Question Asus z490 Mobo PCIe Lane

rygar

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Aug 7, 2010
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Hi there, I apologize if this was handled elsewhere, but I need help with my specific setup... Im really confused regarding how many PCI-E lanes im currently using, and how many I have left / how best to access them.

I just upgraded from a z290 with an i7-7700k to the Asus Rog Swift F-Gaming z490 board with an i7-10700k.

  • I have 2 x 2 TB Samsung 970 Evo Plus PCIe M.2 nvme drives in the 2 available M.2 slots.
  • I have 1 additional 2 TB Samsung 970 Evo Plus PCIe M.2 NVMe drive installed in a PCIE x 4 card, which is inserted in the PCIe x 16 # 3 slot.
  • Lastly I have a PCIe x 1 card for a USB hub, so I can connect my cases front panel after I broke a pin on the 20pin USB 3.0 header on the Mobo. This gives me 4 USB 3.0, 1 USB-C on the back, and allows my 2 USB 2.0 front panel slots to work. (This can be removed if need be.)
I want to add as many PCIe NVMe cards as I can without takijng my GPU out of PCIe x16 mode. If I put the PCIe x 4 card in the #2 slot, my GPU goes to x8 (though I dont notice much if any issues at all, and my Aorus Waterforce Extreme 2080ti with 240mm AIO and 4 x Corsair 120mm MagLev fans will run at 2.160 GHz.)

I plan to upgrade to a 3090 and don't want that kind of card running in x8.

  • How many PCIe lanes do I have left, and how can I access them to add another PCIe M.2 NVME drive?
  • Does teh Thunderbolt 3 header on my Mobo share PCIe lanes with anything else?
  • Can I put a 2 x PCIe M.2 NVME card in (which would be x8) in the #3 PCIe x 16 slot, or would that also knock my GPU out of x16 mode?
I was thinking of removing the PCI-E x 4 card with 1 drive, and putting in a PCIe x 8 drive with 2 PCIe ssds....


-or- better yet, if the Thunderbolt 3 header doesnt share any lanes with anything else - is it possible to run an external Thunderbolt hub that connects DIRECTLY to the internal Header, but DOESNT need a PCIe card for 40gb/s? If i didnt need teh PCI-e card, and it didnt share lanes, I should be able to add a couple PCIe nvme external drives to the hub that would share the 40GB/s... no?

Sorry, this new chipset has me very confused and I am unsure if I am currently maxed out on PCIe m.2 drives if I dont want the GPU reduced from x16 mode.

THANKS FOR THE HELP!!!
 

rygar

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If you dont approve the thread, maybe you can quickly just respond back?

I cant find ANYTHING on teh web that clears all this up for me before pulling the trigger on an expensive card and m.2 drive.

THANK YOU!

(Oh and I apologize for the PCIe lane question... i take it you get way too many here... I just cant seem to find these very specific answers. )
 

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