PCI/mini PCIe concentrator boards

Can you tell me the exact model of your server?, then I can suggest you something.

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The server is home-made from old parts. The server case is 2U size (height) and the motherboard is mATX. It has 1 x PCIe x16, 1 x PCIe x4 and 2 x PCI slots. Currently, one PCI slot is occupied with a gigabit ethernet card, if I remember correctly (I will check this evening).

Would this is be suitable?

Yes this is what I mean but we need to check that it’s actually compatible because it needs USB on the mini PCIe Header and I think USB is not available on the PCI bus.
This card here for example has it through a separate connector:
I saw also cheaper alternatives, need to search again…

This one is cheap and should work:

Cool. Will the pigtails that come with that card be suitable for LoRa? i.e. is the impedance required the same as is used for WiFi? I understand impedance changes with frequency, and Lora uses a lower frequency than WiFi.

I’m not sure what pigtails ship with this device, maybe the IPEX connector does not even fit. So if you want to be sure, just order a pigtail from our website with the device.

Are you referring to the PCIe adaptor card or the n-fuse card?

I mean the adaptor device. In the picture you can see that there are pigtails but I don’t know whether they fit.

Got it.

So cost-wise, this solution, including the pigtail, antenna, PCIe adaptor, tax & shipping is similar to the Heltec device. It would be a slightly neater solution, being installed into my server case.

What other advantages, if any, would the n-fuse card have over the Heltec USB device? Does it have better capabilities, better support…?

Don’t buy this kind of PCI adapter. It adapts PCI lanes to MiniPCIe lanes only. n-fuse uses USB interface over the MiniPCIe pins.

n-fuse is better quality than chisese Heltec. both are USB devices, both follow the same pico-gw reference design and can use the same software.

Thanks @nestorayuso. How can I identify PCI/PCIe adaptor with the required capability?

@PaulRB2 What’s wrong with the one I’ve pointed out already? Why do you need another one?

According to @nestorayuso, the Silverstone adaptor is not suitable because it does not support USB over PCIe lanes.

According to Silverstone,

I am confused.

rely in @Vanthome, he works at n-fuse, and know better than me the right adapters.

the adapter he propose seems valid, it has a four port USB hub in the board, one routed to a USB-A connector, another one routed to MiniPCIe conector and two more on pin headers.

But he also says

But, when I look closely at the Silverstone card, I’m not sure that the n-fuse pigtail can be fitted. I think the “pigtails” already fitted to the card cannot be removed.

Lycom adaptor


Maybe this adaptor would be more suitable? It comes with no pigtails so perhaps could accept the n-fuse pigtail? However, the card is described as “M.2”, not “Mini PCIe”. I am not expert in these differences.

@Vanthome @nestorayuso can you comment please?

EDIT: I discovered that m.2 is a different size connector to mini-pcie, so this adaptor is not suitable.

of course they can be removed.

Only by un-soldering, I think. There appear to be short coax cables with ufl plugs at both ends, which can be removed. But the sma sockets appear to be soldered to the board.

Yes, I agree, it’s a bit more involved than I thought. Update I have checked, you can’t use the integrated pigtails because they have the wrong gender for typical ISM antenna.
So you have to unsolder or better just cut one of the SMA sockets and replace it with a pigtail.

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