is the Post Status Checker (PSC). PSC diagnoses the computer during the POST process and emits a red light to indicate if the CPU, memory, VGA or storage are not working. The lights disappear when the above parts function normally. Since the board does not come with a 2 character POST code LED, this is a valuable feature when troubleshooting POST.
On the right side of the board is a 24-pin ATX connector to power the board/slots/sockets. Below are two USB connectors, a single USB 3.2 Gen2 (10 Gbps) Type-C front panel and the 17-pin USB 3.1 Gen1 connector on the front panel. Last but not least, here’s another fan header.
ASRock focuses on power delivery and uses a 10-phase setup for Vcore. Power is sent through a UPI uP9505 (X+Y=6) controller and then to two uP1911R PWM extenders. These extenders operate in a 4x mode and quadruple the single sent to the MOSFETs. Vishay Sic654 50A MOSFETs make up the VRM along with 60A chokes. This configuration supplies a total of 500A to the CPU. While certainly not the most robust we’ve seen, what’s here can handle our Ryzen 5950X CPU stock and be overclocked to 4.4GHz with all CPU cores and threads without a hitch. It ran hot, but well within spec.
Moving to the bottom half of the board, we’ll start with audio on the left. Here we see a fully exposed audio section and the Realtek ALC897 codec. In addition, we spy four Apaq-branded audio capacitors and the dividing line between this section and the rest of the board. While the Riptide is a budget board and the audio solution is acceptable to most users, I’d like to see a more expensive codec here.
Just above it is the Key-E M.2 connection for a Wi-Fi card (not included). Usually we see this confirmed by the rear IO area, but not with this design. You will have to weave the wires to the rear IO to where the antenna connectors are located, which looks a bit amateurish. Otherwise it’s an easy installation if needed. You can get the latest and greatest Intel AX210 Wi-Fi 6E card for under $40 (or others that cost even less).
Moving to the center of the board, we find three full-length PCIe slots, three x1 slots, and two M.2 sockets. Starting with PCIe, the top slot is connected to the CPU and runs up to PCIe 4.0 x16. The middle and bottom slots are connected to the chipset and run at PCIe 4.0 x4 and PCIe 4.0 x2 speeds. This configuration supports AMD Quad-GPU Crossfire and 2-Way Crossfire. In addition, the three x1 slots get their lanes from the chipset, each with PCIe 4.0 x1 speeds. In general, there are many slots available for all the cards you may want to add.
On the M.2 front, the Riptide includes two total sockets. The top socket is connected through the CPU and provides PCIe 4.0 x4 (64 Gbps) bandwidth and fits up to 80mm modules. The bottom socket, M2_2 is connected via the chipset and offers the same PCIe 4.0 x4 speeds, SATA module support and fits modules of the same size (up to 80mm). Note that if a PCIe M.2 device occupies M2_2, SATA ports 5/6 will be disabled. If you are using a Thunderbolt AIC, SATA type M.2 is disabled. The Riptide supports RAID0 and RAID 1 modes on NVMe storage devices. I’d like to see three M.2 storage options, but understand that this is a budget board and at that level most people don’t fill all the slots with the more expensive PCIe/NVMe-based M.2 devices.
Continuing right, we walk over the chipset heatsink and the only integrated RGB LED lighting. It’s quite understated, so if you’re after a light show you’ll need to add your own via the four ARGB and RGB headers (two each) on the board. Along the right edge are six SATA ports that support RAID0, 1, 5, and 10, with a Clear CMOS button just below.
On the bottom are several headers, including USB ports and RGB. Here’s the full list, from left to right:
- Front panel audio
- 3-pin aRGB and 4-pin RGB headers
- Fan head
- (2) USB 2.0 headers
- Fan head
- Front Panel Header
- USB 3.2 Gen1 header
When you get to the back IO, one of the first things you notice is that the Riptide doesn’t come with a pre-installed IO board. This isn’t a problem, of course, but many of the mid-range motherboards (above) have plates installed already. From left to right, we see the small black BIOS Flashback button, framed for a Wi-Fi antenna, an HDMI 2.1 port (for use with compatible AMD APUs only), and an older PS/2 port. Above you can see two USB 2.0 ports, followed by two USB 3.2 Gen1 ports and two USB 3.2 Gen2 ports (one Type-A, one Type-C). The next stack contains two more USB 3.1 Gen1 ports and the Killer E3100G 2.5 GbE port. Last but not least is a 5 plug plus SPDIF port.
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