PCI E x16 running in x4

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PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sat Sep 14, 2013 2:40 pm

I can't seem to figure out what is causing the graphics card to run in x4 mode!

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ASUS Maximus Formula VI

Zotac GTX780 AMP in x16_1
Xonar DX in x1_3

I had a wireless card in the bottom x16. I found an advisory that that would cause the second x16 to drop down to x4. I took that card out and it didn't fix the issue.

I also have the mini riser card installed, which does eliminate one of the add on sata ports. I can't find anything saying it affects the pcie slots.

What am I overlooking?

The bundled zotac utility and gpuz both identify the card as running in x4. There is a place in the bios to pick with generation of PCIE to use. However the options are only: Auto, Gen1 and Gen2.

Thanks!
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:09 pm

Why are you using a dedicated soundcard with this motherboard? Its built-in sound solution is actually pretty good...

Anyway, try removing all of PCIe cards (except the video card), see if it helps. Also make sure to check if there is a new BIOS update for your mobo. If that won't help - reset the BIOS settings to default and try it again, only using your video card. If that also won't help - RMA the motherboard.

There are some people who had this bug with previous gen of Asus Maximus:
http://community.futuremark.com/forum/s ... tuck-at-4x
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:29 pm

Perhaps some kind of power saving feature? I don't really know what they are capable of doing these days, but perhaps test running a game or something whiile monitoring might be worth a shot?
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sat Sep 14, 2013 7:01 pm

BTW that is a beautiful Motherboard "I am officially jealous" and it does have the most advanced sound design ASUS has ever designed and implemented on a motherboard. The SupremeFX Formula audio setup with a 600ohm headphone amp and everything 120dB Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR) considering your dedicated DX sound card has a a 116 dB Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR) the built in sound solution on your motherboard has a very good chance of being better "JJ a ASUS representative said it was the equivalent or better then the DX sound card soundcard your replanting into this beautiful motherboard. BTW i totally dig the backplate on that motherboard, besides adding rigidity it also cools the basckside of your power VRM/mosfets the surround and power that CPU.....very cool! literally.

As was already mentioned remove that DX soundcard along with any other cards you might have installed along with the drivers and software for the add in cards you could even remove your graphics cards drivers and software since you can run integrated graphics on the motherboard with the HDMI or diplay port outputs on the motherboard utilizing the 4770's graphics to do a full cleanup of your video card drivers without the motherboard detecting your graphics card and installing the drivers again once you uninstall them. But before removing all your software and stuff while the computer is running download the latest drivers for your graphics card where you know it is at so it is ready to install, this is optional since the board will run on integrated graphics. Also you have that wireless card with the built in M-SATA card that does use pci lanes I think. If you have to use wireless or are using a msata SSD you need it. But you might be able to remove that all together if you are using the great gigabit LAN that motherboard has.

Then make sure you are running the latest bios for your motherboard.

Above all else before you install the graphics card Clear you Cmos/bios and start from scratch with your settings for memory XMP profile etc. Also do not overclock until you are sure your graphics card is running at 16x speed. Also running the video card in the bottom/3rd red slot is only wired for 4x speed even though it is a full sized 16x slot. I do not know why you would put a video card down there anyways but I am just making sure. The top slot is usually the 16x slot and the second slot is a 8x slot for 8x8 SLI.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sat Sep 14, 2013 7:34 pm

What kind of memory are you using and what slots are going used? I think there might be a memory mapping issue here.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sat Sep 14, 2013 7:53 pm

JohnC you seem to be solving all my problems lately! Thanks!

I do have the mini-riser card installed, and to not use wireless would be tricky. The wired connection is down three floors.... In the manual it does warn that using the card disables some of the extra SATA ports.

The graphics card is in the top x16 slot. It appears to change "pcie generations" as a power saving feature, but it doesn't change lane width.

I'm dreading disassembly and reassembly. I'm reusing my old Lian Li case and it really is a matter of millimeters to get everything inside and closed up! It seems like a very odd bug to have.

I am using 4x8GB Corsair ddr3-1600 DIMMS. What is a memory mapping issue?

OK to recap:

1. Remove sound card (I don't have a display port cable so I still need the graphics card to run the monitor)
2. Uninstall everything I can find that has to do with network, sound or graphics
3. Once that is finished shut the computer down and update the BIOS using the awesome flash-back feature!
4. Clear the cmos with the nice button on the rear panel

and hope that it works when it restarts.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sat Sep 14, 2013 7:58 pm

Before you do anything else I'd just update the BIOS.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sat Sep 14, 2013 8:11 pm

Just updating the BIOS didn't fix it.

