Print 15 comment(s) - last by marscay.. on Sep 25 at 4:04 PM

Intel puts pressure on Taiwan mobo companies about RD600 chipset and NVIDIA's C19 nForce 590 SLI Intel Edition faces uncertain future

The future of Intel Core 2 based chipsets is uncertain right now as the industry is shaken up by various new business projects, such as the merger between AMD and ATI.

The word in Taiwan, where I live and run my site, is that the high-anticipated ATI RD600 Conroe chipset is only going to be provided by one motherboard manufacturer, DFI. According to my sources, Intel has been putting pressure on Taiwan motherboard companies not to produce RD600 based motherboards. DFI stood up to the Intel giant and mentioned to us that they’ll be the only company providing an RD600 board, the DFI Lanparty RD600. This seems like a real disappointment for ATI as RD600 was set to be a bigger seller for the Canadian company with FSB speeds set to reach 480MHz and above – much higher than 975X and the C19 nForce 590 SLI Intel Edition chipset. DFI’s Lanparty RD600 motherboard will be on shop shelves sometimes next month but we’re not sure on an exact date yet.

We’ve also been hearing reports about the upcoming nForce 590 SLI Intel Edition chipset for Core 2 processors. This chipset is based on the now aging NVIDIA C19 chipset which some Taiwan motherboard manufactures are not impressed with. In fact, NVIDIA recently issued an announcement to motherboard companies saying that the C19 chipset will be phased out very soon and replaced by the newer and more refined C55 chipset in October. The C19 chipset maxes out at around 350MHz FSB which is one of the main reasons the Taiwanese folk were not impressed with the chipset, especially the companies interested in producing highly overclockable boards – and that’s most companies these days. With Intel’s P965 chipset, while not as fast as 975X, we’ve seen reports of the FSB hitting the 500MHz FSB mark. There are no official testing numbers on C55 FSB overclocking but being a refined chipset using newer technology, it is expected to beat the older C19 easily.

New Conroe motherboards using either the RD600 or nForce 590 SLI Intel Edition were expected this month (as first reported here on TweakTown) but users wanting to move away from Intel chipset solutions will need to wait another few weeks for these boards to be ready, possibly longer as BIOS’s are tweaked.

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Well done DFI
By Chronicfathead on 9/5/2006 4:39:42 PM , Rating: 3
Well done to DFI for having the b*lls to stand up the the intel monster. Even Apple and Microsoft work together, so why should intel feel the need to limit it's options, are they not confident in their chipsets? The Conroe chips are looking like the enthusiasts choice at the moment and I for one will be investing in the ATI chipset on a DFI board, if I make the jump to Conroe. I have owned both AMD and Intel chips, but their tactics always make me think twice about which way to jump.

RE: Well done DFI
By vanka on 9/6/2006 1:34:05 AM , Rating: 2
Even Apple and Microsoft work together

That's because Apple does not provide any real competition to Microsoft; Apple's marketshare is a tiny fraction of Microsoft's. In fact Jobs had to beg Microsoft to keep developing Office for the Apple platform; Microsoft could care less about the Apple Office market, but Apple desperately needs Office for Apple. Microsoft obliges because they face no serious competition from Apple.

Intel and AMD/ATI on the other hand have about the same marketshare with AMD/ATI providing some serious and dangerous competition for Intel. For Intel to let a direct competitor get another toehold into yet another aspect of their business, would be just plain stupid. Does it suck that Intel is muscling out a good chip? Yeah, it does; but to not do anything could spell disaster down the road. If ATI didn't realize that something like this would happen once they merged/were acquired/whatever by AMD, the guys on their board of directors should really have their heads examined.

RE: Well done DFI
By Hare on 9/7/2006 5:30:48 PM , Rating: 2
In fact Jobs had to beg Microsoft to keep developing Office for the Apple platform; Microsoft could care less about the Apple Office market, but Apple desperately needs Office for Apple.
Do you have ANY idea what you are talking about? Mac Office is a big source of revenue. If MS dropped the mac office it would take maybe 2 seconds before people would switch to an open source alternative (and Apple would fill the void with their own apps. You see there are pages and keynote so the only thing missing is a spreadsheet). MS doesn't want to see this switch because it would also affect the PC sales as open source gets a stronger foot hold. Slightly offtopic, but I just had to reply...

