Print 6 comment(s) - last by hwhacker.. on Jul 21 at 1:40 AM

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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By Nightmare225 on 7/18/2006 2:40:28 PM , Rating: 2
I'm confused, isn't Crossfire available on 975x boards already?

RE: So..
By plewis00 on 7/18/2006 5:16:31 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, but the point was the 965 series don't support Crossfire (or any SLI-type implementation as I read it) and they are the latest generation of chipsets. 975X is slightly behind these latest released ones (though the features are essentially similar).

RE: So..
By Bluestealth on 7/18/2006 6:14:01 PM , Rating: 2
I can only assume they didn't see much profit in a high end enthusiast chipset? Intel is pretty well known for its chipsets except in the gaming/enthusiast market, kind of a quick retreat if you ask me.

By mlau on 7/20/2006 2:57:36 AM , Rating: 2
I'm curious.. what is does the chipset have to implement
so it can support Crossfire? (apart from 2 x16 PCI-e sockets,
where 2 x8 would suffice)

RE: crossfire?
By hwhacker on 7/21/2006 1:40:03 AM , Rating: 2
If I understand correctly, from rv560/rv570/r600 and beyond, nothing. Crossfire's compositing engine will be onboard the cards, they will communicare via a "bridge" and the pci-e bus, and the drivers to support it will not be platform dependant...At least that's what I took from it. I very-well could be wrong, but that's the impression i've gotten, and it seems you have as well.

That being said, SLI is not platform dependant, but nvidia will not develope drivers for any other chipset than their own (other than ULI), ATi might do the same. Alas, you do see "hacked" sli drivers for other chipsets (SLI on Xfire boards has been widely publisized) that have 2x8/2x16 slots. Once ATi makes this move, expect to see similar cracked drivers for crossfire on nvidia/Intel boards...That is, if they don't just make it an open platform with universal support...which who knows, they might.

I would just assume...
By Doormat on 7/18/2006 9:54:54 PM , Rating: 2
that the 975X chipset is going to be compatible with the bearlake stuff thats going to hit next year. Hook up the ICH9 up to the 975 and go.

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