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Can you run a nvme off a M.2 SATA?

Go to solution Solved by STRMfrmXMN,
7 minutes ago, Hikaru12 said:

I got an Asus ROG Z270i board, love it but the only problem is the M.2 on the back of the board seems to be capped to SATA M.2 which has greatly fallen in popularity to NVME. Would it possible for me to put a NVME M.2 on the SATA M.2 slot on the back of the board and have it work (albeit, at greatly reduced speeds)? I'd be willing to do this until I could upgrade the board. 

 

I find it very strange that Asus decided to go with this setup as I thought the Kaby Lake Series of chips had 28 PCIE lanes available so the GFX card would take x16 and the other two NVME's would take x4 each respectively. Not sure what kept them back from this.

SATA supports RAID/ACHI/IDE but not NVMe. You'd need to use the front one if the rear one is SATA.

I got an Asus ROG Z270i board, love it but the only problem is the M.2 on the back of the board seems to be capped to SATA M.2 which has greatly fallen in popularity to NVME. Would it possible for me to put a NVME M.2 on the SATA M.2 slot on the back of the board and have it work (albeit, at greatly reduced speeds)? I'd be willing to do this until I could upgrade the board. 

 

I find it very strange that Asus decided to go with this setup as I thought the Kaby Lake Series of chips had 28 PCIE lanes available so the GFX card would take x16 and the other two NVME's would take x4 each respectively. Not sure what kept them back from this.

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A PCIe M.2 SSD (such as NVME) will not work at all in a sata M.2 slot.

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Intel® Z270 Chipset :
1 x M.2 Socket 3, with M key, type 2242/2260/2280 storage devices support (SATA & PCIE 3.0 x 4 mode)*1
1 x M.2 Socket 3, with M key, type 2242/2260/2280 storage devices support (PCIE 3.0 x 4 mode)*1

ROG Strix Z270I Gaming, eh?

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No, you can't.  But two things: 

  1. NVMe rarely makes a difference unless you're managing huge files.
  2. Using an x16 slot doesn't mean it's using 16 lanes.  It's probably only using around 4 at most, even if it's a 1080 Ti. Scratch that, forgot Nvidia requires 8 lanes.

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The one on the back is also pcie capable so no worries. What are you planning on putting on the ssd? Chances are an NVMe drive won't even be worth it to you since they aren't really any better than sata SSDs when it comes to boot times and app launch times.

5 minutes ago, Hikaru12 said:

I find it very strange that Asus decided to go with this setup as I thought the Kaby Lake Series of chips had 28 PCIE lanes available so the GFX card would take x16 and the other two NVME's would take x4 each respectively

Kaby Lake CPUs only have 16 lanes from the CPU, plus another 24 from the chipset. 28 lanes from the CPU is for the 2 cheapest skylake x CPUs.

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Just now, JoostinOnline said:

Using an x16 slot doesn't mean it's using 16 lanes.  It's probably only using around 4 at most, even if it's a 1080 Ti.  Your CPU only has 16 lanes anyway.

Nvidia requires 8 lanes for all GPUs. So it wouldn't be 4, but maybe 8

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7 minutes ago, Hikaru12 said:

I got an Asus ROG Z270i board, love it but the only problem is the M.2 on the back of the board seems to be capped to SATA M.2 which has greatly fallen in popularity to NVME. Would it possible for me to put a NVME M.2 on the SATA M.2 slot on the back of the board and have it work (albeit, at greatly reduced speeds)? I'd be willing to do this until I could upgrade the board. 

 

I find it very strange that Asus decided to go with this setup as I thought the Kaby Lake Series of chips had 28 PCIE lanes available so the GFX card would take x16 and the other two NVME's would take x4 each respectively. Not sure what kept them back from this.

SATA supports RAID/ACHI/IDE but not NVMe. You'd need to use the front one if the rear one is SATA.

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16 minutes ago, Zagna said:

Hmm I figured it would only be sata so is this a special type of board that can run both? How is it able to support both a SATA SSD and a NVME drive in the back at the same time? The one on the top underneath the ROG heatsink logo is strictly NVME only.

 

I don't personally want to do 2 NVME's but I do want to keep everything clean inside the case. I have room for 2 SATA SSD's but I don't want to have to use them unless necessary. I'll go with a 1TB SATA M.2 in the back if that's supported. I have a 1TB 960 evo on the top slot.

