In response to several inquiries about a particular issue where the first M.2 slot is disabled on some MSI B560 motherboards, the brand finally released some insights about them.

MSI M.2 Slot

Talking specifically about the MAG B560 TOMAHAWK WIFI and MAG B560 TORPEDO, MSI has explained that the 1st slot is reserved exclusively for PCIe 4.0 lanes, and for your information, Intel’s 10th gen CPU doesn’t support them and instead, it starts from the latest 11th gen.

But why other models with multiple M.2 slots are able to utilize the first slot you ask? Well, in the case of the MORTAR, BAZOOKA, and PRO-VDH variants, these are designed with an internal switch that enables it to identify the CPU itself as to whether it is 10th gen or 11th gen and smartly adapts according to the chipset requirement. In short, TOMAHAWK and TORPEDO don’t have this internal switch so it wouldn’t be able to identify, and to prevent any compatibility and hardware issue, the 1st M.2 slot is disabled to avoid complications. And yes we know this is kinda weird from a user standpoint.

Anyways, here’s a quick rundown of some of the MSI motherboards alongside the PCIe compatibility across 10th and 11th gen Intel CPU for a comparison.

10th Gen Intel CPU

Motherboard

M2_1

M2_2

M2_3

MPG B560I GAMING EDGE WIFI

3.0 x4

3.0 x4

NONE

MAG B560 TOMAHAWK WIFI

DISABLED

3.0 x4

3.0 x4

MAG B560 TORPEDO

DISABLED

3.0 x4

3.0 x4

MAG B560M MORTAR / WIFI

3.0 x4 3.0 x4 NONE

MAG B560M BAZOOKA

3.0 x4

3.0 x4

NONE

B560M PRO-VDH / WIFI

3.0 x4

3.0 x4

NONE

B560M-A PRO

3.0 x4

NONE

NONE

B560M PRO

3.0 x4

NONE

NONE

B560M PRO-E

3.0 x4

NONE

NONE

11th Gen Intel CPU

Motherboard

M2_1 M2_2 M2_3

MPG B560I GAMING EDGE WIFI

4.0 x4

3.0 x4 NONE

MAG b560 TOMAHAWK WIFI

4.0 x4

3.0 x4

3.0 x4

MAG B560 TORPEDO

4.0 x4

3.0 x4

3.0 x4

MAG B560M MORTAR / WIFI

4.0 x4

3.0 x4

NONE

MAG B560M BAZOOKA

4.0 x4

3.0 x4

NONE

B560M PRO-VDH / WIFI

4.0 x4

3.0 x4

NONE

B560M-A PRO

4.0 x4

NONE

NONE

B560M PRO

4.0 x4

NONE

NONE

B560M PRO-E

4.0 x4

NONE

NONE

Therefore, if you have current and future needs for PCIe 4.0, it is better to go for the 11th gen Intel CPU right now especially if you’re looking out for the i5 models. They are honestly not bad for the current market prices and offer you actual processing power without overspending and perhaps overheating. But if you got a deal on a 10th gen and will probably use it for another 4 to 5 years and has zero priority on PCIe 4.0, just make sure you pick the right motherboards to go with them.

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