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Item#: N82E16815158361

StarTech 4 Port PCI SuperSpeed USB 3.0 Adapter Card with SATA / SP4 Power Model PCIUSB3S4

  • PCI to USB Card
  • 1.3 Gbps (PCI Bus) Data Transfer Rate

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  • Overview
  • Specifications
  • Warranty & Returns
  • Reviews

Learn more about the STARTECH PCIUSB3S4




PCI to USB Card
External USB Ports
4x USB Ports
External Ports
4 - USB 3.0 A (9 pin; SuperSpeed) Female
Internal Ports
1 - SATA Power (15 pin) Plug
1 - SP4 (4 pin; Small Drive Power) Plug
Data Transfer Rate
1.3 Gbps (PCI Bus)
Operating Systems Supported
Windows XP(32/64-bit)/ Server 2003(32/64-bit)/ Server 2008 R2/ Vista(32/64-bit)/ 7(32/64-bit)/ 8(32/64-bit)


Increased data transfer rates (up to 1.3 Gbps PCI bus limit) with USB 3.0 compatible devices
Suitable for installation in standard-sized and Small Form Factor computers
Supports bus-powered USB 3.0 devices

Add 4 SuperSpeed USB 3.0 ports to a computer through a PCI slot

Compatible with Dell OptiPlex 7010 / HP Compaq dc7800

4 Port PCI USB 3.0 Adapter Card / PCI USB 3.0 Card Adapter

PCI USB 3.0 Controller / SATA Powered PCI USB 3.0 Card / USB 3.0 Expansion Card

Add Quad USB 3.0 Ports to a desktop PC / Connect USB 3.0 peripherals to a legacy PC through a PCI slot

Standard and Low Profile USB 3.0 PCI-X Card

Optional SATA Power for high power USB 3.0 devices such as external hard drives

Dimensions & Weight

5.2" x 2.6" x 0.8"
2.8 oz [80 g]


Package Contents
1 - PCI USB 3.0 Card
1 - Low Profile Bracket
1 - Driver CD
1 - Instruction Manual
Warranty, Returns, And Additional Information
  • Warranty
  • Limited Warranty period (parts): 1 year
  • Limited Warranty period (labor): 1 year
  • Read full details

Customer Reviews of the STARTECH PCIUSB3S4

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  • Brandon H.
  • 4/6/2016 11:54:34 AM
  • Ownership: more than 1 year
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsGreat performance, LIFETIME warranty, 33/66 MHz operation, both SATA and SP4 power connectors

Pros: 1. Performance
I have both PCIe and PCI-X (it's a server board) on this machine, and I have another USB 3.0 card that uses the same Renesas chip on the PCIe bus, so I did a performance comparison using the same SATA drive (WD Blue 2.5-inch 500GB - WD5000BPVT, reformatted) on a USB 3.0 to SATA cable (StarTech USB3S2SAT3CB USB 3.0 to 2.5" SATA III Hard Drive Adapter Cable w/ UASP) using DskSpeed from roadkil-dot-net

Interestingly enough, on my system the PCI 3.0 card matched the performance of the PCIe USB 3.0 card.

Note: This is a PURELY COMPARATIVE test, NOT a performance benchmark. It answers the question of "How does it compare to a PCIe USB 3.0 card?"
Startech PCIUSB3S4 on PCI bus: Max Read: 95.79 MB/sec (512KB blocks)
VANTEC UGT-PCE430-4C on PCIe bus: 94.15 MB/sec (256KB blocks)

a. Is it faster than USB 2.0?
DEFINITELY YES. 90 MB/sec is 720 Mbps, which is well beyond USB 2.0's 480 Mbps bandwidth.

b. Is it as fast as a PCIe USB 3.0 card?
On MY system, yes, *but* I have PCI-X slots and I switched my PCIUSB3S4 to 33/66 MHz mode, so it's probably running faster than it would on a standard PCI bus.
On the other hand, my PCIe is only v1.0, so I'm pretty sure a _modern_ system's PCIe or native USB 3.0 would be faster than the results I'm getting (in which case the answer would be "No, it's not faster than PCIe")

Still, if you're on an older PCI bus system, I think this is a reasonable addition to the system, as it's definitely faster than USB 2.0

2. Warranty
I've had this card for over a year and it recently had an issue. I contacted Startech, explained the symptoms and what I had tried, and they quickly issued an RMA replacement. Got what appears to be a brand new card (full retail box) back and I'm running normally again. Excellent support, justifies the premium.

