PCI-X vs Normal PCI

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by JasonGough, May 16, 2005.

  1. JasonGough macrumors regular

    JasonGough

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2005
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #1
    One of the things that is making my decision between getting a G5 Dual 2 or a Dual 2.3 is the addition of PCI-X slots on the 2.3 model.

    This model ends up costing about £400 more than the Dual 2, and i was wondering what the PCI-X slots actualy do?

    I have a Pro Sound card that uses a PCI slot with an external breakout box. Will the faster PCI-X slots make any difference to the performance of my sound card?

    Apart from that i can't think of any reason why i would need PCI-X. as far as i know, its for new graphics cards, but i have a pretty decent AGP 8x graphics card, and have no intention of buying a new graphics card.

    Does anyone know of any new technology on its way that will use PCI-X properly in the next few years, or is it worth just saving money and getting a dual 2 with normal PCI slots?

    Any help or ideas would be great.
    Thanx!
     
  2. Abulia macrumors 68000

    Abulia

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2004
    Location:
    Kushiel's Scion
    #2
    Most of the cards that use PCI-X are high end, like RAID SCSI cards, video genlock equipment cards, etc. Not something many of us normally use. However, I think it certainly increases the value of the machine; more options.

    I don't think PCI-X does graphics at all. AGP is being phased out for PCI-Express (PCIe or PCI-E).

    Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.
     
  3. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #3
    PCI-X is just a PCI slot that is overclocked to 100 or 133MHz.

    If your card does not support those speeds it won't work faster.

    Neither the PCI or PCI-X slots in the PowerMac G5s support 5v cards.
     
  4. kwajo.com macrumors 6502a

    kwajo.com

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    Bay of Fundy
    #4
    i htink there are some pci-x graphics cards for workstations, but yes other than that you're right
     
  5. JasonGough thread starter macrumors regular

    JasonGough

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2005
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #5
    ah ok, i didn't realise PCI-X and PCI-Express were differnet, thats abit stupid calling them somthing so similar.

    How come AGP is on the way out? i though that was good cos it avoided the PCI pipeline for dealing with graphics.

    It seems to me tho, that I currently have, and will probably not in the future, have any need for these PCI-X slots. Especialy since they are not the new graphics slots that i was thinking of. Also, since most pro audio interfaces are using FireWire now. I can't think of anything atall that will use these faster PCI-X slots.

    Does anyone know of anything that is planned to come out using PCI-X slots that makes it worth paying a few hundred extra £ to future proof my mac abit more?
     
  6. kwajo.com macrumors 6502a

    kwajo.com

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    Bay of Fundy
  7. atszyman macrumors 68020

    atszyman

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    Location:
    The Dallas 'burbs
    #7
    AGP is on it's way out since PCI Express is a dedicated serial interface rather than a shared bus. By ganging multiple PCI Express connections you can currently equal and in the future exceed the bandwidth of AGP 8X (not that many people even approach the bandwidth at the moment).

    PCI-X has a few differences other than being just over-clocking a 64-bit/66MHz PCI interface. Most of the differences are under the hood and not extremely interesting unless you design PCI hardware. The most noticeable change for end users is the fact that a 133 MHz PCI-X slot is not shared, and a 100 MHz PCI-X slot can only be shared with one other card. PCI-X made a few in-roads in industry with high end interface cards (RAID, SCSI, etc) but not too many consumer level cards exist.

    If it's a matter of saving money I would opt for the straight PCI slots and start saving for your next computer update. Apple will certainly start including PCI Express in one of the next updates which will be a lot more future proof (I wouldn't hold my breath for this though since PMs were just updated). I don't see PCI-X as being a huge benefit for future expansion or resale, of course others may disagree.
     
  8. javiercr macrumors 6502

    javiercr

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2005
    Location:
    London
    #8
    PCI-X is NOT PCI express check http://jcrphoto.com/pci/

    PCI-X is not the same as PCI express, PCI express replaces AGP and is used for graphics cards, PCI-X is just a faster PCI, in theory you can have a graphics card there (like you can have a PCI graphics card) but it wouldn't as good as AGP or PCI express. Macs are still not using PCI express. Check this PCI-X and PCI express comparison
     

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