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NZXT N7 B550 Review and Testing.


Contents:-

  1. INTRODUCTION.
  2. SCOPE OF DELIVERY.
  3. BOX CONTENTS.
  4. TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS.
  5. CLOSER LOOK .
  6. TAKING THE BOARD APART.
  7. CLOSER LOOK AT THE VRM SECTION.
  8. HARDWARE COMPATIBILITY ISSUES.
  9. UEFI and UTILITY.
  10. TESTING AND BENCHMARKS.
  11. CLOSING THOUGHTS AND OPINIONS.

INTRODUCTION.

Back in July of 2019, AMD came up with their latest flagship, X series chipset, the X570.  It was a huge step in the right direction, with the inclusion of PCIe GEN 4.0 and 8 USB 3.1 Gen2. But all these feature upgrades meant we saw a jump in the operating TDP of the chipset from a very optimized 4.8w in the X470 platform to 11w on the X570 which was higher than the 6.8w on the X370 platform. This bump in the TDP warranted the use of some active cooling solutions on the chipset. The introduction of the X570 chipset was quite polarizing, as it was a pretty expensive platform, and the next best option was the previous generation B450. To solve this dilemma AMD had to come up with a good middle ground, thus came the B550 platform, the “budget” option. The B550 platform had a few features stripped off of the X570 platform like Gen 4 general-purpose lanes as well as the Gen4 CPU chipset uplink. 

Recently, NZXT launched their first-ever AMD-based motherboard, which was a step away from their usual Z series line-ups based on the Z series chipsets from Intel. I was quite surprised to see NZXT come up with a budget chipset board, I was half expecting them to come out with an N7 based on the flagship X570 chipset. Today we will have a closer look at this not-so “budget-oriented” B550 board here at Hardware Corpus. Let us run it through its paces and check out how successful NZXT has been in its uncommon venture.


TL;DR.

While working with this board, one thing was clear to us. That is, NZXT targeted aesthetics to be the biggest selling point for the N7. This has to be one of the prettiest-looking boards we have ever seen. White-colored boards are constantly becoming a thing of the past with each iteration and in such a time NZXT has brought out something, which will cater to quite a huge deficit in the market. That being said I have to point out that the board performs wonderfully if paired with the right components, as visible from the benchmarks. As far as suggestions for upcoming versions of the N7, I would like to suggest a few things,

  • Implementation of M.2 Cooling mechanism
  • Some sort of adjustments in the shroud and/or the internal Type-C header to make this board compatible with a wider gamut of cases.

Overall we are quite impressed with what NZXT has managed to achieve with their first Team Red product. though a bit on the pricey side for a B550 board, we can certainly recommend this board to anybody who is going for the dreamy white look in their next build.


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