With its 500-series chipsets, Intel has finally broken tradition and enabled memory overclocking on a non-Z chipset. For this generation, motherboards that leverage the H570 or B560 chipset will allow consumers to use memory that's faster than the official supported specification for Rocket Lake-S.
Intel's latest move may look insignificant for AMD owners, as AMD was always more accomodating with memory overclocking on its budget chipsets, such as the A-or B-series. Before the 500-series chipsets came along, Intel owners only had access to memory overclocking on the flagship Z-series chipset. It took Intel long enough, but it's nice to finally see the chipmaker opening the door for the pocket-friendly chipsets.
For Comet Lake-S, Intel utilized a two-level scheme for memory support. The Core i9 and Core i7 SKUs natively support DDR4-2933, while the Core i5 and below tiers are limited to DDR4-2666. Therefore, H470 and B460 chipsets were restricted to DDR4-2933 support.
ASRock's Z590 Taichi product page (via momomo_us) suggests that Intel is employing a similar tactic with Rocket Lake-S. The description for memory support reads "11th Gen Intel Core™ (i9/i7/i5) support DDR4 up to 3200; Core (i3), Pentium and Celeron support DDR4 up to 2666."
An early rumor suggested that the 11th Generation branding housed both Rocket Lake-S and Comet Lake Refresh chips. ASRock's lettering supports this theory. The Core i9 to Core i5 models are Rocket Lake-S chips that support DDR4-3200, and the remnants are Comet Lake Refresh chips that do DDR4-2666, the same as the existing generation.
The H570 and B560 chipsets now support memory overclocking (memory above DDR4-3200), but you still need to pair the respective motherboard with a Core i5 and above processor. Core i3 and below still stick to DDR4-2666. It's not the full mile, but it's something nonetheless. In the past, pairing a Core i9 chip on an H-or B-series chipset meant you were locked out from using faster memory.
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Zhiye Liu is a Freelance News Writer at Tom’s Hardware US. Although he loves everything that’s hardware, he has a soft spot for CPUs, GPUs, and RAM.
The most deplorable thing about "supporting"memory overclocking on B/H-series boards is that since the memory controller is in the CPU, the chipset plays no real role in memory support capability besides as a fully arbitrary (un)lock.Reply
Intel has finally broken tradition and enabled memory overclocking on a non-Z chipset
its so good to see AMD making Intel change its ways.
Better, but still not enough. CPU shouldn't dictate how fast of ram you can run. The budget crowd is still going to be better off going with a Ryzen 3, and faster ram, vs an i3, with slower ram. That is, of course, once things return to normal stock levels.Reply