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M.2 SSDs

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hi,

Are there any M.2 SSD's that use the PCI-e GEN 2 specification?

I've got a motherboard or two that uses PCI-e GEN 2 @ x4 which is why I ask so using a PCI-e GEN 3 @ x4 would be a waste maybe as it would cost more, that is on the basis that there are PCI-e GEN 2 M.2's in existence.

I've seen the M.2 NVME drives PCI-e GEN 3 @ x4 so I'm not confused about this for this post.

Also, I've seen some M.2 that use the SATA III 6 Gb/s interface which I do understand as these would be used instead of say one or two SATA III ports on a motherboard as they share the same bandwidth.

What I am confused about is trying to see if there are any M.2 drives that use the PCI-e GEN 2 interface so any helpful pointers are welcome - smile.gif

btw - a question, are all M.2's NVME? - Even the M.2 SATA G Gb/s drives?
post #2 of 8
You could get a pcie m.2 adapter. you probably couldnt boot from it though.
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Ol'Faithful
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post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by spinFX View Post

You could get a pcie m.2 adapter. you probably couldnt boot from it though.

Hi,

SSD's another subject in itself - Some PCI-e SSD adapter cards support boot and some don't - It's getting my head around the technology. The PCI-e adapter cards have SATA III data ports on to hook up to the SATA III ports on the motherboard so in effect the M.2 6 Gb/s acts in the same way as a SATA III drive mechanical or SSD.

Then a motherboard may have Ultra M.2 and M.2 that support both PCI-e and 6 Gb/s interface so in the case of 6 Gb/s interface the wiring in the PCB must be linked to the SATA III ports which is why they would be de-activated if used by M.2 6 Gb/s M.2

I did find Kingston Hyper Predator M.2 is for PCI-e GEN 2 but old and too expensive and not widely available.

I've got a couple adapter cards on the way and am happy there are options to use with the now older motherboards such as Z97 / AM3+ / FM2+ and maybe even Z77 / X79 - But the drives are very pricey.

Of course it is just cheaper to use a SATA III SSD but sometimes there is not much difference in price eg Crucial and WD.

If there is a spare PCI-e GEN 3 slot that's where it's handy to pop in a PCI-e SSD adapter card

Which SSD's do you use? - Samsung EVO 850?
post #4 of 8
PCI-E generations are back-and-forward compatible. So it shouldn't really matter if you use a Gen 3 device in a Gen 2 slot.

Not all M.2 devices are NVMe. The NVMe ones use PCI Express signalling, but some will also use SATA signalling which is not as fast and is not NVMe.
post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hi mott555,

Yes I've seen a little more SATA III 6 Gb/s interface and PCI-e GEN 3 x4 interface
post #6 of 8
Yes. Example : Samsung XP-941.

All PCIe 3.0 @ x4 will work in any* PCI-e slot.
*If slot can cope with PCI-e 3.0 GPU, it will work with 3.0 NVMe.

Math wise :
PCIe 1.x @ x4 = ~2x SATA III
PCIe 2.x @ x4 = ~4x SATA III

Real values :
PCIe 1.x @ x4 : LINK
PCIe 2.0 @ x4 : LINK
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post #7 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by fra z View Post

Hi,

SSD's another subject in itself - Some PCI-e SSD adapter cards support boot and some don't - It's getting my head around the technology. The PCI-e adapter cards have SATA III data ports on to hook up to the SATA III ports on the motherboard so in effect the M.2 6 Gb/s acts in the same way as a SATA III drive mechanical or SSD.

Just because the card supports booting doesnt mean your motherboard and cpu will, which they probably won't.
Like others said, pcie is backwards compatible, you can plug a pcie gen 3 device in a pcie gen 1 slot and it will still work, just not as well.

The wings PX1 adapter has pcie3 x4 connection, so in your PCIe 2.0 (which is 500MB/s per lane) you can get 2000MB/s of theoretical throughput compared to the 3Gbit/6gbit sata connection you have on the board at the moment (6gbit is only 715MB/s)
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post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hi SpinFX,

OK sure, the motherboard and CPU need to support boot as well as the actual PCI-e M.2 adapter card

How would you imagine a system would work if the following applied?

OS installed on 1 x SATA III 6 Gb/s port with SSD

M.2 PCI-e GEN 3 SSD adapter card via GEN 3 x16 slot as a write drive

Would the write drive which is a lot quicker than the install drive still write at up to top speeds even though the OS drive is a lot slower?
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