3. 33/66 MHz operation
It isn't mentioned in the instructions, but there's a jumper on the card for 33 MHz and 33/66 MHz. The default is 33 MHz, but I have PCI-X slots so they can run at 66 MHz, so I set my card for 33/66 MHz. Not sure if there's a performance difference, but at least the card can run at 66 MHz and not slow down other cards on the same bus to 33 MHz.

4. Both power connectors
Having both the traditional SP4 floppy drive style power connectors and SATA power connector eliminates the need for adapters or finding the right plug. Less extra cabling means better airflow.

Cons: 1. High price, but IMO it is justified with the lifetime warranty.
2. Windows (7 at least) does not have native drivers for the Renesas controller, but they come on the driver CD, *and* drivers are available on Startech's site as well.

Other Thoughts: Definitely use the driver from the CD or download the driver on Startech's site. They even had a firmware update (though my replacement card was already at the newest firmware version).

You probably should ask yourself, "Do I *really* need to add a _PCI_ USB 3.0 card?" If the answer is yes, this is a good choice.
It you're on the fence, you might want to consider spending the money to upgrade your system to a modern one with native USB 3.0

Did you find this review helpful? Yes No

  • Edwin V.
  • 5/28/2015 8:48:55 PM
  • Ownership: less than 1 day
  • Verified Owner

1 out of 5 eggsBlue Screen of Death

Pros: None...Period.

Cons: Installed the card, started my PC, Card was not found by WIN 7 64Bit. Inserted the installation CD per the manual, and ran the setup program. Right after setup finished, the PC Blue screened... I could not recover through windows repair. The RAID-0 setup of 2 SSD's I was using were trashed and I have not been able to re-use them so far.

Other Thoughts: Never purchase another item by this manufacturer again. The WORST experience I have ever had, and I have been building, repairing, and programming for PC's for over 20 years.

Manufacturer Response:

Hello Edwin,

We are very sorry to hear about your difficulties with this USB adapter card. It sounds like there may be an incompatibility between the chipset used in this PCI card and another device on your computer. There are a few quick things to try:

1. Can you remove any other PCI or PCI Express cards from your motherboard, and reseat the card into a different slot? If the PC boots normally then the conflict was with another card in your system.
2. Can you try the card in a second PC if possible, preferably one using a different motherboard? This can rule out the possibility of the card being faulty.
3. Can you check with your motherboard's manufacturer for any available firmware updates for your system's BIOS? Particularly ones intended to fix conflicts with certain chipsets.

If possible, can you please also let us know the make and model of computer this issue occurred on? If it is a custom build, please let us know the model of motherboard used. We would also be happy to assist you in locating an alternative card using a different chipset.

That being said, our driver should not affect the RAID 0 setup you had on your computer, as it would only apply to our hardware. Could you please provide us with the Blue Screen error code you received?

We are always here to help with our lifetime technical support, so please feel free to contact us regarding this and be sure to reference case # 303-237283.

Thank You,

Customer Support

0 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Anonymous
  • 5/7/2015 3:55:12 PM
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

4 out of 5 eggsHigh Priced but Works Great

Pros: -Works in a PCI slot.
- Adds USB 3.0 ports to an older model PC.
- Easy to Install.
- Comes with Half-Height/Low Profile bracket.
- Ships with Rensesas Drivers on CD.
- Actual Read/Write Speeds close to those on SATA III bus.
- Works with a Lenovo ThinkCentre M58p SFF Desktop.

Cons: - High Cost. This is twice the price of an equivalent PCIe card.
- Not Plug N Play. Requires loading drivers from CD.
- Windows OS will not recognize card.

Other Thoughts: I needed more high speed USB 3.0 ports for a Lenovo ThinkCentre M58p SFF desktop that I had set up as a Plex Server. I had already used up the one PCIe slot for an eSATA card and only had a PCI slot left. This was the only 4-port USB 3.0 PCI card I could find so I purchased it. The cost was more than double that of a PCIe card from the same manufacturer but it was the only one to fit the requirements.

Other reviewers have stated that Windows OS will not recognize the card automatically. The card comes with a CD that has the Rensesas drivers on it and the instruction manual that comes with the card clearly and specifically states how to load the drivers. If your PC doesn't have CD drive, you can download the drivers from the USA website.

After switching out the bracket for the low profile one to fit in the PC, installation was quick. I did need to make a slight adjustment to the bracket (loosening the screws and readjusting the position) to get the USB 3.0 cables to fit in the ports. That only took a minute, or so.

