Does SLI ready mobo with PCIe Gen 3 require Intel iCore 3 gen


Feb 12, 2013
Hi, I'm in the process of my first custom build. I want to take advantage of SLI PCIe 3.0 on a z77 mobo. Does that require a specific Intel iCore generation?

I was thinking of getting this but now I am not so sure PCIe 3.0 is compatible with this processor.

motherboard (PCIe 3) and cpu (2nd gen)

graphics card



At the moment a PCI-e 3.0 slot is not required by any card. It will probably be nVidia's GTX 800 and AMD's Radeon HD 9000 series that will begin to be a little limited a PCI-e 2.0 slot and would need a PCI-e 3.0 to get the full potential. However, that only applies to the very highest end cards like a GTX 880 or 890 for nVidia and the Radeon HD 9990 or 9970 for AMD. In other words if you are going to be spending $600+ on a graphics card in 2013 / 2014, then it would be best to have a PCI-e 3.0 slot. How much of a performance loss will there be if stuck in a PCI-e 2.0 slot? Not sure, but it should not be very bad. Natural slower cards from those future generation graphic cards will not be limited at all by a PCI-e 2.0 slot. The slower the card the lower the chances of a bottleneck.

Having said all that, if you want to take advantage of PCI-e 3.0, then you need an Ivy Bridge Core i5 or Core i7 CPU because the PCI-e controller is built inside the CPU. The Ivy Bridge Core i3 does not support PCI-e 3.0. It must be a 3rd generation Core i5 or Core i7 CPU.

If you are not the type of person to buy really expensive graphic cards and you upgrade the CPU/motherboard every 3 or 4 years, then you really do not have anything to worry about.
as of the moment, as stated above, you do not need to worry. even a 680 cannot saturate pcie 2.0, so its perfectly fine. no performance loss.

im using a 2500k so no 3.0 for me but i have a gtx 670, no problem with the performance. as of now, those branding with pci-e 3.0 are just marketing. sure they are there, if you have ivy you can use it but it's not important for now.

it's like a road with 200kmph limit but cars can only go 100.
it is similar to sata3 using hdd, but with ssd it's a different thing since they can reach sata2 speed limit



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