RE: Well done DFI
By vanka on 9/7/2006 8:19:47 PM , Rating: 2
I have a good idea of what I'm talking about. Office is a very profitable product for Microsoft (be it the Mac or Windows version) making about an 80% profit on every copy sold. So Office Mac does generate a good size revenue stream; but compared to how much MS makes from Office Windows and their other divisions, Office Mac's revenue is not that big. In the future, a case could probably be made that the cost associated with developing and maintaining two versions of Office does not justify the profits that are generated. This is especially true now that there is cheaper or free (true, with less functionality) competition in iWork, OpenOffice, etc.

When you stop and think about it, iWork and OpenOffice are sufficient for most home and business users. Ok, iWork doesn't have a spreadsheet but I'm sure Apple's working on one. So who absolutely needs Office Mac? The professionals who convinced their boss to spring for a Mac but need 100% Office Windows compatibility, or such professionals who bring their work home. Since MS makes a Mac version of Office, no problem. Were Office Mac not available, Apple would lose out on those sales. Apple realizes this and when their pact with Microsoft expired about a year or so ago (this was basically a commitment by MS to develope Office and Internet Explorer for Macs) Apple was scared that MS wouldn't renew that pact. But to Apple's great relief, MS committed themselves to at least five more years of Office Mac. I, personally, see a shrinking market for Office Mac, even if Apple's marketshare grows, because of the other alternatives available. Just imagine buying a Mac online and being offered Office Mac for $300-400 while iWork is $80; or buying a Mac at *shrudder* CompUSA and later finding out from a friend that you can download a free office suite. Which would you choose? So I see it as very likely that MS will abandon the Mac; not anytime soon but eventually.

RE: Well done DFI
By Hare on 9/8/2006 6:34:38 AM , Rating: 2
Mac is no different than your windows PC so your argument works both ways. Both operating systems have open source application suites that can replace office. Mac office is not as big a business as windows office but clearly Mac office is very profitable.

MS also realizes that open source is a huge threat to their business model. That's exactly why they are trying to innovate like mad. The new interface is purely because of the competition from the OS apps. MS now tries to integrate their office more tightly to other applications and services (group/teamware). They are hard at work trying to give their customers more reasons to buy another office version. This is true for both versions, Mac and PC. I don't see either disappearing too soon unless Apple releases their own business orientated 100% compatible office-suite, which is unlikely to happen anytime soon. My 2 cents...

By epsilonparadox on 9/5/2006 11:30:45 AM , Rating: 3
Thats so stupid on Intel's part. They finally have a enthusiast class processor and they're limiting the choices for their motherboards.

RE: Stupid
By Trisped on 9/5/2006 3:54:01 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe, but they are looking at the long term, they have THE enthusiast processor until AMD comes out with their 65nm processor. Since they already control almost all of the Intel chipset market, and NVIDIA controls the rest, they wouldn't be losing anything by stopping AMD (as they view ATI as AMD) from infiltrating their market. Intel doesn't like to play ball with people its size, it likes to play with people it knows it can beat.

RE: Stupid
By JackPack on 9/7/2006 3:37:25 AM , Rating: 2
Intel's plan is already working and ATI taking the hit.

"The anticipated revenue shortfall is due primarily to lower sales volumes of integrated chipsets for Intel-based platforms."

"While we anticipated a decline in future Intel-based chipset business following the announcement of the acquisition agreement with AMD, the decrease occurred much sooner than we expected," said Dave Orton, CEO of ATI Technologies Inc."

By Trisped on 9/5/2006 3:58:11 PM , Rating: 2
Intel is set to win this, which will be very bad for ATI fans and the enthusiast Intel market. Since we, the consumer are the real rulers of the capitalistic society, if we demand the RD600 boards manufactures then they will make them, despite the pressure from Intel.

