Intel Rocket Lake-S, the next generation processor for the desktop chip giant, will catch up in support for advanced interfaces like PCI-Express 4.0 that its rival AMD has long supported.

Intel Rocket Lake-S will be part of the eleventh generation of core processors and it would be expected (and desirable) that it were the last great platform manufactured in 14 nanometer processes before the definitive jump to 10 nm that will happen with the «Alder Lake«. You already know the problems of Intel in the advancement of its technological production processes and this is how this new series is explained as a transition.

In addition to an improved architecture (which is not completely new) with Willow Cove cores and working frequencies above 5 GHz to maintain dominance in IPC, one of its improvements will come from the PCIe 4.0 support. In the absence of confirmation by Intel, the motherboard manufacturers had already rumored it with an image of the characteristics of the new 500 series chipset created for this platform.

Now we get one new evidence based on a screenshot of the SANDRA application, which shows these processors running on an NVMe PCIe 4.0 SSD.

Intel Rocket Lake-S

The support is important considering that it is the most advanced bus of a current PC and because it has been one of the great advantages of the last Ryzen from AMD. Intel is expected to offer 20 lanes in total. The CPU will connect directly and will have 4 additional lanes (x16 for the GPU and x4 for the NVME drive). This means that both dedicated graphics and SSD storage will connect directly to the CPU using PCIe 4.0.

Intel Rocket Lake-S will also offer other news such as the latest generation integrated graphics, Gen12, with significant performance enhancement, support for HDMI 2.0b and DisplayPort 1.4a, and Adaptive Sync image synchronization technology. They will also have native support for Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.1, Thunderbolt 4, and USB 3.2.

It is currently unclear whether Intel will offer support for current 400 series chipset motherboards for these processors or will require newer 500 series chipsets. We hope it will come first because otherwise the cost of these Rocket Lake-S is going to shoot by having to add the new motherboards. Keep in mind that the following, the 10 nm Alder Lake, will take little time to reach the market and these will need new boards with LGA-1700 socket.

In addition to models capable of competing in performance / price with the AMD Ryzen (the ZEN 3 are just around the corner), Intel needs to clarify its entire platform and extend support with chipsets for several generations. Intel Rocket Lake-S will coexist with the current Comet Lake-S and should be available before the end of the year. On September 2, Intel will hold a virtual event and it will be a good time to definitely know all this information.