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ASUS A8N-SLI: Where's the PCI Slots???

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Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
September 17, 2005 6:22:19 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

Looking to purchase ASUS A8N-SLI and there's only 3 PCI slots. But! In
place of two of the places where there would usually be a PCI slot is a
PCI Express Slot. Now I realize PCI Express is the new graphic
interface designed to replace AGP. But what the heck is this new PCI
Express X 16??? Is this supposed to be a new interface for devices like
ethernet, sound card and modem? I have never seen a network card or any
device (other than graphics cards) use PCI Express interface.

More about : asus a8n sli pci slots

Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
September 17, 2005 2:47:02 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

It is for a second graphics card so that you can run 2 cards,but beware if
you go this route you are supposed to buy 2 cards that are matched (made
together at the same time) its only my opinion but after the problems that
my son had with one of these mobo's I would not go there again..hope this
helps..



<mahadragon@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:1126948939.525367.45050@g14g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
> Looking to purchase ASUS A8N-SLI and there's only 3 PCI slots. But! In
> place of two of the places where there would usually be a PCI slot is a
> PCI Express Slot. Now I realize PCI Express is the new graphic
> interface designed to replace AGP. But what the heck is this new PCI
> Express X 16??? Is this supposed to be a new interface for devices like
> ethernet, sound card and modem? I have never seen a network card or any
> device (other than graphics cards) use PCI Express interface.
>
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
September 17, 2005 9:11:50 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

On 17 Sep 2005 02:22:19 -0700, mahadragon@gmail.com wrote:

>Looking to purchase ASUS A8N-SLI and there's only 3 PCI slots. But! In
>place of two of the places where there would usually be a PCI slot is a
>PCI Express Slot. Now I realize PCI Express is the new graphic
>interface designed to replace AGP. But what the heck is this new PCI
>Express X 16??? Is this supposed to be a new interface for devices like
>ethernet, sound card and modem? I have never seen a network card or any
>device (other than graphics cards) use PCI Express interface.
>

Ethernet, firewire and on-board sound are built into modern
motherboards. If you really must still use a bunch of legacy cards,
get the non-SLI version ( single PCI X16 slot) of a PCIe board.
Generally they have up to 4 normal PCI slots. And yes, the x1
and X4 PCIe slots that are on most of the boards are currently
under-utilized.

Seems as if you have a lot more reading (and understanding) to do
on modern PC configurations before plunging into any such
purchase.

Consider what you really want to do with your computer over the
next couple of years--- then look at the software that will achieve
that objective --- then finally the required hardware --- in that
order.Climbing on to any hardware bandwagon like SLI regardless of
your real needs is a recipe for disappointment and poorly-spent
money.

John Lewis

- Technology early-birds are flying guinea-pigs.
Related resources
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
September 17, 2005 10:10:32 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

mahadragon@gmail.com wrote:
> Looking to purchase ASUS A8N-SLI and there's only 3 PCI slots. But! In
> place of two of the places where there would usually be a PCI slot is a
> PCI Express Slot. Now I realize PCI Express is the new graphic
> interface designed to replace AGP. But what the heck is this new PCI
> Express X 16??? Is this supposed to be a new interface for devices like
> ethernet, sound card and modem? I have never seen a network card or any
> device (other than graphics cards) use PCI Express interface.

I assume you're talking about the PCI Express x1 slots, not the x16
slots.. Eventually all devices that are using regular PCI slots now will
likely migrate to those slots. There is not much using them right now,
though PCI-E x1 network cards do exist..

--
Robert Hancock Saskatoon, SK, Canada
To email, remove "nospam" from hancockr@nospamshaw.ca
Home Page: http://www.roberthancock.com/
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
September 17, 2005 10:46:42 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

Hello Robert Hancock, yes I did some more research and I realized that
I was actually talking about the PCI Express X1 slot, not the X16 slot.
I have been doing searches for network cards, modem cards, and sound
cards that utilize PCI Express X1 and I can't find any.

It is very hard for me to believe that as you said, "eventually all
devices that are using regular PCI slots now will likely migrate to
those slots." Usually when you see a migration as you have described,
you hear about things on sites such as Tom's hardware. However, if you
goto Tom's hardware the only thing you see is information about PCI
Express X16. There is no info regarding PCI Express X1.

