The MSi X570 Unify motherboard is a premium unit for the latest Ryzen 3000 CPUs, offering every feature under the sun - except for RGB. A blacked-out board for an edgy aesthetic, to be sure, but does its menacing presence equal its performance? Let’s find out.
CPU (MAX SUPPORT): RYZEN 9
CHIPSET: AMD® X570 Chipset
DDR4 MEMORY: 1866/ 2133/ 2400/ 2667/ 2800/2933 /3000 /3066 /3200 /3466 /3600 /3733 /3866 /4000 /4133 /4266 /4400 /4533 /4600 /4733 /4800 /5000+ Mhz by JEDEC and A-XMP OC MODE
MEMORY CHANNEL: Dual
DIMM SLOTS: 4
MAX MEMORY (GB): 128GB
PCI-E X16: 3
PCI-E X1: 2
M.2 SLOT: 3
TPM (HEADER): 1
LAN: 1x Realtek® RTL8125 2.5 Gbps LAN controller
USB 3.2 PORTS (FRONT): 1(Gen2, Type C), 4(Gen1, Type A)
USB 3.2 PORTS (REAR): 1(Gen2, Type C), 3(Gen2, Type A), 2(Gen1, Type A)
USB 2.0 PORTS (FRONT): 4
USB 2.0 PORTS (REAR): 2
AUDIO PORTS (REAR): 5+ Optical S/PDIF (Realtek® ALC1220 Codec)
FORM FACTOR: ATX
OPERATING SYSTEM: Support for Windows® 10 64-bit
Design And Aesthetics:
The MSi X570 Unify seems fairly bland out of the box, with the only noticeable difference being the increased heat sink sizes, the pre-installed IO shield, and the built-in fan near the bottom. Moving around the board, the MSi X570 Unify features 4 x DIMM slots, 3 x M.2 slots, LED troubleshooting display, a power button, and a reset button. The pre-installed IO shield makes installation much easier - and safer - and is also where the Clear CMOS and BIOS switches are located.
The MSi X570 Unify features a sturdy and rugged build construction, with a server-grade PCB equipped with PCIe 4.0, outfitted with aluminium heatsinks across the board. The SATA plugs have been placed directly adjacent to the USB3.0 connection, and - thankfully - all connections face to the left of the board, making cable management easier, and cleaner. Each M.2 slot comes equipped with M.2 Shield Frozr, ensuring maximum performance by limiting thermal issues.
Most importantly, however, is the dedicated chipset heatsink, which increases performance thanks to it enhances cooling capability. Typically, we would see RGB lighting splattered all over a board such as this, but it seems as though MSi has considered performance over looks in this minimalist motherboard, as there is no RGB lighting in the MSi X570 Unify.
One of the biggest improvements with the new line of X570 motherboards, and the Unify in particular, is the increased bandwidth between NVMe drives, as well as the Ryzen 3000 CPUs. Using AIDA64, we used the “Queens Problem” to benchmark how the motherboard and CPU interact. The “Queens Problem” is a simple integer benchmark that scores the components tested for branch predictions, using a 10x10 chessboard. The MSi X570 Unify scored an impressive mark using this test, coming in at just over 100 000 points.
A standard AIDA64 test was also performed, where the system was run under 100% load for 30 minutes - at out-of-the-box settings - testing the temperature values. Impressively, the system never ran over 51℃, and even at a slight overclock - 4.5Ghz on a Ryzen 2700 - the system didn’t reach 60℃.
Memory cache and bandwidth tests were performed using SANDRA from SiSoftware, and the results were only slightly lower than the MSi MEG X570 ACE which we tested before. However, the differences were so negligible that you probably wouldn’t see the differences between the two in real-world applications.
Boring integer tests and benchmarks aside, one of the biggest - and noticeable - benefits of the MSi X570 Unify included the number of storage devices I could have connected at the same time. On top of this, no drive - which included four SSDs and two NVMe drives - suffered from bandwidth limitations thanks to the new PCIe Gen 4 solution. In a simple File Transfer test, I was able to transfer a 30GB file off a Seagate FireCuda 2TB NVMe drive to a Seagate BarraCuda 1TB SSD, at roughly 1GB/s.
File editing using Adobe programmes was only limited to my RAM capacity - which is still no small feat at 16GB - but transfer speeds and rendering times were significantly improved by the enhanced PCIe Gen 4 solution. Unfortunately, gaming performance was not really impacted, for better or worse, as no gaming application currently comes close to the maximum transfer speeds of PCIe Gen 3, so the upgrade to Gen 4 had no real impact.
Overall, the MSi X570 Unify is an absolutely phenomenal motherboard, packed with features way ahead of its time, showing that MSi wanted to maximise the bandwidth capacity of Ryzen 3000 CPUs. My only issue with the X570 Unify is that the lack of RGB - which I am sure many will praise - does prevent you from customising it so you are limited to a minimalist/blacked out build but that’s all down to personal preference. With results only slightly lower than the MEG X570 ACE, the Unify is a worthwhile addition to the MSi X570 lineup, and one of the better Ryzen 3000 motherboards you can buy.
Loves games with deep character development and a rich storyline. Also, shooty-shooties. Loathes microtransactions. Likes to use sarcasm and metaphors.
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