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SSD and PCIe


kylejwx
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I am considering an SSD purchase but I am interested in getting something that is PCIe based.  Reasons for this include, not taking up a SATA port, theoretically being faster, not having to mess with cables, and just to try something different.


 


I am using an Intel DH6BL motherboard.  http://ark.intel.com/products/50098/Intel-Desktop-Board-DH67BL


 


These are the PCI ports on my board.


 




PCI Support




1




PCIe x1 Gen 2.x




2




PCIe x4 Gen 2.x




0




PCIe x8 Gen 2.x




0




PCIe x16 Gen 2.x




1




 


 


Newegg says "Shop for SSDs by Interface" and lists SATAIII, mSATA, PCIe, M.2, USB, and Thunderbolt.


 


First of all, if I look under PCIe, I find this Plextor (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820249042), but it says that I uses PCIe 2.0 x2.  I think I have x1 and x16 slots. Is that going to work?


 


 


Secondly, a lot of the drives listed under PCIe don't have traditional looking PCI brackets and to my untrained eye a lot of the ones under mSATA and M.2 look very similar to the PCIe slots.  Are any of these mSATA or M.2 drives compatible with my motherboard?  (I am ok with making my own bracket if necessary, as long as it works.)


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A PCIe x2 card will fit x2, x4, x8, and x16 slots. They're electrically compatible. Though obviously, it can only do 'x2' performance.

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As oj88 said, a x2 card will fit in any PCIe slot that's x2 length, or longer. And, except for x8 and x16 slots, you can be sure they are electronically compatible. On many motherboards, x8 and x16 slots are often somewhat different. That's because many x16 slots can operate in x8 mode, and often do when two x16 slots on a motherboard are both filled with add-in cards. For example, I have an Asus mobo that has 2 x16 slots. If I only fill 1 of them (the blue one) it will operate in x16 mode. If I add a card to the other x16 slot, then both of the x16 slots will run in x8 mode.

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OK that really helps explain the different sizes of PCIe. @ikon, your situation with two x16 that switch to x8 when both are used seems like it would have been a pitfall for someone like me. :) thanks for explaining it so well.

 

Can anyone elaborate on how the mSATA and M.2 devices fit in with this? Any relation to the PCIe slots on a motherboard?

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You're very welcome kylejwx.

 

AFAIK, there is no real relationship between PCIe and mSATA or M.2. IOW, I don't think you can install mSATA or M.2 devices directly into PCIe slots. These 2 standards were developed in order to satisfy demands for more compact form factors.

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  • 3 weeks later...

msata (microsata) as ikon said were designed for the ultrabook market. while you can find some motherboard that have a mini pcie slot with msata support. I use them in my NUCs as well as one in my gen8 in a sata to msata adapter. m2 is the next version where it can plug directly into the motherboard on the pcie bus if i remember correctly

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Yeah, M.2 uses the PCIe bus, and is much more directly connected. Can be used for mPCIe cards as well. Some boards have two slots, from what I've seen.

 

Great for embedded devices.

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