What Can Be Plugged Into PCIe Slots

The PCIe slot allows you to add expansion cards to your motherboard for the purpose of providing additional functionality to your PC. These expansion cards are available in a variety of sizes, tailored to a specific category of expansion cards. You can either use PCIe slots if you need to add a graphics card for gaming, a wireless network card, or a dedicated sound card. In this guide, we are going to discuss What Can Be Plugged Into PCIe Slots.

In order to add more components to a computer, they are connected using two different interfaces, SATA and PCIe. SATA is a slower interface and is mostly used these days for spinning hard disks, although CD/DVD drives and other peripherals can also be used with it.

It is through PCIe, on the other hand, those high-speed components such as NVMe SSDs, as well as graphics cards are supported on a wide range of high-speed components.

In the following article, I will explain a bit more about the things you can connect to PCIe slots.

Here are some of the things that can be plugged into PCIe slots

  1. Graphics Cards (GPUs)
  2. Riser / Splitters
  3. Ethernet Network Cards
  4. Wireless and Bluetooth Network Cards
  5. SATA Expansion and RAID Controller Cards
  6. M.2 NVMe Expansion Cards
  7. TV Tuner Cards
  8. Video Capture Cards
  9. Port Expansion Cards
  10. Sound Cards

1. Graphics Cards (GPUs)

Graphics Cards

PCIe slots are typically occupied by DEDICATED graphics cards, which are the processing modules that enable all the visuals you see on the screen to be created. Gamers and crypto miners are particularly interested in these types of graphics cards.

A common feature of most CPUs nowadays is that they come with an integrated graphics card. These cards are fairly basic and can suffice for the needs of most users.

If you are looking for the best graphics cards for gaming, designers, and simulators, then you should get a DEDICATED graphics card. Almost any enthusiast who builds personal computers will tell you that the graphics card they use is one of the most important investments they make.

A desktop is the only situation where you can add a dedicated graphics card via PCIe x16 slot; there is no other possibility. A majority of graphics cards are designed so as to be capable of utilizing 16 PCIe lanes, which means that they need the complete PCIe x16 slot to function at their best. We can say that GPU is the least thing that can be added in “What Can Be Plugged Into PCIe Slots

2. Riser / Splitters

Risers
Risers

The riser card is essentially a PCIe port splitter. PCIe riser cards work in the same way as port expansion cards in that they provide you with another port on your PC. The only difference is that these are PCIe ports. The riser card is an add-in card that is inserted into the edge connector on a motherboard. To make the best use of the limited amount of space available, they are orientated perpendicularly.

Typically, expansion cards would be installed in a space where they wouldn’t be able to be used in the traditional way. There is no additional power requirement for Riser Cards as they are passive devices. By using the edge connectors on each end, power is fed into the card from the original connector and is also passed through the card.

The same method is used for the transmission of data signals between any connected devices as well as between any host devices. Splitters are a good example of “what Can Be Plugged Into PCIe Slots”.

3. Ethernet Network Cards

Ethernet Network Card

A network adapter or Ethernet Network Card ( Wikipedia ) is a device used to connect a computer to the Internet. It should be noted that these adapters do support the Ethernet standard, which is used for high-speed network connections using a cable connection. Wi-Fi networking capability has gradually replaced wired Ethernet ports in computers, as it offers comparable speed to Ethernet but without the hassle of running a cable.

It is not uncommon for some older motherboards to not have Ethernet support, even though most do come with this capability. Therefore, if you have an older motherboard, you may consider investing in an Ethernet network adapter.

Additionally, you will only be able to get an average gigabit network speed on basic mainstream boards. Dedicated PCIe network cards allow you to choose up to 10G or even faster speeds than you would normally be able to get.

4. Wireless and Bluetooth Network Cards

Wireless and Bluetooth Network Card

There are several types of wireless network cards available to consumers, but most commonly it is a wireless terminal device that allows users to access the Internet wirelessly through a local wireless network.

There are numerous Ethernet network cards on the market, but there is also a card that can be used to add WiFi and Bluetooth capabilities to a PC. WiFi Network cards, even those conforming to the newer WiFi 6 standard, require only an X1 slot to be used.

