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The Ryzen 5950X is the Zen 3 flagship CPU from AMD. It costs a pretty penny, but it also gives a lot. Sixteen cores with multi-threading, a single-core boost clock of 4.9GHz (that can go even higher), massive IPC improvement over the previous generation of Ryzen CPUs, all that at 105W TDP. TDP this low allows the Zen 3 flagship to run on a bunch of different motherboards.
Excellent Zen 3 power optimization allows the 5950X to use about 10 percent less power at stock clocks than its predecessor, the 3950X. That said, the CPU still demands a motherboard with a quality VRM setup. This is why our list of the best motherboards for Ryzen 9 5950X mostly includes higher-end models. While you will definitely find a couple of budget choices, the list is mostly populated by mid-range and high-end boards coming with a bunch of ports, high-quality audio, multiple connectivity options, and great overclocking features.
Before you scroll down, do visit our best air cooler for Ryzen CPUs article. The list includes a couple of excellent cooling options for the 5950X. Next, if you want to learn why Ryzen CPUs love fast memory, take a look at our RAM vs CPU guide. Finally, a high-end CPU like the 5950X demands a high-end GPU. If you plan on using the CPU for gaming, hop on to the best RTX 3080 graphics cards guide.
MSI B550-A Pro: Best value B550 motherboard for ryzen 9 5950X
The B550 chipset comes with a few limitations when compared to the X570. You’re limited by 20 PCIe 4.0 lanes provided by the CPU, which translates into only one PCIe 4.0×4 M.2 slot. Further, most B550 boards come with fewer USB ports than an average mid-range X570 board. On the flip side, most mid-range and high-end B550 boards have faster LAN ports (2.5Gb vs. 1Gb found on most X570 boards).
If you’re okay with a budget board that doesn’t come with a ton of extra features, the best value motherboard for the 59590X is the MSI B550-A Pro. The board will run cool if you keep the CPU at stock clocks, and its rear I/O comes with a surprising number of ports. The only downside is that the audio is based on barebones hardware that’s way below what high-end models come with.
The board’s VRM is good enough for the 3950X, so we don’t have a doubt the 5950X will run just fine, as long as you don’t overclock it. The board supports up to 4400 MT/s DDR4 memory comes with six SATA III ports and two M.2 slots. You have two PCIe x16 slots here (x16, x4) and two PCIe x1 slots.
When it comes to connectivity, you’re limited to a single 1Gb LAN port. As we’ve said, the audio section is basic, powered by the Realtek ALC892 audio codec. Finally, the rear I/O is excellent for a budget motherboard. It includes two USB 3.2 gen2 ports (one USB-C), two USB 3.2 gen1 ports, four USB 2.0 ports, and even a BIOS flash button. You also get debug LEDs, which is a very nice thing to have on a budget board like this.
ASUS ROG Strix B550-F Gaming: Best mid-range B550 motherboard for ryzen 9 5950X
Now, the B550-A Pro comes with a range of limitations, the biggest ones being the lack of a built-in Wi-Fi chip and poor audio quality. Our pick for the best mid-range B550 motherboard for Ryzen 5 5950X, the ASUS ROG Strix B550-F Gaming, comes with an improved audio section, Wi-Fi support, and more.
The base specs are pretty similar to the B550-A Pro. The B550-F Gaming has three PCIe x1 slots instead of two. But when it comes to connectivity, you have a 2.5Gb LAN instead of 1Gb along with a Wi-Fi 6 chip that also includes a Bluetooth 5.1 connection. Pretty much all that’s needed for a great majority of users.
The S1220A audio codec tweaked by ASUS is responsible for excellent audio quality. On the back I/O, you have four USB 3.2 gen1 ports instead of two on the B550-A Pro, along with the BIOS flash button. The B550-F Gaming also includes debugging LEDs.
This board’s also quite attractive, with an all-black design complemented by a touch of red and an RGB ROG logo. If you don’t plan on overclocking and don’t need more than one PCIe M.2 slot, the B550-F Gaming is an excellent board for the 5950X.
MSI MAG X570 Tomahawk: Best budget X570 motherboard for Ryzen 9 5950X
The best budget X570 motherboards could run the 5950X without issues. The problem is that the budget X570 market includes a number of boards with poorly done VRM sections. Our pick for the best value X570 motherboard for 5950X is the MSI MAG X570 Tomahawk. Personally, we wouldn’t go for anything cheaper, at least on the X570 market.
The X570 Tomahawk has the best VRM in the class, it has Wi-Fi 6 and a BIOS flash button on the rear I/O, and it looks rather attractive. Other specs include support for DDR4 4600 MT/s memory, six SATA III ports, and two M.2 slots. The X570 Tomahawk includes two PCIe x16 slots (x16, x4), and two PCIe x1 slots. Excellent expansion coverage.
The audio quality is the real issue with this board since it comes with the Realtek ALC1200 codec, which is not not as good as we would expect at this price point. The rear I/O is pretty solid. Aside from the aforementioned BIOS flash button, the board also hosts a 2.5Gb LAN port, four USB 3.2 gen2 ports (one of them is USB-C), two USB 3.2 gen1 ports, and two USB 2.0 ports. And on the PCB, you can find a selection of debug LEDs.
