PCI-Express 4.0 Motherboard - Chipset Z590

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 Tiger Lake First PC was made by IBM in August 1981. It was based on an open, card-based architecture with seven slots, which allowed third parties to develop own cards for it. It used the Intel 8088 CPU running at 4.77 MHz, containing 29'000 transistors. No fans inside desktop case. Open based concept was the reason for it's quickly accept on the market, and became more popular than other 'closed' platforms (like Apple, Commodore, Spectrum, Atari ...). First laptop, similar to today's laptops, was Compaq Armada at the late 1990s. Around 2010, laptops took over the dominance of the PC market. Therefore, it is not surprising that today the development of microprocessors is primarily focused on mobile devices.

Accordingly, the development process of the microprocessor is no different with Intel. Intel's Tiger Lake is codename for the 11th generation Intel Core mobile processors based on the new core microarchitecture, manufactured using Intel's third-generation 10 nm process known as 10SF (10 nm SuperFin). Tiger Lake replaces the Ice Lake family of mobile processors, representing an optimization step in Intel's process–architecture–optimization model. These quad-core processors are designed for 'ultraportable gaming' laptops with 28-35 W TDP (Thermal Design Power).

With a small TDP everything is easier to do, but for powerful computers the situation is different. It is not easy to make a powerful processor for an ATX platform computer. There is a big 'battle' between AMD and Intel over this. Everyone else is 'out of the game'. Intel's contribution is greatest in server platforms, but also in the introduction of new technologies that enable more versatile use of home computers. Their latest chipset 'z590' in community with the processor can support almost anything without the need to use an seven-slot motherboard. Therefore, it was difficult for the author of this page to find an ATX motherboard that would effectively support the use of slots without, for example, a graphics card 'covering' one slot and making it unusable.

Regarding the above, the choice of the author is the MSI (Micro-Star International) motherboard. MSI has the following motherboard categories in its program:

The author's choice is 'MPG Z590 GAMING FORCE' motherboard, without using Wi‑Fi 6 capabilities, because in the opinion of the author this feature should have SOHO gataway. But first let's look at what Intel's 'z590' series offers.

Example XVI

In this example shown in the block diagram of the chipset z590. Shown in the example motherboard supports Core i3, Core i5, Core i7 and Core i9 microprocessors of tenth and eleventh generation planned with the socket LGA 1200.

Along with the new set of processors, motherboard vendors will be launching a variety of 500-series chipset based motherboards for Rocket Lake, and these motherboards will also support current generation Comet Lake processors. These new chipsets have an x8 DMI link to the CPU, unless a Comet Lake chip is installed, then it is only x4. Similarly, Rocket Lake will also work in 400-series chipsets, and the Z490 motherboards that are advertised with PCIe 4.0 support should have this enabled through a BIOS update. But Rocket Lake will not work with H410 and B460 chipsets.

 chipset z590
Figure 3.5.52 Block schema of chipset z590.

It's almost unbelievable that everything supports the z590 chipset. There is almost no need for additional devices, which is essentially the essence for the new generation of laptops. If the laptop doesn't have an optical drive, it needs almost nothing but an 11th generation microprocessor, a z590 chipset and a couple of matching M2 devices. In my opinion, Intel has done an excellent job with microprocessors and chipset for laptops, and I expect that the final product for PCs will be in the same range.

According to the description of motherboard classes at the beginning of this page, I chose to describe the MSI motherboard 'MPG Z590 GAMING FORCE' without Wi‑Fi support, shown in the following Figure. Of the seven possible slots for the ATX motherboard format, this motherboard supports five that are fully usable using a single graphics card in the first slot. Other unused slots can be used, for example, to install a TV card, Sound card, Video Capture Card, ADA metering system or some other specialized card.

 'MPG Z590 GAMING FORCE' motherboard
Figure* 3.5.53 MSI 'MPG Z590 GAMING FORCE' motherboard. ( + / - )

The motherboard uses three full-length PCIe slots, with the top two operating at PCIe 4.0 x16 or x8/x8, and the third one operating at PCIe 3.0 x4, with two additional PCIe 3.0 x1 slots. Looking at storage options, it includes one PCIe 4.0 x4 M.2 slot, with two PCIe 3.0 x4/SATA M.2 slots, each of them covered by its own fancy purple and yellow accented heatsink. The board also includes six SATA ports with support for RAID 0, 1, 5, and 10. Located along the bottom of the PCB is a 6-pin 12 V GPU power input, which is designed to provide more power to the PCIe slots, although this is a very niche inclusion and is not entirely necessary.

The capabilities of this motherboard are best described by the block diagram in Figure 3.5.53b. The Figure shows this better than some super-expert description. Motherboard connectors are shown in the following Figure and their number can be easily increased using dedicated brackets and connectors at the motherboard.

 Connectors at 'MPG Z590 GAMING FORCE' motherboard  Easy Miner
Figure 3.5.54 Connectors at 'MPG Z590 GAMING FORCE' motherboard.  

The motherboard 'MPG Z590 GAMING FORCE' really provides versatility in its use, and although it belongs to some middle category of motherboards it is quite expensive. A popular proverb says, 'Pay, and mock.'.


I like this motherboard although it will not be in use for a long time. Namely, Intel intends to switch from LGA 1200 to LGA 1700 socket for the next generation of microprocessors, and that would be the Alder Lake - S platform, which in addition to a new socket will bring a new rectangular format for the processors. Rumors say that the purpose of this rectangular design and the rather massive number of pins are most likely due to a design change towards a multi-die design, housing two DIEs at 10 nm to compete better with the AMD platform. We'll see.


Citing of this page:
Radic, Drago. " IT - Informatics Alphabet " Split-Croatia.
{Date of access}. <https://informatics.buzdo.com/>.
Copyright © by Drago Radic. All rights reserved. | Disclaimer

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