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PCI Express 2.1 compatibility with Asus M3A78 Pro motherboard

By Jamesqin
Apr 15, 2010
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  1. Hi,
    I know this might be noobish question, but I would like to purchase a new graphic card and I wonder if it is compatible with my motherboard. I mean Im sort of confused with this new PCI-E 2.1 thing. In overview of my motherboard ( http://www.silentpcreview.com/article855-page1.html ) it is stated that it has: "1 x PCIe x16 (Support PCIe 2.0 / 1.0 Architecture )" so it does support PCIe 2.0.. but what about this PCIe 2.1 ? I've read that it should be the same architecture shouldn't it ?
    My question is therefore simple, will it work together ?
    btw. the graphic card would be most probably: GIGABYTE VGA ATI Radeon HD 5850 1GB DDR5
    thanks !
  2. JMMD

    JMMD TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,177

    PCIe 2.1 should be fully backward compatible with PCIe 2.0. Just make sure your power supply is able to handle the new card.
  3. Jamesqin

    Jamesqin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 34

    thanks ! and yes, that would be another issue, Im kinda stuck between purchasing something around 500W or like 750W for further usage (crossfire for example).. what would you suggest ?
  4. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,288   +7

    That would depend on your budget. If you do intend to go CrossFire in the near future then it makes sense to get a 750W PSU now instead of the 550W.

    I would suggest something like the Corsair 750TX. It should be able to handle 2x HD5850 with ease.
  5. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,573   +9

    My view has always been that if you're not going to put in CF right at the start (or soon after), it might make more sense to buy one of the latest graphics cards available, than to expand to CF.

    Make sure you take this fact into account when making your decision.
  6. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,288   +7

    That's a very good point CMH. However, the budget often becomes a constraint. In this case though, the HD 5850 is a good enough choice. A fairly recent card that has been shown to perform exceptionally well. It also scales pretty well in CF.
  7. Jamesqin

    Jamesqin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 34

    well I have a chance of buing a HD 5870 powercolor for like aditional 100 dollars but the performance boost doesnt seem to be that great...
  8. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,288   +7

    If you can purchase an HD 5870 now and acquire another one in the near future then you'll have some serious gaming power at your disposal.

    However, if the 5870 will limit you to single card (due to budget) then get a 5850 now and a second one in the coming month or so.

    Basically whichever setup allows you to go CF within a relatively short span of time is the one to get among these two options. :)
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