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Now we wait for devices to show up

Several years ago when PCI-Express was being developed, the technology was also being designed to support devices outside of the traditional computer enclosure. While "internal" PCI-Express took off, development and support for external devices was slow. This week, the PCI Special Interests Group (PCI-SIG) announced the availability of the PCI-Express external cable specification revision 1.0.

With the new specifications fully defined, cables will be developed for all PCI-Express link widths including: x1, x4, x8 and x16. This allows for devices such as external high-speed storage controllers, network or fabric interfaces and graphics adapters to use the technology.

According to PCI-SIG chairman Al Yanes, external PCI-Express products should now be in full development and show up on the market in less than a year. "This specification helps the industry create new products that will take PCIe technology out of the box – enabling PCIe solutions for IO expansion drawers, external graphics processors, tethered mobile docking, communications equipment and embedded applications,” said Yanes.

External PCI-Express devices will be able to use signaling rates up to 2.5 gigatransfers per second (GT/sec). Of course, the host, adapter and cable must be able to support those speeds, but the future looks promising according to the specification's outline. Later on, 5GT/sec. rates will be possible. Some applications for this type of technology include stacking storage arrays together by using the external PCI-Express interconnect rather than relying on Gig-E networking.



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RE: External GPE
By outsider on 2/9/2007 8:03:28 PM , Rating: 1
What if you want portable gaming?!
Nowadays the only component that prevents a cheap laptop from gaming is the GPU. Take a look, you can buy a Sempron 2GHz and 1GB RAM for 600$. That platform can take on every single game out there. So all you need to add is 250$ Graphics Card that you would have spent anyway on the "Killer Desktop".

Your statement hold absolutely true for the current state of notebooks. Right now gaming notebooks are very expensive. Thats why we rejoice, because now a killer GPU for notebooks will cost us the same as one for PCs. And you can even plug the external card off when you dont need it, to save power.


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