A not-so-quick ? about PCI-e versions & upgrading my dinosaur

I have been shopping around for a new mobo lately.. reading up on pci-e stuff but the ONE thing I can't seem to get answered is what matters the most to me..

Once a mobo manufacturer incorporates a version (say v2.0 or 3.0) into the X16 slot.. does that speed apply to the others (Which is usually just more x1s now days). Every time I look at motherboards on sites like newegg or evilBay or even the manufacturer's sites.. they always tout the revisions of their graphics slots.. but never mention the rest of them. Does it just follow suit that the smaller x slots are bumped up as well?

I'm actually looking for an upgrade board for my aging Q6600 and I want one that has v2.0 x1 slots for some upgrade cards.. like a USB 3.0 or SATA 3 card. I realize that even if I find a board that is v2.0.. that a card may not bring me full speed even in a x4 or unused x16 slot, but it would certainly do better than my present 680i board.. where even my old 8800GTs (SLI) have never shown their full potential.

I'm on a real tight budget.. have to keep my Q6600.. my two 8800GTs and recently just purchased 2 60GB SSDs and 4X2 GB 667 DDR2. The mobo and PSU are what I'm looking to upgrade, for under $200. Want to stay ATX.. no itty-bitty stuff. I realize I might have to snag used stuff as well. Stuck with this EVGA 680i now.. I don't have AHCI so that would be a priority as well.. plus pci-e v2.0. I've been looking at some Intel chipsets.. but they only support ATI Crossfire for the most part (Actually.. for the whole part unless I use some hack/mod like HyperSLI or something. Which I don't want to have to take a ''chance'' on not working AFTER I've gotten a mobo.).

Actually.. I'm a senior on a very limited budget and a friend gave me his Q6600 and the two GPUs about a year ago. I just bought the EVGA board a couple months back off eB but am dissatisfied with it. The dual LAN ports aren't functioning at all (tried everything) and one of the SATA ports is physically broken. My old Rosewill PSU (which served me well.. even with the two 8800s) isn't cutting it on my recent overclocking experiences. My problem lies with cooling (also need a beefy heatsink/fan) and power supply (the Rosewill is only 550 watts). So a new mobo, CPU cooler and PSU are in order to ensure some extra life out of my build.. I think.

Here's what I have.. JUST in the case:

EVGA 680i mobo
Intel Q6600 CPU
2 X EVGA 8800GT (675Mhz oc'ed editions)
4 X 2GB GSKILL 667 Mhz RAM (8GB total)
60GB OCZ Vertex 3 SSD (holds x64 W7 HP)
500 GB Seagate Momentus XT Hybrid Drive
2 X 250GB Seagate single platter HDs (not RAID, one has x86 XP HP)
320GB Maxtor IDE (for backup images)
X-kroma ALL chrome case w/tons o'blue LED fans

..and yes.. I know that's a LOT of stuff for a little bitty 2 rail cheapo Rosewill PSU but it's actually held it's own VERY well for 3 years now. Believe it or not.. I also run a WD MyBook a Samsung USB BD-RW and an Azio USB 2.0 HD dock off of it. It's never once BSOD'ed or shown any signs of brown-out or overload.. but I can't oc the CPU worth a d*mn.. and I should be able to. The GPUs are already factory oc'ed and I don't want to oc the RAM (though I probably could.. I have a RAM cooler BTW) because if I can get the CPU to 3GHz on air.. I'd be at a 1:1 ratio which would be cool.

I tried oc'ing the CPU the other day up to 3GHz.. but it ran too hot and wanted too much core juice to stay stable. My friend never even played with overclocking it before he gave it to me. I get a 7.1 WEI with this setup in W7.. my two 7.1 scores being the CPU and the memory.. once again.. almost unbelievable.

I await all of your expert advices. Thanks gents.
3 answers Last reply
More about quick versions upgrading dinosaur
  1. The PCIe 3.0 lanes for the x16 slot come directly from the CPU and on LGA1155 they are only available with Ivy Bridge CPUs if that is what you want to upgrade to. All other PCIe slots are 2.0 except possibly the 2nd x16 slot if the board splits the CPU's x16 into x8x8.
  2. So if I get a motherboard (EOL 775 chipsets had 2.0 PCi-e) that has a 2.0 x16 slot.. then the x1 slots will also be rev. 2.0?
  3. For s775:
    - The p45 chipset has x16 or x8x8 PCIe 2.0, other slots are PCIe 1.0.
    - The p35 chipset only has PCIe 1.1.
Ask a new question

Read More

Motherboards PCI Express