5. SATA Expansion and RAID Controller Cards

SATA Expansion and RAID Controller Card

It is also possible to increase the amount of storage on your computer by adding more PCIe slots. If your motherboard only has a limited amount of SATA 3 ports, you would need to get a PCIe SATA expansion card in order to connect SATA hard drives.

It depends on a number of variables, such as the number of SATA slots on the computer and whether it has a RAID controller, how large the SATA expansion card needs to be, and what kind of slot it should be inserted into. There are SATA 3 expansion cards available for x1, x4, and x8 expansion slots.

6. M.2 NVMe Expansion Cards

M.2 NVMe Expansion Cards

The fastest and most advanced hard drives are PCIe NVMe SSDs. As a general rule of thumb, in very ideal conditions, a SATA 3 spinning hard disk drive can achieve only 200 MB/s. SSD SSDs such as the Samsung 980 Pro can reach speeds of up to 7000/5100 (Read/Write) MB/s through PCIe NVMe interfaces. This is a significant increase in performance over the average hard drive.

It is generally true that many of the newer motherboards do have at least one NVMe M.2 slot. However, you can invest in an NVMe SSD expansion card in the event that your motherboard does not have an M.2 slot, or if you decide to add a second NVMe SSD to your system. The smallest M.2 NVMe slot you can find requires an x4 PCIe slot. Since every M.2 NVMe slot requires four PCIe lanes.

7. TV Tuner Cards

TV Tuner Cards

A TV tuner card is a next thing on the list of what can be plugged into a PCIe slot. To put it simply, TV tuner cards allow your PC to function as a TV. It has the capability to up TV signals directly, decoding them and showing you the channels you’ve requested.

There are a number of cards out there that are relatively inexpensive and can be used in a number of different situations. There are some devices that can be plugged directly into the motherboard via PCIe and others that can be plugged directly into the motherboard via USB. PCIe x1 slots are required by a TV tuner card.

8. Video Capture Cards

Video Capture Cards

Videos are captured using video capture cards. In addition to the use of these devices, similar content can also be streamed to viewers over the internet. These are especially useful for online game streamers and entertainers, as well as for those with a gaming console or a dedicated streaming PC. These devices are not only used by gamers and streamers, but also by content creators and vloggers.

As a result of video capture cards, raw footage from a camera is encoded into data that can be understood by computers. Once the raw footage is encoded, it can be edited or streamed online. It requires a PCIe x1 slot for an FHD PCIe video capture card to work. In contrast, video capture cards capable of 4K video capture require more PCIe bandwidth and, therefore, an x4 slot to operate.

9. Port Expansion Cards

Port Expansion Cards

An expansion card for PCIe ports is the best way you can increase the input and output capabilities of your computer. In addition to adding more USB Type A ports to your PC, there are also Type C ports that may be of interest, as well as Thunderbolt 3.0 ports. This card Can Be Plugged Into PCIe Slots.

This can be accomplished by adding port expansion cards.It is important to note that the correct header must be present in order for you to be able to add the corresponding port expansion card.

10. Sound Cards

Sound Cards

As all motherboards come with a sound processing chip built in, computers can process sound natively as a result. Nonetheless, if you are a creator, a gamer, an enthusiast, or a professional who is looking for a higher quality sound output, investing in a sound card is the next logical step.

They can improve the quality of your audio ports and maximize the number of audio channels your system can handle. Furthermore, the reduction of interference, a factor that can distort the quality of the sound or produce noise, is another advantage of this process.

While dedicated sound cards are not suitable for professional audio systems and interfaces, they are an excellent option for audiophiles and intermediate producers.

Conclusion

So this was all about the article of What Can Be Plugged Into PCIe Slots. There is no doubt that PCIe formats are changing faster and faster than ever before, and the performance gains with each update are quite substantial. In other words, with relatively simple hardware upgrades or add-ons over the years, it has never been easier to improve your experience and make it more optimal.

Asad Malik
My name is Asad Malik, and I have done my intermediate in Computer Science, and I really enjoy finding out about the newest tech products, buying them, and writing reviews on them.