The MSI B350 Tomahawk motherboard is an entry level ATX motherboard suitable for a single video card machine. This motherboard is very budget friendly with a lot of powerful features. The motherboard launched at around $95.
- Supports AMD RYZEN Series Processors and 7th Gen A-series/Athlon processors for Socket AM4
- AMD B350 PCH
- Full ATX form factor
- 1 x PCIe 3.0 x16 slot (PCI_E2)
- 1 x PCIe 2.0 x16 slot (PCI_E4, supports x4 mode)
- 2 x PCIe 2.0 x1 slots
- 2 x PCI slots
- 4x DDR4 maximum 64GB
- M.2 SSD slot
- 4x SATA III 600 MB/s
- Multi GPU with Steel Armor
- Virtual Reality Ready
- Audio Boost
- WHQL certified for Windows 10
NB: The motherboard supports x 16 speed with RYZEN Series Processors – Supports x 8 speed with 7th Gen A-series/ Athlon™ processors
MSI motherboards are crammed with features to fuel your gaming rig’s memory with more speed, higher overclockability and increased stability. Optimized traces and a fully isolated memory circuitry ensures perfect stability and performance, so you never have to worry about your system crashing during games.
MSI PCI Express Steel Armor slots are armed with more solder points on the motherboard for a stronger hold, preventing any damage due to heavy-weight graphics cards. Steel Armor also protects PCI Express signals against electromagnetic interference for a pure gaming experience and even higher overclocking.
The black color is probably the biggest change from the older brown color seen on the older AM3 board like the MSI 970A-G43.
The Realtek ALC892 audio codec and a Realtek 8111H network controller are used to keep costs down. Onboard video includes a HDMI 1.4 port, a DVI-D port and VGA. DisplayPort is not available unless a discrete video card is used. This board is designed mostly for 1920×1080 as the HDMI 1.4 cannot cope with 3820×2160 at anything more than 24 Hz.
There are 3 USB 3.0 headers so it is possible to have 4 front panel USB 3.0 ports. The AMD B350 supports USB 3.1 but MSI has not provided such support. There are also some USB 2.0 headers for a bracket or front panel use.
The AMD R5 2400G with the integrated Vega graphics would be right at home on the MSI B350 Tomahawk. The R5 2400G has enough basic performance to use a discrete video card if desired. Of course the more powerful R7 1700 would work fine on this motherboard as well.
We suggest using Arctic MX-4 for a CPU instead of the OEM applied thermal pad. MX-4 outperforms the OEM pads by a wide margin.
DDR4 memory is widely available in 4GB DIMMs and this motherboard has 4 slots so its affordable to purchase 4 sticks to have 16GB total. 16GB could also be achieved with a pair of 8GB DDR4 DIMMs. 8GB DDR4 sticks are still very expensive.
The MSI B350 Tomahawk fits easily into any standard ATX chassis. The board needs an EPS12V cable but otherwise it is undemanding. We suggest a 650W PSU with at least 35A of 12V power to cope with the dedicated video card demands which are the most power hungry component in a gaming box.
Comparing the performance of this motherboard with X370 motherboards. MSI did a good job of delivering a well made product and there is no real material problems with this more affordable motherboard. In Short, the B350 can deliver excellent gaming with a strong video card installed.