According to the latest reports Intel will be shelving the iteration of their upcoming Z390 Express chipset, which they had detailed last month. This chipset was sure to have new hardware features. Intel could now re-brand the current Z370 Express chipset as Z390 Express and simply bolster its reference design with heftier CPU VRM specifications, which will be for the upcoming 8-core LGA1151 processors.
The current Z370 Express chipset is almost identical to its predecessor the Z270 Express. So having Intel rebrand it basically means we will get the same feature-set and hardware features we thought we would be getting in the new Z390 Express chipset will be axed. This included more USB 3.1 gen2 / gen 1 ports directly from the PCH, integrated WiFi MAC, and Intel SmartSound technology.
We currently do not know the motive behind this move, but it could be a cost-benefit analysis and having to product the chipset on the busy 14 nm silicon fabrication node, opposed to the 22 nm node which the current 300 series chipsets are being made on.
The block diagram which you see above has been quietly removed from Intel’s website. It has also been rumored that this move could force AMD to rethink its plans to launch the Z490 socket AM4 chipset.