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Author Topic: X99 PCIe lane switching  (Read 22412 times)

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RuudtTopic starter

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X99 PCIe lane switching
« on: 11-December-14, 10:38:20 »

The MSI X99 motherboards have the best PCIe switching design in the market.
We allow you to use M.2 PCIe x4 Gen3 on every X99 motherboard (up to 3-way SLI/CFX).
Due to our flexible design we have numerous configuration possibilities, which are not all listed in the regular manual.
Since plugging in graphics cards affect M.2/SATAe PCIe availability things can get confusing.

To inform you what is possible I made the following switching diagrams, I hope this helps:

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TZBC

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« Reply #1 on: 12-December-14, 06:22:49 »

Wow, it helps me solve the mystery.
Awesome!
Thank you  ;D
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m.letcher

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« Reply #2 on: 21-December-14, 01:14:17 »

Very helpful. Thanks. I just posted in the Graphics section about getting these choices configured in the BIOS. I'm hooking up a 2nd graphic card (nv-750 in PCI1, and nv-650 in PCI3). I have a the first option (x99s SLI Plus with 28 channels ie a 6-core Haswell). I'd like to configure the lanes as 16x8x4, but it is not at all clear which options in the BIOS would do this. If not, I guess it would be an 8x8x8+4 combo which might be OK. Sounds like I should look more at the Gen3 options in the BIOS. All the BIOS PCI options are set to 'auto', so I presumed it would autodetect the cards and self-configure, but it doesn't appear to be doing so. I don't see the 650 in my Win devices, and suspect it's getting locked out since there aren't 32 lanes available for a default 16x16 setup. Any suggestions?
 
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m.letcher

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« Reply #3 on: 21-December-14, 02:57:35 »

After looking into this a bit more, I'll try setting PC1 (750) to Gen3 and PCI3 (650) to Gen2 tomorrow. I think some clouds are parting.
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Cdb8457

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« Reply #4 on: 04-May-15, 16:30:15 »

OK, I have the i7 5930k with the x99s sli plus. Which lanes would I use for SLI evga 980s?
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badboy2k

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« Reply #5 on: 04-May-15, 16:56:54 »

OK, I have the i7 5930k with the x99s sli plus. Which lanes would I use for SLI evga 980s?

depends on the type of SLI as there are 3 types!

if its 2 way its slots E1 and E3 will be X16 X16
if its 3 way its slots E1 - E3 and E5 for X8, X16, X8
if its 4 way its E1, E3, E5 and E7 for X8, X8, X8, X8
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Cdb8457

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« Reply #6 on: 06-May-15, 20:28:35 »

I have mine at E1 and E3. That makes them x16 and x16..... They are almost touching. Would it be back to move the bottom one down to E5 which is x8....How much of a difference to there?
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Nichrome

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« Reply #7 on: 06-May-15, 21:04:08 »

I have mine at E1 and E3. That makes them x16 and x16..... They are almost touching. Would it be back to move the bottom one down to E5 which is x8....How much of a difference to there?

Hi

According to what I find online, it's about 1-5% performance loss. Try it out on Valley Benchmark Extreme HD preset, and see the differences.
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badboy2k

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« Reply #8 on: 07-May-15, 01:35:48 »

I have mine at E1 and E3. That makes them x16 and x16..... They are almost touching. Would it be back to move the bottom one down to E5 which is x8....How much of a difference to there?

if you did that both would drop to X8 - X8 as it would switch to 3 way mode so E1 would switch to X8 too as well as E5!
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thecrazyscotsman1976

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« Reply #9 on: 01-June-15, 12:15:57 »

Ello all..noob and learning..so may have a lame question as im learning and tryin tounderstand. If i have the 5960x , sm951 256gb in m.2 slot as boot drive and 2 msi gtx 980 cards in slots one and four with the sli cable to the outter leftside of the cards,is this all proper and what should i change for switches? Lanes? How do i switch these lanes?..Am not understanding as im still learning. many many thanx if someone can help me out.
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badboy2k

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« Reply #10 on: 01-June-15, 12:21:40 »

your CPU is a 40 lane CPU! your 2 GTX980's are using 16 lanes each so 32 lanes there so even if your M.2 is using lanes too on the cpu thats a maximum of 4 more so 36 lanes used!

