At Computex 2023 in Taipei, Taiwan, ASRock unveiled two motherboards based on its popular and long-running Taichi series, but with a slight twist. Designed to offer an alternative to their flagship Taichi series, the Z790 Taichi Lite and B650E Taichi Lite, as the model naming suggests, are lighter versions of their premium models. Still maintaining the Taichi aesthetic and retaining several premium features, the Taichi Lite series offers a lower-cost alternative to ASRock's flagship line-up.
Motherboard pricing has been a big talking point over the last 5 to 10 years, with prices increasing with each new generation of processors. Based on the premium Intel Z790 chipset for Intel's 13th Gen Core series processors, the ASRock Z790 Taichi Lite, despite the 'lighter' approach on costs, still has the same core feature set but with some minor cost-cutting differences.
Some of the most prominent features of the ASRock Z790 Taichi Lite include an advertised 24-+1+2 power delivery, as well as one PCIe 5.0 x4 M.2 slot, four PCIe 4.0 x4 M.2 slots, and eight SATA ports – all of which is a large selection of storage connectivity. Other connectivity includes two Thunderbolt 4 Type-C ports, with an additional nine rear panel USB ports and plenty of front panel heads, allowing for an additional nine USB ports to be utilized. Regarding networking, ASRock includes a Killer-based pairing consisting of a 2.5 GbE controller and a Wi-Fi 6E CNVi, as well as a further Gigabit Ethernet port.
It's also not the smallest of boards with a large E-ATX-sized PCB, and it has all of the traditional and cogwheel-inspired stylings we've seen from ASRock Taichi boards of late. At first glance, ASRock has made some changes to the aesthetic compared with the regular Z790 Taichi, with a smaller chipset heatsink and without integrated RGB LEDs across most of the board. The ASRock Z790 Taichi Lite also drops most of the PCIe slot coverings and opts for a more simplistic design. There are likely to be other differences too, but ASRock, at the time of writing, hasn't unveiled a complete list of specifications or a controller list.
ASRock B650E Taichi Lite on display at Computex 2023 (Image Credit: Toms Hardware)
ASRock has also extended its latest motherboard family to AMD's AM5 platform through the ASRock B650E Taichi Lite. Designed for the AMD Ryzen 7000 processors, as well as the X3D variants with lots of 3D V-Cache, the B650E Taichi Lite has a similar VRM design to the B650 Taichi, with an advertised 24+2+1 phase power delivery. ASRock has included a single Thunderbolt 4 Type-C port and eleven further rear panel USB ports. In addition, users can use front panel headers to leverage an additional seven ports, and it has a competitive networking configuration consisting of Killer 2.5 GbE and Wi-Fi 6E pairing.
As with the design differences between the Z790 Taichi and the Z790 Taichi Lite, the B650E Taichi Lite also has similar design characteristics; most of the aesthetical changes come from the heatsinks and armor that covers the majority of the regular Taichi. Dropping much of the armor/heatsinks also means there is fewer integrated RGB LEDs, and the chipset heatsink has a more straightforward and smaller design. Like the Z790 Taichi Lite, ASRock hasn't disclosed the full specifications list.
At the time of writing, ASRock hasn't disclosed the expected pricing of the Z790 Taichi Lite and B650E Taichi Lite models, nor how much they differ regarding pricing compared to the regular Taichi models. However, ASRock stated that both boards should be available in retail channels sometime in July.
Source: ASRock (via Tom’s Hardware)