Question PCI (Non Express) GPU Options

Collider

Senior member
Jan 20, 2008
493
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#1
I find myself in a situation where I need to free up PCI-E slots for expansion cards and graphics are totally unimportant for this particular build which will be a storage server.

So does anyone know of any PCI (non express, old legacy PCI) GPUs with still supported drivers that will work with Windows 10?
 

SPBHM

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2012
4,801
40
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#4
what exactly do you want the card for? for just basic display or doing something that requires more performance (like watching videos)?

because PCI bus is very limiting, in any case I have a 8400GS PCI that works fine under windows 10, the newest driver is for windows 8 but it works no problem, still it's very slow, and the PCI bus is a bottleneck even for web browsing when it involves video.

if it's just for a display out, even without a driver you get the MS basic driver which works OK enough for that.

but, there were cards as new as Fermi (GT 520) with PCI which had proper win 10 drivers,
but even a 6200 PCI should be OK, I mean you have to use windows 8 drivers but it works OK (at least it did with my 6100 IGP)

edit: actually the 8400GS installs the driver automatically on windows 10, the ones that need the windows 8 driver are geforce 7 and 6.
 
Last edited:
Oct 27, 2006
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#6
PC video cards are extremely old. However, compatibility mode still works. I have some old servers with on board PCI ATI 8MB video. No drivers work for newer than XP era, but it doesn't matter really, still displays basic video at 1024x768. You can RDP for basic configuration from there totally headless.
 

NTMBK

Diamond Member
Nov 14, 2011
8,283
248
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#8
What's the CPU and motherboard for this build? I'd second the suggestion to just use the IGP if you have one.

However- Zotac made a PCI version of the GT 520: https://www.zotac.com/ph/product/graphics_card/gt-520-pci Looks like Windows 10 drivers are available for the 520. You'll need to hunt on eBay to find one, but they are out there.

EDIT: They also made a PCI version of the GT 610: https://www.zotac.com/ge/product/graphics_card/gt-610-pci

EDIT 2: There are also some rare cards that fit in a PCIe x1 slot, so you could use as few of your PCIe lanes as possible for the GPU. https://www.zotac.com/th/product/graphics_card/geforce-®-gt-610-pcie-x1
 

Insert_Nickname

Diamond Member
May 6, 2012
3,545
112
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#9
Wouldn't a modern iGPU be faster then PCI?
Significantly. But if all you need is a picture on the monitor, performance doesn't matter. At least since those </deity> awful integrated Intel "Extreme" Graphics...

EDIT 2: There are also some rare cards that fit in a PCIe x1 slot, so you could use as few of your PCIe lanes as possible for the GPU. https://www.zotac.com/th/product/graphics_card/geforce-®-gt-610-pcie-x1
That's what I'd suggest if you don't have access to an IGP. There is also a GT710 model, which should be fully supported by almost any OS:

https://www.zotac.com/dk/product/graphics_card/geforce®-gt-710-1gb-pcie-x-1
 
Feb 25, 2004
21,033
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#10
can you use a USB video card instead?
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16812400361


edit: a lot of the "PCI" cards on newegg are pci-e. bad listings
From all the research I've done on these, they all require a primary video to do the real work and are really only suitable to add secondary video out. Which makes sense I suppose, the motherboard would need to have a way to hook into the video on boot and I'm not aware of any that can do it through USB.
 

SPBHM

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2012
4,801
40
126
#11
Wouldn't a modern iGPU be faster then PCI?
yes but if you don't have an IGP that's not a solution,
using a (decent) PCI cards beats having to use something like a GMA 950 (specially on windows 10), but modern IGPs are nicer to use, still there are some clear problems... the PCI interface makes even scrolling a web page clearly less smooth... and I can see on monitoring softwares that this sort of thing maxes the bus usage, while things that don't run smoothly.
 

NTMBK

Diamond Member
Nov 14, 2011
8,283
248
126
#12
Significantly. But if all you need is a picture on the monitor, performance doesn't matter. At least since those </deity> awful integrated Intel "Extreme" Graphics...



That's what I'd suggest if you don't have access to an IGP. There is also a GT710 model, which should be fully supported by almost any OS:

https://www.zotac.com/dk/product/graphics_card/geforce®-gt-710-1gb-pcie-x-1
Nice find- looks like that 710 is still available new from Amazon, so should be easy to get your hands on.
 

Insert_Nickname

Diamond Member
May 6, 2012
3,545
112
126
#13
using a (decent) PCI cards beats having to use something like a GMA 950 (specially on windows 10), but modern IGPs are nicer to use, still there are some clear problems... the PCI interface makes even scrolling a web page clearly less smooth... and I can see on monitoring softwares that this sort of thing maxes the bus usage, while things that don't run smoothly.
The GMA 950 was almost obsolete when it launched, being a faster derivative of the GMA 900. It doesn't even support DX9c in hardware.

I'd go so so far as to say a DX11 capable GPU is a requirement for a good experience on 10. Doesn't have to be more then a HD2500. Win10 driver support for pre-DX11 GPUs is... spotty... at best. Like even Sandy Bridges IGP loosing all OpenGL functionality, unless you, ahm, force install the 7 driver.

PCI is only capable of 133MB/s on a good day down hill, so anything requiring even moderate bandwidth is going to choke.
 