TDP - you missed my point. I am well aware of PCI Express and it's use
for graphics cards and yes I'm aware that the motherboard I mentioned
about is SLI capable. I'm not interested in discussing PCI Express and
it's use for graphics cards. I did make the mistake of saying PCI
Express X16 instead of PCI Express X1 so I was confusing in that
regard, sorry.

John Lewis - I just used the motherboard above as an example. I would
likely not buy the Asus A8N. I know for a fact that I will not use the
SLI as the performance gain (IMHO) is minimal and not cost effective.
If I did buy a motherboard it would probably not have all the onboard
stuff on it (it would be a basic board) due to the fact that I have my
own high performance sound card, ethernet, modem, and usb ports. It's
just alarming to see some ASUS motherboards with as many as 4 or 5 PCI
X1 slots and I have yet to find one peripheral that uses those slots.

I spent last Friday at Fry's electronics and I was looking at the Asus
boards and I found little PCI X1 slots located in little spots all over
the board (not just in the traditional PCI slot spaces but) in
different places and I was wondering what in the devil all those slots
were used for. I counted 5 PCI X1 slots on one motherboard (I don't
remember which board). What a waste of space.
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
September 18, 2005 12:31:22 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

Here ya go:

http://www.digit-life.com/news.html?122267

Bill

That article is two days old. It's a good thing for you I didn't post
my question 3 days ago or you wouldn't have any response!

Why Belkin?? How come we can't get reputable companies like Audigy,
Creative, or Linksys to make peripherals for PCI Express X 1?
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
September 18, 2005 2:30:36 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

<mahadragon@gmail.com> wrote in message
> Why Belkin?? How come we can't get reputable companies like Audigy,
> Creative, or Linksys to make peripherals for PCI Express X 1?
>
The PCI-x bus is new. There weren't many PCI cards available when it first
replaced the ISA bus.
September 18, 2005 2:42:11 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

In article <1127014282.390958.269070@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com>,
mahadragon@gmail.com says...
> Here ya go:
>
> http://www.digit-life.com/news.html?122267
>
> Bill
>
> That article is two days old. It's a good thing for you I didn't post
> my question 3 days ago or you wouldn't have any response!

Nah, I'd have just waited 24 hours to post. :) 

>
> Why Belkin?? How come we can't get reputable companies like Audigy,
> Creative, or Linksys to make peripherals for PCI Express X 1?
>
>

First one I found on Google.

Seriously, PCI Express just hasn't been out that long. Same for
Windows XP64. Finding drivers for it is a pain right now. A year from
now there'll be more drivers just like there'll be more PCI Express
cards. Heck, I saw an LSI Logic SCSI card that was PCI Express that
took an X8 slot. Now, what motherboard are you going to stick that in?
<rhetorical question>

There used to be a bunch of motherboards that had that stupid ACR
slot. Whoever used that?

OTOH, I've got a lot of ISA cards with no slots to put them in.

Just wait until motherboards don't even use copper contacts for logic
connections. They'll be using fiber optic ~gigahertz busses.

Personally, I'm just going to hang on to this old fashioned Abit AV8
AGP board for a while. I figure an upgrade to the last, fastest AGP
graphics card they'll make and an AMD64 X2 4800+ processor will keep me
going for a couple of years.

Bill
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
September 18, 2005 7:43:29 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

On 17 Sep 2005 18:46:42 -0700, mahadragon@gmail.com wrote:

