The big picture: one of the main complaints about the latest AMD Ryzen 7000 processors is the high cost of the platform. The AM5 only supports the more expensive DDR5 memory, unlike the Team Blue LGA 1700 platform. AMD also only had premium X670 and X670E motherboards on the market, although that changed today with the release of the B650(E).
Motherboards based on AMD B650 and B650E mid-range chipsets are now finally available, offering users a (slightly) lower cost of entry to the AM5 platform. Newegg currently offers more than 25 models from four major manufacturers priced from $170 to $450.
So what is the difference between all AM 5 chipsets? X670(E) motherboards use two Promontory 21 chips with four PCIe 4.0 lines reserved for communication between chipsets. Meanwhile, the B650 series uses only one chip, which means it offers half as many connectivity options as its premium counterpart.
Ryzen 7000 processors also offer up to 24 PCIe 5.0 lines, and due to the complexity of routing such high throughput, the two B650 variants handle them differently. The B650E offers 16 PCIe 5.0 lines (1 x 16 or 2 x 8) for graphics cards and at least one PCIe 5.0 M.2 slot for storage. In contrast, the B650 should only provide PCIe 4.0 across the board, and PCIe 5.0 support for data storage is optional, according to AMD. It is also worth noting that all the presented AM5 motherboards support overclocking both the processor and memory.
The cheapest B650 Series motherboard currently on display at Newegg is the ASRock B650M PG Riptide at $170 ($75 less than the cheapest X670(E) motherboard). At this price, you get a Micro ATX board with 12+2+1 power phases designed for 50A. The rear I/O is quite simple, with a 2.5Gbps LAN port and no Wi-Fi card, while the fastest USB ports have a maximum speed of only 10 Gbps. However, the motherboard offers a PCIe 5.0 M.2 slot (plus another one limited to PCIe 4.0 speed).
When AMD announced its Radeon 7000 series processors, the company said that AM5 motherboards would cost from $125. However, it does not mention whether this price will apply to the B650 boards or to the A620 chipset, which has not yet been announced.