It was so easy! Last time I updated a BIOS I had to find a floppy...
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sat Sep 14, 2013 8:23 pm

If you are pcie gen 3.0 then you are not really taking that big of a hit to performance.

http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Inte ... ing/3.html

That being said, I would double check the motherboard manual to see if there is some reason why there.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sat Sep 14, 2013 8:26 pm

Yeah I already thought about that. I can't compare directly, but it doesn't seem to hurt. Of course at this level I really want to have a part that works just as it was designed to do.

BIOS update and CMOS reset has not changed anything.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sat Sep 14, 2013 9:11 pm

I've also put in a ticket with ASUS support since this doesn't seem to be a quick fix.

Vargis14 I'm totally blown away by the onboard audio! The built in amp is no joke! I had not even bothered to give it a try. I'm using Sennheiser 518's and with the Xonar DX 80% maybe a bit higher was a good volume. With the onboard somewhere around 20% is good!
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sat Sep 14, 2013 10:04 pm

Have you also tried to put your video card in second "long" PCIe slot? Does the card show as "x8" when you do that? If "yes" - it is definitely an issue/bug with the motherboard itself...
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sun Sep 15, 2013 5:21 am

I am with JohnC,
Try the second slot it should run at least at 8x pci-e 3.0 under load. It should not bottleneck your video card at all 8x at 3.0 is double the bandwidth of pci-e 2.0 that running at 8x and even 8x at 2.0 will not bottleneck your card.....plus since its double the bandwidth since its pci-e 3.0 it just like a pci-e 2.0 16x slot.

Least that gives you time to get a hold of ASUS and search out the problem more on the net and try the ASUS forums ETC.
Hopefully if you have to RMA the motherboard since it is a 300buck board they will send you out a replacement and let you ship back the board in the box you received the replacement one in.

Also cool with the sound deal :)
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sun Sep 15, 2013 12:15 pm

I switched the card to the second x16 and it is still running in x4.

I have not heard anything back from ASUS yet.

I can see the link speed dropping down to 1.1 while idle and rising back to 3.0 under load. So there is that working.

Can cards control link width? Obviously it would be nice to just send that part back!
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sun Sep 15, 2013 12:36 pm

To be 100% sure that it's the motherboard issue - go to a local BestBuy (or whatever other local store that sells PC hardware), buy the cheapest video card which supports x16 PCIe, test it out then return the card (just make sure to open its package carefully). Or keep it as a spare, just in case something like this might happen again.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sun Sep 15, 2013 1:30 pm

JohnC wrote:To be 100% sure that it's the motherboard issue - go to a local BestBuy (or whatever other local store that sells PC hardware), buy the cheapest video card which supports x16 PCIe, test it out then return the card (just make sure to open its package carefully). Or keep it as a spare, just in case something like this might happen again.

If you go this route, keep it as a spare. Buying stuff with the up front intent of returning it is, to be quite blunt, sleazy and dishonest.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sun Sep 15, 2013 1:48 pm

I do have my old graphics card, HD4850, around. So no need to go out and spend the money for a test subject!

AND it works in x16 PCIE 2.0!

I think that is good? As in it figured out what it should be? Unless I need to test it with a card that does PCIE 3.0 x16?

As an aside, i've been playing crysis 2 with every setting maxed out at 1920x1080 and it doesn't seem to be affected running the gtx 780 at x4.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sun Sep 15, 2013 2:37 pm

That is strange... Perhaps there is some kind of BIOS bug or perhaps your Zotac card has a defective connector. I'm more inclined to believe that it is a problem with motherboard since Asus Maximus mobos are known for this exact issue:
http://rog.asus.com/forum/showthread.ph ... -Need-help
Anyway, if you are actually satisfied with the gaming performance and if there are no stability issues - I wouldn't worry about it much.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sun Sep 15, 2013 2:54 pm

Image

This is with the HD4850
It says PCI-E 2.0x16 @ x16 2.0

Image

with the GTX780
it says: PCI-E 3.0x16 @ x4 3.0

I guess i'll run some benchmarks and see what they say!
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Sun Sep 15, 2013 3:19 pm

http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/2010/1 ... explained/
http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Inte ... ing/1.html

read this about pci express and you will understand why in games you dont get alot of penenlty from using pci-e 3.0 x4 vs pci-e 2.0 x16
in short pci-e 3.0 is twice the bandwith per channel so a x4 is a x8 in pci-e 2.0
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Mon Sep 16, 2013 5:02 pm

Okay - random thought here.

Get the newest GPU-Z and run the included 3D stress test while watching the link rate and width. I'd bet $5 it jumps to x16 when loaded.

