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Intel X38 High End Chipset Launch and Benchmarks

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the new-flagship dept.

Intel 87

MojoKid writes "Though many leaks of the product have been circulating for some time, Intel officially took the wraps off and launched their new X38 Express chipset for the high-end desktop motherboard market. With this launch, the Intel desktop chipset line-up gets a new flagship. Intel's new X38 chipset encompasses all of the technology advances that have made the P35 a success and adds a slew of new features designed to increase memory and graphics subsystem performance, like PCI Express 2.0 SerDes and Intel Extreme Memory technology in the new X38 MCH. The Asus motherboard tested by HotHardware even features an embedded Linux-based OS that boots in a matter a seconds."

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87 comments

I thought high end meant Xeon? (0)

tjstork (137384) | more than 6 years ago | (#20967647)

The article description says "High end", but the link describes a single processor configuration. Am I missing something?

Re:I thought high end meant Xeon? (2, Informative)

phantomcircuit (938963) | more than 6 years ago | (#20967671)

It's a high end Desktop chip, Xeon are server chips.

Re:I thought high end meant Xeon? (4, Informative)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968045)

No. Xeon is the name of the processor chip used in both high-end desktops and servers. X38, FTFS, is a chipset.

Re:I thought high end meant Xeon? (4, Interesting)

tjstork (137384) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968105)

It's a high end Desktop chip, Xeon are server chips.

You can have a Xeon desktop. Hell, I have a dual Opteron desktop. It would be called a "workstation".

Re:I thought high end meant Xeon? (1)

phantomcircuit (938963) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968125)

Sure you can, but that's not what the chips are marketed as.

Re:I thought high end meant Xeon? (2, Informative)

D4MO (78537) | more than 6 years ago | (#20969015)

Dell precision workstations

Re:I thought high end meant Xeon? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20969415)

Dell precision workstations

Dell Vostro Desktops

Re:I thought high end meant Xeon? (2, Informative)

dreamchaser (49529) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970151)

Gee...I guess that's why Intel's own page for the Xeon has big bold letters that say Server and Workstation Processors. [intel.com]

Intel has always marketed the Xeon as a high end CPU for server and workstation applications. If you're going to try to be pedantic, at least be accurate about it.

Re:I thought high end meant Xeon? (3, Funny)

caffeinemessiah (918089) | more than 6 years ago | (#20967845)

3 words: Quad core Xeon. We run a reasonably big single-CPU quad core server and although its got dual CPU sockets, the thing doubles as a reasonably good space heater.

ok, but will it run... (3, Funny)

crowbarsarefornerdyg (1021537) | more than 6 years ago | (#20967683)

Windows AfterVista®?

Re:ok, but will it run... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20967745)

Yes, but not as an embedded OS.

Windows grows faster than the cost of flash drops/density increases so it will never fit into flash memory.

Yes (1, Funny)

Xiph (723935) | more than 6 years ago | (#20967759)

It'll run xwindows quite nicely

After having tried Vista at work, the partition, i had set up for my third os, soon became infected with ubuntu.
Not all infections are bad :)

Re:Yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20967815)

The second is Minix, I love it to death =) but unfortunately it's not that useful yet...

Re:Yes, Yes, Yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20967859)

Mine is infected with Red Hat.

Vista bytes.

Apple next? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20967753)

This may mean we'll soon see a Mac hardware announcement from Apple that uses X38.

Re:Apple next? (3, Interesting)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 6 years ago | (#20967777)

we more likely to see a g33 / g35 system from apple to replace the mini with on board video and x16 and x4 pci-e slots.

And apple will making a dumb move by going with over priced DDR3 that is not much faster then much cheaper DDR2 ram.

Re:Apple next? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20968255)

And apple will making a dumb move by going with over priced DDR3 that is not much faster then much cheaper DDR2 ram.

You mean, dumber than FB-DIMMS and no decent graphics card choices? Hasn't stopped them yet.

Dreaming... (1)

argent (18001) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970545)

we more likely to see a g33 / g35 system from apple to replace the mini with on board video and x16 and x4 pci-e slots.

