Intel Thunderbolt 5

(Image credit: Intel)

A prominent hardware leaker has alleged that while Thunderbolt 4 will come as standard for Intel Core Ultra 200 CPUs on Z890, that the upcoming CPU generation will miss out on Thunderbolt 5. 

As spotted by Videocardz, hardware leaker Golden Pig Upgrade has claimed that Intel Arrow Lake will miss out on Thunderbolt 5 support for Z890 motherboards after all, despite its unveiling last year. If true, it’s disappointing news considering that Intel 14th Gen missed out on Thunderbolt 5 at release, too. 

As a frame of reference, both Thunderbolt 3 and Thunderbolt 4 are capped at 40 Gbps which means there’s no great increase in the two technologies despite their seven-year age gap. In contrast, Thunderbolt 5 can achieve double this at 80 Gbps which can be increased to 120 Gbps through Bandwidth Boost. 

Also alleged by Golden Pig Upgrade is that Ultra Core 200 CPUs will feature just four Xe cores baked onto the chip which is half of what’s currently available through Meteor Lake for laptops. This is unlikely to be too big a deal considering most (if not all) users will pair the processor with one of the best graphics cards, but it’s worth noting. 

We can take the alleged specs for the Arrow Lake flagship as a point of comparison. It’s believed that the Intel Core Ultra 9 285K will feature 24 cores and 24 threads with a maximum boost clock of up to 5.5 GHz and a 125W TDP. In contrast, the current-generation Intel Core i9-14900K features 24 cores and 32 threads up to 6 GHz. It’s certainly a different approach moving to Disaggregated architecture from Hybrid.

Not the best impression for Arrow Lake 

Should Intel Arrow Lake miss out on Thunderbolt 5, that would mean that we would likely have to wait until Lunar Lake in laptops and Panther Lake in desktops to get ahead. 

The new connectivity standard would mean not only increased bandwidth for external GPUs and SSDs but also boosting higher resolutions and framerates of up to 540Hz and enhanced multi-monitor in 4K and 8K (via Intel)

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Aleksha McLoughlin is an experienced hardware writer. She was previously the Hardware Editor for TechRadar Gaming until September 2023. During this time, she looked after buying guides and wrote hardware reviews, news, and features. She has also contributed hardware content to the likes of PC Gamer, Trusted Reviews, Dexerto, Expert Reviews, and Android Central. When she isn’t working, you’ll often find her in mosh pits at metal gigs and festivals or listening to whatever new black and death metal has debuted that week.

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