>Hello Robert Hancock, yes I did some more research and I realized that
>I was actually talking about the PCI Express X1 slot, not the X16 slot.
>I have been doing searches for network cards, modem cards, and sound
>cards that utilize PCI Express X1 and I can't find any.
>
>It is very hard for me to believe that as you said, "eventually all
>devices that are using regular PCI slots now will likely migrate to
>those slots." Usually when you see a migration as you have described,
>you hear about things on sites such as Tom's hardware. However, if you
>goto Tom's hardware the only thing you see is information about PCI
>Express X16. There is no info regarding PCI Express X1.
>
>TDP - you missed my point. I am well aware of PCI Express and it's use
>for graphics cards and yes I'm aware that the motherboard I mentioned
>about is SLI capable. I'm not interested in discussing PCI Express and
>it's use for graphics cards. I did make the mistake of saying PCI
>Express X16 instead of PCI Express X1 so I was confusing in that
>regard, sorry.
>
>John Lewis - I just used the motherboard above as an example. I would
>likely not buy the Asus A8N. I know for a fact that I will not use the
>SLI as the performance gain (IMHO) is minimal and not cost effective.
>If I did buy a motherboard it would probably not have all the onboard
>stuff on it (it would be a basic board) due to the fact that I have my
>own high performance sound card, ethernet, modem, and usb ports. It's
>just alarming to see some ASUS motherboards with as many as 4 or 5 PCI
>X1 slots and I have yet to find one peripheral that uses those slots.
>
>I spent last Friday at Fry's electronics and I was looking at the Asus
>boards and I found little PCI X1 slots located in little spots all over
>the board (not just in the traditional PCI slot spaces but) in
>different places and I was wondering what in the devil all those slots
>were used for. I counted 5 PCI X1 slots on one motherboard (I don't
>remember which board). What a waste of space.
>

But how many PCI ( non-e) slots do you now really need on a modern
motherboard, considering the integrated peripherals ? And the PCIe x1
and x4 slots will be usefully applied once PCIe is the norm and the
current fixation with video cards has died down.

BTW, the spare x16 slot on a SLI motherboard is likely to be used
by a future high-performance peripheral, such as a real-time video
editor or a physics processor for gaming ( in x8/x8 mode on the
current SLI boards, and in x16/x16 mode on the upcoming motherboards
using the new nForce4 SLI X16 chip-set. )

There are many SLI motherboards out there that still have the second
video slot empty, and it probably will continue to be empty for quite
a while, particularly with the advent of the high-performance
single-socket PCIe video cards, 7800GTX, 7800GT and the upcoming
Ati X1800. nVidia has now shipped almost 2 million SLI
chip-sets.......

John Lewis
September 18, 2005 9:04:53 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

In article <1127014282.390958.269070@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com>,
mahadragon@gmail.com wrote:

> Here ya go:
>
> http://www.digit-life.com/news.html?122267
>
> Bill
>
> That article is two days old. It's a good thing for you I didn't post
> my question 3 days ago or you wouldn't have any response!
>
> Why Belkin?? How come we can't get reputable companies like Audigy,
> Creative, or Linksys to make peripherals for PCI Express X 1?

The problem is, you don't have any appreciation for exactly how
high tech PCI-Express really is. Both it and SATA have taken
a big leap, compared to the technologies they replace.

The PCI Express signals work at 2.5 gigabits/sec. Up to a few years
ago, you would only find those signals inside fiber optic networking
equipment, where the circuit packs cost $100,000 a piece. Or
inside test instruments costing $50,000 and upwards.

The practical upper limit for signal transmission on an FR4 PCB
material, is about 3Gb/sec. I have not been keeping up on the
technology, but perhaps a signal can be pushed 18" at that speed,
without the use of more complicated I/O pad design (pre-emphasis ?).
FR4 PCB material is lossy, especially at high frequencies. No
motherboard, or add-in card manufacturer, wants to use exotic
dielectrics for the printed circuit material.

For a new technology to be successful, it must be easily applied
by humble ordinary engineers. If only a hundred specialists can
make the technology, it will never be wide spread.

At the silicon end, up until a few years ago, maybe you would
find LVDS I/O pads operating at 622Mb/sec or with a few companies,
perhaps twice that I/O rate (1.2Gb/sec). There really weren't a lot
of good reasons to make I/O pads that work faster than that (with
the exception of telecom and fiber optics customers and the like,
and the business they generate is minimal).

What does that mean to your average company ? First, you need
someone who knows how to route a cheap FR4 PCB with the 2.5Gb/sec
signals. Those guys don't grow on trees. Next, you have to use the
latest silicon technology (90nm perhaps), to get the 2.5Gb/sec
I/O pad to drive the signals. If you are doing analog signal
processing, perhaps the analog functions plus the digital functions
you need, are not available in the same cell library - this
stuff all has to live on the same chip, after all.