I think you're dreaming. Apple wants people to use minis for home entertainment centers, not to use them for anything that requires oomph. I'd love them to do something like that as well, but once bitten...

Re:Apple next? (2, Interesting)

p0tat03 (985078) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970643)

The same Apple that has stuck with DD2-667 even on their high-end workstations, despite there being faster DDR2 clocks? Apple doesn't look like they're the type to cash in on the newest buzzword-tech, which is sometimes good, and sometimes bad (I do wish the Mac Pros would ship with something a tad faster than DDR2-667...)

Re:Apple next? (1)

teg (97890) | more than 6 years ago | (#20972785)

The same Apple that has stuck with DD2-667 even on their high-end workstations, despite there being faster DDR2 clocks? Apple doesn't look like they're the type to cash in on the newest buzzword-tech, which is sometimes good, and sometimes bad (I do wish the Mac Pros would ship with something a tad faster than DDR2-667...)

Mac Pros use FBD, not DDR2.

Re:Apple next? (1)

MojoStan (776183) | more than 6 years ago | (#20971467)

This may mean we'll soon see a Mac hardware announcement from Apple that uses X38.
We may be dreamin' (as another comment in this thread said), but I think this would be a great chipset for the mythical "xMac" or "Mac XL" for all those desktop buyers who don't want an underpowered SFF (Mac mini), an all-in-one with few options (iMac), or an overpowered dual-processor workstation (Mac Pro).

The X38 chipset offers Apple a choice of implementing four DDR2 or DDR3 slots, which are both better options than the iMac's two SO-DIMM slots or the Mac Pro's FB-DIMM slots. The CPU socket will accept a large variety good-performing desktop CPUs (not the iMac's notebook CPUs or the Mac Pro's server/workstation Xeons) from the Pentium Dual-Core E2140 (which offers great performance for $75) up through the upcoming (by MacWorld) 45nm quad-core "Extreme" CPUs. Other chipset features like PCI Express 2.0, RAID, and eSATA would help justify the price premium over the iMac.

The only drawback I can think of is the probable large case size if the X38 chipset is used. "Performance" chipsets typically are used on large motherboards like ATX. I'd settle for a microATX-sized G35-based xMac. That would still be a heck of a lot better than an iMac, which uses a notebook chipset and offers few options.

Icarus (1)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 6 years ago | (#20967801)

And someone will buy this, then load Windows Vista on it, where all its uber spiffy performance will be limited by a broken USB driver, or the fact that their DSL link is only 768kbps, or they chintzed out and bought a 5400 rpm drive.

Re:Icarus (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20967931)

[where all its uber spiffy performance will be limited by a broken USB driver]

You could have aslo added: non-accelerated video driver, no wireless,lousy UI, and lack of any useful office applications.

Oh wait, that's Linux.

 

Re:Icarus (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20968143)

lack of any useful office applications.
If you need to touch Word/Excel/PowerPoint more often than once a month, your job sucks.

Re:Icarus (1)

TheStonepedo (885845) | more than 6 years ago | (#20976193)

I used Excel with some frequency doing laboratory research. That job didn't suck at all, and Excel is much easier to use the OOo Calc or Gnumeric.

I love the smell... (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20968563)

...of Windows fanboys burning in the morning.

At what point did you realise you'd wasted your trustfund? Was it during the MCSE course, or after, when you discovered the only jobs you could get paid Rupees?

Re:I love the smell... (0, Flamebait)

Bill Dog (726542) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968663)

I love the sound of Linux fanboys pretending that they have counterparts on their opposing side to validate them, who are burning in the morning.

Re:I love the smell... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20968811)

We're not Linux "fanboys". We're Linux "zealots". Is getting that right really so difficult?

Re:I love the smell... (0, Flamebait)

Bill Dog (726542) | more than 6 years ago | (#20969657)

Well, while my assertion still stands that Linux freaks need to make believe that there exist equal but opposite freaks that they need to be around to counter, you're right in that the qualities of the Linux mass hysteria go far beyond mere fanboyism and are squarely in the camp of religious zealotry. To the point that y'all are the "Fundies" of OS's, and RMS is Jerry Falwell, GNU being his Moral Majority.