PCI-E lane allocations are automatic so you do nothing!
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thecrazyscotsman1976

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« Reply #11 on: 02-June-15, 00:28:08 »

Oh mint. Thanks for the reply m8.. think its all good.. now to get the sm951 in m.2 slot  to show up in bios..its all booting etc and read write speeds are 1900 or so and i believes 1200..my score is around top end of 1800s..it shows in windows but not in bios system info section.. i dunno why. Ill have to post a thread and reach out to the community i guess. Again thank ya for yer answer..cheers
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dragonguard

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« Reply #12 on: 30-July-15, 20:34:44 »

I have:

MSI X99A Gaming 9 ACK
MSI GTX 980 Ti Gaming 6G
Intel 5820k
M.2 Samsung drive with x4 link

Due to the CPU cooler, the first PCIe slot is blocked and I have to use the lower ones.
I put the GPU in slot 3 now as it has the most space there, however it's only using an x8 link according to various software tools.

I assume it is not possible to get a full x16 link if a single GPU setup isn't sitting in the very first PCIe slot?

Thank you.
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badboy2k

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« Reply #13 on: 31-July-15, 09:01:12 »

I have: MSI X99A Gaming 9 ACK MSI GTX 980 Ti Gaming 6G Intel 5820k M.2 Samsung drive with x4 link Due to the CPU cooler, the first PCIe slot is blocked and I have to use the lower ones. I put the GPU in slot 3 now as it has the most space there, however it's only using an x8 link according to various software tools. I assume it is not possible to get a full x16 link if a single GPU setup isn't sitting in the very first PCIe slot? Thank you.

its still possible! Move the card to the slot just above the M.2 Connector as that is also wired for x16 operation so no its not just the top slot! (the lanes are wired the same as the X99S Gaming 9 ACK) the one marked bellow is also x16 capable!
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dragonguard

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« Reply #14 on: 31-July-15, 09:06:35 »

Hello and thank you for your reply. According to the picture, this only applies to CPUs with 40 lanes, or am I wrong?
I'm using the 5820k in my build (28 lanes)
« Last Edit: 31-July-15, 16:12:36 by dragonguard »
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badboy2k

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« Reply #15 on: 31-July-15, 09:33:44 »

yeah true! guess your stuck then!
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« Reply #16 on: 02-October-15, 14:06:18 »

running a 5930K with 40 lanes and MSI GTX 970  twin frozr plugged into an MSI 99A board PCIe # 1 and #3, the card on # 1 is heating to 85-91 Celsius under load, since I want a 16x16 lanes, and I want to OC the VGA how do I solve the cooling problem? IF I move to #1 and # 4 I am 8x8, so with all this flexibility what is my best config ?? :)
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flobelix

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« Reply #17 on: 02-October-15, 14:07:48 »

What X99A board?
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drwhimsy13

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« Reply #18 on: 02-October-15, 19:39:27 »

What X99A board?

running X99(S) A Gaming 7
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flobelix

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« Reply #19 on: 03-October-15, 12:05:25 »

There is about nothing you can do if wanting x16/x16. The only option for x16/x16 is using the cards in E1 and E3. With just one slot of space between them there is simply no space to "breathe". The card in E1 heats up the card in E3 and in addition sucks in the hot air from the card in E3. Because of the small gap between them even a sidepanel fan won't help. The lane arrangement is predefined and depends on slot population. So moving the card to E5 instead of E3 will switch the slots to x8/x8 and nothing can change that. Personally I would go for this option as the performace difference because of the lane limitation will not be noticeable. But since lower temps mean higher boost clockrates and no downclocking you might even see a performance increase when the cards woN't heat up each other and can suck in cooler air.
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drwhimsy13

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« Reply #20 on: 04-October-15, 02:20:38 »

thank you , is there ANY  MSI motherboard which I can plug my 5930 and 2 970s into and achieve enough slot separation to run overclock cool on vga cards and get 16 lanes on both cards ? appreciate your thoughts :)
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badboy2k

