Print 40 comment(s) - last by murphyslabrat.. on Mar 8 at 7:40 PM

NVIDIA to launch next-generation Intel chipsets next month

With the next generation processors from Intel drawing near, chipset manufacturers have been hard at work designing products around Intel's CPU architecture.

NVIDIA's upcoming MCP7A motherboard Intel chipset is expected to launch this coming April along with the 45nm Intel Core 2 Duo E8300 and the 65nm Core 2 Quad price drops.

NVIDIA claims MCP7A includes a number of improvements over the last generation products including HDMI and Hybrid SLI capabilities.

MCP7A will be offered in 8 different SKUs, seven of them with onboard DirectX 10-based GPUs that will feature high-definition video processing at 1080p support and integrated HDCP on the higher-end MCP7A-GL and MCP7A-J. There is no word yet on how powerful the onboard graphics processors will be, however, they will all support Shader Model 4.0 and DirectX 10.

Other oddities include an MCP7A chipset that offer a workstation-class GPU from NVIDIA's Quadro line.

The MCP7A line will support a 1333 MHz front-side bus and 20 PCIe 2.0 lanes in a possible 16x1 + 4x1 setup. This would allow a single GPU expansion card to be used in conjunction with the GPUs in seven of these chipsets for a Hybrid SLI setup. The only two SLI boards, the MCP7A-SLI and MCP7A-GL, will feature 2 x8 PCIe 2.0 slots for dual expansion card capabilities.

Each of the chipsets with onboard GPUs will feature 2 analog and 2 digital display heads, with the notable exception of the high-end MCP7A-J which will feature 2 analog and 3 digital heads. Motherboards based on the MCP7A line will have the potential to support DVI/HDMI/Dual Port and RGB formats of video output, while the MCP7A-J chipset will also support LVDS.

Other standard features on all boards will include support for up to 6 SATA 3.0 GB/sec ports, up to 12 USB 2.0 ports, integrated 10/100/1000 Mb/sec LAN and RAID 0, 1, 0+1, and RAID 5 support on the SATA interface.

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needs more SATA
By thejez on 3/4/2008 12:29:29 PM , Rating: 1
only 6 SATA ports!? They should be up to 12 by now...

RE: needs more SATA
By AlphaVirus on 3/4/2008 12:37:47 PM , Rating: 2
You seriously would use 12? I barely use more than 2 lol.

RE: needs more SATA
By cochy on 3/4/2008 1:05:40 PM , Rating: 2
I have a file server currently with 4 drives. That's 4 SATA ports used with 2 more available. I'd like to have room to expand further, so 12 would be nice and I'd have purchased that.

RE: needs more SATA
By TomZ on 3/4/2008 1:17:01 PM , Rating: 5
What you need is called a "server board." :o)

I don't think that more than 6 SATA ports is necessary for a desktop board. Most people have 1-2 HDDs, 1 optical, and maybe one external drive - that's four max. - 6 is plenty.

I think the space and cost is best spent putting in more USB ports, which is what they did. USB is more versatile and is useful for more types of devices compared to SATA.

Also, let's not forget that it's very easy to add more SATA ports via PCI(e) expansion card(s).

RE: needs more SATA
By Xerio on 3/4/2008 1:27:47 PM , Rating: 2
The other thing is that hard drive capacity increases everyday (or it seems like it). Sure, 1TB drives a kinda expensive, but relative to what HDDs cost 5 years ago per GB, they are cheap.

RE: needs more SATA
By cochy on 3/4/2008 2:04:48 PM , Rating: 2
No I don't need a server board cause I don't need to blow away so much $ :P

I saw pictures of some up coming P45 mobos at AT and I believe I noticed an MSI with 8 SATA.

RE: needs more SATA
By cochy on 3/4/2008 2:07:47 PM , Rating: 2
lol but thats nothing new. My Gigabyte P35 has 8 SATA weee.

RE: needs more SATA
By murphyslabrat on 3/4/2008 3:07:21 PM , Rating: 2
Wait, what? You're saying that they want you to pay extra for mission-specific hardware?

