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Intel P35 Express powered motherboard spotted with DDR3 memory slots

Motherboards featuring the upcoming Intel P35 Express variant from the upcoming Bearlake-family desktop chipsets will be some of the first to support DDR3 memory.  Initial Intel roadmaps claimed that the first DDR3 support would come late 2007 if industry support caught on.

However, that doesn't mean Intel isn't getting its ducks in a row.  The company has already started sampling its DDR3 motherboards and several have leaked out into the channel already.

According to Intel guidance, the P35 chipset can feature DDR2 or DDR3 memory, but not both at the same time.  The leaked motherboard supports up to four sticks of DDR3 memory rated at 800 MHz or 1066 MHz.

It will also support up to a 1333 MHz front-side-bus on Socket T, also known as LGA775 processors. LGA775 processors supported by the upcoming P35 Express-based board include Intel Core 2 Duo, Core 2 Quad and Celeron 4xx-series.

There is no mention if previous Pentium 4, Pentium D and Celeron D processors for LGA775 remain supported on the new platform. Nevertheless, expect Intel to launch 1333 MHz front-side-bus Core 2 Duo E6x50-series later this year. Intel’s Core 2 Duo E6850 1333 MHz front-side-bus processor was spotted in the wild earlier this month.

Expect Intel to launch its Bearlake-family during its typical sunny seasons, in time for the back-to-school shoppers. Intel’s Bearlake-family will spawn five desktop variants. The variants include the integrated graphics endowed G33 & G35 Express, vPro platform Q33 & Q35 Express, mainstream P35 Express and performance oriented X38 Express. As always, expect Intel to launch a top-to-bottom lineup of Intel Desktop Boards featuring the Bearlake chipset-family.

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Might not be the best move...
By Goty on 2/12/2007 7:03:05 PM , Rating: 2
Moving to DDR3 may not be the best move for Intel, at least not if it provides significant gains in memory bandwidth. Seeing as how the Core2 architecture doesn't reap substantial gains from increases in memory bandwidth and considering the fact that a quad-core chip from AMD will probably be pretty bandwidth-hungry (pure speculation on my part, but not unreasonable), forcing DDR3 into the mainstream sooner than is absolutely neccessary may not be in Intel's best interest.

RE: Might not be the best move...
By masher2 on 2/12/2007 7:38:21 PM , Rating: 3
There's more to DDR3 than bandwidth increases. The primary benefit to start (at least in my eyes) is the huge decrease in power consumption. If you only have a gig of Ram, a 40% power decrease only amounts to a few watts, but when your system has 4+ gb, it really starts to make a difference.

By lemonadesoda on 2/12/2007 7:41:05 PM , Rating: 3
Yes! Save power on RAM and spend it on an R600 or 8800 GPU! ;)

RE: Might not be the best move...
By AnnihilatorX on 2/12/2007 7:41:28 PM , Rating: 2
Well pushing in new technology is, and always have been Intel's tradition. DDR, DDRII were and DDR-III is being pushed to market.

There are good and bad of this. Good point is we get better technology, and DDRII prices will drop because of this sooner or later. Bad thing is well, customers might not like the fast transistion to an expensive platform. However, as with DDRII, There are plenty of early adoptors that will jump suit, not necessarily bad for Intel.

RE: Might not be the best move...
By xsilver on 2/12/2007 8:21:47 PM , Rating: 2
im not sure i totally agree with u in saying that prices for ddr2 will drop if intel moves to ddr3.
ram is the only component that INCREASES in price when it becomes obsolete

if it means cheaper prices for ram - im all for it -- 2gigs of good ram is now the second most expensive component of a pc behind a good gpu

RE: Might not be the best move...
By nerdye on 2/12/2007 8:42:06 PM , Rating: 2
I agree in the fact that ddr2 is the most expensive component behind a good gpu, I just built a new rig with a 160$ core2 e6300, a 260$ bfg 7950gt, and 250$ 2gb kit of corsair ddr2 800 xms 2. How much would you expect a 2gb kit of ddr3 800 to cost in the corsair dominator flavor, maybe > 400$? Ddr2 can now get the 1ghz level and beyond with high end dimms, I don't see the point in ddr3 until it surpasses those speeds. Remember when ddr2 400 came out that had much much higher latency that equivalent speed ddr 400 (pc3200), the same unfortunate souls that bought ddr2 400 should not make the same mistake in buying ddr3 800, (oh it saves me 12 watts on my 700 watt power supply what a difference maker!). Right now the market calls for you to buy ddr2 due to cost and value, DO IT!

