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10Gb Ethernet has been around for many years now, and it is only the past couple of years prices have started to drop but it is still restrictively expensive for your average user.

With the launch of Wi-Fi 6, we now have the promise of multi-gigabit wireless, but it is our Ethernet that is now holding us back.

Several 2.5Gb and 5Gb controllers have come out, and there are a few semi-affordable adaptors such as the TRENDnet USB-C 3.1 to 2.5GBASE-T adaptor. Then AMD X570 motherboards have started to bring multi-gig to the desktop but at a significant premium, partially thanks to the PCIe4.0 they also feature.

It now looks like Intel will be the driving force at making multi-gig affordable. It is not quite the 10Gb Ethernet I wished for, but it is a step in the right direction.

Intel plans to launch its low-cost i225-V “Foxville” ethernet PHY controller in the near future.

The i225-V is expected to feature in the upcoming wave of socket LGA2066 motherboards for Intel’s “Cascade Lake-X” HEDT processors, followed by the company’s 400-series chipset that launches alongside the “Comet Lake-S” MSDT processors. 

The i225-V is a low-cost PHY that relies on PCH-based Ethernet MAC and its proprietary PCIe-based bus that runs at half the data-rate of PCIe. This is precisely why the i219-V doesn’t feature on AMD motherboards, but rather its pricier sibling, the i211-AT, which comes with an integrated MAC and a standard PCIe interface.

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