What is PCIe 4.0 and Will It Boost Gaming


Each and every day the technology is getting updated with more advance improvements and the PCIe 4.0 is also another great piece of technology on the PCI Express technology. Even though it’s better than all the previous technologies, Is it worth to use PCIe 4.0 and what is PCIe 4.0? PCIe 4.0 is the latest version of computer bus for your graphics card, network cards or even the latest NVMe drives. The previous version of PCI express which is PCIe 3.0 was introduced in the year 2010 but it took almost 10 years to bring the PCIe 4.0 into the real-world components.

But still, it’s not that much obvious as only AMD manufactures PCIe 4.0 supported motherboards and this is more similar to the situation of RTX or Real-Time Ray-Tracing at the first place. Even though it’s almost 2 years after the initial launch of the first RTX card, yet only a few numbers of games support the real-time ray tracing.

What is PCIe?

The letters PCIe stands for Peripheral Component Interconnect Express and the latest PC bus and more likely it’s better to use the term expansion bus, used to connect latest components into our PC such as graphics cards, SSD drives, network adapters, capture cards, sounds cards, etc. Before PCIe came into life, in late 1980s IBM PCs these expansion slots were known as XT-bus or AT-bus slots and later it got renamed as “ISA” which stands for Industry Standard Architecture and this was quite similar to the current PCIe version as it could almost connect every main component to the motherboard without being limited to the graphics card.

Different ISA Ports
Different ISA Ports

But the speed of each of these versions isn’t enough and as a solution, the PCI standard was introduced in the year 1992 and finally, in 2004 the PCI Express expansion slots came to use by giving much more improvements with higher speeds.

A PCIe lane is a serial connection used to transfer data and by using more lanes, a higher amount of data can be transferred each time and that makes the difference in each number of lanes inside one PCIe slot. By now the number of x1, x4, x8 and even x16 lanes supported slots can be seen on modern motherboards and in each different versions of PCIe tends to give more faster transfer rates than the previous one.

PCIe Versions

  • 2004: PCIe 1.0 – 250MB/s per lane
  • 2007: PCIe 2.0 – 500MB/s per lane
  • 2010: PCIe 3.0 – 985MB/s per lane
  • 2017: PCIe 4.0 – 1.97GB/s per lane

You’ll see the transfer rates of each and every version according to the number of lanes respectively from the below graph.

Data Transfer Rates in Each PCIe Versions
Data Transfer Rates in Each PCIe Versions

With these different speeds that can be gained by a different number of lanes, each and every component needs a different number of lanes to give the best performance such as ost of the graphics cards required 16 lane slots while a sound card only requires 1 lane slot to perform.

What is PCIe 4.0?

PCIe 4.0 is the next big version even though the 5.0 version is also there because it will take another a lot of time to reach the speed that they are targeting to get from that version. However in PCIe 3.0, we could only have 16GB Per Second (real-world benchmarks gives only 15.75GB Per Second) in each direction when using 16 lanes and each and every version, the developers’ group wanted to give twice more speed than the previous version.

What is PCIe 4.0
High Speed Data Transferring

And now you’ll understand why it took almost 10 years because the task of pushing 32 Gigabytes per second is not that much easy. The speed of 32 Gigabytes is excessively huge and non of the components or tasks doesn’t require that much huge transfer rate. When comparing two versions PCIe 3.0 vs PCIe 4.0, the only difference is the higher bandwidth and transfer rates which we mentioned in comparing each version. Remember these speeds can differ from real-world benchmarks but can it boost the gaming experience even you are using the latest 4.0 version on your system.

Is PCIe 4.0 worth it for Gaming?

The shortest answer is a BIG NO!
When listening to the speeds, most of the people thinks that using these components can boost the gaming experience, but remember the previous 3.0 version is more than enough for gaming. Even if you are using the AMD’s latest 4.0 supported motherboard, more likely there will be a difference of 2 or 3 frames per second and in most cases, it doesn’t ever change. this is same for the SSD NVMe drives as well.

The less loading times is given when using the SSD inside the PC but in gaming, this doesn’t even noticeable. So if you are willing to boost your gaming PC, try buying a graphics card with better GPU and VRAM which will significantly improve by giving higher frame rates without lags.

But before that read these articles which can help you out to enhance your gaming experience without getting into any troubles.

The PCI Express 4.0 will be useful in making external graphics cards as it requires to transfer data much faster when you are using it outside the system and also for the research centres which uses thousands or even more graphics cards for the researches. Still, the 3.0 version is more enough for gamers to do their job.


But if you are willing to build a high-end workstation for editing tasks using 4K technology, then probably the PCIe 4.0 will help you carry the tasks much faster but the same results can be gained by using 3.0 also if you are using the correct components. With the inspire of the manufacturers, the PCIe 4.0 will be used more cases but the cost of these items will also be higher than a normal item in the market.

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