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Strix x670e-e build advice

Level 7

I have recently setup and installed new motherboard and switched from a threadripper build. Issues with this MB have been crazy as audio stuff is wonky. The MB only supports 1 front panel usb 3.1 and my helios case has 2 of those plus a C. So I installed a new USB 3.1 card in the pci 3 slot to make the remaining ports on my case work. Now the issue is I want to install my soundblaster card in pci slot 2 without impacting my 16x graphics card (slot 1) degrading down to 8x or 4x if I do so. Can anyone think of a way to swing this or am I SOL on this?

I hate all the added cards I'm doing just to get this rig operating to my standards. (Like not having dead ports on my case & stupid audio issues and static garbage)