I am in the process of choosing the parts for my first build. I chose the AMD Ryzen 5 1600 and decided that b530 motherboard would be the best option for me.

I am not going overboard for this build. This is primarily for casual gaming with either Gtx 1050 Ti or Gtx 1060 3GB, depending upon how much money I have left after finalizing the other parts. And, I will also be watching movies and listening to music a lot.

Though not high-end, my 2.1 Phillips speakers are pretty decent (mine is a small-medium sized room). And I prefer high quality media files, especially my music.

So, this brings us to the question - which b350 motherboard has good on-board sound? I am being extra careful because, I do not want to add a sound card.

Also, I am making sure that the parts I choose are future-proof to some extend. So far, I have read good comments about Asrock AB350 Pro 4 and a couple of Msi motherboards.

I am new to all of this and therefore, I have been spending a lot of time in reading and researching about every single part. I am not complaining, I actually love doing this. I just want this build to be really good, so please share your thoughts and opinions. Thank you.

  • I am choosing the Asrock AB350 ATX motherboard. After spending significant amount of time, I learned that without a sound card, most motherboards in the B350 range will work the same. I am going to try the build without any audio cards for now. :)
    – user7357
    Nov 27 '17 at 10:38

You didn’t specify if you planned to buy a standard ATX motherboard or a smaller one (micro-ATX, mini-ITX)?

The renowned French tech site Hardware.fr provided a spreadsheet with all AM4 motherboards characteristics. It includes the audio chipset reference. URL is https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/10dvMrPxjWqo5E3VO9djvjC5DU4vXXVtlXRoZsJBesc0/htmlview The higher the number after "Realtek AlC" is, the better the chipset is supposed to be (see Realtek website for tech specs).

However I don’t know if higher-end Realtek ALC chipsets will make a difference in your audio setup. When I bought myself a Ryzen platform I knew I needed a SPDIF optical output, and I wondered if such an option means the manufacturer taked extra care on the audio part. Last but not least, marketing says that insulating the audio area from the other motherboard component provides better audio quality.

  • Thanks a lot, really helpful. BTW, I am looking for an ATX board.
    – user7357
    Nov 26 '17 at 6:18

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