Nvidia may be sticking with the PCIe 4.0 interface with its next-gen Lovelace graphics cards, according to a new rumor.
This comes from a major hardware leaker on Twitter, Kopite7kimi, who leaked some new nuggets of information in some recent tweets about what will likely be RTX 4000 GPUs (although Nvidia may deviate from the obvious next step for the name).
Existing Nvidia RTX 3000 (Ampere) GPUs use a PCIe 4.0 slot on the motherboard, but with Lovelace it was thought that Nvidia might eventually upgrade to PCIe 5.0.
Mainly because Nvidia is embracing PCIe 5.0 with Hopper, its next-gen heavy (data center) GPUs, so it would follow to some degree that Team Green might be looking to move incoming consumer graphics cards in the same direction. At least from a marketing standpoint, especially now that PCIe 5.0 is provided by Intel with the 12th Gen Alder Lake lineup, and the cutting-edge standard is expected to be adopted by AMD with next-gen Zen 4 CPUs which is set to debut later in 2022 (when Lovelace is set to arrive).
Additionally, Nvidia is expected to use PCIe 5.0 power connectors with the RTX 4000 line – as already seen with the RTX 3090 Ti, in fact, given the high power demands of the GPU – Lovelace will therefore theoretically use PCIe 5.0 for the food, but stay there. PCIe 4.0 interface.
Analysis: Will we really need PCIe 5.0 before RTX 5000, anyway?
While it might seem like an unusual situation to have a graphics card with a PCIe 5.0 power supply but plugged into a PCIe 4.0 interface, that’s not really the case. that surprising when you think about it. As mentioned, the new 3090 Ti already does this, and is meant to be a sort of test for RTX 4000 cards, if the rumor is to be believed (as reported by Neowin). Naturally, this is all still speculation, so let’s not get carried away – we’re being cautious about how much stock to put into this new rumor anyway.
Still, it makes sense that Nvidia would want to keep PCIe 4.0 for next-gen just from a practical standpoint. It would cost more to equip Lovelace graphics cards with the state-of-the-art PCIe 5.0 interface, and with no real end – PCIe 4.0 already offers plenty of bandwidth.
While PCIe 5.0 would future-proof, of course, realistically when PCIe 4.0 struggles to keep up with gaming demands, Nvidia will likely release RTX 5000 cards – and these may come with the PCIe interface. 5.0.
In short, it doesn’t seem like a need to upgrade to PCIe 5.0 just yet, and the savings from PCIe 4.0 can probably be better spent elsewhere to improve Lovelace’s performance. So we won’t be particularly surprised if that turns out to be the case, or worried for that matter – the real concern about the RTX 4000 family for us are those rumors about huge levels of power consumption.
With tales of Lovelace graphics cards pushing power consumption up to 600W, or maybe even more – like 800W at the flagship level – that’s certainly the biggest worry about next-gen GPUs. What gamers don’t want is a situation where they have to think about upgrading their power supply as well as buying a new graphics card (GPUs are already more than expensive enough, although at least the prices swollen have finally gone down lately).