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M.2 SSD on Z97-A Mobo, will a PCIe to M.2 adapter help?

I'm getting an M.2 SSD for my birthday that is rated ~2-3 GB/s read/write. My mobo has an M.2 slot but it shares bandwidth with two PCIe 2.0 x1 slots (so basically combined bandwidth of a PCIe 2.0 x2 slot = ~800 MB/s in theory) which definitely will throttle the speed of the drive. I'm considering getting an adapter to help, this is the one I found in my area. It has two M.2 slots, so first question is if only one is in use do I get the full bandwidth of the adapter? And can this adapter use the full bandwidth of PCIe 3.0 x4 (in theory should be ~4 GB/s bandwidth)? 

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Is your motherboard PCIe 2.0 or 3.0? If it's 2.0, then all you'll get is PCIe 2.0 x4. If it's is 3.0, then you'll get full 4GB/s bandwidth.

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my mobo has 2 PCIe 3.0/2.0 slots (which I assume are 3.0 slots but just indicates that they're 2.0 back compatible). I intend to use one of those for that adapter. Just worried whether that specific adapter will work for me.

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  • 1 month later...

Just an update: I fixed it by enabling CSM compatbility mode. It immediately booted from the NVMe no problem. Wherever I went I was told that if you want to use an NVMe you've got to disable that, but I guess not if there's already an installed version of windows.

Glad I didn't have to reinstall/reformat.

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