Since the X58 chipset was introduced some time ago, Intel’s kept mum on the next-gen follow up. The good news? Someone managed to get their hands on a product slide detailing some of the new features. The bad news? There’s still no USB 3.0.
The new X79 platform will support Intel’s “Enthusiast” class Sandy Bridge CPUs. That means that the quad-core Core iX chips are going to get a new place to play, in the form of the new LGA2011 socket. X79 will support native overclocking in both CPU and RAM. As part of the speed upgrades, Intel has engineered the option for take four additional PCIe lanes to the CPU that are dedicated to storage bandwidth.
Eight PCI-e lanes are on tap, as is new audio hardware that can support dual stream HDMI and DisplayPort audio streams. This is partnered with up to 14 SATA connections, with a max of ten of those 14 capable of supporting SATA III (6Gbps). Unfortunately, however, there’s no word about whether the new systems will be capable of supporting USB 3.0 – the slide mentions up to 14 USB 2,0 ports, but nothing for USB 3.0. Also conspicuously absent is any mention of Intel’s own competing interconnect format, LightPeak (also known as Thunderbolt).
Obviously, there’s no news yet on when the new boards will be coming out, but now that Intel has that little flaw behind them, it’s looking more likely to be sooner rather than later.