RE: needs more SATA
By cochy on 3/4/2008 3:29:46 PM , Rating: 2
No I'm saying that I don't want to pay. I don't need the features of a server board (extra socket, FB-DIMMs etc.)

RE: needs more SATA
By rsasp on 3/4/2008 4:14:48 PM , Rating: 1
Then you are not running a real server.

RE: needs more SATA
By sirvent67 on 3/5/2008 4:29:37 AM , Rating: 2
That is BS. ANY pc can be a server, it doesnt have to have enterprise class hardware in it to funtion as a server. Maybe he doesnt need the extra sockets, ram capacity, and scsi. not to mention having to use more expensive ram.

What he has is merely a CHEAP server.

RE: needs more SATA
By jtemplin on 3/5/2008 9:47:00 PM , Rating: 2
Screw server boards anyway. I'd rather be able to use any speed ram I wish, have the luxury of overclocking and lose out on the 4 SATA ports you guys are talking about.

RE: needs more SATA
By murphyslabrat on 3/8/2008 7:40:24 PM , Rating: 2
Dude, if those four ports are seriously an issue, then get a cheap/not cheap controller card. You add a little more latency, but you'd be paying for those extra ports anyway.

RE: needs more SATA
By DigitalFreak on 3/4/2008 3:30:02 PM , Rating: 3
Or you could, *gasp*, buy a PCI-E SATA controller card. We don't need performance motherboard prices being driven even higher with more onboard junk.

RE: needs more SATA
By surt on 3/4/2008 3:06:10 PM , Rating: 2
With more people wanting to run 2 drives raid 0 for speed, and 5 drives for raid-5 safety, i'd say 8 sata ports would cover 99% of what home users want. 6 is just barely short of the mark for that scenario.

RE: needs more SATA
By TomZ on 3/4/2008 3:13:15 PM , Rating: 3
I don't think many people are wanting to run a 5-drive RAID5 array in their desktop machine. That's a pretty unusual use case.

And for those few who want to, the cost differential for a server board is obviously not a concern, if one is willing to invest in 5 drives.

RE: needs more SATA
By evident on 3/4/2008 3:34:15 PM , Rating: 2
don't forget optical drives, as IDE is now completely obsolete and not supported anymore. what a waste of $ i spent the last year on optical drives that were all IDE thinking it would last as long as parallel and serial ports on MB's.. . boy was i wrong

RE: needs more SATA
By xsilver on 3/4/2008 6:26:02 PM , Rating: 2
I agree that running raid is not your usual home user setup.
However there is also the possibility that some of your sata ports are blocked due to a long graphics card.
my 8800gt blocks definitely 1 and puts pressure on the cable for a second port.
That effectively means that I've only got 4 ports left, which are coincidentally all used up. (2hdds, + 2optical)

RE: needs more SATA
By Carter642 on 3/5/2008 9:22:24 AM , Rating: 3
I've got an asus board and it's got the sata ports at a right angle to the board face. This means that my 8800GTX goes right over the top of my sata heads and doesn't block any of them. I'm actually really surprised that more motherboard manufacturers haven't done that.

RE: needs more SATA
By Polynikes on 3/4/2008 3:54:41 PM , Rating: 2
I agree, I have two hard drives in a RAID 0 config and two others for storage (one filled up, so I got another) and that's all I'll need for a loooong time. That's not exactly a typical setup. 6 ports is plenty. I'd still have room for two optical drives or an optical drive and another hard drive.

RE: needs more SATA
By King of Heroes on 3/4/2008 1:27:07 PM , Rating: 2
Well, its certainly better than 4 SATA ports, which appears to be the standard amount for most mainstream boards nowadays. With 6 you can have 1 system drive, 3 storage drives (yay for RAID 5!), and 2 optical drives. Thats a damn nice spread to me.

RE: needs more SATA
By King of Heroes on 3/4/2008 1:38:56 PM , Rating: 2
Geh, apparently you can't edit posts, so I have to reply to myself...

Or, even better, ditch the extra optical and setup RAID 0 for the system drive(s). Either way, 6 ports is a very flexible amount.

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