Tuesday, January 11th 2022

PCI-SIG Releases PCIe 6.0 Specification: 64 GT/s Per Lane

PCI-SIG, the organization responsible for the widely adopted PCI Express (PCIe ) standard, today announced the official release of the PCIe 6.0 specification, reaching 64 GT/s. PCI Express technology has served as the de facto interconnect of choice for nearly two decades. The PCIe 6.0 specification doubles the bandwidth and power efficiency of the PCIe 5.0 specification (32 GT/s), while providing low latency and reduced bandwidth overhead.

"PCI-SIG is pleased to announce the release of the PCIe 6.0 specification less than three years after the PCIe 5.0 specification," said Al Yanes, PCI-SIG Chairperson and President. "PCIe 6.0 technology is the cost-effective and scalable interconnect solution that will continue to impact data-intensive markets like data center, artificial intelligence/machine learning, HPC, automotive, IoT, and military/aerospace, while also protecting industry investments by maintaining backwards compatibility with all previous generations of PCIe technology."
PCIe 6.0 Specification Features
  • 64 GT/s raw data rate and up to 256 GB/s via x16 configuration
  • Pulse Amplitude Modulation with 4 levels (PAM4) signaling and leverages existing PAM4 already available in the industry
  • Lightweight Forward Error Correct (FEC) and Cyclic Redundancy Check (CRC) mitigate the bit error rate increase associated with PAM4 signaling
  • Flit (flow control unit) based encoding supports PAM4 modulation and enables more than double the bandwidth gain
  • Updated Packet layout used in Flit Mode to provide additional functionality and simplify processing
  • Maintains backwards compatibility with all previous generations of PCIe technology
"With the PCI Express SSD market forecasted to grow at a CAGR of 40% to over 800 exabytes by 2025, PCI-SIG continues to meet the future needs of storage applications," said Greg Wong, Founder and Principal Analyst, Forward Insights. "With the storage industry transitioning to PCIe 4.0 technology and on the cusp of introducing PCIe 5.0 technology, companies will begin adopting PCIe 6.0 technology in their roadmaps to future-proof their products and take advantage of the high bandwidth and low latency that PCI Express technology offers."


"There is a growing demand for ever-increasing performance in many segments in the data center such as high-performance computing and AI," said Ashish Nadkarni, Group Vice President, Infrastructure Systems, Platforms and Technologies Group, IDC. "Within three to five years the application landscape will look very different and companies will likely begin updating their roadmaps accordingly. The advancement of an established standard like PCIe 6.0 architecture will serve the industry well in establishing composable infrastructure for performance intensive computing use cases."

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25 Comments on PCI-SIG Releases PCIe 6.0 Specification: 64 GT/s Per Lane

#1
Chrispy_
Great for servers in 2023 maybe, irrelevant to consumers. Outside of flagship motherboards costing $500+ it's rare to see more than the bare minimum of PCIe 4.0 lanes because of implementation costs vs how many people actually have a use for them.
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#2
aQi
Amd and Intel !!!! Here we go again :D
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#3
defaultluser
I know they finally hacked their way through the wall that was PCIe 4.0, and left bit open for the next few revs...but this still seems pointless, untill something like Optane becomes cheaper, you just can't make use of this speed!!

Every professional PCI 4.0 flash SSD already hits the sustained write wall well below it's peak rates after that cache is exhausted! And video cards still can't saturate PCIe 3.0 x16.

Servers can use it t add more devices, but with the insane price of video cards, supply is going to be hard to come by.
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#4
Vya Domus
defaultluseryou just can't make use of this speed!!
You can't because everything is built with the assumption that the PCIe transfer rate is low. A lot of things in a graphics engine have to be written using very confusing and complicated logic to work around the limitation caused by the fact that typically you're not going to able to transfer large quantities of data to the GPU in-between frames.

If you ever wonder why it is that game worlds aren't as interactive and dynamic as you'd expect them to be, this is one the reasons.
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#5
Tigger
I'm the only one
There isn't even a PCIe 5 SSD or GPU out yet..................................
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#6
mama
TiggerThere isn't even a PCIe 5 SSD or GPU out yet..................................
It's a standard for "three to five years" time.
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#7
defaultluser
Vya DomusYou can't because everything is built with the assumption that the PCIe transfer rate is low. A lot of things in a graphics engine have to be written using very confusing and complicated logic to work around the limitation caused by the fact that typically you're not going to able to transfer large quantities of data to the GPU in-between frames.

If you ever wonder why it is that game worlds aren't as interactive and dynamic as you'd expect them to be, this is one the reasons.
No, it's not - or else, you'd better explain why Apples amazing low-latency high-bandwidth shared memory MacBook Pro is so disappointing for game performance?

And the reason why game world aren't dynamic at all has more to do with developer time being prioritized on other content (you can't both make a seamless dynamic game, and also spend the same amount of time you used to do on creating characters + storyboard + models + licensed content . SO YOU END UP WITH A VERY EMPTY BUT DYNAMIC WORLD!)

