Explosive Budget Motherboard for gaming and office use - MSI B450M Mortar

We pulled a Mortar out of the arsenal of MSI and were impressed with what we found.

B450 supports AMD 5000 series.

The MSI B450M Mortar is a powerful budget motherboard for AMD's AM4 socket reaching up to Ryzen 9 with some impressive features. This is a go-to motherboard for an AMD fan. One awesome thing AMD did was to allow the new AMD Zen 3, AKA Ryzen 5000 Series, to work on this motherboard by doing a BIOS update. I believe MSI will soon release this BIOS update. This will save some of you from spending even more on a new motherboard upgrade if they want to buy yourself an AMD 5000 CPU. Please note that some other motherboard brands does not allow you to go back to your previous BIOS, you will be stuck with the new BIOS and you won't be able to use the previous generation processors. Hopefully MSI will see this issue and not follow suit.

I know your thinking, but what about the B550 board. It does have a few perks; LAN is 2,5G, Memory can reach up to 4400 when overclocked, and some PCIe Gen4 bragging rights. If you have money for the B550, go for it, but the B450 is still more than enough and is cheaper.

Some features for the MSI B450 Mortar include BIOS Flashback+, Audio Boost, X-Boot, EZ Debug LED, 2-Way Crossfire, Mystic Light, 4 memory slots, PCI-E Steel Armor, sleek aesthetics, etc. The grey/black colors and smooth heat spreaders fit in well with any build. 

All the RGB lovers will love the Mystic Light function to customize their ambient feel and mood. Mystic Light can function with a variety of peripherals like keyboards, headsets, gaming chairs, and case fans. Mystic Light Sync will allow you to sync all your lighting settings across your peripherals.

The board conforms to the mATX format, unique for the minimalist. The mat black PCB with modern tech design prints will look great in any PC chassis with black trimmings. There are nine holes for mounting in the case. Unfortunately, there are no points for measuring voltage, as well as an indicator of POST codes. But MSI made a plan to give us the EZ Debug LED to troubleshoot your PCB errors. Remember, this Motherboard is intended for one-time PC assembly, and not for exhausting overclocking experiments.

It is always good to know that the B450M can handle fast memory of up to DDR4-3466. To bump up your memory, MSI allowed you to slide in the four slots a total of 128Gb.

If you've tasted M.2 and SSD, you will never go back to a normal hard drive. This motherboard includes the Turbo M.2 which will deliver PCI Gen3 x4 performance and excel the speed to 32 Gb/s. I know not many people use RAID so often, but if you are one of those guys who want to combine your drives then you will be happy to hear that SUPER RAID is here. You can even combine different drive types in a few easy steps. 

MSI also include some awesome software to tweak your gaming performance. You can look out for the Command Center, RAMdisk, Gaming App, Live Update 6, and the all so famous MSI Afterburner.

Ports

Good old PS/2 Combo Port.
Flash BIOS Button.
Display Port and HDMI Port.
USB 3.1 Gen1 with transfer speeds up to 5Gb/s and USB 3.1 Gen2 (Type A+C).
Golden audio jacks with S/PDIF. 
Arsenal Sticker Area. Free for customization with personal style.
Extended Heatsinks Design. Leading heatsink design, extended for maximum cooling and performance.
Heavy plated gaming heatsinks. Military styles designed for maximum cooling.
DDR4 Boost. Optimized traces and isolated memory circuitry.
Turbo M.2. Delivering speeds up to 32 Gb/s using Gen3 x4..
PCI-E Steel Armor. Protecting VGA cards against bending and EMI
Audio Boost. Optimized gaming audio using the best components.

We did a PC build with the B450 Mortar we received from MSI into a Raidmax Galaxy ARGB LED Chassis. Thank you once again. Have a look.

Pros and cons of the motherboard

Let’s start with the pros:

  • Popular AM4 Socket;
  • 4 RAM slots;
  • Eight-pin for processor power;
  • Good Audio Boot chip;
  • connector for RGB tape to decorate the system;
  • GPU and EZ indicators for error detection.
  • A great number of USB ports
  • PCI-E Reinforcement
  • 2 x M.2 slots

Cons :

  • Lack of a heat sink on the VRM SoC.
  • Lack of USB Feedback protection.
  • No WiFi module
  • No M.2 heat sinks

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