Re:I love the smell... (1)

ameoba (173803) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970023)

Unix and F/OSS can, understandably have zealous supporters - the various incarnations of the Unix and Free Software social & design philosophies have some weight to them. You can't really say the same about Windows and Microsoft - it's really hard to get emotionally involved with a megacorporation making megabucks selling a mediocre mainstream OS (unless you're a shareholder).

no emotional involvement? (1)

Joseph_Daniel_Zukige (807773) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970843)

Then how do you explain the above exchange between fanboys (burning at what time of day, who knows, and burning what, who knows, except that it's probably silicon-based instead of carbon)?

Re:no emotional involvement? (1)

ameoba (173803) | more than 6 years ago | (#20971035)

Orbital mind-control lasers.

Beta tester first post! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20967855)

I'm using one right now! That's how I got first post!

Re:Beta tester first post! (1)

Stormwatch (703920) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970163)

I'm using one right now! That's how I got first post!

Still not fast enough. You better overclock it.

fucking faggots (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20967857)

big dumb bitches.

DDR3 ECC supported! (3, Informative)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 6 years ago | (#20967861)

It's about damn time. I've looked all over the net to find an official answer. Not even Intel's webpage mentions anything about the X38 supporting ECC. So, I downloaded the manual for the Asus P5E3 Deluxe board. From page 2-13 of the PDF document.

You may install 512, 1GB, and 2GB unbuffered ECC, non-ECC DDR3 DIMMs into the DIMM sockets.


To Intel and vendors: How bloody hard is to include "supports ECC" in your online product summary?

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (1)

flyingfsck (986395) | more than 6 years ago | (#20967981)

Well, most people run Windows and attributes any crash to Microsoft, not memory errors.

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20967983)

It may support ECC DIMMs, but that doesn't necessarily mean it'll use the ECC feature of those DIMMs.

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (3, Interesting)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968093)

Mod parent up, informative! My cheapass motherboard supports ECC DIMMs, but does not make use of the ECC features. There's no way to know whether it'll use the ECC feature unless you either A) try it and see (hard to do), or B) Intel tells you it does (in which case you have to accept their word for it.)

It seems to me that a high-end motherboard chipset should support ECC features, but that doesn't mean that it does.

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968417)

I would imagine that Intel's memory controllers do support ECC. I don't know if it compares, but the Alpha version of Linux put out console warnings. I know that the workstation and server chipsets do, I've seen screen shots of Mac's System Profiler on the Mac Pro do show a count of ECC errors if they use FB-DIMMs with inadequate heat sinks.

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20968715)

Intel's "premium desktop" chipsets and server chipsets do, while their consumer variants don't. Segmenting the market *just because they can*. The Intel product page specifically mentions ECC on DDR2, but doesn't say anything about DDR3... Also, you need to make sure the BIOS supports it as well.

For example, nearly all of AMD's processors support ECC, but finding a motherboard which actually has the BIOS option enabled is a real hassle.

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20969183)

At least such motherboards exist though. For this reason alone, I will not even consider Intel chips anymore. It is a real shame that they insist on crippling their otherwise excellent products these days.

For those who are looking for ECC boards, try Tyan or the various "workstation" boards from Asus/Gigabyte/etc. They are a bit more expensive, but nowhere near the cost of a dual socket Intel server board with FB-DIMM memory. Also, as the parent states, just about every AMD chip supports ECC, so you need not spend obscene amounts on Xeons.

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (2, Informative)

Agripa (139780) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968987)

Intel's chipset comparison page and datasheet are somewhat informative. Apparently, the X38 chipset supports ECC when using DDR2 but not when using DDR3.

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (3, Informative)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970727)

You sir, would be correct. I found the documentation on Intel's website. Found in 31846901.pdf section 3.3 titled ECC Support.

For DDR3 the X38 Express Chipset does NOT support ECC, does not support ECC unbuffered
DIMMs, and it does not support any memory configuration that mixes non-
ECC with ECC un-buffered DIMMs.

For DDR2 the X38 Express Chipset does support ECC and ECC un-buffered DIMMs but
it does NOT support any memory configuration that mixes non-ECC with ECC unbuffered
DIMMs.


