Pci express versions 1 & 2

I have a mobo with a PCI Express slot version 1 (ASROCK CONROE-eSATA2).
I want to upgrade my graphics card and find that current cards are 'only suitable' for version 2 slots.
What do I do now?
28 answers Last reply
More about express versions
  1. A version 2 card does still work with version from what I can make out in Wikipedia. You just won't be able to take advantage of the features in version 2 of PCI-e. If all else, upgrade your motherboard (though this also means a very high chance of needing to upgrade the CPU and RAM).

    Edit: For several months, I've been running a PCI-e 1 card in my PCI-e 2 motherboard just fine. I don't play games on my computer so I wasn't losing anything.
  2. ^
    what the guy says is true. It will work and you won't feel the difference. Just don't buy PCIe 2.1 card!
  3. You are going to be OK with Nvidia new cards. Can you give me more detail specs?
  4. Thanks, however, my problem is that I cant buy a PCI 1 slot graphics card. Current ones ARE designed for mobos with PCI 2 slots. I have now read the wiki.. item, and other sources, and it looks a bit of a hit or miss situation. In other words there is NO guarantee the a type 2 card Will work in a Type 1 board, it might or might not. The idea of having to buy a new mobo+graphics+memory+psu?+case?+hd? is simply not on!!!

    Anybody got actual experience of this problem with a specific solution?
  5. refillable said:
    You are going to be OK with Nvidia new cards. Can you give me more detail specs?

    What sort of details can I supply that will help you help me? Please be specific.
  6. The motherboard (already stated), CPU, and PSU are the primary ones.
  7. I have been running a pcie-2.1 card fine in my Pcie-1a slot with no problems.
  8. whats the complete model of your Board? If you are saying all you have is a PCIe 1x (small port around 1 inch long) then you are out of luck and can not get a new GPU for that board.

    If you have a PCIe 1.0 or 1.1 (longer ports about the same as an old PCI) then you will be fine. I have never seen a GPU that is not backwards compatable with the older PCIe standard.
  9. PCI-e 2.0 cards will run perfectly fine in any PCI-e 1.x slot.

    There have been a few people who reported that they have problems with a PCI-e 2.1 card in a PCI-e 1.x slot, but as I stated there have been few of those incidences.
  10. As I said, Don't get PCIe 2.1 card if you don't want to risk it, but PCIe 2.0 card will work 100%.
  11. ulillillia said:
    The motherboard (already stated), CPU, and PSU are the primary ones.

    Thank you, my CPU is an Intel 540, 3.2GHz HT, Model BX80547PG3200E, Skt LGA775, FSB 800MHz, 1MB L2, (Prescott); the PSU is Enermax Model EG495AX-VE(W)(24p). The latter has a 6 pin power connector for connection to a Graphic card. On the question of power to the GC I understand that one feature of the PCI express slot type 2 is that power is not supplied from a separate PSU connector but from the main 'strip'. The term 'strip' is not the correct one used by the experts but I cant remember it's correct name.
    If the power is provided this way, how does a Type 2 GC get it's power, unless this card has both facilities.

    To answer another question posed, the slot on my mobo is the PCIE X16 used by current GC's.

    I'm beginning to get the impression from the contributors that really there is no problem here. Compatible they may well be, but how about the fall off in performance due to reduced number of data lines? Any info here please?

    Finally, I have used GC's with GeForce chips in the past, are these to be recommended or do I have to change chip mfr as well?

    I have a much clearer picture now thanks to everyone who has taken the time to help me out.
    I think I am much closer now to making a decision.
  12. As to whether you use GeForce and Radeon, that primarily depends on what you intend on doing. Both companies are essentially tied, but they have their own strengths and weaknesses. Basically, what do you intend on doing with your computer? Gaming (if so, what kinds of games are you looking into playing)? Video processing? Web browsing?

    Edit: also, how many amps do you have on the +12V rail(s) on your PSU? This will determine the limit of your video card power wise.
  13. My main interest is photography/computing and I have no interest whatsoever in games. I like to concentrate on video/slideshow work but nothing too heavy.

    The PSU manual quotes power ratings as follows: total power 495watts; +5V 32A ;+3.3V 32A ;+12V1 18A ;+12V2 18A; -12V 0.8A;+5Vsb 2.5A.

    Devices fitted: 1 IDE HD, 2 SATA2 HDs, 1 DVD R/W, 3 ancillary fans, 2MB memory, 2 USB hubs with own PSU's. The OS is XP Pro.

    As you can see it is quite a modest PC that I built some 4 years ago, the limiting factor performance-wise is the GC which is why I want to upgrade this area.

    Does this info help with your suggested GC?
  14. For your needs, I would recommend upgrading the CPU much more than the GPU. I do quite a bit of image editing and the CPU really has a very strong effect on this. Overclock it and it's even more extreme. I don't notice any difference between my previous GeForce 7600 GT and my current GeForce GTX 460 (which is supposedly 4 times as powerful) as far as image editing goes. Video editing is the only reason I upgraded my video card, due to CUDA and the fact that video decoding is typically done on the GPU rather than the CPU though it appears that that is dependent on the program you use.

