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Need a video card, but I am not sure what these slots mean.

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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November 23, 2013 3:11:10 PM

I have received a Lenovo 8171 with 2 gb of RAM & Windows XP. I am wanting to use this as a video recorder and watch TV/Netflix/DVD's through it. I have installed all of my parts, tested it out and I have everything up and running with no problems. Video is fluid and records from my Win TV Adaptor.

However, I still need a Graphics card with HDMI capability to plug into my TV. When I look at the specs, this is what Lenovo states the slots are.

Slot 1: half length, 1 lane PCI Express (graphics)
Slot 2: full height, half length, 32-bit PCI 2.2 (5v)

I get the Slot 1, Slot 2 and height, but I am lost on the "half length, 1 lane" section for slot 1.

What am I looking for on this? I have searched the web and even found a place where a guy had photos explaining the difference, but it still made no sense to me.

I am guessing this is not a standard PCI Express card. Correct?

Any recommendations?

More about : video card slots

a b U Graphics card
November 23, 2013 3:59:14 PM

This is not a standard pcie slot. check out this thread http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/247979-28-express-vid...
You will want to look for pcie x1 video card (try amazon or e-bay- sorry to lazy to check right now ;)  )
Whatever solution you do pick (standard x16 card with slot modification or whatever) make sure the card will physically fit (length from rear panel, height from slot) in your case.
November 23, 2013 4:57:01 PM

Dom_79 said:
This is not a standard pcie slot. check out this thread http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/247979-28-express-vid...
You will want to look for pcie x1 video card (try amazon or e-bay- sorry to lazy to check right now ;)  )
Whatever solution you do pick (standard x16 card with slot modification or whatever) make sure the card will physically fit (length from rear panel, height from slot) in your case.


So, I looked up the pcie x1 video card and saw what it's slot looks like. Here is what I have in the machine. Neither of these are the short slots that this kind of card looks like. This is why I am confused because the pcie x1 video card is so short and neither of these slots are short.

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a b U Graphics card
November 23, 2013 5:47:02 PM

Well then it seems you are in luck. This slot is a regular pcie x16 slot that has what appears to be stoppers/caps on it that indicate it is only to be used as a pcie x1 - most likely due to limitations of the motherboard. If you can remove the plugs/caps that are on there you can install any pcie x16 card, but it will only work to the performance of a pcie x1. Most low end pcie 2.0 cards will give you the ability to output with an HDMI port. I'd recommend not getting anything expensive/fancy because your motherboard will essentially be "cutting it off at the knees" by restricting that slot to pcie x1 performance. Happy hunting and remember to make sure that whichever card you do pick will have room to fit in there without hitting anything.
November 23, 2013 7:41:37 PM

Dom_79 said:
Well then it seems you are in luck. This slot is a regular pcie x16 slot that has what appears to be stoppers/caps on it that indicate it is only to be used as a pcie x1 - most likely due to limitations of the motherboard. If you can remove the plugs/caps that are on there you can install any pcie x16 card, but it will only work to the performance of a pcie x1. Most low end pcie 2.0 cards will give you the ability to output with an HDMI port. I'd recommend not getting anything expensive/fancy because your motherboard will essentially be "cutting it off at the knees" by restricting that slot to pcie x1 performance. Happy hunting and remember to make sure that whichever card you do pick will have room to fit in there without hitting anything.


Awesome. That is what I was thinking. I had just never come across something like this. I have picked a "Cheapy" out over at newegg with good reviews. I just wanted to make sure it would work before getting it.

Thanks for the help!
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