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Dual PCI-E 2.0 Vs Single PCI-E 2.0 x16

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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March 5, 2013 6:25:54 AM

A friend requested I build him a computer on a tight budget. I proceeded to use a Barebone build from NewEgg and built a pretty affordable system. I just finished reviewing all the packaging and parts.. and it would be perfectly put together with the following equipment..except for one small snag.

The system is housed in a BIOSTAR MEDIA HDZ77 Tower:
• Intel Core i5-3350P Ivy Bridge 3.1GHz (3.3GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 69W Quad-Core
• H77MU3 LGA 1155 Intel H77 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard
• CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800)
• XPG SX900 2.5" 64GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
• LG Blu-ray Burner - WH14NS40
• 300W PSU - Included w/ barebone


My Question of the evening boils down to this, What would be Faster/Better/Stronger?

TWO - PCI-E x1 2.0 Graphics Cards in SLI/Crossfire
OR
ONE - PCI-E x16 2.0 Graphics Card


Spoiler

If I had in THEORY booted the system, I would hear the horrendous sound of 8 single beeps. Which most people know is a Graphics card issue. Least to say I was banking on Integrated graphics.. (Especially with Intel's new upgrades to their onboard graphics.) To my Absolute and complete horror after looking up the CPU before completely building the computer, I noticed it is NOT compatible for Integrated Graphics. Making such a STUPID error like this is not something I have ever attributed myself to. Although the CPU I found at the time was the only one within my friends budget ( :(  Now I know why it was less costly)
:sleep:  If you all haven't fallen asleep by now, in short the conundrum of delivering this horrible news to my friend tomorrow may not go smoothly. I am making the system for him free of charge and he is just supplying the parts.. so I guess he honestly can't say much.. :kaola: 

If you read the spec's on the H77MU3 Mobo you can see it has:
1 x PCI-E x16 3.0 Slot (supported by Core i5 -3xxx / Core i7 3xxx CPU)
1 x PCI-E x16 2.0 Slot (x4)
2 x PCI-E x1 2.0 Slot


Spoiler

Based off reading the manual, I am imagining that the correct answer would be the Single PCI-E x16 2.0 (x4) Graphics card. Due to it having a theoretical realized bandwith of 2GB/s simultaneously per direction, for an aggregate of 4GB/s totally. Where as the PCI-E 2.0 (x1) has data transfer bandwidth up to 500MB/s per direction; 1GB/s in total. The other alternative is just having him buy a PCI-E 3.0 card now, which we decided he would just buy in the future when he needed it. Although that would be more costly and an upgraded PSU I imagine... :heink:  Suggestions?

The one other part that may make a difference is my friend does want to run dual monitors. So if they both will match up to roughly the same, Dual cards versus a single card. Then I will probably suggest Dual graphics cards to give him an easier time at Dual Monitors.

After already making a mistake though... :pfff:  I wanted to make doubly sure my advice on what he purchases next be Pristine :D 


Lastly, I want to thank whoever you are, for reading this and responding as soon as possible. I am very appreciative of the assistance; I've been using Tom's Hardware for years but never really needed to post before.

Thanks!!
a b U Graphics card
March 5, 2013 6:45:15 AM

If I were in your shoes I would return the CPU and get either of the following without having to go through the hassle of getting a graphics card that would have sub par performance because of the x4 slot on the motherboard. 1) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
2) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
3) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
4) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
I kept in mind that it was a quad core processor that was a non "k" or "unlocked and unleashed" version of the CPU's (meant for overclocking). Also these CPU's you can get from anywhere i just used my preferred site to help you out. Anyway, regardless of what you end up doing i thing he will be pleased because of his new system. =D
March 5, 2013 6:46:10 AM

You think with Newegg after being removed from the packaging will still take back the CPU? .. I still have it all but the box..it isn't pristine.. =(

Thank you SO much for your quick reply friend! <3's & farts!
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March 5, 2013 6:52:47 AM

I dont think newegg accepts returns on oem cpus
a b U Graphics card
March 5, 2013 7:04:29 AM

He could just clean off the CPU paste on both the heatsink and the CPU and return it saying that the heatsink did not come with thermal paste. But I probably shouldn't have said this =D. Anything to help out someone in need though.
March 5, 2013 7:06:17 AM

Yeah, wow.. I really screwed the pooch on this one.. So yeah back to the drawing board..

Dual PCI-E 2.0
OR
Single PCI-E 2.0 x16

Just checked Neweggs Return policy:
Spoiler

CPU Replacement Only Return Policy
Return for refund within: non-refundable
Return for replacement within: 30 days
Products that state "This item is covered by Newegg.com's CPU Replacement Only Return Policy", or items labeled as “Non-refundable” (or similar labeling) must be returned to Newegg within 30 days of the invoice date for this policy to apply. Products covered by this return policy may only be returned for a replacement of the same or equivalent item if the original item is no longer available. “Return” constitutes receipt of the product by Newegg, and not the mere issuance of an RMA.

The following conditions are not acceptable for return, and will result in the merchandise being returned to you:
Any CPU that is physically damaged
Improper installation of CPU fans and/or improper clocking may cause CPUs to chip. CPUs that are chipped, burnt or have bent/broken pins are considered physically damaged and cannot be returned for refund or replacement. Physical damage includes (but is not limited to) improper handling and any other type of damage sustained by irregular use.


