It hasn&t been long since the first PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSDs came onto the market, but in the meantime the first models (such as the Samsung SSD 980 Pro) with read speeds of up to 7,0000 MB/s are already threatening to reach the limits of the transfer rate of a bit under 8 GB/s (4 x 2 GB/s with four PCI 4.0 lanes).
The solution lies in the next generation of the PCIe interface, because PCIe 5.0 will double the bandwidth compared to version 4.0, i.e. 4 GB/s can (theoretically) be transferred via one lane. Servers in large data centers will be the first to benefit from this bandwidth, because Samsung wants to launch a suitable PCIe 5.0 SSD in time for the market launch of Intel&s first server CPUs with PCIe 5.0 support in summer 2022. The PM1743 enterprise SSD, which is intended for data centers, uses four PCIe 5.0 lanes in the form of 1×4 (single port) or 2×2 (dual port) interfaces to transfer the data, so it has a maximum of 16 GB/s available, effectively (minus overhead) there should be around 14 GB/s left for data transfer.
The Samsung PM1743 will use the new EDSHH (Enterprise & Data Center SSD Form Factor) standard E3.S, which was specifically defined for data centers and is based on sixth generation NAND flash memory with a write endurance of 1 DWPD (Drive Writes Per Day).
Samsung SSD 980 Pro
For video editing professionals (especially when working with higher resolution formats like 6K, 8K as well as RAW), high bandwidth is always good news as it can avoid potential bottlenecks when working - be it when transferring data to and from an NVMe SSD or when using (multiple) GPUs to calculate effects.
Since experience shows that technology developed for the server market, such as the PCIe 5.0 controller belonging to PM1743, will also arrive a bit later in the prosumer market, the first PCIe 5.0 SSDs in the consumer-suitable M.2 format could already be on the market at the end of 2022 or beginning of 2023. Of course, a CPU or chipset that supports the PCIe 5.0 interface is required to utilize its speed. Intel&s Alder Lake-S (Core i-12000) CPU, which will probably be released at the end of 2021, is supposed to support PCIe 5.0, but not the corresponding chipset, i.e. only one x16 slot for the GPU will have PCIe 5.0 speed and none will be left for SSDs. However, AMD&s new Zen 4 microarchitecture-based CPUs and chipsets will probably come with comprehensive PCIe 5.0 support in early 2022.
PCI 6.0 is already in the works
. According to the plan of the PCI-Sig, a new PCIe standard including doubling of the data rate should appear approx. every 3 years, so after the PCIe 5.0 standard PCIe 6.0 will still be finally specified in 2021 with a bandwidth of 128 GB/s in one direction or 256 GB/s in two directions per x16 slot, i.e. 8 GB/per lane.