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Thread: 1156 motherboard advice

  1. #1
    Banhammer in peace PeterB kalniel's Avatar
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    1156 motherboard advice

    I'm pretty techie, but I'm getting well confused with all the options out there now. Is there an 1156 motherboard out there that can simultaneously:

    1) Run a single dual-slot graphics card at a full PCIe 2.0 x16 (ie straight off the CPU)

    2) Run Sata 6gbps + USB 3.0 (ie using a PLX chip via the southbridge)

    3) Use a PCIe 4x add-in board (for something like an OCZ revodrive)

    4) Also have a free PCIe 1x slot (for something like a sound card)

    5) And also have a free PCI slot. (for something like a wireless card)

    Without using a NF200 chip. (Won't help - the nf200 helps two cards talk to each other bypassing the CPU, and I want the graphics to go straight into the CPU)

    Picky, I know Not very keen to head down the 1366 route, but I might be forced to just from the slots point of view.

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Pob255's Avatar
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    Re: 1156 motherboard advice

    Not sure I know of one, they normally use the pci-e lanes to susstain the sata 6gb

    Gigabyte GA-P55-UD6
    http://www.gigabyte.com/products/pro...px?pid=3234#sp
    http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Gigab...nd-20-RAID-ATX
    As long as you don't use the 2nd graphics card slot you should be ok and have
    1x pci-e x16 graphics crad slot
    1x pci-e x1 slot (above the graphics card)
    1x pci-e x4 slot (the bottom full length slot)
    2x SATA 6gb connectors (the other 6 will run at 3gb speed)

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  4. #3
    Banhammer in peace PeterB kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: 1156 motherboard advice

    Several boards (Asus/MSI for eg.) use PLX chips to combine PCIe lanes from the southbridge for USB3/sata 6gbps, which is what I'm looking for really.

    Sadly the UD6 doesn't and thus fails requirement #1 - you only get a PCIe 2.0 x8 for the graphics simultaneously with USB3/sata 6gpbs.

    The closest I've seen is the Asus P55D-E Pro, but it doesn't have a PCIe x4 slot off the southbridge.

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    Re: 1156 motherboard advice

    The PCI-E x1 slots share bandwidth with the x4 slot on all gigabyte boards. I assume this is due to the socket limitations and will be the same on all boards. When the x4 slot is used at full speed the x1 slots are disabled.

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    Senior Member Pob255's Avatar
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    Re: 1156 motherboard advice

    Umm well I was goping off this
    * When dual graphics cards are used in 1st and 2nd PCIex16 slots, SATA3 / USB 3.0 (Marvell 9128 /NEC USB 3.0 Controllers) will work at normal mode.
    So that's why I said if you didn't use a card in the 2nd pci-e full length slot you should be ok.
    It's running the pci-e x1 and pci-e x4 off the southbridge, just stealing bandwidth from the 2nd full length slot to run the sata at full 6gb

    One thing I would ask is if you really need a full x16 pci-e 2.0 for a graphics card? there's very few card that come close to saturateing the x8 pci-e 2.0 that running at x16 will make a difference.
    The only card I can think of that would fully benefit from it is a 5970 or maybe the gtx480

  7. #6
    Banhammer in peace PeterB kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: 1156 motherboard advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Pob255 View Post
    Umm well I was goping off this
    * When dual graphics cards are used in 1st and 2nd PCIex16 slots, SATA3 / USB 3.0 (Marvell 9128 /NEC USB 3.0 Controllers) will work at normal mode.
    So that's why I said if you didn't use a card in the 2nd pci-e full length slot you should be ok.
    It's running the pci-e x1 and pci-e x4 off the southbridge, just stealing bandwidth from the 2nd full length slot to run the sata at full 6gb
    Unfortunately what gigabyte are saying is that if you use two graphics cards then you completely lose USB3 and Sata 6gpbs. You can plug the connectors in, but they operate at USB2 and Sata 2 speeds. Even if you don't plug two graphics cards in but you enable either or both of the USB3/Sata 6gpbs functions then the primary graphics slot drops down to x8. It's a really clever switching mechanism, but makes full x16 and USB3/Sata 6gpbs impossible.

    One thing I would ask is if you really need a full x16 pci-e 2.0 for a graphics card?
    Of course not, at the moment. Likewise I certainly don't need a PCIe x4 powered SSD either. But this is quite a picky build because it's the direction I'm likely to go in the future.

    I'm just doing the maths on the numbers and it might not be possible at all:

    CPU: 16 lanes at 500 MB/s - I need all dedicated to a single slot.

    South bridge: 8 lanes at 250MB/s

    PLX PEX8608 chip requires 4 lanes to provide 2x500MB/s lanes that are dynamically shared between the Marvel 2xSata 6gpbs connectors and NEC USB3.0 chip (so not good if saturated, but better than nothing, and USB devices aren't going to saturate it for a while).

    1 lane needed for x1 slot

    4 lanes technically needed for x4 slot

    OOPS, banker wins already, without even considering how PCI slots are connected. Which I can't find any information about at all, anywhere!

    I suppose that the x4 slot need not actually have 4 lanes. 500MB/s would be enough for a PCIe SSD card at the moment. So we could just about do it if they used only 2 lanes for a x4 slot.

    Tricky though, and I doubt anyone would happen to have the same requirements.

  8. #7
    Headless Chicken Terbinator's Avatar
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    Re: 1156 motherboard advice

    If this is a build you want to last some time (I suspect it is ?) from an expansion point of view rather than say CPU grunt, I would suggest waiting for SB at the end of the year and go 2011/X68, or P67 depending on how the latter pans out.

    At least you know you'll be getting SATA6(IIRC) as a given with SB in addition to a load of free PCI-e lanes (with X68).

    Also, isn't it about time we left PCI behind
    Kalniel: "Nice review Tarinder - would it be possible to get a picture of the case when the components are installed (with the side off obviously)?"
    CAT-THE-FIFTH: "The Antec 300 is a case which has an understated and clean appearance which many people like. Not everyone is into e-peen looking computers which look like a cross between the imagination of a hyperactive 10 year old and a Frog."
    TKPeters: "Off to AVForum better Deal - £20+Vat for Free Shipping @ Scan"
    for all intents it seems to be the same card minus some gays name on it and a shielded cover ? with OEM added to it - GoNz0.

  9. #8
    Banhammer in peace PeterB kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: 1156 motherboard advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Terbinator View Post
    If this is a build you want to last some time (I suspect it is ?) from an expansion point of view rather than say CPU grunt, I would suggest waiting for SB at the end of the year and go 2011/X68, or P67 depending on how the latter pans out.
    X6* is going to be a LONG way off. Bulldozer is worth considering if I'm going to wait that long. Which I could, I guess. Just some people are wanting hand-me-downs and even current gen processors are a sizeable upgrade SB at end of this year will be evil integrated GPU.

    Also, isn't it about time we left PCI behind
    PCIe is massively over-rated You can't beat the low-latency of PCI for timing critical functions

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