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The absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence -- unless it comes from an Intel slide
A surprise or not, there is no 975X replacement

Although some people had expected a surprise Intel 985X motherboard chipset announcement, it looks like it was not meant to be.  In fact, it seems the whole concept of "high-end" nearly one-off chipsets from Intel is dead in the water.

The most recent Intel roadmap revealed that Intel has no plans to produce a high-end "extreme" chipset through at least Q2'07.  This is important since Q2'07 marks the launch of Bearlake, Intel's chipset successor to the 965 series.  Ultimately, we can infer that Intel has put the "extreme" series of chipsets on hiatus for a least two generations.

Of course, without a 975X platform, this also means there is no longer any plans for an Intel-based Crossfire platform.  975X, 955X and 945P were the only chipsets from Intel that support Crossfire, and Intel's newest chipsets do not -- including G965, P965 and Q965.  Intel's next generation chipset, Bearlake, may support Crossfire or SLI, but the trend seems to suggest this is unlikely.  With the efforts of NVIDIA and ATI both producing independent chipsets for Crossfire/SLI, it seems unlikely that we will see native multi-GPU technology on any Intel chipsets in the near future.





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