Not long ago someone among the mining forums said that “2017 is THE year for cryptomining”. Who said that exactly, I cannot confirm, but the phrase is actually spot-on.
Motherboard manufacturers know this too and they are literally racing to deliver the best MoBos for cryptominers.
We all know that ASRock pioneered this by releasing the first MoBo for cryptomining. The Pro BTC was especially tailored to be THE motherboard for coin mining. True to this day it still is the most sought-after MoBo in the mining community. The board has become so popular that AsRock fails to supply the demand.
Biostar TB350-BTC Review – 6x GPU Mining Motherboard
The Newest Alternatives
The fact that it is literally impossible to purchase new ASRock Pro BTC MoBos forces us to look for alternatives; so far there are three worth looking at:
Which One Is the Best for Mining?
Besides the H81 Pro BTC, we have at least two alternatives. So why would we bother reviewing the TB350-BTC in the first place?
The reason is simple – there is always room for improvement, and the TB350-BTC specifications make me think that it might become the new favorite in the mining community.
Why the TB350-BTC?
Before I get into this MoBo’s stats, let me quickly compare it to the other two I’ve just mentioned.
TB350-BTC vs TB250-BTC
If you read the TB250-BTC review, you probably noticed how good the motherboard is for a GPU mining rig. The sole notable difference between the TB250 and the TB350 is that the latter is designed to work with AMD CPUs and APUs. Not only that – the TB350 is compatible with the newest AM4 socket, which includes the new-gen AMD CPUs with the Zen architecture. This comprises the Ryzen series, some of which are already available for sale, while others will be released somewhere during the year.
TB350-BTC vs MSI Z170A Gaming Pro Carbon
Now, compared to the MSI Z170A Gaming Pro Carbon, the TB350-BTC will probably have a more reasonable price tag. The TB350 is yet to be released (coming soon) so the exact price isn’t clear yet, but here’s why I believe it will be more economic.
You probably know that in order to combine low price with high quality, manufacturers usually remove most additional features that are not necessary for cryptomining anyway. Those who do not do that come up with hybrid gaming/mining models that are disliked by the gaming and mining communities alike. The MSI Z170A Gaming Pro Carbon is one of those examples – it could be the perfect MoBo for mining, but the additional (and useless) features add to the price way too much.
Same as the TB250-BTC, the new TB350-BTC is supposed to have virtually no additional features, resulting in a lower price tag. Low price means good ROI, which is what all miner rig owners are after in the first place.
The only area where the Gaming Pro Carbon is better is that it supports up to 7 GPUs, while Biostar motherboards can only handle six maximum. The TB350-BTC comes with 6x PCI-Express slots – one x16 and five x1 PCI-E.
A Little Bit More About the AM4 Socket
As we know, the TB350-BTC only supports the AM4 socket, which is both a con and a pro. The good news is that the MoBo will support any further AM4 CPUs and APUs. The bad news is that as of today, the only available AM4 CPUs on the market are unnecessarily powerful and expensive for cryptomining. However, this might be fixed with the release of new Ryzen models.
Where & What to Buy
Biostar TB350-BTCCompatible CPUCompatible RAM
Where to buy the Biostar TB350-BTC motherboard
The AMD AM4 Ryzen 5 1400 CPU is the cheapest one and also has the lower power usage of 65w
Supported memory RAM for Ryzen 5 1400 is DDR4 2400 Mhz
I’ve also mentioned the expected motherboard price to be reasonably low. It might get even better once AMD releases new Ryzen CPUs and APUs that are expected to be more affordable than their Intel counterparts. As for now though, Intel and AMD newest gen CPUs price tags are on par.
The TB350-BTC might be the best new AMD-based motherboard for GPU mining rigs. As some users speculated, AMD CPUs might also work better when paired with Radeon GPUs. While this is merely a speculation, it does make sense.
Considering that the TB250-BTC proved to work like a charm, I’ve got reason to believe that the new TB350-BTC will be great too.
Affordable, well-built and tailored for GPU mining, this new board might have some great prospects and might be a nice long-term investment too – AMD announced that new AM4 socket GPU and APU models will be released this year. As many miners speculate, some of the expected models of the Ryzen line might have a modest price tag.
Thank you for reading. As always, your comments, suggestions and questions are welcome.
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