..Interesting, now that I think about it.. I don't think it did come with thermal paste! Luckily I didn't put it together but only removed it from the package!

For humor's sake though, is there a win on the Dual PCI-e 2.0 versus Single PCI-e 2.0 x16?
a b U Graphics card
March 5, 2013 7:11:23 AM

Call them and see if you can return it for an in-store-credit type of deal?

Best solution

a b U Graphics card
March 5, 2013 7:19:00 AM
Share

Klarq said:
Yeah, wow.. I really screwed the pooch on this one.. So yeah back to the drawing board..

Dual PCI-E 2.0
OR
Single PCI-E 2.0 x16

Just checked Neweggs Return policy:
Spoiler

CPU Replacement Only Return Policy
Return for refund within: non-refundable
Return for replacement within: 30 days
Products that state "This item is covered by Newegg.com's CPU Replacement Only Return Policy", or items labeled as “Non-refundable” (or similar labeling) must be returned to Newegg within 30 days of the invoice date for this policy to apply. Products covered by this return policy may only be returned for a replacement of the same or equivalent item if the original item is no longer available. “Return” constitutes receipt of the product by Newegg, and not the mere issuance of an RMA.

The following conditions are not acceptable for return, and will result in the merchandise being returned to you:
Any CPU that is physically damaged
Improper installation of CPU fans and/or improper clocking may cause CPUs to chip. CPUs that are chipped, burnt or have bent/broken pins are considered physically damaged and cannot be returned for refund or replacement. Physical damage includes (but is not limited to) improper handling and any other type of damage sustained by irregular use.


..Interesting, now that I think about it.. I don't think it did come with thermal paste! Luckily I didn't put it together but only removed it from the package!

For humor's sake though, is there a win on the Dual PCI-e 2.0 versus Single PCI-e 2.0 x16?

Well if you are talking about if there is benefits towards getting 2 graphics cards and sli/crossfiring them vs just getting one card then yes you get increased performance at the cost of well more costs, heat, electrical bill, also micro-stuttering and what not. But if that motherboard has a 16x slot for a graphics cards and not a x4 slot then you could get him this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... for gaming, web surfing, and multi-monitor support, or this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... for general use like media, multi-monitors and web surfing and the like.

*!EDIT!* If you want the graphics card that can be used for gaming you would nee a better power supply. If this is the case you would need to tell me if this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... would fit in the case. But for only 20 dollars with the rebate and 5 dollars off coupon its a steal.
March 5, 2013 7:43:52 AM

I don't think that Corsair would fit but not sure:

The Online specifications: http://www.biostar-usa.com/app/en-us/barebone/content.p...
Show that the Case's Dimension are: 323mm x 140mm x 276mm (H) x (W) x (D)

Great price though! I will have to measure the PSU on hand and see. I doubt he will be gaming much of ever on this thing, he wants it for Sound/Video/Photo editing. I think he could easily get by with a PCI-E 2.0 x16 for now then upgrade the PSU and graphics card later if needed. Don't ya think?
March 5, 2013 7:44:48 AM

Best answer selected by Klarq.
a b U Graphics card
March 5, 2013 7:52:12 AM

Klarq said:
I don't think that Corsair would fit but not sure:

The Online specifications: http://www.biostar-usa.com/app/en-us/barebone/content.p...
Show that the Case's Dimension are: 323mm x 140mm x 276mm (H) x (W) x (D)

Great price though! I will have to measure the PSU on hand and see. I doubt he will be gaming much of ever on this thing, he wants it for Sound/Video/Photo editing. I think he could easily get by with a PCI-E 2.0 x16 for now then upgrade the PSU and graphics card later if needed. Don't ya think?

I think he could very well upgrade later as he pleases =D. Also that power supply would fit.
March 5, 2013 7:59:38 AM

I'm sorry for the confusion, I gave you the CASE dimensions as in the Outside! I don't think it would fit boss, I'm thinking these would be my only options as this is a Micro ATX case.
As you can see below the CD drive has to fit side ways for instance, and that itself is a 5.25":
http://www.biostar-usa.com/app/en-us/barebone/content.p...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


FSP Group 450W Micro ATX12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Power Supply - $64.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

FSP Group 400W Micro ATX12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Power Supply -$59.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Thank you so much for all your help tonight!! I've got a game plan now and will go over all these options with him tomorrow!

helper800 YOU KICK ARSE!!
a b U Graphics card
March 5, 2013 8:05:50 AM

Klarq said:
I'm sorry for the confusion, I gave you the CASE dimensions as in the Outside! I don't think it would fit boss, I'm thinking these would be my only options as this is a Micro ATX case.
As you can see below the CD drive has to fit side ways for instance, and that itself is a 5.25":
http://www.biostar-usa.com/app/en-us/barebone/content.p...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


FSP Group 450W Micro ATX12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Power Supply - $64.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

FSP Group 400W Micro ATX12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Power Supply -$59.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Thank you so much for all your help tonight!! I've got a game plan now and will go over all these options with him tomorrow!

helper800 YOU KICK ARSE!!

You got me, sorry for the misleading info about the case and psu. Anyway thanks man it means a lot to me =). Go with the 450 watt one for that graphics card and make sure its continuous wattage/amperage PSU.
!