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Which is Faster PCI or PCI Express? Compare

Which Should I Use, PCI or PCI Express? Compare Motherboard Slots:

NTI- Which is faster PCI or PCI Express Slot

Different PCI, PCI Express slots as they would appear on your motherboard.

PCI 1056 Mb/s  
AGP 8X 2,133 Mb/s
PCI Express 1x 2,500 Mb/s
PCI Express 4x 10,000 Mb/s
PCI Express 8x 20,000 Mb/s
PCI Express 16x 40,000 Mb/s
IDE (ATA100) 800 Mb/s
IDE (ATA133) 1064 Mb/s
SATA 1500 Mb/s
SATA II 3000 Mb/s
SATA 6 6000 Mb/s
Firewire 400 400 Mb/s
USB 1 12 Mb/s
USB 2 480 Mb/s
USB 3 4,800 Mb/s
Gigabit Ethernet 1000 Mb/s

Compare PCI vs PCI Express

The slots shown above represent the slots on a computer motherboard that a video card would be mounted into. To compare, PCI Express is a serial based technology, data can be sent over the bus in two directions at once.

Normal PCI is Parallel, and as such all data goes in one direction. Hence PCI Express will provide much faster video than the older PCI. (See more port types at the bottom of this page).

Each 1x lane in PCI Express can transmit in both directions at once. Also please note that in PCI Express bandwidth is not shared the same way as in PCI, so there is less congestion on the bus.

The "x" in an "x16" connection is typically represented as "by" (by 1 [x1] , by 16 [x16] etc). PCIe connections are scalable by one, by two, by four, and so on.

When the computer starts up, PCIe determines which devices are plugged into the motherboard. It then identifies the links between the devices, creating a map of where traffic will go and negotiating the width of each link.

NTI- Which is faster PCI or PCI Express Slot  

NTI- Which is faster PCI or PCI Express Slot Each lane of a PCI Express connection contains two pairs of wires -- one to send and one to receive. Packets of data move across the lane at a rate of one bit per cycle.

A x1 connection, the smallest PCIe connection, has one lane made up of four wires. It carries one bit per cycle in each direction. A x4 link transmits four lanes, and so on.


NTI- Which is faster PCI or PCI Express Slot

What is PCI?

PCI is short for Peripheral Component Interconnect. The PCI slot is a local system bus standard that was introduced by the Intel Corporation, however, it is not exclusive to any form of processors and PCI slots are found in both Windows PCs and Macs.

PCI slots allow numerous different types of expansion cards to be connected inside a computer to extend the computers functionality. Examples of PCI expansion cards are network cards, graphics cards and sound cards.

Although the bus speed is slightly slower than PCI Express, the PCI slots are the most common type of slot and found on most motherboards today. If you are installing a new video card and you are unsure about the slots, stick with the PCI version of this card it will always work.


Compare PCI and PCI Express

The 32-bit PCI bus has a maximum speed of 33 MHz, which allows a maximum of 133 MB of data to pass through the bus per second. Different PCI Express specifications allow different rates of data transfer, anywhere from 400 MB to 8000 MB of data per second and beyond. (see table at top of page)

Compare PCI and PCI Express

NTI- Which is faster PCI or PCI Express Slot


Since PCI, PCI-X and PCI Express are all compatible, all three can coexist if the operating system allows it. As of 2011, the PCIe format is the most common type of video adapters by far and now considered the standard.

Network and sound adapters, as well as other peripherals, have been slower in development to adapt to PCI Express but it is coming. Since PCIe is compatible with current operating systems and can provide faster speeds, it will eventually replace PCI as a PC standard. Gradually, PCI-based cards will become obsolete.

Windows 7 for example requires a PCI Express video card, older PCI express cards will not work, not well anyway.

(Acknowledgments to HowStuffWorks, answers.com and Directron for assistance in this article.)

Computer Systems with PCI Express Video Cards:

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