PCI Express 3.0 Spec Delayed Until 2010, Products Until 2011

PCI Express 3.0 Spec Delayed Until 2010, Products Until 2011

So, there's good news for those hoping to make their existing machine last a little bit longer. And there's bad news for those always looking for the next big leap in computing technology. The PCI SIG, the working group responsible for the forward movement of the PCI bus, has just confirmed that the release of PCIe 3.0 will be delayed by a significant amount.

The standard was originally expected to be ratified by the end of this year, yet now the specification isn't apt to be passed off until Q2 2010. You might say that Q2 2010 doesn't feel that far away, and in our eyes, you'd be right. But remember, that's the date that the specification will be passed off; it'll be some time yet before actual PCI Express 3.0 products are produced after the coding is signed off on.  In fact, some estimates suggest that it could be late 2011 before PCIe 3.0 wares are on sale to the general public, which means that PCIe 2.0 just got a new lease on life.



If you're curious about the reasons behind the delay, the answer is pretty simple: the PCI SIG wishes to perfectly maintain backwards compatibility with PCIe 1.0 and 2.0. Also of note, it's taking a long time to verify products in the lab, and honestly, we'd rather these guys and gals get things right than push out a buggy protocol that causes all sorts of issues with expansion cards. So yeah, it'll probably be 2011 before you buy your first PCIe 3.0 GPU, but at least you can snag up that GTX 295 now without worrying over it become even more outdated even quicker.
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No biggy.  Using PCI-E 2.0 to its full extent is hard to do currently so PCI-E 3.0 might not be as helpful as 2.0 is currently unless we are looking forward to some really fast consumer grade SSD's in the near future that are affordable.

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Yeah, there's hardly any difference between running PC-E 2.0 at 16x and 8x (8x is equivalent of 16x PCI-E 1.0).  Dual 8x 2.0 is fine for most Crossfire and SLI anyway, unless you are pairing up GTX 295s or Radeon 4870s.  PCI-E 3.0 can take its time because once it comes 4.0 really shouldn't be neccessary for a long time.

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