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« Reply #21 on: 04-October-15, 02:54:57 »

X99A RAIDER would be a Good choice for that as it is capable of a 3 slot spaced gap between the 2 x16 slots so it would have full x16 on both cards! (that board only has 3 slots and is meant for 2 way SLI at full speed)
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« Reply #22 on: 04-October-15, 07:10:38 »

is there ANY MSI motherboard which I can plug my 5930 and 2 970s into and achieve enough slot separation to run overclock cool on vga cards and get 16 lanes on both cards ? appreciate your thoughts :)

Also all X99 boards above your Gaming 7. That means all Gaming 9 and XPower versions.
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« Reply #23 on: 06-November-15, 20:11:10 »

Hi

Sorry for being dense but I'm not sure I understand. I just bought a Samsung 950 Pro that im using together with my 2 AMD cards and a 5820K. And from my understanding I should be able to run the 950 Pro at 4x speed in the M.2 slot. Is that correct? Because I cant seem to get it above 2x right now.
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« Reply #24 on: 06-November-15, 20:47:48 »

Hi

Sorry for being dense but I'm not sure I understand. I just bought a Samsung 950 Pro that im using together with my 2 AMD cards and a 5820K. And from my understanding I should be able to run the 950 Pro at 4x speed in the M.2 slot. Is that correct? Because I cant seem to get it above 2x right now.
Depends what slots they are in.
Did you set M.2 PCH Strap to M.2 PCIE.
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pratul.chandra

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« Reply #25 on: 21-November-15, 14:27:31 »

Hi,

I have the Godlike gaming and have the R9 295X2 in Slot 1. I am planning to add the Samsung 950Pro in the M2 slot. Please advise the switching and if possible the diagram

Thanks in advance
« Last Edit: 21-November-15, 22:03:45 by pratul.chandra »
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Nichrome

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« Reply #26 on: 21-November-15, 16:05:34 »

Hi

Keep it as it is. And simply insert the M.2 drive to the slot, should work just fine.
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pratul.chandra

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« Reply #27 on: 21-November-15, 16:12:17 »

thanks a ton
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j.sickn3ss

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« Reply #28 on: 16-January-16, 23:35:51 »

Correct me if i am wrong but i shouldn't have any trouble using the 5th slot (only) in my x99a Godlike Mobo for my MSI 980 ti 6gb?
(trying to trouble shoot any and all possible issues as my 6.3 audio jack is not being detected)

Thanks
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« Reply #29 on: 17-January-16, 08:27:34 »

Hi

It should work fine. Though still depends what CPU you have and what devices are in other slots.
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« Reply #30 on: 17-January-16, 19:42:20 »

Correct me if i am wrong but i shouldn't have any trouble using the 5th slot (only) in my x99a Godlike Mobo for my MSI 980 ti 6gb?
It depends what you consider as trouble.
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johnwilliams2022

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« Reply #31 on: 14-February-16, 15:48:40 »

Ive made my own thread asking this question .  so will ask the same question here . i have also sent a message to customer service as cant believe this is not a big problem .

Im very upset to learn that my 2 x 980ti in slot 1 and slot 3 are only running at 8x/8x using the msi gaming long bridge . i automatically assumes that because the bridge only reaches 3 slots then i thought this was it and put the cards in slot 1 and slot 3 . now i learn that  i can only have the sli'ed cards ion 1 and 4 slot . how is this even possible if you have a watercooled set up and to use the advertised 4 slot gaming bridge long ? 

i wont notice the speed in games but i built a very expensive water cooled (hardline tubing set up ) and my system cant bench to its full potential . dont get me wrong the board is one of the best for overclocking as i have a stable 4.75ghz on 1.27v with my 5960x J batch chip and runs very cool indeed on fill load . but the layout for the PCIE is a nightmare and i feel misled for a very expensive motherboard 
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« Reply #32 on: 16-February-16, 00:00:13 »

I have mine at E1 and E3. That makes them x16 and x16..... They are almost touching. Would it be back to move the bottom one down to E5 which is x8....How much of a difference to there?


