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Intel Upgrades Hardware

Sandy Bridge Motherboards Dissected, Compared 143

crookedvulture writes "As we've learned, Intel's Sandy Bridge CPUs are pretty impressive. If you're going to build yourself a system with one, you'll need a new motherboard with an 1155-pin socket. The Tech Report has an in-depth look at four such boards based on Intel's P67 Express chipset. Although the boards offer identical application performance, there are notable differences between their power consumption and the speed of onboard peripherals like USB 3.0 and Serial ATA ports. Some implement the new UEFI BIOS framework while others do not, and the quality of those implementations varies quite a bit. Recommended reading for anyone thinking about rolling their own desktop with one of Intel's latest CPUs."
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Sandy Bridge Motherboards Dissected, Compared

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 07, 2011 @09:13PM (#34800152)

    DRM should be one of the tags. After all that is what Intel Insider is and a major part of Sandy Bridge is. Read all about it... what a riot...

  • by Joe The Dragon ( 967727 ) on Friday January 07, 2011 @09:50PM (#34800476)

    this is where AMD better and why hypertransport is good so you can take a low or high end cpu and have more chip set choice.

    Intel only has QPI in the high end cpu and drive up the cost if need a lot of pci-e IO but not a high end cpu.

  • by Gadget_Guy ( 627405 ) * on Saturday January 08, 2011 @12:21AM (#34801446)

    For example, the protected audio path introduced in Vista made many sound drivers much more complex to write, and resulted in poor performance and system stability problems. This was of course passed on to the customer as an additional expense, as well as yet another source of blue screens of death.

    Hey? Vista simplified the audio system by handling more of the audio processing itself. The way they implemented the protected audio path effectively reduced what the companies had to do in their own drivers. Some of the things that used to be done using hardware acceleration is now handled by the OS in software. This resulted in new features such as per-application audio settings and enhancements such as virtual surround, room correction and loudness equalization for even the most basic sound chipset. APIs were introduced to allow the higher end soundcards to implement their custom system effects using the same hooks that Microsoft used to implement the built-in effects. The Universal Audio Architecture [wikipedia.org] provided more structure to the driver model and meant that the driver writers could rely on the OS to provide many of the user configuration needs.

    Furthermore, the code was moved from the kernel into userland to prevent buggy drivers from causing blue screens of death.

    So rather than this system increasing the cost to consumers, it decreases it because it makes the integrated solutions (that come with every single motherboard) much more useful. There will always be people who prefer a dedicated soundcard, but more and more this is becoming a niche market due to improvements in integrated chipset quality and operating system features.

"Never face facts; if you do, you'll never get up in the morning." -- Marlo Thomas