MSI MAG X570 Unify: Best mid-range X570 motherboard for Ryzen 9 5950X
4. MSI MAG X570 Unify: Best mid-range X570 motherboard for Ryzen 9 5950X
As for our pick for the best mid-range X570 board for the Ryzen 9 5950X, our vote goes to the MSI X570 Unify. This board is pricier than the X570 Tomahawk, but it comes with a slew of upgrades. The VRM is pretty similar to the one featured on the Tomahawk. Next, on the Unify, you get three M.2 slots instead of two. A great improvement even though the board has only four SATA III ports. You also have three PCIe x16 slots instead of two.
The X570 Unify is a board made for overclocking and the cheapest X570 board that can net you amazing OC results. It also includes lots of OC-friendly features. You have debug LEDs, POST code, and power and reset buttons mounted on the PCB. The rear I/O hosts Clear CMOS and BIOS flash buttons along with six USB 3.2 gen2 (one is USB-C) and two USB 2.0 ports.
The Unifi is also great when it comes to connectivity. It packs a 2.5Gb LAN, Wi-Fi 6, and Bluetooth 5. The audio quality, powered by the Realtek ALC1220 codec is solid, but this isn’t the board for audio purists. Overall, the Unify is a great pick for the 5950X. You have fast ethernet and Wi-Fi, lots of fast PCIe 4.0 M.2 slots, pretty solid rear I/O, and a ton of overclocking features.
ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII Dark Hero: Best high-end X570 motherboard for Ryzen 9 5950X
When it comes to the high-end X570 boards, the best high-end X570 board for the 5950X you can get right now is the Crosshair VIII Dark Hero from ASUS. It’s an overclocking beast and the only board at the moment that allows new Ryzen CPUs to switch between the all-core OC and high single-thread performance thanks to a feature called dynamic OC switcher.
Since the main focus of this board is to overclock the hell out of your CPU, the Dark Hero comes with the best VRM in the class and every OC-friendly feature you can think of. That said, this board is also the best choice for those who need a ton of ports and other features for their 5950X build.
You have support for DDR4 4800 MT/s, eight SATA III ports, and three M.2 slots. There are also three PCIe x16 slots (x16, x8, x4) as well as a single PCIe x1 slot, rarely seen on a high-end motherboard. Connectivity options are excellent and include dual gigabit (1Gb+2.5Gb) LAN, Wi-Fi 6, and Bluetooth 5.1.
The audio section provides superb audio quality thanks to the heavily tweaked ASUS audio codec assisted by ESS ES9023P DAC. The rear I/O is probably the best we’ve seen on an X570 board. Here you have eight USB 3.2 gen2 ports and four USB 3.2 gen1 ports, more than most people will ever need.
Now, the only negative we can say about the Dark Hero is the lack of a 10Gb LAN connection. Aside from the lack of a 10Gb LAN port, the ASUS ROG Crosshair VIII Dark Hero is an impressive motherboard that packs every extra feature you could think of.
MSI B550M Mortar: Best mATX motherboard for Ryzen 9 5950X
The X570 mATX market is nonexistent if you plan on getting the Ryzen 9 5950X since the ASRock X570M Pro4 has too poor of a VRM set up to run the CPU without starting to thermal throttle. You have a couple of solid B550 choices. The thing is, if you plan on getting a flagship CPU, it’s probably better to get a full-sized ATX or an E-ATX board and get more features and more ports.
if you, however, want an mATX motherboard, check out the MSI B550M Mortar. Looking solely at VRM, the MSI B550M Mortar is the best mATX motherboard for the Ryzen 9 5950X. It could probably handle an overclocked 5950X. For the price, this is an excellent mATX board. You have support for DDR4 4400, six SATA III ports, and two M.2 slots. The board has two PCIe x16 slots (x16, x4) and two PCIe x1 slots.
The audio section is okay but not great, powered by the Realtek ALC1200 codec. Connection options are great. You have 2.5Gb LAN, and there’s also a Wi-Fi version of the board that comes with Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1. The rear I/O hosts two USB 3.2 gen2 ports (one is USB-C), two USB 3.2 ge1 ports, two USB 2.0 ports as well as the BIOS flash button. The board also includes debug LEDs on the PCB.
MSI MPG B550I Gaming Edge WiFi: Best mini-ITX motherboard for Ryzen 9 5950X
Last but not least, we have the best Mini-ITX board for the Ryzen 9 5950X. While basically every B550 mini-ITX board aside from the ASRock B550-ITX/ac can run the 5950X without issues (they’re fine when paired with the 3950X), the Gigabyte B550I Aorus Pro doesn’t have the front panel USB-C header, while the ASUS ROG Strix B550-I runs the 5950X at frequencies lower than stock. The issue with the ROG Strix B550-I can most likely be resolved with a BIOS update, but still, this is a serious problem.
This is why our vote goes to the MSI B550I Gaming Edge WiFi. It packs a front USB-C header, and it looks like it doesn’t have issues with the 5950X. It also includes pretty solid specs – Support for up to DDR4 4600 MT/s, four SATA III, and two M/2 slots. A single PCIe x16 slot is the norm here. When it comes to audio, the solid Realtek ALC1200 codec is at the helm.
Connection options include a 2.5Gb LAN along with Wi-Fi 5 and Bluetooth 5.1. Finally, the rear I/O features two USB 3.2 gen2 ports (one of those is USB-C), two USB 3.2 gen1 ports, two USB 2.0 ports, and a BIOS flash button. Overall, this is an excellent board to build around, and a great base for a potential SFF build based around the 5950X. If you need an ITX case to complete that SFF build, check out our guide for the best Mini-ITX case.
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