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PCI subsystem gets third major update

The new version supports several variants of conventional PCI connections.

A standards group has released the third major version of the 12-year-old Peripheral Components Interconnect (PCI) standard for plugging everything from network cards to video capture boards into a computer. The new version supports several variants of conventional PCI connections, including PCI-X, Mini PCI and Low Profile PCI, but not a different new category called PCI Express.

A major change in the version 3.0 is in the voltage difference that distinguishes the ones and zeros being transferred across the PCI subsystem's electrical connections. The PCI 1.0, introduced in 1992, used 5-volt signaling technology, and version 2.0 added support for 3.3-volt technology that permits the PCI subsystem to run at faster speeds. Version 3.0 requires the 3.3-volt connections.

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