Will the Removal of PCI in Intel's Upcoming Chipsets Affect You?

Discussion in 'Motherboards' started by Rob Williams, Jun 24, 2010.

  1. Rob Williams

    Rob Williams Editor-in-Chief Staff Member Moderator

    Jan 12, 2005
    Atlantic Canada
    When information began to leak out earlier this year regarding the chipsets planned to be paired up with Intel's upcoming Sandy Bridge processors, the 6-series (P67 as an example), one of the more interesting details about it was the absolute lack of USB 3.0 support, something that many wouldn't have expected given that the company has been a strong force where anything USB is concerned.


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  2. b1lk1

    b1lk1 Tech Monkey

    Mar 1, 2006
    This needs to happen sooner or later so it may as well be sooner to get the rest of the manufacturers to stop using PCI bus tech. For me, it would cause me to upgrade slower since I still require PCI for my audio card, but it is definitely not the end of the world. There is little else out there that does not have a PCi-E version that could be purchased cheap enough. If you can afford bleeding edge platforms, you can afford a new $100 sound card that is PCI-E based.
  3. Rob Williams

    Rob Williams Editor-in-Chief Staff Member Moderator

    Jan 12, 2005
    Atlantic Canada
    I agree that it's good to just get things out of the way, but when support was pretty much dropped for the AGP bus, there were people complaining about it for years to follow, and even today some stand by the fact that there was nothing wrong with simply sticking with it for a bit longer. I'm sure PCI will be even worse because it's not only graphics cards that people use it for, but network cards, audio cards, et cetera.

    It DOES need to happen though. Many people who build computers today don't have the need for a PCI bus, so it's just going to be a slot that's on a lot of motherboards that no one uses. Kind of like the floppy connector as mentioned, or the IDE connector for many people as well.
  4. Kougar

    Kougar Techgage Staff Staff Member

    Mar 6, 2008
    Wouldn't affect me, I made a point to pay an extra $10 for a PCI-e version Xonar card... hell it's past time for top-end boards to do away with the PCI bus. Budget, business, and other markets can keep it, but many enthusiasts would prefer to have it gone and given Intel makes chipsets exclusively for each of these markets, it should be fairly easy to make it happen as a gradual transition away from them.
  5. TheCrimsonStar

    TheCrimsonStar Tech Monkey

    Apr 12, 2010
    Strawberry Plains, TN
    won't affect me at all. I'll just buy a PCIe sound card. big whoop xD

    but yeah, I was one of the people complaining about AGP support being dropped for a while, but I got over it, and the comp i have now doesn't even have AGP. I'm using a PCI graphics card. LOL
  6. On_Wisconsin

    On_Wisconsin Coastermaker

    Dec 10, 2007
    I'm happy as heck to see PCI finally phased out. It was a bit frustrating on my mobo finding space (or lack of) for my TV tuner card
  7. Tharic-Nar

    Tharic-Nar Senior Editor Staff Member Moderator

    Nov 25, 2009
    The switch to pure PCI-E will only work if they provide full 8x or 16x lane card slots, none of those silly 1x slots. A 1x slot only just provides the bandwidth for a single USB3 port, sure, they're enough for a gigabit NIC or an audio card, but most people just use the onboard audio and NIC, so the number of uses that a 1x port has is significantly reduced. 4x ports should be the minimum these days, especially given the increase in bandwidth requirements from SATA3, USB3, IO cards and native PCI-E Storage. It's not like we're running out of lanes since VERY few use more than one graphics card.

    Maybe this is why Intel decided against USB3 integration on their chipset, apart from the limited number of devices that can make use of the full bandwidth, it's also the number of PCI-E lanes each port consumes, so they may have thought it would be better to let the MB manufacturers decide how to use the lanes rather than reserving 2 or 4 for the use of USB3, which may or may not be used.... it's unlikely, but a possibility. There is of course Intel's own Light Peak in development as well, nothing like a nice bit of competitive intervention, :rolleyes: lol.

    I would like to see IDE, FDD and PS/2 ports gone as well (IEEE 1394 and firewire are becoming a distant memory now). I haven't needed IDE in years since SATA near enough completely replaced it, even in the optical market (no more master/slave jumper selections to contend with, yay). The only problems with SATA optical drives is that of WinXP. I haven't needed a Floppy drive in..... well, one of my computers needs it to install WinXP because of the raid drivers, but anything modern certainly doesn't need it since we have flash drives.

    PS/2... i'm sure many people would disagree about it's removal, but it's overdue. They tried to phase it out a couple times, but it would seem that some BIOS's still refuse to detect USB peripherals, so if you're having BIOS problems with no PS/2 port, you're stuffed.

    I don't think they could have dropped PCI any sooner though. They could drop AGP very quickly due to the fact that graphics cards were the only things that used the port. PCI took a while since it's a more universal architecture, and it took sound card manufacturers a good year or two just to come up with a card that could use PCI-E, coupled with the hardware acceleration removal from Vista, it caused serious problems for the audio market. At least USB's ubiquity eased the transition since any device that was on a PCI card could be made into USB as well.

    Actually, i think Windows XP is largely responsible for the slow transition, all those drivers and hardware changes, the legacy stuff had to stay in order to even allow XP to install since it probably couldn't even detect half the new gear without boot-time drivers (and the hard drive switch to 4k). Now it's being phased out, the legacy stuff is no longer required. But i'm sure motherboard manufacturers will get hold of conversion chips and still plague us with the ports for a while yet.
  8. slugbug

    slugbug Coastermaker

    Mar 1, 2007

    JMMDTG Obliviot

    Sep 18, 2009
    I don't have any PCI cards in my machines. Won't affect me.
  10. madstork91

    madstork91 The One, The Only...

    Feb 24, 2005
    My X-fi card and me are not amused.

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