Wednesday, November 30th 2011

PCI-SIG Announces PCI-Express 4.0 Evolution to 16 GT/s, Twice That of PCIe 3.0

PCI-SIG, the organization responsible for the widely adopted PCI Express (PCIe) industry-standard input/output (I/O) technology, today announced the approval of 16 gigatransfers per second (GT/s) as the bit rate for the next generation of PCIe architecture, PCIe 4.0. This decision comes after the PCI-SIG completed a feasibility study on scaling the PCIe interconnect bandwidth to meet the demands of a variety of computing markets.

After technical analysis, the PCI-SIG has determined that 16 GT/s on copper, which will double the bandwidth over the PCIe 3.0 specification, is technically feasible at approximately PCIe 3.0 power levels. The data also confirms that a 16GT/s interconnect can be manufactured in mainstream silicon process technology and can be deployed with existing low-cost materials and infrastructure, while maintaining compatibility with previous generations of PCIe architecture. In addition, the PCI-SIG will investigate advancements in active and idle power optimizations, key issues facing the industry.

"The PCI Express architecture has become the de facto I/O technology within the industry, in large part due to PCI-SIG's dedication to I/O innovation and the insight of those who defined earlier versions in such an extensible manner," said Nathan Brookwood, research fellow at Insight 64. "Like its predecessors, the PCIe 4.0 architecture is well positioned to preserve the industry's investments in earlier generations of PCI Express specifications while extending the technology in a manner that enables new applications and usage models."

Approximately 24 billion lanes of PCIe have shipped in the marketplace since its introduction−a strong testament to the industry's reliance on PCIe architecture as an open bus standard now and for the future. This next-generation PCIe architecture, while doubling the data rate, will maintain its position as a low-cost, high-performance I/O technology. PCIe 4.0 technology will maintain backward compatibility with previous PCIe architectures and provide the optimum design point for high-volume platform I/O implementations across a wide range of existing and emerging applications. The PCIe 4.0 specification will address the many applications pushing for increased bandwidth at a low cost including server, workstation, desktop PC, notebook PC, tablets, embedded systems, peripheral devices, high-performance computing markets and more.

"Experts in the PCIe Electrical Workgroup carefully analyzed a number of target bit rates for the next generation of PCIe architecture, taking into consideration several key factors, including our ability to continue using low-cost materials. We have concluded that 16 GT/s is a feasible technical solution that satisfies our member companies' requirements," said Al Yanes, PCI-SIG chairman. "While the preliminary analysis is encouraging, a lot more challenging work lies ahead in developing the specifications. The PCI-SIG looks forward to providing our members with a specification that not only satisfies their high performance requirements but also meets their power, cost and compatibility goals."

The final PCIe 4.0 specifications, including form factor specification updates, are expected to be available sometime in the 2014-2015 timeframe.
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12 Comments on PCI-SIG Announces PCI-Express 4.0 Evolution to 16 GT/s, Twice That of PCIe 3.0

#1
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
Many Thanks to Coldstorm for the tip.
Posted on Reply
#2
qubit
Overclocked quantum bit
Sounds good. I look forward to graphcs cards that can take advantage of this.
Posted on Reply
#3
Jizzler
by: qubit
Sounds good. I look forward to graphcs cards that can take advantage of this.
Graphic cards :slap:

Time to plug in whole SBC (single board computers) into the PCIe slots of your host computer for even more POWER!
Posted on Reply
#4
qubit
Overclocked quantum bit
by: Jizzler
Graphic cards :slap:

Time to plug in whole SBC (single board computers) into the PCIe slots of your host computer for even more POWER!
Sure, anything that needs a lot of bandwidth. :)
Posted on Reply
#5
ironwolf
Sweet, can't wait to plug in my 56K modem into it! Er, wait... :nutkick:
Posted on Reply
#6
NC37
Because we've obviously all long surpassed PCIe 3.0...:rolleyes:

Oh well, least it is a few years out.
Posted on Reply
#7
theJesus
Final specs are expected 2014-2015, but what about actual market availability?
Posted on Reply
#8
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
by: thejesus
final specs are expected 2014-2015, but what about actual market availability?
2016~17.
Posted on Reply
#9
RejZoR
Why are they complicating with iterations? Just release PCIe v6 now so we can rest for the following 5+ years.
Posted on Reply
#10
techtard
Can't wait to see the mature, stable & ultra-highspeed PCIe 4.0 SSDs.
Posted on Reply
#11
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
by: Jizzler
Graphic cards :slap:

Time to plug in whole SBC (single board computers) into the PCIe slots of your host computer for even more POWER!
Couple of rendering boxes would be kind of cool for encoding/folding for the folder guys. Maybe even bitcoining.
Posted on Reply
#12
Wile E
Power User
Screw graphics cards, I want affordable storage subsystems that can take advantage of the bandwidth.
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