In the Future, Your Gadgets Will Be Unbelievable Fast, But Not Until PCIe 6.0 Is Available

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Screenshot: ExplainingComputers/YouTube – It is possible to achieve a theoretical maximum bandwidth of 256 GB/s across 16 lanes using the new standard. However, as is so frequently the case in the computer business, the instant new technology appears, it quickly becomes outdated. PCI SIG has now produced a completed specification for PCI Express 6.0, which will serve as the foundation for future (next?) generations of solid-state drives.

I think it’s time to talk about the top speeds. The raw data transfer rates on PCIe 5.0 (32 GT/s) have been doubled to 64 GT/s on PCIe 6.0, and up to 8 GB/second in each direction or 256 GB/s in an x16 configuration with this new version.

Read more: Breakthrough in UltraRAM Technology Brings Us Nearer to a Single RAM and Storage Solution Across the Board

Image: PCI Special Interest Group

The consortium anticipates the first commercial goods to hit the market in the next 12 to 18 months, or by the end of 2023, now that the final specification has been accepted. Commercial storage devices like the PCIe 6.0 SSD will arrive in servers before consumer products ever see the light of day. Artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), networking and storage in data centers, industrial and automotive (IAM) are among the “first target applications” identified by the PCI Special Interest Group (SIG).

While PCIe 5.0 was finished in 2019, it wasn’t until CES 2022 that Samsung and Adata revealed their first PCI 5.0 SSDs, which are aimed at business clients. This timetable is comparable to what we’ve seen with PCIe 5.0. Despite the fact that Intel’s 12th-generation Desktop CPUs enable PCIe 5.0, its new mobile processors are restricted to PCIe Gen 4, a choice Intel said to Gizmodo was taken to keep costs down and because no PCIe Gen 5 cards were available for validation.

To far, the PCI Special Interest Group has doubled PCI Express speeds every three years since the standards was first published in 2003. By employing PAM4 signaling technology, it was able to do this (Pulse Amplitude Modulation with 4 levels).

I won’t bore you with the technical specifics (those who are interested may find out more here), but the people at AnandTech claim the update is “probably the biggest in the history of the standard.” Aside from increased speeds, low-latency operation is enabled as well.

There will be no compatibility issues when upgrading to PCIe 6.0 from PCIe 5.0 or earlier, since PCIe 6.0 hosts and peripherals are backwards compatible.

In response to the growing need for high-bandwidth, low-latency data transfers, a new standard has been developed. Consumer graphics cards and SSDs will be the first to use PCIe 6.0 when it is released for commercial use, but the standard will ultimately make its way into these goods, just as PCIe 7.0 will.