Intel 915 with BOTH AGP and PCI

We posted pictures of Gigabyte's "impossible" Intel 915 with both PCI Express (PCI-E) and AGP 8X in our preview coverage of Computex. As we reported, PCI-E and AGP on the same 915 board is supposedly an impossible engineering feat. Well, Gigabyte is not alone with the bright idea of AGP 8X and PCI Express slots on the same Intel 915 board. ECS has a similar feature on one of their new high-end 915 boards.

Click to enlarge.

ECS calls their AGP slot on the 915 "AGP eXpress". Both ECS and Gigabyte claim they have not used a bridge chip in their new design - deriving the AGP 8X support from the PCI Express signals. We've done some digging and it appears this is only part of the story. We've put together a separate news story explaining how ECS and Gigabyte accomplish this task of bringing AGP and PCI Express to their Intel motherboards. Read our article entitled: AGP on Intel 9xx Chipsets? We explain how.

nVidia PCI Express for Athlon 64 ATI RS480 for AMD Socket 939 Athlon 64


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  • Kaji - Monday, June 7, 2004 - link

    Cool! Finally a lot of the technologies I have been waiting for!

    Some disapointments though... how come all BTX boards only have one PCI-E x16 slot? that sucks!
    What about those groovy dual PCI-E graphics solutions that are already starting to appear?

    Another BTX related question... what about server boards? The excellent article on BTX covered the three desktop form factors... but will there be an Extended BTX form factor for dual CPU? I want to go with BTX, but only if I can have two PCI-E x16 slots... and two dual PCU would be nice!

    I wonder when Lian-Li will release BTX case?
  • rms - Sunday, June 6, 2004 - link

    "I was really looking forward to seeing the "extra" performance a user would get on a Nvidia board & card platform. "

    Could be wrong, but wasn't that advantage only present with the FX series of cards? And involved basically speeding up the effective AGP bus speed? If PCI-X is already 16X, you think any speedups would be miniscule.

  • Reflex - Saturday, June 5, 2004 - link

    #12: No kidding. But I was referencing the fellow who seemed to think that it was all about performance. SATA is not really any 'faster' than IDE, however it is still an important step forward. PCI-E is similiar in that regard. Reply
  • tmhartsr - Saturday, June 5, 2004 - link

    But - where is the 64 bit OS???? Reply
  • XRaider - Saturday, June 5, 2004 - link

    Yea, but still it's a shame that these boards with PCI-E won't be out for another several months! :( It is depressing, but hopefully the 939 FX's will drop far in price by the time these boards are ready to ship mainstream. Hopefully.
    It still seems like they're draggin their feet on this stuff. :-\
  • Falco. - Saturday, June 5, 2004 - link

    um.. pci express isn't just for graphics :-)

    its for every add in card that we presently put in pci slots :-) besides.. for all w know, a x16 pci express slot could do the same thing that going from agp 4x to 8x did.. not much in the performace dept, mainly with video cards being outfitted with 128 megs of ram, and what looks like 256 megs ... have u seen and NV4x and R4xx with 128 megs ?? i can't recall seeing any ....

  • Reflex - Saturday, June 5, 2004 - link

    #6: PCI-E is not about performance, its about features. More can be done with the interface than can be done with the very limiting AGP. Realize that AGP itself is not really utilized for its performance at all, the 'bandwidth' it allows is nearly useless. Try turning your setting from 8X to 2X and notice the almost complete lack of a performance difference(2-5% approximatly).

    I, for one, and happy to be rid of the AGP interface. It was a troublesome hack that never lived up to its advertised potential. Bring on PCI-E.
  • Reflex - Saturday, June 5, 2004 - link

    test... Reply
  • Falco. - Friday, June 4, 2004 - link

    any thing on Asus and NF3 250 gb/ulta mobos ?? say the k8N-E Deluxe NF3 250 board from asus just with a 939 pin socket ????

    or something similar from asus ??
  • jrphoenix - Friday, June 4, 2004 - link

    #6... I am just hoping for a slot that won't be obsolete in 1-2 years (how long I want to wait before having to my a new motherboard).

    If Nvidia is that slow rolling PCI-E out I may just get a VIA chipset & ATI card. I was really looking forward to seeing the "extra" performance a user would get on a Nvidia board & card platform.

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