If you have the X99 SLI Plus board or the Krait and you move the card to slot 5 it will make both cards run at x8. Slot 5 is only wired for an x8 and the "switch" gets tripped and makes your master gpu run at x8 as well. I just went through this and had to get rid of my EK Triple Serial Connector (that kept the cards in slots 1 and 5) for a Dual Serial Connector having the cards in slots 1 and 3. Its the only way to get x16 on both cards on this board.

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« Reply #33 on: 15-March-16, 09:11:53 »

Hi all,

Hopefully someone can help me out with this.
I have the Godlike motherboard with a 5820k CPU and I am trying to work out the lane configuration for 2-way SLI with a sound card and an M.2. I was thinking E1 and E2 for the GPU's and then E4 for the sound card, but would it be possible to use E1 and E4 for the GPU's and then E5 for the sound card and just have it run at a lower Gen setting so as to not impact the other lane speeds, or would it simply allow it as it stood?

Thanks.
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badboy2k

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« Reply #34 on: 15-March-16, 09:58:11 »

Hi all, Hopefully someone can help me out with this. I have the Godlike motherboard with a 5820k CPU and I am trying to work out the lane configuration for 2-way SLI with a sound card and an M.2. I was thinking E1 and E2 for the GPU's and then E4 for the sound card, but would it be possible to use E1 and E4 for the GPU's and then E5 for the sound card and just have it run at a lower Gen setting so as to not impact the other lane speeds, or would it simply allow it as it stood? Thanks.

that board splits lanes the same as a X99S gaming 9 AC



you would have to use 1,2 and 4 as using slot 5 with that CPU will make your M.2 use the PCH lanes on the chipset as the card in the lower slot would use the block of 4 PCI-E lanes that the M.2 is using making it much slower!
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john_a_constantine

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« Reply #35 on: 15-March-16, 10:33:22 »

Thank you for clearing that up for me!
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badboy2k

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« Reply #36 on: 15-March-16, 11:02:24 »

Thank you for clearing that up for me!
no problem as it can be confusing what it will do if you don't know!
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« Reply #37 on: 23-April-16, 00:59:50 »

It is pretty amazing u guys can do something like this, u guys r almost tech savvy than some average Joe end user like me, salute to u, and I learn a lot from all these great posts
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« Reply #38 on: 14-May-16, 16:42:58 »

Hi
Just wanted to check if I generally understood this correctly.
I have X99A SLI plus motherboard, 5820k cpu and 2x970GTX in SLI. I have nothing else connected.

I tried putting those two cards E1 and E3. Everything worked of course, but as I run couple of benchmarks top card started to heat up much much faster, reaching 85 degrees very fast.

I then decided to put second card in E5 (so E1 an E5). Nvidia inspector shows that both cards are now running at 3.0 x 8.
However temperatures are now equally low, and there is 0 percent loss in performance in any benchmark software.

So I was wondering, since these two cards supposed to work in sync, is there ANY benefit in having one at x16 and other in x8 while they are in SLI?
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« Reply #39 on: 14-May-16, 20:21:59 »

So I was wondering, since these two cards supposed to work in sync, is there ANY benefit in having one at x16 and other in x8 while they are in SLI?

No, x16/x8 or x8/x8 is totally irrelevant. Stick with the better temps and x8/x8
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« Reply #40 on: 14-May-16, 20:44:57 »

Thanks for fast reply!
I'll stay on x8/x8 than.
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« Reply #41 on: 14-May-16, 23:00:22 »

:biggthumbsup:
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« Reply #42 on: 26-May-16, 01:12:31 »

Ok, still a little confused...

I'm planning to pick up the X99A SLI Krait Edition MB in the next 2 weeks. I also plan to run 2 video cards, the M.2 port as a PCI-E 4X device and the CPU will be a 40 lane one.

From what I found in the MB manual, I should be able to do the following:

Slot 1 - 16x 3.0
Slot 3 - 16x 3.0
M2 - 4x 3.0

That accounts for 36 of the lanes. Shouldn't I be able to plug in up to 4X worth of lanes into the lower 2 16x slots (#5 and #6)?? Because the manual just shows "-----" in those blocks. I assume it's ok to plug something else like a Soundblaster card (yes I know there's built in audio... I have a reason for a 2nd sound card) etc. so long as they don't use more than 4x right?