    Upgrading the CPU, however, almost always requires upgrading the motherboard and RAM.

    What is your budget? For the most part, you might consider an i5-2500K. This processor has huge overclocking potential and doesn't cost all that much (you'll need a P67 or Z68 motherboard to overclock though). If you don't want to overclock, then there are lower end processors you can consider as well. If budget is limited, you might go with an AMD processor, though I don't know AMD very well.
  15. Great minds think alike!
    The same thought occurred to me when I started down this road. But looking at the make-up of this system it seemed the weak link was the graphics card, and as such this could be the cheapest way forward. I'm not interested in spending what I call real money on this issue (I'm in my mid-80s) as there are other priorities!

    Having said that I do have a spare CPU and memory from my video editing PC which is now defunct.

    And, the reason why I haven't pursued this approach is that I'm not sure what benefit I would get.

    The spare CPU is an Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 2.4GHz, 8MB L2, 1066MHz FSB, Socket 775, and the memory is Crucial CT2KIT12864AA80E, CL=5, PC2-6400, 2GB (1GBx2).

    My existing CPU is Intel 540, 3.2GHz HT, Model BX80547PG3200E, Skt LGA775, FSB 800MHz, 1MB L2, and memory Crucial CT12864AA53E.16FB 16TFY, 2x1GB DIMM, 533 MHz, CL4, DDR2.

    I'm no expert on CPUs or memory so I have no way of judging what improvement or advantage would be obtained by swopping these items.

    If I assume it is a better way forward, the next issue is what are the difficulties/penalties in doing so. Both CPU's are Socket 775, the PSU would be OK in terms of power and range of connectors, I'm not sure about memory compatibility or what problems lie ahead if I use my existing primary HD (although I still have the original HD from the defunct PC).

    This is rather a long post, but I hope you can still stay with me in continuing to give me your considered views on whether it is worthwhile and cost effective my swopping these components. Because of my lack of knowledge I originally decided to go down the GC route without realising the technical issues involved in doing so.

  16. What kind of a hard drive is it? In the years of 2005-2006 there was a shift from older IDE connection, and newer SATA connection. If your motherboard support the whatever connection hard drive uses, it will work.

    Your current CPU is Intel Pentium 4 3.2 GHz, and it's around 5 times slower than Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600.

    Check this site out for CPU speeds: http://cpubenchmark.net/

    Is this your motherboard?
    If so, it supports both SATA and IDE.
  17. Hi Sunius,
    Thanks for joining the discussion, and for those most useful links which I will keep for future reference. Certainly, the figures indicate that my old CPU is far superior to my present one.

    Just for info mY asrock mobo is


    sorry I dont know how to make an hyperlink!

    This is an Xfire version of the one you identified, specifically AsRock ConroeXfire-eSATA2, rev2.0.

    Yes it has provision for Sata and IDE HD's, and my PSU can handle both types.

    On the face of it THE best way forward is to take advantage of my 'spare' components which were ideal for video work. A pity the old GC was physically damaged and has had to be scrapped.

    Putting the subject of replacement GC to one side for the moment, I would now like to pursue with you the use of my spare CPU, memory and HD in my present PC.

    You give me the impression this could be straightforward.

    If I now deal with the physical process perhaps you could indicate whether it is easy or, perhaps, what additional work has to be done to make it work.

    Method 1
    Step 1 - remove present CPU, primary HD (PATA) and 2 memory chips.
    Step 2 - fit old CPU, primary HD (PATA) and 2 memory chips.
    Step 3 - turn on PC power, sit back and watch boot into Windows on screen.

    "Comment - I cannot believe it was so simple."

    Method 2
    Step 1 - remove present CPU and replace with old CPU.
    Step 2 - turn on PC power, sit back and watch boot into Windows on screen.
    Step 3 - turn off PC, replace present memory with old memory.
    Step 4 - turn on PC power, sit back and watch boot into Windows on screen.
    Step 5 - turn off PC, replace present HD with old HD.
    Step 6 - turn on PC power, sit back and watch boot into Windows on screen.

    "Comment - Sit back and be amazed that everything worked first time without a hitch."

    I imagine that it wont be so simple and that the following will happen.

    There is a good chance that fitting the old CPU and memory will go smoothly although there may well be some tweaking needed to some memory attributes.

    I fully expect that if I now fit the old HD the PC wont boot and I will end up having to reload OS and everything else. If that is the case what are the chances that the new CPU and memory will work with my present HD?

    Please feel free to set out the replacement routine in as much detail as you think is necessary to make my task as easy as possible.
  18. Hey it isn't that hard, though don't forget the CPU Heatsink! It may take some force (don't be afraid to use it) to take it off and get it on again, but it's the case with most of them.

    It's more like method 3, but you will have to reinstall windows after replacing CPU: when you install Windows, it calibrates itself to exactly your CPU, and if you replace it, it won't boot.

    It should work with your present hard drive if it's not broken, but you will still have to reinstall OS.

