Various cast or wrought fully lamellar TiAl-based alloys with and without boron addition have been assessed. It has been found that titanium boride precipitates are the predominant factor influencing the room temperature tensile ductility. Large sized titanium boride precipitates often observed in high-alloyed TiAl alloys (such as Ti-44Al-8Nb-IB) cause premature failure in as-cast samples through promoting crack propagation via debonding between boride-matrix interfaces or cracking through boride precipitates themselves, giving rise to a typical tensile ductility of 0.3%. Refinement in titanium boride precipitates, via hot working or fast cooling during casting, will significantly improve the tensile ductility. In low-alloyed alloys (such as Ti-48Al-2Cr-2Nb-lB) the effect of boride precipitates is not as significant as it is in the high-alloyed alloys mainly because of their small sizes. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.