It looks like Intel’s B660 motherboards may axe PCIe 5.0 support to lower pricing

It looks like Intel's B660 boards will axe PCIe 5.0 support to lower pricing

It looks like Intel’s B660 chipset will axe PCIe 5.0 support to lower motherboard pricing

Thanks to Videocardz, some information about ASUS’ upcoming Prime B660-PLUS D4 motherboard has been revealed, suggesting that Intel’s B660 series motherboards may axe PCIe 5.0 support to lower manufacturing costs. 

Based on its name alone, we know that the Prime B660-PLUS D4 motherboard will support DDR4 memory modules, as D4 stands for DDR4 support for all ASUS’ Z690 series motherboards. Whether or not many Intel B660 motherboards will support DDR5 memory remains to be seen, and at this time, there is little reason to believe that there will be no B660 chipset motherboards that support DDR5 memory. 

Unlike PCIe 4.0’s mainstream launch with AMD’s 500-series motherboards and Ryzen 3000 series processors, PCIe 5.0 mainstream launch with Alder Lake lacks any compatible devices that make use of the standard. SSDs using the PCIe 5.0 standard aren’t due to release until mid-2022, making B660 motherboards without PCIe 5.0 support a non-issue for many consumers. 

While PCIe 5.0 support for Alder Lake is a forward-looking feature for Intel’s 12th generation processors, the lack of compatible PCIe 5.0 devices within today’s PC market makes its inclusion useless to today’s customers. 

PCIe 5.0 support requires motherboard manufacturers to create designs that can handle the tight tolerances of the PCIe 5.0 standard and meet all of its signalling requirements. These changes increase the cost of motherboard manufacturing, making it an area that could be cost-optimised for users who do not want PCIe 5.0 compatibility. 

Assuming that Videocardz’s leak is correct, the question now is whether or not all B560 motherboards will cut PCIe 5.0 support. Should PCIe 5.0 be a feature that is exclusive to Intel’s higher-end chipset, or will it be a feature that differentiates high-end B660 motherboards from their lower-end counterparts? 

It looks like Intel's B660 boards will axe PCIe 5.0 support to lower pricing

Currently, the pricing of Intel’s Z690 series motherboards is much higher than their older-generation counterparts, making the prospect of lower cost B660 motherboards very appealing. 

You can join the discussion on Intel’s B660 motherboards potentially lacking PCIe 5.0 support on the OC3D Forums.