GIGABYTE GA-Z77M-D3H RETAIL - PCIe Slots, need some help recognizing which is which

Hello everyone, i have a question that i couldn't find any answer around the web so i thought to ask it here since the community is very supportive.

Before you keep reading i would also like to say that English is not my main language so i am sorry for any inconvenience you may have while reading.

I built recently a custom PC, it was not my first time, and chose this motherboard:

Now for my question. I am not sure i can understand which slot is the PCIe 3.0 slot.

It has 3 slots and i know that it's not the middle one. The bottom one has exactly above it PCE Express 3.0 and i believe that this one is the PCIe 3.0 but while reading around the internet, i read that PCIe 3.0 is usually the top slot (which is also PCIEX16).

So which of these 2 is my PCIe 3.0 slot?

Probably it's kinda stupid to ask that, but i am confused and if someone could clear it out for me i would be more than thankful.

A picture of my motherboard as shown in the site of Gigabyte.
(can't embed it, forum doesn't accept me as a confirmed member)

Thanks in advance.
7 answers Last reply
More about gigabyte z77m d3h retail pcie slots recognizing
  1. Hi,
    It's the top one (x16).
    PCI eExpress 3.0 written on the bottom part does not refer to the slot. It's just advertising.
    From the board's specs:
    x PCI Express x16 slot, running at x16 (PCIEX16)
    (The PCIEX16 slot conforms to PCI Express 3.0 standard.)
    * For optimum performance, if only one PCI Express graphics card is to be installed, be sure to install it in the PCIEX16 slot.
    * The PCI Express x16 slot supports up to PCI Express 2.0 standard when an Intel 32nm (Sandy Bridge) CPU is installed.
  2. alexoiu said:
    It's the top one (x16).
    PCI eExpress 3.0 written on the bottom part does not refer to the slot. It's just advertising.

    Thank you mate. All this time i had it wrong...

    By the way, how much performance (approximately) do i loose?

    I have Ivy Bridge CPU and 1 graphic card, so ye first slot it is.
  3. It's limited bandwidth so in games the card would not work at full capacity. I know that between x8 and x16 there is not a significant difference but with x4 it's a different situation.
    If in the bottom slot, I suggest moving the GPU in the top x16 one.
    You can run some benchmark applications/check the WEI in both cases and see the difference. Please post back the results for other users.
  4. Thanks for your suggestions. I will run the benchmarks later today and i will post the results back here.
  5. Ok i did the change and benchmarked the card before and after and here are the results:

    My PC specs:
    Windows 7 64bit
    Nvidia GTX 660

    ShaderToyMark 0.3.0

    Resolution: 1920x1080
    Fullscreen: On

    Score: 98 points (16FPS, 60sec)
    Score: 99 points (16FPS, 60sec)

    TessMark 0.3.0

    Map Set: Set 4 (2048x2048)
    Tassellation: Insane (X64)
    Fullscreen: On
    Resolution: 1920x1080
    Anti-Aliasing 8x MSAA
    Duration 60sec

    Score: 5944 points
    Max GPU temp: 53c
    FPS: min = 86 max = 111 avg = 99
    Score: 6007
    Max GPU temp: 51c
    FPS: min = 86 max = 114 avg =100

    FluidMark 1.5.2

    Default PhysX benchmark Preset: 1080

    Score: 1786 points, 29 FPS
    Score: 1910 points, 31FPS

    FurMark 1.10.6

    Burn-in benchmark 1920x1080 15min

    Score: 2740 points, 30 FPS, 65c
    Score: 2759 points, 30FPS, 63c

    So yes, the performance got slightly better.

    Though i have a new problem now, after changing the slot, startup time on pc has risen a lot. And by a lot i mean really a lot. I tried uninstalling and re-installing the drivers, did several reboots, but still the startup time is higher than before.

    Checked the Event Viewer and it does give me errors on Boot Time, 100, 101, 102 and 103 (102 and 103 not always at the same time). Checked online at Windows help, but well it didn't really help.

    Any ideas what might have happened? is there any chance that Windows files got damaged?
  6. Try clearing the CMOS (unplug the power cord and remove the CMOS battery for few minutes).
  7. I did that, but it didn't really help that much, what did help though was to trace my windows startup and then following a guide i managed not only to get the speed i had, but also to improve it.

    Thanks for you help mate.
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