Intel Skulltrail arrives in Q1 2008

Posted on Sunday, Oct 14 2007 @ 12:25 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
The Intel Skulltrail platform will likely be available in the first quarter of 2008. This is a dual-processor platform for enthusiasts with a lot of money, it's expected that the processors alone will cost you more than $3,000 as you'll need two Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9775 3.2GHz processors that will cost $1,499 each in 1,000-unit quantities.

X-bit Labs has some more info and predicts an extremely high-end system based around the Skulltrail platform with four high-end SLI graphics cards from NVIDIA, fast and big HDDs in RAID, 4GB of DDR3 memory, a high-end power supply, a big 30" LCD display and some other expensive components will result in Skulltrail gaming systems priced above $10,000. Skulltrail will allow you to create the best-of-the-best but it will come at a hefty price of course.

The performance of such a system will probably be extremely good but I guess the price/performance ratio will suck compared to a much cheaper $1,500 gaming rig.
Intel’s Skulltrail platform for gamers based on code-named Seaburg chipset resembles Stoakley platform for high-end dual-processor workstations, but in addition to features like support for two quad-core microprocessors with up to 1600MHz processor system bus, up to 128GB of PC2-6400 (800MHz) FB-DIMM memory, Intel virtualization technology and other capabilities, the Skulltrail offers four PCI Express x16 slots for graphics cards to support 4-way CrossFire or SLI multi-GPU configurations.

Intel plans to release special versions of Intel Core 2 Extreme processors in LGA775 form-factor to power its dual-socket enthusiast platform, confidential documents seen by X-bit labs claim. The first of such chips will be Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9775 clocked at 3.20GHz with overspeed protection disabled (unlocked multiplier), the new chip will utilize 1600MHz processor system bus and feature 12MB cache. Given that the newcomer is made using 45nm process technology, it will sport all the advantages that the new code-named Penryn family has. The new extreme chips from Intel will have thermal design power of 150W, therefore, will need very efficient and potentially noisy and/or expensive cooling systems.

It is currently known that Intel will offer Intel D5400XS motherboard for Skulltrail systems, but it is unclear whether large mainboard makers, such as Asustek Computer, will also offer a Skulltrail platform.

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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