Yes, the IO is still a limiting factor for creating these dynamic worlds, but users have already made their decision about how much they want their AAA game to be like a movie (AND WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU SAW ONE OF THOSE SUCCESSFUL MOVIES BE INTERACTIVE?
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#8
trsttte
Cool, we're approaching GPU memory speeds on the pcie bus itself, the possibilities are very interesting
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#11
Vya Domus
defaultluserNo, it's not - or else, you'd better explain why Apples amazing low-latency high-bandwidth shared memory MacBook Pro is so disappointing for game performance?
Like I explained it's a software thing, so just having a faster interface alone means nothing and this isn't just about performance. There is no way you'd understand exactly what I am talking about if you don't know graphics engines are written so I wont expect you to.
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#12
bonehead123
TiggerThere isn't even a PCIe 5 SSD or GPU out yet..................................
Hummm..... I seem to recall seeing a few gen 5 drives announcements recently, although I haven't seen anything about GPU's...
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#13
R-T-B
InitialisedI miss AGP
I mean I have some nostalgia for it, but it's got absolutely nothing pcie does not offer, so I can't really say I "miss" it.
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#14
Maenad
S.T.A.R.S.
TiggerThere isn't even a PCIe 5 SSD or GPU out yet..................................
Still kickin' with PCIe 3.0 hardware here, I guess that 4.0 will be pretty short-lived as new Intels support for 5.0 already and PCIe 4.0 is only 2½ years old.
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#15
Tigger
I'm the only one
MaenadStill kickin' with PCIe 3.0 hardware here, I guess that 4.0 will be pretty short-lived as new Intels support for 5.0 already and PCIe 4.0 is only 2½ years old.
My board has a PCIe 5.0 GPU slot only, as far as I know has only PCIe gen 4 M.2 but tbh they are pretty fast. Shame there is no PCIe Gen 5 GPU out yet
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#16
zlobby
InitialisedI miss AGP
Ah, the days back when Voodoo and OpenGL reigned over the nerdy Quake and Diablo playing teens, doing LAN parties in someone's basement.. :oops: #fov120forlife
R-T-BI mean I have some nostalgia for it, but it's got absolutely nothing pcie does not offer, so I can't really say I "miss" it.
I'm pretty sure he/she misses the sentiment, not the AGP bus itself... :banghead:
defaultluserI know they finally hacked their way through the wall that was PCIe 4.0, and left bit open for the next few revs...but this still seems pointless, untill something like Optane becomes cheaper, you just can't make use of this speed!!

Every professional PCI 4.0 flash SSD already hits the sustained write wall well below it's peak rates after that cache is exhausted! And video cards still can't saturate PCIe 3.0 x16.

Servers can use it t add more devices, but with the insane price of video cards, supply is going to be hard to come by.
Many scientific accelerators can use the improvements for sure.

On a side note, I wonder will we live to see commercial NVRAM with in-mem computing at the current DDR5 speeds?
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#17
R-T-B
zlobbyI'm pretty sure he/she misses the sentiment, not the AGP bus itself... :banghead:
Most likely. I'm known to be quite excessively literal.
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#18
chrcoluk
The rate this is progressing in 10 years we will have gen 9 on boards with no consumer use case and the boards will be 2000usd a pop because they need 20 something layers.
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#19
Maenad
S.T.A.R.S.
chrcolukThe rate this is progressing in 10 years we will have gen 9 on boards with no consumer use case and the boards will be 2000usd a pop because they need 20 something layers.
Wonder would these require more cooling as we saw with PCIe 4.0 and X570.
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#20
arni-gx
oh, what a great news...... meanwhile, this, my old PC still using PCIE 3.0 from a years ago.......
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#21
TheLostSwede
MaenadStill kickin' with PCIe 3.0 hardware here, I guess that 4.0 will be pretty short-lived as new Intels support for 5.0 already and PCIe 4.0 is only 2½ years old.
Short lived? Sorry, but no. What it will do, is replace PCIe 3.0 for things that can take advantage of if, like Thunderbolt, 10 Gbps Ethernet, USB4 etc.
If you look at Intel's chipsets for Alder Lake, they offer PCIe 5.0 from the CPU, PCIe 4.0 from the CPU, PCIe 4.0 from the chipset and PCIe 3.0 from the chipset.
This is likely to continue for quite some time, as not everything needs to be on PCIe 5.0, or even 4.0.
PCIe 3.0 is the last "simple" implementation of PCIe, as it doesn't require signal "boosters" of any kind, unlike later standards, so we're likely to continue to see it in lower cost platforms and various embedded systems for at least another five to 10 years. PCIe 4.0 is still quite manageable, but PCIe 5.0 is very expensive to implement once you have traces over a certain length as it requires signal retimers, rather than the much cheaper redrivers that PCIe 4.0 can use, even if it's not recommended by the PCIe SIG.
chrcolukThe rate this is progressing in 10 years we will have gen 9 on boards with no consumer use case and the boards will be 2000usd a pop because they need 20 something layers.
Not likely, as things are starting to hit a lot of limits of current manufacturing technology.
There's work being done on optical connectivity to try and prevent signal degradation, but it's still a long way until we get to a sensible implementation of that.
MaenadWonder would these require more cooling as we saw with PCIe 4.0 and X570.
That was a node issue, but just as with CPUs, higher speeds have either required more cooling, or an improved production node.
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#22
u2konline
where can i find workstation pcie 4.0 motherboards or desktops?
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#23
ShurikN
u2konlinewhere can i find workstation pcie 4.0 motherboards or desktops?
3rd Gen Threadripper and its accompanying platform.
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#24
TheinsanegamerN
MaenadWonder would these require more cooling as we saw with PCIe 4.0 and X570.
"require" is a strong term, as x570 often ran cooler when given a third party silent heatsink then the pathetic custom ones OEMs were putting on their boards. The first gen will probably have them since board makers have forgotten how to properly cool something without fans.
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#25
u2konline
ShurikN3rd Gen Threadripper and its accompanying platform.
Ooops sorry. I meant where i can find workstation Intel Xeon or Intel PCIE 4.0 motherboards? usually i shop only on ebay, just don't know where to look. I only heard amd has them.
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