By Bull Dog on 9/5/2006 11:25:20 PM , Rating: 2
If I decide to go Intel, I'll buy the RD600 and only the RD600 chipset

Oh yeah, Intel has THE enthusiasts chip.
By Thraxz on 9/7/2006 4:46:46 AM , Rating: 2
I'd consider myself and enthusiast and an enthusiast with no brand loyalty whatsoever. To establish credentials, my currect "big rig" is a water cooled 939 opteron 165 OC'ed to 3.0ghz. I digress.

Suffice it to say conroe is a badass processor. Yet, I've built THREE computers since Conroe's launch and because of intel's business strongarming all three have been AMD chips. Why? Because I object to paying as much for my mobo as I do for my CPU. Money wise, AMD X-2s still make so much more sense.

I applaud my favorite MoBo maker DFI for telling the loudmouthed idiot (intel) to shut up and build exactly what they want... a best in class performance MoBo.

By marscay on 9/25/2006 4:04:42 PM , Rating: 2
so instead of paying a few more dollars for an INTEL machine that hands any current amd rig a complete thrashing you keep building underperforming AMD rigs.

it's not like the INTEL boards are twice the price of good enthausiast class AMD boards, maybe 30% more on average for a good 975 board.....boards with 965 chipsets are hardly expensive and in fact the same price or cheaper than high-end AMD boards.

you say money wise AMD makes more sense .....cost v performance you're getting raped!

btw DFI have never built a decent INTEL board, whose to say they will break the duck with this?

By gramboh on 9/5/2006 3:58:04 PM , Rating: 2
Seems like poor planning, although from Intel's perspective it makes sense. The numbers probably aren't public (are they?) but I'm sure Intel chipsets are the lions share of Intel CPU based systems and so they aren't motivated to encourage outside support and lose chipset sales.

Personally I want to build a C2D system but am somewhat unimpressed with P965/975X (975X pricing is retarded) and was eyeing NV 570/590 but with 350MHz FSB no way, going to wait it out until Christmas and see. Probably end up with a P5B P965 if nothing changes.

By Doormat on 9/5/2006 4:19:02 PM , Rating: 2
I'm surprised they're trying to kill off any other chipsets that'll work with the Conroe. Even with the whole AMD+ATI thing going on, go look online now for 975X boards. I'm looking at Asus' and I cant find it instock at any reputable place. Likewise, the 965 boards are having crappy IDE performance due to the fact that ICH8 doesnt have any PATA channels and they had to use an extra chip.

Intel's really been screwing up on chipsets lately. The 965G just got delayed too.

Better FSB and more stability
By FXi on 9/6/2006 10:36:01 PM , Rating: 2
There are huge threads on the 590 chipset and the serious dissappointment it represents. The FSB clocking his awful, even the great top end mobo makers couldn't tweak it for much more than 350 FSB. Worse, and I've been hearing this from a lot of OEM testers, overclock it even a small bit and the stability is seriously bad. Early testers have blown hardrives right and left, on simple BSOD's and just about no one thinks the option of SLI is worth dealing with these problems.

Nvidia needs a far better clocking FSB-wise, and they need to deeply and significantly address stability and data safety at the same time. The 965 and the 975 overclock with ease. They recover from a bad clock 99.9% of the time without damage to the system itself. This is the arena that Nvidia has to compete in to succeed. They have to offer SLI AND do all the 975 and 965 can as well. And as long as they fail to do this correctly, they'll lose. People want SLI (and heck it SHOULD BE MADE TO WORK ON THE 975 BECAUSE IT WILL SELL MORE GPU'S DUH NVIDIA). But people want to clock well and without having to reconstruct their system (even image recoveries take time) or reinstall the OS.

This is a market you helped to flourish Nvidia. It's time you made a much bigger step up to the plate.

“We do believe we have a moral responsibility to keep porn off the iPhone.” -- Steve Jobs
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