video cards shared a post this morning showing leaked images of MSI’s upcoming B760 Tomahawk motherboard. This is Intel’s first motherboard to feature his yet-to-be-announced B760 chipset. The motherboard looks very similar to his B660 predecessor with the same ATX form factor and design language. The motherboard also appears to share the same amount of storage options and PCIe slots as its predecessor, confirming previous rumors that the B760 would not be a massive upgrade to his B660.
This MSI motherboard, along with other B760 models from other vendors, is expected to release in early 2023, possibly at CES, which starts on January 5th, after Intel officially unveils the B760 chipset.
Intel released its high-end Z790 chipset alongside three fully unlocked processors a few months ago when it launched its 13th Generation Raptor Lake CPUs. Intel has decided to delay the release of his non-overclockable 65W CPU and low-end 700-series chipset until next year.
However, Intel revealed the SATA, USB, and PCIe specs for all 700-series chipsets during the announcement, giving us a good idea of what the B760 will do. The chipset isn’t a big upgrade for the B660. The only notable upgrade is the PCIe revision change from Gen 3 to Gen 4 for some chipset lanes. So you get some extra bandwidth for add-in cards and fast storage compared to the B660.
Videocardz images clearly demonstrate this fact with the B760 Tomahawk. The board layout is almost identical to its predecessor, with the same number of SATA ports, PCIe slots and M.2 storage solutions. Some of these slots will be upgraded to Gen 4, but users will still have the same amount of physical slots and connectors as the previous generation boards.
Rear I/O is the same story, with the B760 Tomahawk having the same number of USB ports, audio ports, and internet connectivity options as the B660 version. However, 4 of the Type-A ports are upgraded to 10Gbps, Type-C ports get 20Gbps, and WiFi is upgraded from version 6 to 6E. So at least there is some form of upgrade here. But if the price has gone up quite a bit from this generation to the end and this board is a sign of what’s to come for the B670, many people building mainstream gaming and computing rigs are better off going with the B660 option They are still available.
B760 will be more expensive
These minor upgrades would be fine if the price of the platform stayed the same, but unfortunately that won’t be the case. He recently covered a report that he expects the B760 price to jump 10% over the B660 upon release.
We expect this price increase to have a significant impact on sales of the B760. Most mainstream consumers rarely use the capabilities that PCIe Gen 4 and ultra-fast USB connectivity offer. Most of Intel’s B-series chipset motherboards are used in standard consumer applications with causal browsing, gaming, and video playing obligations.
This is compounded by the fact that Intel’s B660 chipset is a very capable platform for supporting both 12th Gen Alder Lake and 13th Gen Raptor Lake parts. The only requirement is a BIOS update to break 13th generation compatibility.
This will incentivize buyers to go back to Intel’s older B660 platform, which offers the same computing experience as its successor, except for a select few who actually take advantage of the B760’s higher bandwidth ports. We hope Intel’s partners find ways to make the B760 more competitive, but it looks like the B660 will be the best budget option for both Alder Lake and Raptor Lake systems.