In other words, you need deep pockets, to fund the new lab equipment
(measure eye opening of PCI Express I/O signals), to find the
silicon tech that supports both your applications circuits and
also the PCI Express I/O.

And, not all add-in card areas seem to have continued interest
in hardware development. I don't expect to see cheap PCI Express
SCSI controllers for example. There is this RAID controller on
Newegg, but I wouldn't expect to find a non-RAID controller
any time soon, nor one at a decent price.

LSI Logic LSI00008 PCI Express x8 SCSI RAID ($620)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

SATA is the future, and there should be more SATA cards than SCSI.

Areca ARC-1220 PCI-Express x8 SATA Controller Card RAID ($695)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

With the old 32 bit PCI, the signals work at 33Mb/sec or 66Mb/sec,
versus PCI Express 2500Mb/sec. That is a factor of 38 faster
in the latter case. It will take time for the necessary tools
and information to spread, before any garage operation can
make PCI Express hardware.

Paul
September 18, 2005 11:19:14 AM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

On Sat, 17 Sep 2005 22:42:11 -0700, Bill
<spamtrap@tinlc.lumbercartel.com> wrote:

>In article <1127014282.390958.269070@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com>,
>mahadragon@gmail.com says...
>> Here ya go:
>>
>> http://www.digit-life.com/news.html?122267
>>
>> Bill
>>
>> That article is two days old. It's a good thing for you I didn't post
>> my question 3 days ago or you wouldn't have any response!
>
> Nah, I'd have just waited 24 hours to post. :) 
>
>>
>> Why Belkin?? How come we can't get reputable companies like Audigy,
>> Creative, or Linksys to make peripherals for PCI Express X 1?
>>
>>
>
> First one I found on Google.
>
> Seriously, PCI Express just hasn't been out that long. Same for
>Windows XP64. Finding drivers for it is a pain right now. A year from
>now there'll be more drivers just like there'll be more PCI Express
>cards. Heck, I saw an LSI Logic SCSI card that was PCI Express that
>took an X8 slot. Now, what motherboard are you going to stick that in?
><rhetorical question>
>
> There used to be a bunch of motherboards that had that stupid ACR
>slot. Whoever used that?
>
> OTOH, I've got a lot of ISA cards with no slots to put them in.
>
> Just wait until motherboards don't even use copper contacts for logic
>connections. They'll be using fiber optic ~gigahertz busses.
>
> Personally, I'm just going to hang on to this old fashioned Abit AV8
>AGP board for a while. I figure an upgrade to the last, fastest AGP
>graphics card they'll make and an AMD64 X2 4800+ processor will keep me
>going for a couple of years.
>
> Bill
>
>
The part that gets real interesting is not the pci slots or the pci-e
slots, but the fact that so many motherboards and periphials need a
slot opening to offer the external connectors, in one case I needed
four additional empty slots to mount all the connectors to the slot
covers and now I see that some of the water cooler people are mounting
external radiators and routing the hoses thru an empty slot cover,
eventually you end up with every slot cover taken and no actual room
for pci or pci-e cards

Grep
Anonymous
a b V Motherboard
September 18, 2005 11:38:36 PM

Archived from groups: alt.comp.periphs.mainboard.asus (More info?)

On Sun, 18 Sep 2005 07:19:14 GMT, grep <grep@verizon.net> wrote:

>The part that gets real interesting is not the pci slots or the pci-e
>slots, but the fact that so many motherboards and periphials need a
>slot opening to offer the external connectors, in one case I needed
>four additional empty slots to mount all the connectors to the slot
>covers and now I see that some of the water cooler people are mounting
>external radiators and routing the hoses thru an empty slot cover,
>eventually you end up with every slot cover taken and no actual room
>for pci or pci-e cards
>
>Grep

While I was puting my new PC together I got stuck in with drills and
files and mounted the COM, Games and 4 extra USB connectors so that my
PCI and PCI-E slots were free.

I am surprized the case manufacturers do not provide knockouts for
easy fitting of all the extra connectors provided with modern
motherboards.

Gordy
!