By ZachPruckowski on 2/12/2007 8:49:15 PM , Rating: 2
I think the important thing to remember here is that it supports both DDR2 and DDR3. AMD has a similar set-up with its Stars cores on AM3 (or is it AM2+?). So the motherboards/processors will support DDR3 before people are buying. In my mind, this is the best outcome, since it'll allow you to upgrade a motherboard now and upgrade your RAM later. It's not a requirement that you do both at once.

By kenji4life on 2/13/2007 11:25:42 AM , Rating: 2
(oh it saves me 12 watts on my 700 watt power supply what a difference maker!)

Well that's one way to think of it. But I'm sure masher2 was talking about saving wattage in general, not "freeing up space" on his power supply like you are implying.

The fact of the matter is that although high end computer system's power envelopes are rising, the average computer will still run just fine on a 400 watt power supply.

The only reason you really need that 700watt power supply is if you are running a high power consumption CPU overclocked with SLI/Crossfire GPU's, a raid array + storage drives, multiple optical drives, maxed out ram @ high voltage, and several fans. Even still you are nowhere near maxing out said PSU (if the PSU is one of quality).

RE: Might not be the best move...
By RamarC on 2/12/2007 8:46:13 PM , Rating: 2
marketing-wise, newer almost always equals "better". enthusiasts can see through the smoke-screen, but if you present identical pc's with ddr-2 and ddr-3 on the bullet list, the common consumer is going to go with the "-3" model. and ddr-3 further distinguishes intel from (and keeps the pressure on) amd.

RE: Might not be the best move...
By nerdye on 2/12/2007 9:00:53 PM , Rating: 2
You are entirely correct that non performance enthusiasts will want the ddr3 due to the obvious reasons that ddr3 sounds a whole lot sexier that ddr2. I also agree that this will again be another intel "me first" move that will put pressure on AMD to be "me second". As a consumer though, I'm saddened that technologies like this make the light of day before they have truly tangible benefits over their succeeding technologies they inevitably will replace. Yet, with a ddr2/ddr3 (assuming they are the same pin count) compatible motherboards, this could also be looked upon in a positive light due to upgrade paths. Lets all just hope that a ddr2/ddr3 compatible motherboard will perform well with ddr3 ram.

RE: Might not be the best move...
By Goty on 2/12/2007 11:44:50 PM , Rating: 3
Well pushing in new technology is, and always have been Intel's tradition. DDR, DDRII were and DDR-III is being pushed to market.

As I recall, Intel spurned DDR in favor of that ill-conceived idea of RDRAM =P

By kenji4life on 2/13/2007 11:28:21 AM , Rating: 2
That's how I recall it as well.

RE: Might not be the best move...
By Assimilator87 on 2/12/2007 11:26:50 PM , Rating: 2
I would guess that DDR3 would be able to overclock far higher than DDR2 at introduction. Think about how aggressively binned the very best DDR2 modules are. They basically top out at 1333Mhz. Now consider that DDR3 is starting out in 800Mhz, 1066Mhz, and possibly 1333Mhz at the very start of its life and it's supposed to run at much lower voltages. Crank up the voltage a little bit and I'm sure something like 1.5Ghz wouldn't be far off. Of course, that's all speculation at this point. Hopefully the yields will be good enough to make my inference true.

By kenji4life on 2/13/2007 11:30:51 AM , Rating: 2
While this is true, don't forget about the difference in latency. We haven't even seen a huge drop in latency for DDR2 yet. Don't forget that there was a much longer time period between DDR and DDR2.

RE: Might not be the best move...
By GoatMonkey on 2/13/2007 8:25:08 AM , Rating: 2
Is there an Anandtech article that shows what a bandwidth increase will do for a duo or quad processor? Maybe a comparison of DDR2-667 vs. DDR2-800 or 1000 with the same CPU clock speed?

By GoatMonkey on 2/13/2007 1:59:25 PM , Rating: 2
Nevermind. I was reading one of the other posts. The asrock review showed the effects of memory speed and type pretty well.

By Spartan Niner on 2/12/2007 6:35:01 PM , Rating: 2
My DDR1-based A64 is so obsolete... might be about time I save up for a DDR3/dual-core so I'll have a decent upgrade path later. AFAIC s939 is a dead-end, and AM2 will be no better soon enough. At least this route will leave quad-core (8 cores even?) as an upgrade option. The other thing I'm waiting for is AMD's new launch. I'm curious to see how the performance stacks up before I make my next purchase.

Here's to competition, may the consumer benefit! =)

By phaxmohdem on 2/12/2007 6:45:31 PM , Rating: 3
Anything you buy will be "obsolete" in a few months. As long as your rig does what it's supposed to who cares.