After loading the drivers from the CD and rebooting, the PC the card was recognized and has functioned flawlessly.

I tested read/write speeds using a 3GB .mp4 file and a Seagate 5TB External Enclosure Expansion Drive.

Using the USB 2.0 ports on the PC I got the following:
Read - 24.2MB/sec maximum
Write - 22.0MB/sec maximum (more like 18 MB/sec average)

Using the USB3.0 ports on the Startech PCI card I got the following:
Read - 97 MB/sec maximum
Write - 87 MB/sec maximum

If I do the test on a Lenovo ThinkServer TS-140 that has SATA III buses and USB 3.0 ports connected to the same Seagate 5TB expansion drive I get the following:
Read - 134 MB/sec
Write - 111 MB/sec

Yes, the Startech USB 3.0 ports are slower than those on a new machine with SATA III bus but they are 4X faster than the USB 2.0 ports on the PC. This is definitely a great improvement.

If you are transferring large amounts of data, you will definitely appreciate the speed increase!

In conclusion, if your PC does not have the ability to use a PCIe card and you need higher transfer speeds than USB 2.0 provides, this is the only PCI card available new. It is pricey, but it works. I deducted one egg because of the high cost and because the card is not PnP. The card appears to be well built. I hope it lasts.

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Bernard B.
  • 4/29/2015 9:08:10 AM
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsOutstanding!

Pros: Works great! XP Drivers installed easily from CD. About twice as fast as ordinary USB 2.0 as advertised.

Cons: Would have been nice if they had supplied one internal USB 3.0 along with the card also besides the 4 external ports.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • John N.
  • 4/18/2015 8:45:09 AM
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year

5 out of 5 eggsSuperb

Pros: Works like a champ. Real world transfer speeds very near onboard USB 3.0 ports on a companion computer

Cons: None really. Would like to see a Next Gen card with external SATA/eSATA powered ports..

Other Thoughts: This is one of the first USB expansion cards of any generation I have seen come close to claimed functionality. Most are sad performers. I have a couple of USB 2.0 expansion cards I use for paperweights.

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • 3/30/2015 5:34:18 AM
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

1 out of 5 eggsNever Worked

Pros: None

Cons: Never worked, even after downloading new firmware .
Manufactures web site was no help!

Manufacturer Response:

Dear Robert,

Thanks for taking the time to leave feedback on our PCIUSB3S4 USB card. We apologize for the issues you have been experiencing with your unit and we would like to help resolve them.

Are you able to detect the card in “Device Manager”? The device will show with an error (usually an asterisk beside it) before installing the driver. Some operating systems may require a manual installation of the driver as well. If you are using Windows XP, 7, or 8 you may find our installation FAQs helpful; they can be found on the same page as the latest drive package, here:

If you are unable to detect the device, can you try reseating the unit or inserting it into other PCI slots? If this has no effect, you may need to change the PCI frequency on the card using the jumper.

We're always here to help with our lifetime technical support. If you require further assistance, please feel free to contact us any time and be sure to reference case # 303-212512.

You can also respond here and we will be sure to follow up!

Thank You,

Customer Support

0 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • William N.
  • 9/15/2014 6:47:14 AM
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsUSB 3.0 Powered Adapter

Pros: Excellent product - fast - easy to install and configure.

Cons: Only the time it takes to put it in the slot !!

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

5 out of 5 eggs

Pros: Twice as fast as built-in USB 2.0

Cons: Much slower than USB 3.0 standard - not cards fault, limitation of legacy PCI Bus on older computers.

Price for card seems high

Other Thoughts: This card is twice as fast as the built in USB 2.0 on my computer. However it is much slower than the USB 3.0 standard. This is not the cards fault, it is the limitation of the legacy PCI bus. This card provides enough power to power my external 2.5" laptop hard drives. You must connect an internal power source to PCI card. To achieve the best performance with this card, limit the amount of devices connected to it. Example - My keyboard, mouse, non USB 3 devices are running off my USB 2.0 ports. When I was running these off the USB 3.0 card it dropped transfer rates by 10MB/s!

Tested using a USB 3.0 to SATA adapter with 256GB SSD connected. Bart's Stuff Test v5.1.4

USB 2.0 (built-in USB on my computer for comparison)
33MB/s Read
29MB/s Write

USB 3.0 (Startech PCIUSB3S4)
83MB/s Read
58MB/s Write

USB 3.0 (Built-in to newer PC)
142MB/s Read
158MB/s Write

20 out of 21 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

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Item#: N82E16815158361
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