Gen 4 PCIe is here and some newer graphics cards are already using the new standard. While the difference between Gen 3 and Gen 4 PCIe is not significant for graphics cards, it makes a huge difference when it comes to M.2 NVMe SSDs. But what motherboards has Gen 4 PCIe?
In general, Gen 4 PCIe is still new technology so you have to look for it in high-end motherboards if you want to have the latest and greatest. Also, Intel motherboards are overall lagging behind when compared to AMD motherboards in terms of Gen 4 PCIe. The best way to know what motherboards has Gen 4 PCIe is to actually check the specifications of your model on the manufacturer’s website.
So, let’s take a closer look at what motherboards has Gen 4 PCIe and list a few different models. You can also read more about why Gen 4 PCIe is such a big deal below.
What Motherboards Has Gen 4 PCIe?
You can find Gen 4 PCIe on almost all high-end X570 motherboards for AMD, like the Asus ROG Strix X570-E or the Gigabyte X570 Aorus Pro. When it comes to the X470 chipset, only some motherboards support Gen 4 PCIe like the Asus ROG Strix X470-F Gaming motherboard. Either way, it is always good to double-check the manufacturer’s website to make sure that your exact model supports Gen 4 PCIe.
But perhaps the best value chipset that supports PCIe Gen 4 is the B550 chipset. You can get a decent, mid-end motherboard like the Asus TUF Gaming B550-PLUS and you will get all the benefits of PCIe Gen 4 to go with it. But what about Intel motherboards?
As far as Intel is concerned, they have been behind AMD for quite some time. It’s been around a year and a half since we first saw PCIe Gen 4 on AMD, with Intel only having some degree of support for PCIe Gen 4 on some chipsets. But thanks to the launch of Intel 11th-Gen Rocket Lake CPUs, we should see better support for Gen 4 PCIe.
Also, Intel claims that their new chipsets will be able to run PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSDs slightly faster than with Ryzen. But what motherboards have Gen 4 PCIe that support Intel CPUs?
Unfortunately, things are a bit more complicated here. While some Z490 support PCIe Gen 4 with a BIOS update, others do not. The support for PCIe Gen 4 on Z490 depends on the manufacturer and motherboard model, so check the specifications to be sure.
Thankfully, the newer Z590 series should support PCIe 4.0 across the board, so you won’t have to do a lot of research and guessing here. The same is true for H570 motherboards like the Asus TUF Gaming H570-Pro WiFi board as well as B560 motherboards.
The main takeaway here is that you should always check if your motherboard has Gen 4 PCIe if you care about it. You can expect all newer motherboards to support the new standard, but for motherboards released in 2019 and 2020, it can be a bit tricky. But why is Gen 4 PCIe such a big deal anyway?
PCIe Gen 4.0 can support speeds of up to 2 gigabytes per second per lane, whereas PCIe Gen 3.0 can only support up to 1 gigabyte per second. This means that PCIe 4.0 has double the bandwidth. While the bandwidth still does not matter much for graphics cards, it might play a role in a few years as graphics cards get more powerful.
But the most significant difference is in read/write speeds for NVMe SSDs. That can make games run much smoother with fewer stutters and significantly shorter loading screens and moving files from one drive to another can be done much faster as well.
Now you know that most mid and high-end motherboards on both Intel and AMD support PCIe Gen 4. No matter which motherboard you’re getting, always check the manufacturer’s website where you can easily find out whether the motherboard you are interested in has Gen 4 PCIe. And since it is twice as fast as Gen 3 PCIe, the difference is significant, especially when it comes to NVMe SSD speeds.