Z690 marks the debut of the 600 chipset series, designed specifically to make the most out of the Intel Alder Lake series CPU. Supporting K and Non-K chips (K chips are favored by users looking to overclock CPUs thanks to a slightly higher headroom on processing power), the chipset will also support DDR5 alongside DDR4. It’s nice to see the backward compatibility, but you’ll probably want to go for DDR5 RAM to take full advantage of the Alder Lake infrastructure.
PCIe Gen 5 is supported alongside some enhanced overclocking abilities, which means users will be able to get the most out of the chipset and Alder Lake out of the box. Make sure to do some research on max clock speeds for the CPU in mind first though, no one wants to burn out their CPU on day one. The CPU socket is switching from LGA 1200s square socket to LGA 1700 socket, a rectangular configuration that will require new coolers or brackets from your existing cooler manufacturer.