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PCIe 2.0 gfx card for PCIe 1.0 motherboard?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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October 29, 2012 1:29:34 AM

I'm in the market for a gaming-quality card. Problem is, my motherboard is old and only has PCIe 1.0 slots. I was hoping to confirm whether 2.0 cards are compatible with 1.0 slots. From what I understand, they function, but are limited by the lesser bandwidth of the 1.0 slot.

My previous card was a GeForce 8800GTX, which I understand was kind of a powerhouse for its time. It ran Borderlands 2, Kingdoms of Amalur, Bethesda games, etc. pretty much flawlessly at max settings even through a 1.0 slot. I'd like to maintain that sort of output, with hopefully less heat/power draw than the 8800GTX had (my PC was like a space heater). I'm also running a 1000w PSU, so hopefully that shouldn't be an issue.


full CPUID report here
CPU/motherboard info:





I've been recommended the 550ti. Is this a good choice/value for what I'm seeking? If not, please recommend based on my above system specs and the following:

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: by Wednesday, hopefully (the sooner the better)) BUDGET RANGE: USD up to $150

USAGE: Gaming - can run Borderlands 2, Kingdoms of Amalur, Bethesda games well at max settings

PARTS PREFERENCES: Nvidia only (I need Physx, unfortunately)

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1280x1024

More about : pcie gfx card pcie motherboard

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October 29, 2012 3:24:11 AM

You can run any card in a 1.0 slot, it will just drop to 1.0 speed. That really won't be an issue, though. Your CPU is more likely to be a bottleneck than your PCI slot.

650 Ti is about the best Nvidia card you can find for $150.
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a b U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 29, 2012 3:43:23 AM

Oh man, that E6600 takes me back. You've got the old 65nm one too. Used that exact same chip for six years. And man, can I tell you, it's bottlenecking you. You want to make that your top priority to upgrade.

You can find a Q6600 on ebay for around $100, which will solve most of the problems. The LGA 775 Xeons will work in consumer motherboards too (used one myself after the E6600). If you're into overclocking, or willing to try, that will also help, and any chip you upgrade to on LGA 775 will overclock very well.

For reference, I ran my E6600 at 3.5 GHz for a long, long time with no problems. Some will go as high as 4 GHz. That will help a lot, but really you need to get a quad core chip to compensate for the older architecture being slower.

As far as video cards go, don't worry about what PCIe revision it supports. Everything is backward compatible, and issues are rare. Even a GTX 690 gets the overwhelming majority of its performance on a PCIe 1.1 board.

I would, however, recommend aiming a little higher on your video card upgrade. For about $10 more, the HD 7770 is anywhere between 10% and 50% faster while using a bit less power. For about $80 more than the 550 Ti, the HD 7850 is more than twice as fast. Basically, at this price point the more you can spend the better bang for your buck you get, up to around $200 or so.
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October 30, 2012 3:52:06 PM

Thanks for all the info. I've got my eye on a Q6600 for ~$80. Assuming I grab that and a superclocked 560 GTX (seems like the best value for Nvidia under $200; deals/rebates bump it down to ~$130), what might you recommend for a motherboard? I'll be picking up some new RAM as well, for what it's worth.
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a b U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 31, 2012 5:15:34 AM

Oh, if you're buying a new motherboard, don't get the Q6600. You'll want to post a thread in the new build section if you're looking at doing this extensive of a rebuild.
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November 2, 2012 3:40:10 PM

Ah, will do. Thanks again.
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November 2, 2012 3:40:58 PM

Best answer selected by athetosis.
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August 12, 2013 3:16:34 AM

twelve25 said:
You can run any card in a 1.0 slot, it will just drop to 1.0 speed. That really won't be an issue, though. Your CPU is more likely to be a bottleneck than your PCI slot.

650 Ti is about the best Nvidia card you can find for $150.


But will the power of the graphics card drop? Will I be able to use the maximum power of the card?
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