My 770s all shift down to 4x and PCIe 1.0 at idle but jump to 16x and PCIe 3.0 when loaded.


EDIT: Nevermind, I see you already tried this. I should read more carefully before posting. :oops:
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Mon Sep 16, 2013 5:39 pm

Memory mapping is basically how the computer knows where to locate every device in memory. In the x86 standard it throws the memory addressing on the upper range (3GIB-4GiB). This became an issue with systems that still ran x86 OS and were equipped with 4GB. 1GiB-1.5GiB of total memory capacity would be taken up by the peripheral devices. x64 OS had the same issue initially, until BIOS writers used a memory remapping hack that threw the device addressing back into the upper range of x64 standard (4-8EiB range).

I thought that your issues might be the result of BIOS is assigning 4x PCIe 3.0 lanes to PCIe slot 1 due to some weird memory and addressing mapping. Afterall, Z87 chipset only handles 8x, 8x, two 4x slots PCIe 3.0 slots configuration (assuming all slots are used up).

Image.

Just double check your BIOS and motherboard to see how PCIe slots are assigned. It is possible for some bizarre reason, ASUS decided to make PCIe Slot 1 on that board only be able to handle 4x PCIe 3.0 .

You can try doing a BIOS hard restart and see if that helps clearing in up. If all else, fails and PCIe Slot 1 is supposed to have 8x/16x PCIe 3.0 . Just RMA the motherboard.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Mon Sep 16, 2013 6:29 pm

It's not a "memory mapping issue" or a chipset-specific issue, you can find the stories of other people having this issue (with other chipsets like Z77) which was solved by hardware (video card or motherboard) replacement or by switching to different brand of same product. But thanks for pretty pictures! :wink:
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Mon Sep 16, 2013 7:13 pm

JohnC wrote:It's not a "memory mapping issue" or a chipset-specific issue, you can find the stories of other people having this issue (with other chipsets like Z77) which was solved by hardware (video card or motherboard) replacement or by switching to different brand of same product. But thanks for pretty pictures! :wink:


You will be surprised how stupid issues like that can cause problems. It doesn't hurt to look before committing yourself to a RMA and getting replacement units.
Last edited by Krogoth on Fri Sep 20, 2013 10:35 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:46 am

OK so heard back from support.

Asus thinks that I should get another CPU or reseat the CPU. If i'm doing that i'll just RMA the board. They also want me to try another 3.0 capable gpu.

Zotac thinks I need a bigger power supply, or that the gpuz render test isn't enough. However running crysis 2 at full doesn't bump it up either.

The only other test I can think of is to put the card into my dad's workstation which has a 1000w power supply. That system is pcie 2 only though.

Is it wrong to think that if the board runs pcei 2 at x16 then it is fine after all? Since that is higher bandwidth than pcie 3 at x4? Meaning that if I put the card in the system with the big power supply and it runs at x16 then I have identified the power supply as being too small.

Is a hard restart of the BIOS the same as clearing the CMOS? I've done that twice.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Fri Sep 20, 2013 10:34 am

Hard reset = powering off the system, removing the CMOS battery, give it 5-10 minutes and put the battery pack. This should clear the CMOS and BIOS settings to factory defaults. I have done this a few times where a failed overclocked attempt locked the system and BIOS reset jumper didn't work.
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Thu Oct 03, 2013 7:10 pm

OK so an update.

I got another card to test it, and the board recognizes it as x16@3.0! It throttles up and down just as it should.

I think this eliminates the motherboard.

The next thought was lack of power. I'm now running a Corsair AX1200i so lots of power. Still no luck!

The card is still stuck at x4@3.0

Beginning RMA with Zotac now. I hope that it doesn't take too long!
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Thu Oct 03, 2013 10:28 pm

what was the 2nd test video card you used? just trying to figure out if this is a 7x0 series issue or what...
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Fri Oct 04, 2013 12:12 am

I am glad you figured out the real issue. Just for the future reference - you should probably stick to EVGA if you'll ever be buying Nvidia-based cards again, EVGA's customer support is very good and they are also pretty quick to come up with fixes for hardware/firmware issues...
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Re: PCI E x16 running in x4

Postposted on Fri Oct 04, 2013 6:10 am

The card I used to test was an XFX 7790.

EVGA next time! Granted, it might be some time before I need to move on from the 780!

I'm also hoping to upgrade from two 23" to two 30" displays. It is a bummer that nvidia surround requires three of a kind. This was the other reason I went to the 1200W. I could see using a multi card configuration. If they get them working well!
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