Or will doing anything in those 2 slots cause Slots 1+3 to drop down to 8x mode???
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KedarWolf

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« Reply #43 on: 26-May-16, 16:48:02 »

If I want my video cards in the top two slots and put a pci-e Intel 750 which runs at 4X in the fourth slot will the video cards 16/16? I have a 40 lane CPU.
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badboy2k

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« Reply #44 on: 26-May-16, 17:54:30 »

If I want my video cards in the top two slots and put a pci-e Intel 750 which runs at 4X in the fourth slot will the video cards 16/16? I have a 40 lane CPU.

what board? you have said you have a 40 lane CPU but not what board you have!
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« Reply #45 on: 08-July-16, 09:05:52 »

So I've almost exclusively bought MSI products in the past, because I've never had issues and this was enough to make me stick to them... until now.

I've recently bought an entirely new system:
- Intel Core i7 6900K
- Kingston HyperX Predator DIMM Kit 16GB (x2)
- MSI X99A Gaming Pro Carbon
- MSI GeForce GTX 1080 Gaming X (x2)
- And a whole bunch of Noctua PWM fans

(Please don't assume that I'm rich or anything. I'm a student. This was a major investment for me. I've used money I saved over the course of about three years!)

Right from the start I've faced issues with the ASMEDIA USB 3 controller (*this*), but since I don't really need that many USB connections anyway, I've decided not to use them and just wait this issue to get fixed per driver update or something.

But there's another problem, that I think is way more severe. The top GTX 1080 of my SLI setup is absolutely suffocating, because MSI thought it would be a great idea to have no free space between dual slot graphic cards on the X99A Gaming Pro Carbon. Sorry for needlessly bashing the engineers of MSI, but I'm just so infuriated about this! Obviously I blame myself for this, too, I should have definitely paid more attention to this before I purchased the motherboard. Well, basically one GTX 1080 is always running up to 20°C hotter than the other one, even with all fans manually set to 100%.

Would SLI still work if I used PCI_E1 and PCI_E5 (with a sound card in PCI_E3 and an SSD in the M.2 slot)? I guess they wouldn't be running in x16 mode then? To be perfectly honest, I'm even too dumb to make sense of the graphs in this thread. And I cannot test this, because I have no SLI bridge that long and before spending about ~$20 on a SLI bridge or even $50+ on a SLI-HB bridge I thought I'd ask you guys.

Thanks in advance!
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« Reply #46 on: 08-July-16, 10:21:01 »

Hi

SLI should work just fine with PCIE1 and PCIE5 slots being used. Of course, it will not be at x16 speed, but the difference is so small that you wouldn't notice a difference.
Also it is normal that top card runs hotter than the other. But if top card's temp doesn't exceed 85C under full load then I wouldn't worry about it.
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flobelix

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« Reply #47 on: 08-July-16, 14:31:16 »

Yes, E1 and E5 will work in SLI (at x8/x8). It is the best idea with this setup. You won't notice any difference compared to x16/x16 anyway. Lower temperatures and full boost clockrates are more important.
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« Reply #48 on: 09-July-16, 04:41:02 »

Hi

SLI should work just fine with PCIE1 and PCIE5 slots being used. Of course, it will not be at x16 speed, but the difference is so small that you wouldn't notice a difference.
Also it is normal that top card runs hotter than the other. But if top card's temp doesn't exceed 85C under full load then I wouldn't worry about it.

So, you're admitting this is worrisome? :undecided:

After 3 minutes the top card runs 93°C while the bottom card still is about 20°C cooler:


After 15 minutes the top card is running at a mere 949MHz thanks to thermal throttling:


The ambient temperature is 20°C (AC controlled). I still don't understand why MSI chose to design the PCIe slots on the X99A Gaming Carbon like this, when most graphics cards these days are dual slotted. I'm really upset about this... :(
« Last Edit: 09-July-16, 12:13:34 by strike »
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« Reply #49 on: 09-July-16, 08:32:14 »

Yes 93C is quite bad, and better to move cards around to get them at x8/x8 but with lower temps.
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