Are all Z690 Motherboards DDR5 Compatible? (Explained)

Z690 motherboards have been produced to give Intel 12 Gen Alder Lake processors an optimal performance. And with more and more sellers moving towards adopting the Z690 motherboard, people are curious as to what RAMS these motherboards are compatible with, especially when it comes to the DDR versions of RAMS with the newer technology upgrades hitting the globe.

So, here’s a breakdown of whether or not all Z690 motherboards are compatible with DDR5 CPUs. Let’s take a look!

Are all Z690 Motherboards DDR5 Compatible

Are all Z690 Motherboards DDR5 Compatible?

The simple answer is no, not all Z690 Motherboards are compatible with DDR5. The Z690 has many different models from many different manufacturers that support DDR5 and DDR4 respectively.

In some models, the difference between the two motherboards is obvious. For example, ASUS’s “PRIME Z690-P-CSM” supports DDR5 while the “PRIME Z690M-PLUS D4-CSM” supports DDR4. 

However, there are some manufacturers that utilise naming methods that are less obvious. BIOSTAR’s “Z690 VALKYRIE” supports DDR5 memory, while the “Z690A VALKYRIE” supports DDR4 memory.

The difference between the two is not automatically obvious making it difficult for customers to differentiate between the two. Thus, it is important to remember while making a purchase that just because it is a Z690 motherboard does not mean that it is compatible with DDR5.

Now you might be wondering what exactly is the difference between motherboards that support DDR5 and DDR4 respectively. However, there is no specific answer to this question, as different manufacturers have different approaches, making it difficult to judge the difference.

For example, if we take a look at BIOSTAR’s Z690 VALKYRIE series, the only difference between the DDR5 and DDR4 compatible models is that the support for the memory slot is different.

Other than that, all the functions between the two are the same. If we take a look at another manufacturer ASUS, their approach is to use their DDR5 compatible motherboards in their most high-end products, while the DDR4 compatible motherboards are used in their lower-priced products.

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How many RAM slots do Z690 motherboards have?

The number of RAM slots on the Z690 motherboards depends on both the manufacturer and the model that you purchase. For example, ASUS’s “PRIME Z690-P” series has 2 ram slots available for its customer to use, while ASUS’s “PRIME Z690F” series has 4 dual channel DDR5 memory slots that can be used to upgrade your motherboard’s RAM.

  Both series have the same manufacturer, but as they are different models, they also have a differing number of RAM slots.

Another manufacturer and series that also have four RAM slots is BIOSTAR’s “Z690 VALKYRIE.” The VALKYRIE series by BIOSTAR supports up to four DDR5-6000 memory slots, that allow up to 128 GB of storage, making sure that its users can make the most out of their motherboard, and allow them to fully maximize their potential. 

Thus, depending on the model you purchase, and the manufacturer you decide to go with, you can scale your RAM slots depending on your requirement, from either two slots, and up to four.

Read: Test a Motherboard’s Graphic Card Compatibility

Benefits of Z690 motherboards with DDR5

  • If you plan on adding Intel’s 12th Gen CPUs into your desktop build, the Z690 motherboards are your best option, as they will best be able to support your CPU.
  • The Z690 motherboards’ most prized feature are the expansion slots. With the motherboard having 20 PCLe 5.0 slots, it can support various expansion devices.
  • Intel’s Z690 motherboard chipsets feature HD audio, as the chip hardware can support up to 16 PCM audio channels, and 15 input/output channels, providing you with a powerful audio solution.
  • The Intel chipset also now comes included with Direct Memory Interface (DMI) 4.0. This helps facilitate data transmission between the CPU and input/output connectors like audio, Ethernet, storage devices and Wi-Fi, allowing the user a seamless experience.
  • DDR4 in comparison to DDR5, transfers data at the speed of 25.6 GBs/s while the DDR5 tops out at the speed of 38.4 GBs/s, with a much higher data transfer rate.
  • DDR4 can hold up to 64 GBs per module (RAM stick) while DDR5 can tops out a whopping 256 GB per module, making this one of the most significant upgrades between the two.

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Why are Z690 motherboards the best?

  • So far, only Z690 motherboards are able to support Intel’s 12th Generation CPUs, which boast a new core architecture design that promises performance like never before. 
  • Z690 motherboards are also able to support DDR5 memory, which is the new replacement for the current DDR4 memory configuration. This helps increase the density and bandwidth of the RAM, while decreasing the volume of power that is consumed. As a result of these changes, the DDR5 is able to provide a strong increase in performance and a more seamless experience for the user.
  • The new Z690 motherboards along with Intel’s 12th Gen CPUs support the newest iteration of PCIe, PCIe 5.0, which offers a transfer rate that is almost double that of PCIe 4.0s, clocking in at about 32 gigatransfers per second. This upgrade allows manufacturers to produce products that perform significantly better than any other products currently available on the market.
  • Z690 motherboards offer some of the best wired and wireless connectivity available on the market. The chipsets boast a completely integrated connectivity solution that allows you to get Wi-Fi 6e, 2.5 GB ethernet, and Bluetooth connectivity all on the same product.


Z690 motherboards with new chipsets and DDR5 RAM are a big deal for the PC industry. If Intel can outperform its AMD competitors, it’s only time. The Z690 is the first motherboard for home use to work with Intel’s 12th-generation Core CPUs.

The Z690 motherboards have DDR5 memory and PCIe 5.0, faster and more efficient than their counterparts. The latest DDR5 RAM and PCIe slots will significantly improve performance.

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