Feb 25, 2004
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#14
You can buy 1x pcie cards used on ebay for like $17 if that is of any interest for the use case. Not sure how easy it would be to get your motherboard to boot with it as primary though, probably not easy or impossible. I have a ivybridge board that has an option to boot to pci but nothing for the 1x slots that I can see.
 

ozzy702

Senior member
Nov 1, 2011
940
166
136
#15
I find myself in a situation where I need to free up PCI-E slots for expansion cards and graphics are totally unimportant for this particular build which will be a storage server.

So does anyone know of any PCI (non express, old legacy PCI) GPUs with still supported drivers that will work with Windows 10?
Build something newer... I mean how old is this dinosaur if it doesn't have a PCI-E slot?
 

ElFenix

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Mar 20, 2000
98,083
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#17
From all the research I've done on these, they all require a primary video to do the real work and are really only suitable to add secondary video out. Which makes sense I suppose, the motherboard would need to have a way to hook into the video on boot and I'm not aware of any that can do it through USB.
TIL

@avp2306
what board is it? could you potentially swap out a board with more slots? what processor?
 

ozzy702

Senior member
Nov 1, 2011
940
166
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#18
He has PCIe slots, he just wants to use them for storage.
Er.... poor reading comprehension on my part :homer: , must be the 3hrs of sleep I'm running on thanks to my 5yo, 3yo and newborn (my 6yo slept like a champ though). Carry on. :)
 
Last edited:
Feb 25, 2004
21,033
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#19
So there's a great wikipedia for all nvidia gpus: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Nvidia_graphics_processing_units

It lists everything they ever made and you can find the most recent PCI card that exists. There's an equally good one for AMD gpus but IIRC nvidia has more recent PCI offerings and their driver support of old stuff is better than AMDs.

Now I've noticed that just because there is an entry for PCI doesn't mean you'll actually be able to find a product for sale anywhere that matches. Its a real pain to search for PCI (legacy) graphics cards since every search will just show you pci-e cards as well and most of the ones labeled pci are simply mislabeled pci-express cards.

I've wondered if buying one of those janko pci to pic-e slot adapters and just using a pci-e card in the slot would work but its mostly an academic pursuit to me.
 

SPBHM

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2012
4,801
40
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#20
The GMA 950 was almost obsolete when it launched, being a faster derivative of the GMA 900. It doesn't even support DX9c in hardware.

I'd go so so far as to say a DX11 capable GPU is a requirement for a good experience on 10. Doesn't have to be more then a HD2500. Win10 driver support for pre-DX11 GPUs is... spotty... at best. Like even Sandy Bridges IGP loosing all OpenGL functionality, unless you, ahm, force install the 7 driver.

PCI is only capable of 133MB/s on a good day down hill, so anything requiring even moderate bandwidth is going to choke.
GMA 950 (and I think other derivatives, like GMA 3100) is really horrible on Windows 10 (on 7 it's just very bad, but doesn't have this problem to this extent, and you can eliminate the dwm.exe hit by disabling Aero), even with drivers installed you can get almost 1 core fully loaded with just dwm.exe if you are watching a video on the web browser, because of how much work is being done by the CPU

I think it might be related to being WDDM 1.0 driver? I haven't tested other WDDM 1.0 cards recently; or maybe because yes, it's not even a proper DX9 GPU.
from what I was reading WDDM 1.1 makes a significant difference for the desktop windows manager.
GMA 4500 which uses WDDM 1.1 and has DX10 support seems to handle things a lot better with not so high CPU usage like with the GMA4500 I saw 5% usage by dwm.exe in a situation GMA 950 uses around 30-40%.

in any case, the 8400GS works ok with Win10 and uses WDDM 1.2 drivers, it seems to accelerate stuff properly, while something like the GMA 950 doesn't.

my Radeon HD 4670 (uses WDDM 1.1 drivers) also works OK in terms of basic performance on Windows 10, but the Geforce 8 works clearly better overall with driver compatibility and video acceleration, I know there are HD 4350 and such with PCI interface, but I think the Nvidia PCI (series 8 and higher) ones are better to use with Windows 10 because of the drivers, with windows 7 and lower maybe it's different

the max bus usage I was able to see my PCI 8400GS use was around 103MB/s, it's fairly easy to max the interface as I said just scrolling a web page... but I was also surprised as to how often it doesn't,

but I'll take the bandwidth starved 8400GS PCI over a GMA 950 anyday for Windows 10 at least, against most other things, not really.
 

whm1974

Diamond Member
Jul 24, 2016
7,449
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#21
I would simply get a 1030 or RX 550 instead of PCI card. I believe that both dGPUs are at 8X instead 16x so you will free up some PCIe lanes.
 

SPBHM

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2012
4,801
40
126
#22
I would simply get a 1030 or RX 550 instead of PCI card. I believe that both dGPUs are at 8X instead 16x so you will free up some PCIe lanes.
1030 is x4
but they still take a full x16 slot, unless you use adapters/modifications or buy a rare model that doesn't
 

whm1974

Diamond Member
Jul 24, 2016
7,449
483
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#23
1030 is x4
but they still take a full x16 slot, unless you use adapters/modifications or buy a rare model that doesn't
Thanks, I was thinking that the 1030 uses 4x PCIe lanes but wasn't sure. What about the Rx 550 is it 4x as well?
 

MrTeal

Platinum Member
Dec 7, 2003
2,616
9
106
#24
Would something like the amfeltech x4 PCIe splitter work with a GPU?
 

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