Tuesday, January 11, 2022

New PCIe 6.0 spec delivers 64 GT/s raw data rate

PCI-SIG, the organization responsible for the widely adopted PCI Express standard, officially released the PCIe 6.0 specification boasting a top raw data rate of 64 GT/s (gigatransfers per second) -- double the bandwidth and power efficiency of the PCIe 5.0 specification (32 GT/s).

Applications for PCIe 6.0 are expected to include data centers, AI/ML, HPC, and defense systems.

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

“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.”