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PCIe 5.0 To Be Finalized In 2019; PCI-SIG Fast Tracks Final Spec

The PCI-SIG Developers Conference is in full swing in Santa Clara. The group just announced PCI Express 5.0 has entered the 0.3 release phase of development. Next comes 0.7 and then 1.0, the finalized specification released to manufacturers. Sources say the final release phase is expected in 2019 with 32GT/s for a single lane. For reference, that's the same speed we currently get from a PCI Express 3.0 x4 lane connection.

It takes a lot of time to sort out data when it's moving at high speeds. Your computer uses only PCIe 3.0 right now, but the consortium group didn't leapfrog PCIe 4.0. In a recent release, Silicon Motion, Inc., a fabless semiconductor SSD controller design house, said it will have PCIe 4.0 products ready in 2018 to coincide with Intel's 8th Generation processor release. Intel hasn't confirmed PCIe 4.0 on 8th Gen Core processors, but all signs lead us to believe the technology will come to market in Q2 or Q3 2018. AMD has publicly stated the company will target 2020 for PCIe 4.0.

“With the onset of Big Data, high-performance applications and the arrival of next generation non-volatile memories, storage devices have a voracious appetite for increasing performance,” said Amber Huffman, President of NVM Express, Inc. “We are pleased to see the PCI-SIG continue to evolve this interface technology to enable NVMe SSDs for the enterprise and data center to leverage the scalability of the PCIe architecture, both in higher bandwidth and lower latency.”

PCI Express 5.0 has companies excited, with many talking about technology we can only dream of today. Expect Ethernet to reach 400Gb/s, and dual 200Gb/s InfiniBand. These technologies feed advanced AI and machine learning for Big Data. The technology will also enable lower performance products like NVMe SSDs to utilize fewer lanes to achieve high speeds. The reduction in PCI Express lanes per device decreases power consumption and reduces engineering and R&D costs.

Several companies provided statements in support of the PCIe 5.0 specification.

“As GPU accelerators increase in performance, so does the need to supply them with data more efficiently. With an expected bandwidth that’s twice that of its predecessor, the new PCIe 5.0 standard will deliver the kind of speed necessary to further support advances in AI, machine learning, gaming, robotics, autonomous driving, virtual reality and more. NVIDIA looks forward to continued collaboration with our industry peers on the PCI-SIG Board of Directors and work groups to develop and complete the PCIe 5.0 specification.”~Michael Diamond, Senior Director of Strategic Partnerships, NVIDIA

“The ability to move and analyze growing amounts of data is critical for research, for products development and for achieving a competitive advantage. PCIe 5.0 technology, doubling the data throughout compared to PCIe 4.0 technology, combined with the data throughput roadmap of InfiniBand and Ethernet, will enable the data center ecosystem to leverage industry standard solutions to achieve maximum return on investment for future compute and storage platforms.”~Gilad Shainer, Vice President, Marketing, Mellanox Technologies

  • chriz78
    Expect Ethernet to reach 400Gb/s
    Expect RJ-45 400GigE to be right around the corner! :pt1cable:
    Reply
  • spiketheaardvark
    It's a bit of downer that AMD isn't moving on this for another 3 years. Giving how their chips link with pci-e, I would have thought they would have been all over this
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    19793596 said:
    It's a bit of downer that AMD isn't moving on this for another 3 years. Giving how their chips link with pci-e, I would have thought they would have been all over this
    Nothing prevents AMD from upgrading AM4's existing PCIe lanes to PCIe 4.0/5.0 in future CPUs and 3.0/4.0 in future chipsets, though you'll need a new motherboard if you want to use the updated chipsets' faster PCIe and may need it for the CPU lanes too if your pre-4.0/5.0 motherboard's CPU PCIe lanes don't meet specs.
    Reply
  • bit_user
    Sure, Nvidia says they'll support it, but I wouldn't be surprised to see them drag their feet at least until they have a version of NVLink that's faster.
    Reply
  • alextheblue
    19793635 said:
    19793596 said:
    It's a bit of downer that AMD isn't moving on this for another 3 years. Giving how their chips link with pci-e, I would have thought they would have been all over this
    Nothing prevents AMD from upgrading AM4's existing PCIe lanes to PCIe 4.0/5.0 in future CPUs and 3.0/4.0 in future chipsets, though you'll need a new motherboard if you want to use the updated chipsets' faster PCIe and may need it for the CPU lanes too if your pre-4.0/5.0 motherboard's CPU PCIe lanes don't meet specs.
    Yeah that's the sort of thing they've done before with "+" platform refreshes. I think they'll eventually release an AM4+ refresh. If that happens I would aldo bet most existing boards will work with the new CPUs with a BIOS update, but potentially without PCIe 4.0. Meanwhile newer boards will run older AM4 CPUs, but will absolutely lack PCIe 4.0 in that situation.

    This has worked well for them in the past. On the consumer side of things PCIe 4.0 and beyond won't be a big deal for the next couple of years, in particular for the majority of people using a single graphics card with a 16 lane slot. With that being said, I don't want them to wait TOO long. PCIe 5.0 might require a new platform though... thoughts?
    Reply
  • valeman2012
    19793523 said:
    Expect Ethernet to reach 400Gb/s
    Expect RJ-45 400GigE to be right around the corner! :pt1cable:

    Come to California, Santa Carla and San Francisco
    You can get cheap 1 Gigabit Home Internet Service.
    Reply
  • eriko
    @ chriz78

    Quote, "Expect RJ-45 400GigE to be right around the corner!"

    Nope, not around any corner I can yet see, and I'm still deploying 100G channels like crazy. But as I gear up for upcoming 400G deployments, you should know you'll not be seeing that on an RJ45 any time soon, if ever.

    400G uses the CFP8 form factor, which physicall is about the size of CFP2 that is becoming ubiquitious, and optically, its 4x100G (mostly) on a single fiber, or 1x400G (rare), plus a couple of other number of waves & bit rates.

    But the real info is that electrically, it is 16x 25Gb/s bit rate on the electrical connector. I can't wait to see a picture of your motherboard with 16x25Gb/s electrical interfaces.
    Reply
  • mrpijey
    19793523 said:
    Expect Ethernet to reach 400Gb/s
    Expect RJ-45 400GigE to be right around the corner! :pt1cable:

    It won't be RJ45 as it already has issues with crosstalk and too thin wires. It would be far better to go away from wires and go optical as you won't have issues with interference or crosstalk. And at those speeds you don't want any interruptions in the traffic. RJ45 is still around only because it's such a standard and it works for the majority of the nets, but even at 10Gbit you rather go fiber as it's more reliable. Only when doing PoE is it required (obviously) to go with copper. And regardless the cost of 400GigE will be far outside of regular consumer wallets. Only recently has 10Gbe become affordable for end users and it's been around since 2002.
    Reply
  • chriz78
    Expect RJ-45 400GigE to be right around the corner! :pt1cable:

    Sorry, I guess my sarcasm was not very obvious. Considering 10gigE has been out for how long? Anyway, it's been many years, and still not affordable. So ethernet reaching 400Gb/s means absolutely nothing to me.
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    19794067 said:
    PCIe 5.0 might require a new platform though... thoughts?
    On the CPU-hosted lanes side of things, it should require little more than PCIe traces and AM4 sockets with ~4X tighter electrical parameters tolerances.
    Reply