By lemonadesoda on 2/12/2007 7:39:47 PM , Rating: 2
DDR1 is still pretty fast! The memory bandwidth is BETTER than DDR2 per clock. The gain of DDR2 is the increased clock speeds.

If you have a lot of good quality DDR1, consider going Quad Core 2 Duo with an ASROCK Conroe865 board. While not as good as the best 965/975 boards, it will save you a lot of money on RAM. You can also use your AGP GPU. When DDR3 is mainstream... move your Core 2 Duo to the new board.

By outsider on 2/13/2007 1:39:53 AM , Rating: 2
What is he talking about? My 2.2GHz Socket 754 Athlon 64 screams trough anything other than system deadlocks. Yesterday I did some photoshopping on a Socket AM2 Turion X2 and may I be damned if I noticed any difference... except that the notebook fan turned on a lot more often.
People really have to disassociate normal PCs from benchmark PCs. On a benchmark, a Core 2 Quad will absolutely destroy my 3 year old Athlon 64. In real life, I couldn't wish more from my CPU.

By afkrotch on 2/13/2007 7:15:01 AM , Rating: 2
Try some multi-tasking. You'll quickly find out how inadequate your system is for such a daunting task. I have a dual screen setup. I have 10 season of Friends in a playlist that runs on one monitor, torrents downloading in the background, and I game on my other monitor. I do this quite often on my C2D. Tell me how your S754 64 handles the task. You'll get a very unfortunate surprise. Shoot, the damn thing doesn't even support dual channel memory.


Anyways, I'm all for DDR3. As long as it performs on par with current DDR2, then what do you really have to lose? Early adopters will get stuck with a higher price tag, but every early adopter knows that.

With Intel pushing for DDR3, more companies will start pushing the product and the technology will advance and performance will increase. During this time prices will start dropping for motherboards and the memory.

If Intel wasn't pushing new tech, we'd still be sitting on DDR1, LGA procs, AGP, PCI, dual cores, quad cores, and so on.

Shoot, after Intel stopped supportint PATA on their chipsets, more SATA optical drives started popping up.

By theapparition on 2/13/2007 7:48:10 AM , Rating: 2
Why I tend to agree with you that for a large percentage of people, the current level of computing technology is quite sufficient. Standard web browsing, email, word processing and listening to music any 4-5yo system will do quite nicely. This was one reason there still is a lot of talk about an "internet appliance" that would be cheap, instant on, and take care of these tasks.

However, we also see the increasing demands being placed on hardware with multitasking, HD content, and DX10 games. While not personally a big gamer, I love the advances in that field because it drives hardware perfomance increases for the entire industry. Personally, I do high end engineering work that requires a computer to spend anywhere from a few days to a few weeks to converge to a solution. Any increase in speed is a godsend.

By Aikouka on 2/13/2007 8:21:51 AM , Rating: 2
You probably didn't see as much of a difference as some of your other components are slower. You forget that you are using a laptop and components are typically reduced in speed to create higher longevity while off the plug. Also, just saying "I photoshopped" is like saying "I Maya'd" as we have no idea what you did! You'd most likely see the benefits in Photoshop when using plug-ins on rather large images.

Also, I own an Athlon 64 2800+ system, an Athlon 64 X2 4400+ system and a Core 2 Duo E6600 system and let me tell you... I can tell the difference between the first one and the last two. Although, my environments aren't great enough to give you exact figures (as the computers themselves are all upgrades... i.e. they don't really share similar configurations and each one is a step above the one before it).

The pink elephant in the room
By lufoxe on 2/13/2007 9:32:32 AM , Rating: 2
Speed is all good and fun, but the main thing I'm concerned with is latency. Yes I know, in the intel front latency doesn't really has as much as an effect as in an AMD platform. But cmon we have CAS latencies going into 5, 4 and in the best case 3. Call me crazy but I remember the day when if you had a CAS latency of 3 on your memory, it was deemed cheap... excuse me "value" memory. I could just be concerned about nothing, but it is a thought

RE: The pink elephant in the room
By bkiserx7 on 2/13/2007 11:40:04 AM , Rating: 2
latency is not everything when you get bandwidth and multiple pipes of data

RE: The pink elephant in the room
By Neosis on 2/13/2007 3:12:51 PM , Rating: 2
By just looking Cas latency, you can't say anything about overall latency which depends on all timings (primarily column access strobe) and memory frequency.

I can say my TCCDs have lower latency at Cas 2.5-4-3-8@300Mhz than Cas 1.5-2-2-5-7-14@210Mhz

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