Damn, that blows. And shame on Asus for false documentation!

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (1)

Agripa (139780) | more than 6 years ago | (#20977623)

I examined Intel's documentation and did not find any specific reason for the lack of DDR3 ECC support. The memory controller uses the same burst length for both memory types and the 64,72 hamming code should work in either single or dual channel mode. None of the immediately preceding chipsets support ECC at all.

Maybe the cause is cost or marketing?

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 6 years ago | (#20977923)

Perhaps DDR3 ECC is not supported because the memory controller (North Bridge) can't up with the increase in calculation overhead that is necessary. I wouldn't think that would be the issue if all ECC calculations are a synchronous event with memory read/write operations.

Just a guess.

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (1)

Agripa (139780) | more than 6 years ago | (#20978333)

That occurred to me but DDR2-800 supports ECC while DDR3-800 does not. DDR3 ECC is widely available so I also doubt it was for lack of modules to test.

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (1)

Agripa (139780) | more than 6 years ago | (#20978379)

Nix the DDR3 ECC comment. Crucual's dynamically updated page leave something to be desired. DDR3 ECC would seem to be rather rare so perhapse Intel was not in a position to test with it.

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (1)

DaveWick79 (939388) | more than 6 years ago | (#20969221)

Intel allows the motherboard manufacturer to determine memory support. They created the chipset to handle DDR2 or DDR3 in whatever configuration the motherboard manufacturer desires. It is my understanding that on Intel's X38 desktop board configuration, they are supporting non-ECC DDR3 only.

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (1)

urbanriot (924981) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970323)

It's not hard at all; Intel fully lists all supported memory on their motherboard support pages. When Intel releases the X38 chipset motherboard, they will list exactly what RAM their motherboard supports. It's up to the motherboard manufacturer to list what RAM a board supports, not the maker of the chipset.

To Intel and vendors: How bloody hard is to include "supports ECC" in your online product summary?

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (1)

RMingin (985478) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970829)

Actually, you're still without an answer, because the mobo maker said ECC ram works, not that the ECC checking is done.

Them Taiwanese mobo guys are shiftier than a bad transmission, never ASSUME they mean anything.

Re:DDR3 ECC supported! (1)

tokul (682258) | more than 6 years ago | (#20972609)

To Intel and vendors: How bloody hard is to include "supports ECC" in your online product summary?
You looked at the wrong page. Check links under "Server Boards" and "Server and workstation chipsets". Intel supports ECC and Windows Server drivers only on pricey server broads and chipsets.

Cliffs' Notes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20967899)

Despite fancier parts, this crop of X38 motherboards don't perform appreciably better than the P35 boards they replace.

Cool (1, Insightful)

Xogede (1064902) | more than 6 years ago | (#20967903)

Now, imagine a be...

boots in a matter of seconds (1, Insightful)

plisskin (979687) | more than 6 years ago | (#20967961)

My computer boots in a matter of seconds also. It just so happens that it is in a matter of 120 seconds.

Re:boots in a matter of seconds (1)

jo42 (227475) | more than 6 years ago | (#20971265)

Eh, you must be running that Vista POS Thing...

Intel and Linux (4, Informative)

Simon (S2) (600188) | more than 6 years ago | (#20967985)

I just love Intels commitment to linux lately. They release open source drivers for their chipsets, and now an integrated linux os on the firmware of this mobo. The last notebook I had was all Intel chips (IPW2200 for wireless, GM945 graphics) and just everything worked out of the box without proprietary drivers. Really, thanks Intel, I am a happy customer.

Re:Intel and Linux (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20968763)

As a stereotypical Slashkiddie, I don't know whether to suck your ass for speaking good of Linux, or rip you a new one for speaking good of AMD's arch-rival. Oh Slashdot Hive-mind, oh Mighty Enforcer of Correct Thinking, please show me the One True Way on this!

Misjudgement (1)

Almahtar (991773) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970667)

I think you may be missing the common thread between the trend of liking Linux and liking AMD on Slashdot. Now it could be, as you seem to connote, that we're just biased and playing favorites. I think it's probably more that we realize that competition is healthy for the consumer, so when the game is lop-sided we vote for the underdog. It's simple understanding of capitalism, and the only way to keep people honest.

