PCIe 6.0 specifications preparing for 2021 launch

PCI-SIG announces version 0.5 of the next-gen PCIe 6.0 specification, on schedule for 2021.

Published Feb 27, 2020 9:11 PM CST   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 11:44 AM CST
1 minute & 7 seconds read time

We are still just getting our toes dipped in the waters of PCIe 4.0 thanks to AMD's recent launch of the X570 chipset, and Ryzen 3000 series processors -- but PCIe 5.0 and PCIe 6.0 are also on the way. You know the story, technology never slows down.

PCIe 6.0 specifications preparing for 2021 launch |

PCI-SIG has officially announced version 0.5 of the new PCIe 6.0 standard -- yeah PCIe 6.0, not PCIe 5.0 -- which will have an insane 8x the bandwidth of PCIe 3.0 that most people are using today. PCIe 3.0 starts things off with 32GB/sec of bandwidth on a full PCIe 3.0 x16 port, while PCIe 4.0 x16 offers up to 64GB/sec.

Things start to really ramp up with PCIe 5.0 x16 with a huge 128GB/sec, but PCIe 6.0 takes things to the stars with 256GB/sec on a PCIe 6.0 x16 port. This means we're looking at a huge 8Gbps per lane of bandwidth with PCIe 6.0 -- crazy stuff, and while graphics cards won't benefit too much from it (unless things change in a big way), next-gen NVMe SSDs, networking controllers, and other technologies will suck up all that additional bandwidth easily.

PCIe 6.0 will be fully backwards compatible with "all previous spec generations", says PCI-SIG Board Chair and President Al Yanes. He writes: "Two of the key changes that we're implementing include PAM-4 (Pulse Amplitude Modulation with 4 levels) encoding and low-latency Forward Error Correction (FEC) with additional mechanisms to improve bandwidth efficiency".

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Anthony joined the TweakTown team in 2010 and has since reviewed 100s of graphics cards. Anthony is a long time PC enthusiast with a passion of hate for games built around consoles. FPS gaming since the pre-Quake days, where you were insulted if you used a mouse to aim, he has been addicted to gaming and hardware ever since. Working in IT retail for 10 years gave him great experience with custom-built PCs. His addiction to GPU tech is unwavering.

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