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ASUS L1N64-SLI WS to be the first 4x4 motherboard

DailyTech has obtained a couple of images of an upcoming motherboard for AMD’s 4x4 enthusiast platform. The motherboard is an ASUS  L1N64-SLI WS powered by two NVIDIA nForce 680a MCPs. Two socket-1207 processors are supported with four memory slots—two slots per processor. With two nForce 680a MCPs the ASUS L1N64-SLI WS features 12 SATA 3.0 Gbps ports and one PATA for storage connectivity. There’s also an additional e.SATA port on the back I/O as well.

As far as PCI Exress goes the L1N64-SLI WS features a grand total of four PCI Express x16 slots for plenty of SLI and SLI physics processing power. Due to space limitations the L1N64-SLI WS only has one PCI and PCIe x1 slots.

Networking features of the ASUS L1N64-SLI WS include dual Gigabit Ethernet ports. The onboard Gigabit Ethernet features NVIDIA’s FirstPacket, DualNet, Teaming and TCP/IP offload technologies. Audio is powered by a high definition audio codec with optical and coaxial S/PDIF outputs. It is unknown which codec ASUS has equipped the L1N64-SLI WS with, though it could be Analog Devices or Realtek. The board is not legacy free and still has PS/2 and parallel ports.

Due to the complex design of AMD’s 4x4 platform, the ASUS L1N64-SLI WS uses an eATX form factor which will not fit in smaller cases. Since dual processors require a little extra power, ASUS has equipped the L1N64-SLI WS with an 8-pin EPS12v and Molex power connectors.

U.S. distributors claim the ASUS L1N64-SLI WS will have an MSRP of $480 without bundles, but the street price will probably be much less.

Expect AMD’s 4x4 enthusiast platform to arrive later this month with three Athlon FX processors—FX-70, FX-72 and FX-74. It is unknown if the ASUS L1N64-SLI WS will be compatible upcoming AMD Stars processors.

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RE: If you're going to do this...
By VooDooAddict on 11/20/2006 6:16:39 PM , Rating: 1
The problem with the Xeon route is that afordable motherboards aren't there for gaming. Many can't handle a single PCIe x16 ... let alone 2 (or 4?!)

FB-DIMM does command a premium, too. Though the motherboard premiums for something that can truely support x16 seem to be the killer.

Otherwise I agree ... two quad core Xeons are a very tempting option for a gaming/workstation system. Even at 1.6 or 1.8 Ghz it's still a pretty fast chip in gaming. (Considering you can get two of those chips for the cost of one Core 2 Quad Extreme.)

RE: If you're going to do this...
By Thorburn on 11/20/2006 7:04:26 PM , Rating: 2
If the rumours of an NVIDIA nForce 680i based Xeon chipset are correct then things could certainly get interesting though.
The Xeon really needs something like that as standard DDR2 and 16x PCI-Express would really benefit it in the workstation (and maybe even enthusiast) market.

RE: If you're going to do this...
By Fenixgoon on 11/20/2006 7:33:52 PM , Rating: 4
FB DIMMS are also horridly inefficient. if im not mistaken, some good DDR2 > FB DIMM RAM. FB DIMM has greater theoretical power, but in practice (as per Anandtech's review of the Mac Pro), it's simply not 100% useable.

RE: If you're going to do this...
By JeffDM on 11/21/2006 5:57:16 PM , Rating: 2
The difference is that FB-DIMM scales up better, which is why the workstation chipsets use it. You can put up to 16 of them in a workstation. I think all said, a quad (2x2) Xeon system probably ends up being comparable in cost as a quad (2x2) AMD. I don't understand why this is helping, because it looks like rebranded Opterons + Opteron boards at Opteron pricing, though with less memory capacity and more PCIe slots.

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