Re:Intel and Linux (4, Informative)

Justus (18814) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968773)

Although Intel's Linux driver support is pretty good on the whole, the integrated OS is a feature of the ASUS motherboard and isn't a product of Intel's good will toward Linux.

There was a previous Slashdot feature specifically covering that [slashdot.org] , if you want more information.

Re:Intel and Linux (1)

niko9 (315647) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970205)

Mod parent up.

Intel maybe be driver friendly when it comes to video and wireless devices, but they are sorely lacking in the LinuxBIOS dept or any other open BIOS for that matter. Most of the motherboards supported by LinuxBIOS are on AMD or NVIDIA chip sets. Intel is still trying to push EFI, which Linus, on the LKML, called: "this other Intel brain-damage (the first one being ACPI)".

Re:Intel and Linux (1)

doctormetal (62102) | more than 6 years ago | (#20973009)

Why should supporting an alternative bios have any priority for intel?
It is far more important to have decent drivers to be able to use the hardware under a specific OS.
For 99 percent of the users there will be absolutely no need to look at an alternative bios for their system. The bios supplied by the manufacurer is all they need.
I am one of those people. I want my hardware to work and I see no reason to replace my bios with an open source version. The one Asus supplied does its job.

Arguments like 'but it is not open' only matter to a handful of people. The rest actually don't care about that.
Using something like linuxbios can be useful to create a thin client or terminal. This is also something only a small amount of people do.

Re:Intel and Linux (1)

Almahtar (991773) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970649)

I wonder if that isn't one of the major factors in AMD's recent decision to open up their GPU specs.

Please, Intel and AMD, get into a war of openness one-upmanship. Everyone benefits.

Cool, but... (4, Funny)

niteice (793961) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968095)

does it run...oh

SLI? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20968113)

There were rumors that this chipset was maybe going to do SLI seeing as it's got the 2 16x slots.. But the article only lists support for Crossfire, and I'm guessing the manuals also say the same.

Too bad, I was hoping Nvidia would go for it.

nVidia sucks on non-graphics chips. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20968283)

You mean the nVidia that's actively blocking SLI in their drivers for non-nVidia platforms? Why would they suddenly change their minds? Heck, they haven't even opened up for the ULi "SLI" board that I own, even though they now own ULi whole sale.

Direct PCI 2 PCI link (1)

Ep0xi (1093943) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968259)

Motherboards are in time to put a PCI to PCI direct link, ready to hang as many processors and computers as you have. Maybe it could probably be a Direct PCIE 2 Way Hardware layer Link, i dunno. If someone wants to develop this technology as SOHO working with me, please let me know. We could make Clusters of DHLL (Direct Hardware Layer Link). Thanks for making technology, cheap, usable, portable, recyclable, and the most important. TOUGH TECHNOLOGY.
Cooperate with me to make 1 Gig of DDR2 memory to cost FIVE DOLLARS.
Cheap memory, is what i want.

Express Gate appz (2, Interesting)

Kensai7 (1005287) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968279)

If you launch the Express Gate applications, which are comprised of a web browser and Skype at this time, the embedded Linux-based OS is launched from a ROM and seconds later it's available for use. We found the Express Gate technology easy to use and quite handy. Say, for example, you need to download a driver or BIOS file and the hard drive-based OS isn't functioning properly. With Express Gate you can now access the web and integrated peripherals even if the system's full blown OS has a problem.

This might me be quite handy when the shit hits the fan. I hope more manufacturers implement mini-OSes like this one.

Re:Express Gate appz (1)

DaveWick79 (939388) | more than 6 years ago | (#20969245)

Intel has its own similar implentation and they've had it for a year now - it's called vPro. And you can do it remotely. However it's implemented, it's a great feature and I agree that every manufacturer should be building this into their boards.

Re:Express Gate appz (1)

Ant P. (974313) | more than 6 years ago | (#20969597)

I wouldn't call that a "mini-OS" - they've got a full install of Firefox on there.

