Can you use a PCIe 4.0 SSD on your existing motherboard?

Can you use a PCIe 4.0 SSD on your existing motherboard?

Best answer: Officially, no. The new X570 chipset for AMD Ryzen systems is currently the only confirmed way to use a PCIe 4.0 SSD at its full performance. For everyone else, our best recommendation is currently the Samsung 970 EVO Plus.Blazing speed: Samsung 970 EVO Plus (From $80 at Amazon)

AMD's X570 chipset required

PCIe 4.0 is a standard, but so far the only confirmed way to make use of it is on AMD's X570 platform. This was announced at Computex 2019 alongside the new Ryzen 3000 processors.

As such, the major motherboard manufacturers, including ASUS, Gigabyte, ASRock and MSI, should all have X570 motherboards available from July 7 to go with the Ryzen 3000 launch.

X570 will offer a raft of other improvements over previous generation AMD chipsets, but specifically to PCIe 4.0, it's currently the only one that will officially support the new standard and its super fast SSDs.

The first SSDs have already been announced, but so far the only hint on pricing has been for the Corsair MP600 which was briefly listed on Amazon U.S. starting at $250 for the 1TB model. The Japanese listing claims a July 13 availability.

Some older motherboards did get updates

Initially, it looked like older motherboards would be able to accept a limited amount of PCIe 4.0 hardware through a BIOS update. Indeed, some manufacturers started pushing them out — the Aorus X470 motherboard received a BIOS update that enabled PCIe 4.0 on the top slot.

AMD has since come out and said that officially it will not be supporting PCIe 4.0 on pre-X570 motherboards.

"Pre-X570 boards will not support PCIe Gen 4. There's no guarantee that older motherboards can reliably run the more stringent signaling requirements of Gen4, and we simply cannot have a mix of 'yes, no, maybe' in the market for all the older motherboards. The potential for confusion is too high. When final BIOSes are released for 3rd Gen Ryzen (AGESA 1000+), Gen4 will not be an option anymore. We wish we could've enabled this backwards, but the risk is too great."

The reasoning is sound, especially with regards AMD's duty of care to its customers. If you have a motherboard that already received such a BIOS update, then you may have some success. But the safe bet is not to bank on that before spending hundreds of dollars on a new SSD.

You're also going to get a lot more heat from PCIe 4.0 and the X570 chipset than your current system is probably equipped to handle (as evidenced by the number of X570 boards already announced with dedicated fans on the chipset).

Nothing from Intel

All this sounds good for AMD PC builders but what about if you prefer using Intel CPUs? Well that's where the disappointment kicks in. Right now, Intel hasn't officially confirmed whether it will even support PCIe 4.0 at all.

There's no guarantee that it ever will, either. The next stage, PCIe 5.0, is in development and if that accelerates at all, Intel could just skip a generation. Nobody knows right now.

Recommendation for everyone else

Samsung 970 EVO Plus

Samsung 970 EVO Plus (Image credit: Windows Central)

So, you can't get a new, ridiculously fast PCIe 4.0 SSD to upgrade your existing rig. So what can you get? If you're in the market for super fast storage, as we'd assume you are if you're interested in PCIe 4.0, then there's a great alternative from Samsung.

The 970 EVO Plus is currently one of our absolute favorite SSDs with read and write speeds up to 3,500 and 3,300 MB/s respectively. It's reliable, comes with a great warranty, easy to use companion software, and with capacity up to 2TB you won't be left short.

It's also surprisingly affordable given the performance it offers.

Richard Devine
Managing Editor - Tech, Reviews

Richard Devine is a Managing Editor at Windows Central with over a decade of experience. A former Project Manager and long-term tech addict, he joined Mobile Nations in 2011 and has been found on Android Central and iMore as well as Windows Central. Currently, you'll find him steering the site's coverage of all manner of PC hardware and reviews. Find him on Mastodon at