    The replacement part doesn't have a specific order, but I suggest you take out the graphics card the memory and all the wires away from the CPU when you are removing heatsink - it will make your job way easier. Also, make sure not to apply any force when placing the CPU and make sure you're placing it in the right direction, since it's probably the most fragile part of a computer.

    One more thing: what is your present memory and what are you switching it to? There are different memories around, like DDR, DDR2, DDR3 and they are not backward/forward compatible. Your motherboard supports DDR2 only.

    Good luck!
  19. HI,
    Thank you for the details. I will take care especially in the CPU/Heatsink area.

    In an earlier post I gave full details of earlier and latest memory, the spare memory is Crucial CT2KIT12864AA80E, CL=5, PC2-6400, 2GB (1GBx2), DDR2, and the present is Crucial CT12864AA53E.16FB 16TFY, 2x1GB DIMM, 533 MHz, CL4, DDR2. So presumably this is no problem here and should be straightforward. Perhaps this should be the starting point?

    I had a feeling I would have to reload the OS something I was hoping to avoid. What with all the MS and Norton upgrades, not to mention those for all my applications, it wii take most of the day!

    One more piece of info please on reloading the OS. What is the precise procedure, for example, given that the drive already has an OS installed, how does the reload take place? Is there a specific order that must be followed, or is it an entirely automatic procedure in which boot up is made by BIOS auto set to start via the CD ROM drive, and then that process selects the next format/load sequence automatically without any input from the user? Or are there certains items that have to be manually selected from a menu etc etc?

    I've a certain amount of knowledge and experience when it comes to loading an OS on a new drive, but never when the drive already has an OS preinstalled. Do I have to disconnect the SATA2 drives and any USB hubs to which USB MASS devices are connected, otherwise the drive letter sequence may affect what drive letter is allocated to the drive that is about to have the OS installed on?

    Any other tips that may occur to you in regard to the OS loading selection/sequence would be appreciated.

    I really do appreciate the time and effort you are putting in to help me.
    Many thanks indeed.

  20. Yes, well, it will take whole day :)

    You don't have to unplug anything, all you have to do is backup your data, insert the CD, set the bios boot sequence to boot from CD first, then let it load, and then follow the install wizard. It's a bit different for windows xp and windows 7, and I can tell you in more detail if you let me know which OS you're going to install. Though, it's no harder than installing a simple application, really. All you have to do is read what it says and enter what it asks you, like, where to install, how to format, etc.
  21. I intend to use XP Pro which is currently loaded on both my spare PATA and current HDs.
    When you say '....backup your data...., what exactly do you mean?
  22. Write your important data to either USB stick, another hard drive or DVD drives. When you reinstall your OS, EVERYTHING on that hard drive will disappear.

    XP pro.. Well, it's not hard. Make CD your boot device, insert cd, wait for it to load. Then with D, delete the partitions. All of them.

    Then using another key (can't remember which one though, it will say which key to use on screen), create two (or more, if you like) partitions. For drives up to 40 GB, I suggest not to partition it. Up from that, partition it around 25-30 GB for the OS and the rest to another partition.

    Then select the partition in which you want to install Windows, and it will proceed. It will eventually ask you to input your name, serial code of windows, regional settings, just follow what it asks you to do. When you're done, you'll have to install drivers, preferable from the CD which originally came with the motherboard.

    Merry Christmas!
  23. Hi Sunius,
    Many thanks for helping me through the fog. I can now remove my existing items and replace them with my spares. Followed by the instal of OS XP Pro.

    I'm not looking forward to having to spend a long, long time watching the paint dry, otherwise known as software loading!

    With any luck this update will raise the performance of this PC and thereby avoid having to go down the new GC route.

    I'll tackle this job early in the new year (lets get the festivities behind us) and the brain begins to start to function normally again.

    I wish you and yours a Merry Xmas and a Prosperous New Year.

    I'll keep you posted on the results of my efforts if you are interested.
    Best Regards
  24. Hey Leo,

    Let me know how it goes.

  25. Will do.
  26. Sunius said:
    Hey Leo,

    Let me know how it goes.


    Having time on my hands I decided to take the plunge!

    Well it was an interesting exercise, since in the process I think I have now discovered why my Video Editing PC suddenly died on me.

    Firstly, I added the higher spec memory from this PC to the AsRock, and everything worked fine with no input from me.

    Then I added the higher spec CPU and got absolutely no response whatsoever. No video no start up, absolutely nothing. I strongly suspect that this 4 year old CPU suddenly developed a major fault which in turn led to the Corsair PSU rupturing a fuse in the mains lead. Subsequent tests show that this unit is as dead as a doornail.

    So, my only gain from this exercise is that I have now got more and faster memory.

    I shall now have to revert to my initial plan A and go down the GC route and decide whether I should take the plunge and risk fitting a Type 2.

    If you have any more ideas on the GC front I would like to hear from you.
    Best Regards
  27. Dont be afraid of a new GPU. I have multiple computers with Pentium d 945 chipsets from like 2005 using 2.0 graphics cards like 8800gt and hd 4850 and a 9400gt.
  28. As I said before in the post above, PCIe 2.0 graphics card will work for sure. Just don't get PCIe 2.1 one :)
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