Benchmark result: (2, Informative)

imsabbel (611519) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968315)

Same performance as any other board (inside the margin of error).
Seriously, why even bother benchmarking?
You buy those boards for compatibilty, or for their features, but not because they are _faster_....
(extreme overclockers excluded. Some board may be better suited for FSB overclocking).

Re:Benchmark result: (1)

weirdcrashingnoises (1151951) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968373)

and considering this being marketed as a high-end mobo...

extreme overclockers excluded. Some board may be better suited for FSB overclocking

thats exactly who this product is primarily being marketed for. tho it remains a fairly valid question, why bother with benchmarks, unless of course the benchmarks are actually to see how far the mobo can overclock.

Open Solaris (1)

bhima (46039) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968335)

Has anyone tried Open Solaris with a board with an X38 chipset?

I'm looking for a board that supports at least a 6 SATA drive RAID.

Intel's X48 to Come in Just Another 5 Weeks !! (2, Informative)

Zymergy (803632) | more than 6 years ago | (#20968655)

http://news.softpedia.com/news/Intel-039-s-X48-to-Come-in-Just-Another-5-Weeks-67604.shtml [softpedia.com]
http://www.dvhardware.net/article22289.html [dvhardware.net]
It appears the X48 chipset is actually the X38 chipset without the ECC support and for DDR3 Only? Great, just when we weren't confused!

Here's another X38 review: http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/intel/showdoc.aspx?i=3120 [anandtech.com]
A chipset comparison graphic: http://images.anandtech.com/reviews/chipsets/intel/x38-launch/memory-lg.png [anandtech.com]
And another review: http://www.tomshardware.com/2007/09/26/intel_x38_chipset/ [tomshardware.com]

A Gamer's Dream? (4, Insightful)

abirdman (557790) | more than 6 years ago | (#20969177)

Observations from reading the article:
  1. The two MB's they reviewed are going to be incredibly expensive (over $300) when they hit the streets,
  2. the only one that survived overclocking the already insanely fast CPU (the other one died and could not be revived), takes ridiculously expensive DDR3 memory, and
  3. when run at their max (optimal, i.e. stock) settings showed no difference in performance from their "hopelessly outdated" predecessors, the P35 chipset boards.
  4. Only one game benchmark (F.E.A.R.) showed any measurable difference at all from one to the other.
  5. All the video and audio encoding benchmark results were identical, which only proves those tasks are processor bound (all the test systems used the same CPU-- only the chipsets and/or memory differed).

I find it odd the reviewers even recommended the board (the survivor-- they were skeptical of the dead one). I don't understand the attraction of a board/chipset like this! It's going to take another generation of hardware to take advantage of the 32 simultaneous 32 bit video data "lanes" on each PCI-E (or X or whatever) slot. And eventually, maybe DDR3 will drop in price when there's some demand for it. And all the I/O (8 USB 2.0 ports and external SATA ports and optical and coax digital AV) seem like they could come in handy. But seriously, why are they making these now? Is it for the quad-core support? Do other chipsets support quad-core Intels? Or is it because they allow plugging in not one but two $500+ dollar video cards?

I look forward to lots of serious gamers buying these, devising new benchmarks to prove their efficacy, and bringing down the cost for this point of entry into the market for the rest of us. But gamers! Read the review and benchmarks. This chipset does not, at least based on this review, demonstrate a big leap forward.

Re:A Gamer's Dream? (1)

Ant P. (974313) | more than 6 years ago | (#20969737)

That's because this isn't aimed at gamers. It's aimed at rich idiots, who will pay to beta test new hardware.

Re:A Gamer's Dream? (1)

0111 1110 (518466) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970355)

Actually the key selling points of X-38 for an overclocker seem to be PCIe 2.0 and a heatspreader on the northbridge chip. PCIe 2.0 has twice the data transfer rate of PCIe 1.1. It's sort of like buying a motherboard with AGP8X versus AGP4X. It remains to be seen what difference, if any, it makes in game benchmarks. The heatspreader may be an advantage for cooling the northbridge which may allow for higher FSB clocks eventually, but all of this is still speculative. And these boards are awfully expensive.

Re:A Gamer's Dream? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20973765)

It's going to take another generation of hardware to take advantage of the 32 simultaneous 32 bit video data "lanes" on each PCI-E (or X or whatever) slot.

