Intel to launch Bearlake chipsets for desktops

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Intel to launch Bearlake chipsets for desktops

Post by [MgA]ODEN » Thu Mar 15, 2007 12:47 pm

Ricky Morris, DigiTimes.com, Taipei [Thursday 15 March 2007]


Intel and its partners will kick of CeBIT 2007 with the launch of Intel's Bearlake family of chipsets for desktop PCs. The new series introduces support for DDR3 memory, front side bus speeds up to 1333MHz and are designed to support Intel's upcoming 45nm-process CPUs, the Core 2 Duo (Wolfdale) and Core 2 Quad (Yorkfield).

The main chipset on show is known as the P35 and is to be positioned as the successor to Intel's current 965 Express series for mainstream desktops, according to sources. Motherboards based on the P35 will be able to support FSB speeds up to 1333MHz (up from the 1066MHz of the 965) which will be required for several of the CPUs Intel is planning to launch in the second half of the year. The P35 also introduces support for DDR3 memory which is currently specified to run at up to 1066MHz, versus DDR2's 800MHz, and so offers greater memory bandwidth. DDR3 also operates at just 1.5V compared to DRR2's 1.8V.

Supplies of DDR3 are, however, currently low and prices relatively high, which does not match the mainstream position of the P35. For this reason Intel has also designed the P35 with optional legacy support for DDR2 which motherboard makers can choose to implement is several ways: cutting-edge boards that only support DDR3 but which increase system costs because new, expensive RAM needs to be bought; legacy boards that support DDR2, but not DDR3, allowing users to take advantage of the abundance of DDR2 now, but may be limited in the future when DDR3 becomes more common; and so-called "combo" or "hybrid" boards which support both DDR3 and DDR2, but not at the same time, meaning that consumers can save some money by using DDR2 now and upgrade to DDR3 later, but the system is limited to only two DIMMs at a time compared to the four that are available in the other implementations.

Several Taiwan-based motherboard makers will be showing P35-based boards at CeBIT. Micro-Star International (MSI) will display a total of six boards, one pure DDR3, two hybrid-boards, which will target high- and mid-range markets, two pure DDR2 boards, again for the high- and mid-range segments, and finally an mATX-board. ECS will be showing a hybrid-board which will be released as the P35T-A. Also Gigabyte United, which has recently gained a reputation for having some of the most overclockable motherboards in the 965 range will be hoping to do it again with its P35 series.

P35-based motherboards are expected to be available in April or May.

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Post by [MgA]ODEN » Fri Mar 16, 2007 1:11 pm

Today, in Part 2, the other chipsets in the Bearlake family will be covered, including a high-end version which introduces support for PCI Express 2.0 and integrated graphics processor (IGP) designs.

While the P35 can be found openly shown at booths around CeBIT, the G33 ? a chip with similar features but which adds integrated graphics ? can only be seen behind closed doors. As with the P35 the G33 supports DDR3 and/or DDR2 memory, front side bus speeds up to 1333MHz, and is designed to support Intel's upcoming Wolfdale and Yorkfield CPUs. The G33's IGP supports DirectX 9 and is scheduled to launch in the second quarter, according to sources.

Intel will expand the Bearlake family in the third quarter starting at the high-end with the X38. The successor to the current 975X Express chipset, the X38 also supports FSB speeds of 1333MHz and upcoming Wolfdale and Yorkfield CPUs, but unlike the P35 and G33 will not include legacy support for DDR2. X38-based motherboards will only support DDR3, but in the high-end market this makes sense. The X38 will also feature support for PCI Express (PCIe) 2.0 which offers double the bit-rate of current PCIe for higher bandwidth ? up to 5GT/s. X38-boards will support two x16 PCIe slots, but it is unknown whether Crossfire and/or SLI will be possible due to licensing issues.

Also in the third quarter, Intel is scheduled to release the G35, a chipset similar to the G33 but which features a DirectX 10 based IGP. Finally, two chipsets aimed at business platforms, the Q35 and Q33, and a value segment chip ? which will not sport DDR3 or the quad-core Yorkfield CPUs ? will be also be introduced under the name G31.

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Post by [MgA]Shemp » Sat Mar 17, 2007 4:35 pm

I love upgrading! :shock:

My wife... not so much :smt091

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