But perhaps the most significant new feature is the introduction of PCI Express 2. No Interruptions Day Shortbread. Merry Christmas from The Tech Report staff! Our Verdict The new weapon of choice for performance enthusiasts. That said, both boards will support memory running much faster than that.

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That strikes us as particularly petty on Nvidia’s part, and while it blunts some of the X48’s appeal, CrossFire has matured into a viable and in some cases preferable alternative to SLI.

But what about performance? It’s not currently compatible with the X38 and that’s not something we expect to change. The X38 also sports a number of enthusiast-friendly features.

IntelĀ® Chipset Software Installation Utility

What’s more, the X38 retains support for DDR2, giving both exprews makers and buyers the option to stick with more affordable DDR2 memory technology until DDR3 prices begin their final descent from the stratosphere.

However, despite working with Nvidia to bring SLI support to its Skulltrail platformIntel’s desktop chipsets remain locked out of the green team’s multi-GPU rendering scheme. So, why pay more for an Xpowered board?

Despite falling DDR3 prices, the fact that the bottom has essentially dropped out of the DDR2 memory market makes for a tough sell. Prices were too high, for one, and DDR3 hadn’t yet ramped to chipet higher clock speeds than existing DDR2 modules. The P35 only officially tangos with the cooking versions of Intel’s new 45nm Core 2 chips. Actually, the Asus is a bit of a stunner all round. On paper, that gives the X38 an advantage over the P35 which tops out at MHz.


For as long as it lasts However, depending on your motherboard, that top memory speed may only be available if you’re also running a MHz front-side bus. At the very least that makes them excellent candidates for overclocking enthusiasts.

Unfortunately, there’s still an inescapable price premium associated with DDR3. The headline feature for PCIE 2.

Support for IntelĀ® Chipset Software Installation Utility

Steam names the best-selling games of The most obvious upgrades over the X include official support for MHz bus Intel processors along with the latest 45nm Core 2 chips and DDR3 memory. In combination with Intel’s new QX quad-core monster, the Asus in particular is a bit of a stunner.

The arrival of a new Intel motherboard chipset isn’t always a cause for much rejoicing. But its new X38 performance chipset is a little different.

But whatever happens with the X48, one thing is for sure.

It even boasts an embedded Linux OS that offers a quickbooting alternative to Windows for light web browsing and even Skype telephony. Motherboard makers have some leeway when it comes to defining bus dividers, which is why you’ll find plenty of P35 Express boards capable of clocking DDR3 memory at MHz, despite the fact that the chipset only officially supports memory bus speeds up to MHz.

Finally, to bring the X38 story full circle, we should briefly mention rumours of the imminent arrival of the X48 chipset. Hardly a secret, the ICH9R shows up at the south bridge. Both feature 32 second-generation PCI Express lanes, providing substantial bandwidth to not only single graphics cards, but also CrossFire configurations.


Intel’s X48 Express chipset – The Tech Report – Page 1

Of course, the mainstream P35 already offers most of that. After all, Intel has a nasty habit of churning out new chipsets so fast the solder has hardly set on existing boards. That said, both boards will support memory running much faster than that. Based on our own experiences overclocking a couple of X38 boards to front-side bus speeds of MHz and higher, we’d wager there are plenty of X38 chips up to the task of a mere MHz.

Intel’s X48 Express chipset

But really, it’s all about the X38’s northbridge chip. Firstly, Intel claims it delivers improvements to memory performance courtesy of a revised memory snoop feature.

However, may not be long for this world The X48 Express north bridge chip cap. For Unbeatable performance Supports the latest Core 2 45nm chips Most boards will boast significant bus and itel clockspeed ovderclocking headroom.