Actually the "double performance" of PCIe 2.0 over PCIe 1.0 isn't the amount of lanes but the speed per lane: 5 Gbps over 2.5 Gbps. (Avoiding "GHz" figures because I'm unsure of what kind of DDR or QDR they use to get the speed.) They are 1-bit lanes, thus the 16-lane PCIe x16 is really a 16-bit "parallel serial" port connection; a very fast one. "Parallel serial" because each lane works independently, delivering and assembling its own serial packets, before the controller joins them into larger parallel lines.

However, this time Intel provided for two PCIe x16 graphics slots, so when PCIe 2.0 cards arrive, X38 offers (potentially) four times more graphics system bandwidth than P35.

And those idiot HotHardware editors left all this completely untested. What was the frigging idea of running CPU-only tests, on those nearly identical CPU clocks? No shit Sherlock you get nearly identical results! I would have *loved* to see game tests on top-dog SLI gear, tested at maximal (texture) resolutions, to really find out if system bandwidth for graphics ("doubhle PCIe 2.0 x16 OMG" and all that) matters anything at all in games.

This was a great chance to test marketing claims and assumptions, and they botched it.

Wake me up when ... (1)

Skapare (16644) | more than 6 years ago | (#20969937)

... it supports ECC DDR3 at 1333 and TWO Xeon quad core processors all in an ATX form factor.

Performance (0, Troll)

king-manic (409855) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970057)

Intel are noobs, everyone knows the new X38 are 48 less powerful then the x86.

Re:Performance (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20981079)

I bet you should have been funny, ecxcept that you were probably hit by a moderator from Intel. These guys don't know what funny is though, too bad for you.

anybody know if it will run ESX 3.02 VI (1)

MrDERP (1004577) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970875)

What would be even cooler, IMO if it was embedded with VMWARE Virtual Infrastructure. Still, anybody know if this chipset will support ESX VI? (weould use (iSCSI SAN) Been looking to get some 'high end" equiptment that will run many VM's at once. Preferably building it. Yeah sorta of topic ... so atleast I am assuming that current Linux kernel supports this? or is the "embedded linux" highly modified? Either way , kewlness if I can get it for under $4000 with 4 GB DDR3 SAS RAID etc. Also RAID (real raid not software/cheap) would be awesome, couldn't find that info ..... Maybe I should stick to Xeon/opteron for now. --derp

Full Version Article Is Here (1)

MojoKid (1002251) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970953)

Not sure why the slashdot editor stripped out the links to the full version of the article but none of the full sized images don't work in it when you click the thumbnails.

Please mod this up for all.
Here is the full version article: http://www.hothardware.com/Articles/Intel_X38_Express_Chipset_Debuts/ [hothardware.com]

Re:Full Version Article Is Here (1)

MojoKid (1002251) | more than 6 years ago | (#20970967)

hehe... sorry 'bout the typo.

It's a LINUX conspiracy, wake up!!!! (1)

gravy.jones (969410) | more than 6 years ago | (#20972079)

You all are missing the mark. Intel is not flooding the market with new products because it wants to have the fastest hardware. They are flooding the market with new hardware because the open source developers of drivers will not have chance in hell to keep up. But since they are catering to MS and Apple, those two will be on the know and will be able to dominate their respective brackets with hardware support. Of course MS will have the PC that everyone knows and loves to hate but more importantly, as it was pointed out by Rob Malda, Apple has given the LINUX world an uppercut with it's O/S and will now become the defacto NIX platform because it will support Intel

Dissapointed (1)

Espectr0 (577637) | more than 6 years ago | (#20978485)

I have been dissapointed with Intel's two last motherboard releases. The P35 isn't any better than the P965 it is supposed to replace (check the article at techreport.com). They also have an article on the X38, and seems that the only difference is DDR3 (which at this time, it's SLOWER than DDR2 because of the high latency timings, despite the increased bandwidth, and of course, DD3 is double the price of DDR2 right now)

So, if you are building a new system, get a cheap full featured P965 for just 100$.

Intel just made the P965 too good.
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