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13 minutes ago, Hikaru12 said:

Hmm I figured it would only be sata so is this a special type of board that can run both? How is it able to support both a SATA SSD and a NVME drive in the back at the same time? The one on the top underneath the ROG heatsink logo is strictly NVME only.

 

I don't personally want to do 2 NVME's but I do want to keep everything clean inside the case. I have room for 2 SATA SSD's but I don't want to have to use them unless necessary. I'll go with a 1TB SATA M.2 in the back if that's supported. I have a 1TB 960 evo on the top slot.

The one in the front is sata and pcie. As well as the one on the back.

 

M.2 connector has connectors for sata and pcie. Sata drives use the sata connectors, pcie drives use the pcie connectors.

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4 minutes ago, DocSwag said:

The one in the front is sata and pcie. As well as the one on the back.

 

M.2 connector has connectors for sata and pcie. Sata drives use the sata connectors, pcie drives use the pcie connectors.

The above quoted specs from one of the forum members says otherwise: 

Intel® Z270 Chipset :
1 x M.2 Socket 3, with M key, type 2242/2260/2280 storage devices support (SATA & PCIE 3.0 x 4 mode)*1
1 x M.2 Socket 3, with M key, type 2242/2260/2280 storage devices support (PCIE 3.0 x 4 mode)*1

 

The one in the back is SATA and PCIE from my understanding. I didn't know the M.2 connector supports both nor did I know that NVME was the method by which communication with the PCIE bus was setup. That makes sense now that M.2 is just the form factor and connector type.

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55 minutes ago, Hikaru12 said:

I find it very strange that Asus decided to go with this setup as I thought the Kaby Lake Series of chips had 28 PCIE lanes available so the GFX card would take x16 and the other two NVME's would take x4 each respectively. Not sure what kept them back from this.

Only Intel's X series of processors (e.g., Skylake-X or Kabylake-X) have 28 PCIe lanes in some SKUs. The others have 40. Otherwise every other consumer desktop processor has 16 PCIe lanes.

 

Also any non-HEDT board routes NVMe based SSDs to the chipset or their own channel, not the CPU/Graphics' PCIe lanes.

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6 minutes ago, M.Yurizaki said:

Only Intel's X series of processors (e.g., Skylake-X or Kabylake-X) have 28 PCIe lanes in some SKUs. The others have 40. Otherwise every other consumer desktop processor has 16 PCIe lanes.

 

Also any non-HEDT board routes NVMe based SSDs to the chipset or their own channel, not the CPU/Graphics' PCIe lanes.

 

So NVME drives get their own special section of the chipset that doesn't count against the lanes from the Graphics and CPU? It's been a long time since I've looked at the architecture changes on how things get routed on the motherboard so this is good to know.

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Just now, Hikaru12 said:

 

So NVME drives get their own special section of the chipset that doesn't count against the lanes from the Graphics and CPU? It's been a long time since I've looked at the architecture changes on how things get routed on the motherboard so this is good to know.

Yes and no, it depends on how the manufacturer distributed the lanes. See this diagram as an example of how Skylake's PCH could be distributed:

PCH%20Allocation.png

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1 hour ago, Hikaru12 said:

The above quoted specs from one of the forum members says otherwise: 

Intel® Z270 Chipset :
1 x M.2 Socket 3, with M key, type 2242/2260/2280 storage devices support (SATA & PCIE 3.0 x 4 mode)*1
1 x M.2 Socket 3, with M key, type 2242/2260/2280 storage devices support (PCIE 3.0 x 4 mode)*1

 

The one in the back is SATA and PCIE from my understanding. I didn't know the M.2 connector supports both nor did I know that NVME was the method by which communication with the PCIE bus was setup. That makes sense now that M.2 is just the form factor and connector type.

Derp, didn't see that part.

 

I think the one on the front is the one that's both and the one on the back is just pcie. If you look at the overview section on the Asus website that's what it looks like to me.

spac-pc.png

1 hour ago, M.Yurizaki said:

I don't think NVIDIA actually requires 8 lanes, considering our favorite PCIe scaling article ran a GTX 1080 with four lanes by physically preventing their connection.

Whaaaaa

 

I always thought they had made it so the card won't output at all if it doesn't get 8 lanes. I guess it's actually that without 8 lanes it doesn't technically get supported by Nvidia. Interesting.

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