[SOLVED] Running M.2 NVMe on an older motherboard with an adapter?

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Supreme93

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Hi everyone,

I wanted to add some extra storage to my pc and remembered seeing videos about being able to install M.2 drives into motherboards that didn't have an M.2 slot via a PCIe adapter. After doing some research I found out that I possibly won't get the maximum read and write speeds because my second PCIe slot would be running at x4( I think ). I read my motherboard's manual and I think that it confirms this but I'm not sure


This is my motherboard: https://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/H77M/#Specification

Motherboard manual: https://download.asrock.com/Manual/H77M.pdf

On page 21 it says: 2. In CrossFireXTM mode, please install the PCI Express x16 graphics cards on PCIE1 and PCIE2 slots. Therefore, PCIE1 will work at x16 bandwidth, while PCIE2 works at x4 bandwidth.

This is the adapter I had in mind: https://www.mwave.com.au/product/orico-m2-nvme-to-pcie-30-x4-expansion-card-ac22230


The M.2 drive I wanted to get has a max read speed of 3400MB/s and write speed of 2900MB/s so if my second PCIe slot runs at x4 does that mean I won't be able to reach those speeds?

Google says that PCIe 2.0 x4 has a bandwidth of 2000MB/s and I intend to keep my GPU in the PCIe 3.0 x16 slot because I also play games in my free time

Should I maybe go for a slightly slower M.2 drive like a WD Blue that has a read speed of 2400MB/s and write speed of 1750MB/s ?

Also If the adapter( like the one linked above ) says it's PCIe 3.0 does that mean it won't work in a PCIe 2.0 slot?

I current have a WD 10K RPM VelociRaptor drive for storage and a WD Green SSD for my OS. Using CrystalDiskMark it says that my VelociRaptor drive has a read and write speed of 110MB/s and my WD Green SSD has a read speed of 260MB/s and write speed of 250MB/s which is half of what it's supposed to be running at. My SSD should be at a minimum of 500MB/s read and write and I'm not sure why it's running slower. I've tried different SATA cables and changing the ports but it's still the same

Other than storage speed my pc is great and I have no intention of building a new system anytime soon. I use it for work and gaming so I feel that the only thing I need to add is faster storage and a newer GPU for games

My pc:

CPU: i7 3770 non k
RAM: 16GB DDR3 1600
GPU: R9 280x ( when needed it will be upgraded to either a RX 580 or Radeon 5700 )
HDD 1: WD Green SSD
HDD 2: WD VelociRaptor 10K RPM
Monitor: 40 inch LED @ 1080p ( it's great for productivity and even better for gaming. I could never go back to a 24inch or 32 inch monitor again )
PSU: Thermaltake 750w 80 plus Bronze


Thank you to anybody who was willing to read through all this o_O lol
 

Maxxify

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Would require BIOS mod to boot. Drive will only run at x4 PCIe 2.0 or around 1.8 GB/s - 5x4 Gbps * 8b/10b encoding * .9 (overhead) = 1840 MB/s. Not that it matters much, you won't be able to use that sequential performance, although a drive like the WD SN550 would be ideal (avoid the SN500 - it's x2 and would run half as fast).
 
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USAFRet

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Don't buy an NVMe drive and adapter.

Instead, get a regular SATA III SSD, and replace your WD Green. (or leave the WD Green as a secondary drive)
A Crucial MX500, for instance.

An NVMe drive in that system won't do anything special except waste money.
 
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Supreme93

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Dec 31, 2015
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Don't buy an NVMe drive and adapter.

Instead, get a regular SATA III SSD, and replace your WD Green. (or leave the WD Green as a secondary drive)
A Crucial MX500, for instance.

An NVMe drive in that system won't do anything special except waste money.
The MX500 has the same read and write speeds as my WD Green so I'm worried that if I got one it will only be running at half the speed like it is with my current SSD

In terms of money the price of a new NVMe drive with an adapter isn't going to to break the bank and is something I'm happy to spend on as long as it will work in my system

I built a system for my father with a NVMe drive and love how quick the start up time for windows and games is. Plus every application feels so responsive and crisp and is something I'd like to have in my system as well
 
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Maxxify

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Would require BIOS mod to boot. Drive will only run at x4 PCIe 2.0 or around 1.8 GB/s - 5x4 Gbps * 8b/10b encoding * .9 (overhead) = 1840 MB/s. Not that it matters much, you won't be able to use that sequential performance, although a drive like the WD SN550 would be ideal (avoid the SN500 - it's x2 and would run half as fast).
 
Reactions: Supreme93

Supreme93

Reputable
Dec 31, 2015
9
0
4,510
0
Would require BIOS mod to boot. Drive will only run at x4 PCIe 2.0 or around 1.8 GB/s - 5x4 Gbps * 8b/10b encoding * .9 (overhead) = 1840 MB/s. Not that it matters much, you won't be able to use that sequential performance, although a drive like the WD SN550 would be ideal (avoid the SN500 - it's x2 and would run half as fast).
Unless you have a specific use case for an NVMe drive you are unlikely to notice any real world difference compared to a good SATA SSD for general work and gaming.
Thanks for helping me out. I just looked around and it seems that it's true that for my use case I won't see any significant improvement

This makes me think that something might be wrong with my current SSD and that it's performing far lower than it should be. I'm not sure why I'm getting half the read and write speeds but I'm going to spend some time looking into and hopefully can find a solution

Thanks again for the help and saving me around $140 :D
 
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