Rumor: Biostar manual tips off the existence of a Z390 chipset

When Intel launched more Coffee Lake CPUs and their accompanying motherboards last week, the absence of the rumored Z390 chipset was conspicuous. As it happens, that chipset may still be on the way for an upcoming release. The manual for Biostar's B360 Racing GT5 motherboard clearly references a "Z390GT5" model and even lists specifications for the board inside.

Although Biostar is known for an emphasis on affordable hardware than on wacky designs, nothing stands out in the purported board save for its USB 3.1 Gen 2 ports—especially not much to set it apart from existing Z370 offerings. Moreover, the board's maximum supported CPU TDP is 95W, just enough for the Core i7-8700K. Rumors have spoken of an eight-core Coffee Lake CPU that could exceed that TDP in the past, but we wouldn't put it past Intel's silicon chops to fit eight cores in 95 W if such a chip does come into being.

So what might a Z390 chipset even entail? If one wants to extrapolate from H370's characteristics, Z390 might offer more chipset PCIe lanes than Z370, built-in USB 3.1 Gen 2 support, and built-in CNVi Wi-Fi. Biostar's purported board doesn't specifically implement any of those features, though, so we can't say for sure. Last year's leaks seemed to indicate that the Z390 chipset would include its own audio hardware, too, but this board still includes an older Realtek codec. We'll keep you updated as we hear more. Thanks to Videocardz for the tip.

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