First Time Build - Question About Sandy Bridge and PCi 3 slots

Hey guys im building a super computer right now and I have my mind set on a Radeon HD 7970 and an Intel Core i7 3930. Im thinking about getting an ASUS P9X79 Pro motherboard as part of a set for the processor. However, I dont exactly know how the Core i7 3930 works with PCi 3.0 slots. The Radeon HD 7970 is a PCi 3.0 card and, if I understand correctly, I can connect it to PCi 2.0 slots. I also understand that Sandy Bridge processors cannot utilize PCi 3.0.

So my questions finally is.. If I get the ASUS P9X79 and connect the Radeon HD 7970 to its PCi 3.0 slot, will the system even work altogether with the Core i7 3930?
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  1. Yes, PCI express is backwards compatible so it will work.

    Also, if you have that kind of money, why not the gtx 680? Even the gtx 670 easily outperforms the Radeon 7970 while being cheaper and more power efficient.
  2. Ive heard that the gtx 680 can be kind of loud and produce a lot of heat. If I dont know what im talking about, could you tell me some of the cons of the gtx 680 vs the radeon 7970?

    Check this out. It shows the following:
    gtx 680 = radeon 7970 in terms of load GPU temps
    gtx 680 is slightly better in terms of idle GPU temps
    gtx 680 is slightly better in terms of load power consumption
    gtx 680 = radeon 7970 in terms of idle noise levels
    gtx 680 is better than the 7970 in terms of load noise levels

    There are also some games where the 7970 beat the gtx 680. Its all in that chart.
  4. Thanks very much for the answers. Ive been researching the gtx 680 a bit and i like what im seeing. Ill probably go with that guy :D
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