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Intels Skulltrail extreme gaming platform will see an update this year, an obscure German web site reports. Intel will release a Nehalem version of Skulltrail in early 2009, with some interesting changes from the prior version.

Like its predecessor, the new Skulltrail will feature two sockets for quad-core processors and support for both NVIDIA and AMDs multi-GPU systems. However, while the original Skulltrail board was essentially a repurposed server board with a server chipset, this new Skulltrail uses the desktop X58 chipset. It thus seems that X58 supports dual sockets, which is unusual but not unknown among desktop chipsets. NVIDIA has already announced it is allowing SLI on the X58, with a certification program for individual motherboards, with or without use of NVIDIAs nForce 200 SLI bridge chip. Some X58 board manufacturers, including Asus, have announced they will use the chip, while others eschew it. Although Skulltrail currently uses the nForce 200, Intel appears not to be using the bridge and instead seems to be relying on software control.

No details of the new board, like the number of PCIe slots, number of cards supported in SLI and Crossfire, memory support, or hard drive count, have been announced. However, its already a bit fuzzy on what criteria Intel expects Skulltrail to distinguish itself from other X58 boards. With SLI already allowed and 24GB of RAM on three channels of DDR3 supported on the same chipset in other X58 boards, how can Intel distinguish Skulltrail?

Dual processors is one thing, but in gaming, the performance increase from four to eight cores should be minimal to nonexistent. Intel might support quad-SLI or -XFire, and restrict this to Skulltrail. Superior I/O options through additional circuitry, like USB3, SATA600, or FireWire S3200, might also be featured. However, the smaller gap between Skulltrail and other X58 platforms might also account for a decreased price difference. The current Skulltrail motherboard sells for over $600 and supports only the highest-end LGA771 CPUs; perhaps the new Skulltrail will be cheaper, or support the midrange i7 variants. If the board is similar in price to the current Skulltrail, a Skulltrail system with the same graphics cards and RAM might command a mere $600 premium over a comparable single-socket X58 system. This may be the right segmentation point for the availability of quad-GPU systems.

Intel may answer these questions at IDF in Taipei in two weeks; details of the first Skulltrail board appeared there last year.

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and iggster just built his monster mod. im going to crush him with 2x 920's overclocked.
 

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Originally Posted by nathangentzen View Post
and iggster just built his monster mod. im going to crush him with 2x 920's overclocked.
lol when I read this first thing I did was look for a release date (none) who knows I might go skulltrail but ill wait for some reviews first the last one wasn't to good with gaming or benching.
 

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i love my Skulltrail rig. I will look into getting the new version when it comes out. Correction for the source though, Skulltrail uses nforce 100 chips not the nforce 200, so there will be an improvement there. Current skulltrail systems perform great, if you have the QX9775's. Intel designed the system around that processor.
 

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Originally Posted by iggster
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lol when I read this first thing I did was look for a release date (none) who knows I might go skulltrail but ill wait for some reviews first the last one wasn't to good with gaming or benching.

I thought it tore up cinebench? or am i wrong?
 

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This article (although old now) shows some more details;

Linky

If skulltrail is based off the configurations on that page, I'm betting it will be the last one;

 

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Nice, this looks like my next system!
 

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Originally Posted by Sikozu View Post
This article (although old now) shows some more details;

Linky

If skulltrail is based off the configurations on that page, I'm betting it will be the last one;


Odd that it shows ICH9. I'm pretty sure that they would use ICH10 since it is pretty much just a die shrink of ICH9, resulting in lower power consumption and heat.

But like you said, it is a bit old.
 

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Originally Posted by quadx View Post
Nice, this looks like my next system!
perfect news indeed eh? i heard a while back that nehalem is "scale-able" so that they can easily make an 8 core version on the die in the future.

if this is true. (since i have to hold out for cash flow issues anyhow) a 2p system with 1 octo core in a year or so sounds good, then upgrade to 2 octo's down the road..

hopefully you can "use one socket for starters then add the second processor...." if not and AMD can, il be switchin! (want a long term build hehe)
 

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Wow... with the QX9775 already costing $1500, the Core i7 for Skulltrail might set a new bar in cost of Extreme processors. Imagine dropping over $3k for just the processors....
 

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Well if the motherboards will have 6 slots per CPU, that's even better for me. I'll be waiting for the 4GB DDR3 modules to emerge before I even think about getting this i7 Skulltrail... Yup... 48GB of RAM... nice.

Looks like I'll be spending $10k on this one.
 

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For Approx. $3000 you can get:
2 Core i7 + 1 skulltrail motherboard
or
2 QX9775



Quote:

Originally Posted by quadx View Post
Well if the motherboards will have 6 slots per CPU, that's even better for me. I'll be waiting for the 4GB DDR3 modules to emerge before I even think about getting this i7 Skulltrail... Yup... 48GB of RAM... nice.
If it's anything like the current Skulltrail, I'm pretty sure it'll only have 6 slots for both CPUs since it's not an actual server board.

If I needed a high-end workstation 24GB + 2 i7 940 would be nice
 

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Only thing I'll be porting over will be my SAS controller and drives. 12 4GB modules is gonna cost like whoa. If I didn't make money on the side I'd never think of spending the amount of money I do on this stuff.
 

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Originally Posted by quadx View Post
Nice, this looks like my next system!
Looks like the next system I'll wish I had!
 

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Think the i7 quick connect is being over looked here. A little. Although nothing using that many processors so it shouldn't matter I guess. The chips being able to talk to each other directly will make this setup a beast in shear power.
 

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Nice, this looks like my next system!
It's not worthy of consideration because Skulltrail and further evolutions of it are nothing more of a waste of money unless you run a media buisiness which requires such a "monster".
 
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