SemiAccurate has heard some rumors about Intel's Patsburg, an upcoming chipset for the company's LGA2011 processors. The author reports the chipset is quite surprising, as it's intended for both the high-end desktop market (Sandy Bridge B2) as well as the mid-range server market (Sandy Bridge EN). The LGA2011 platform is expected to support quad-channel memory, PCI Express 3.0, SATA 3Gbps and 6Gbps, and SAS.
The site points out that fitting eight memory slots on a standard ATX motherboard isn't easy, so it's expected that a lot of motherboard makers will go for EATX instead. If these rumors are true, it means many gamers will have to buy a new case as well, as typical PC cases aren't roomy enough for an EATX motherboard.
The Patsburg chipset is destined to be Intel's first single chipset solution for its high-end desktop products and mid-range server solutions, as with the rest of Intel's range of Sandy Bridge processors, we should see the PCI Express controller being moved from a separate chip into the CPU itself. Unlike the LGA-1155 parts, the LGA-2011 processors are still set to feature PCI Express 3.0, although, unless AMD launches Southern Islands with PCI Express 3.0 support, it'll be quite a while before anything will take advantage of this faster interface.
It seems like Intel has yet to make up its mind up with regards to storage connectivity. It's been suggested that Intel was set to fit as many as 10 SATA 6Gbps ports with SAS support, but from what we were told today, this isn't the case. Instead the new chipset is something of a mess, as it'll have support for two or three SATA 6Gbps ports, six SATA 3Gbps ports and six SAS ports, via three independent controllers in the chipset. This all has to do with Intel's new great idea to develop a single chipset for desktop and server products and as such both teams have added the features they want. You won't be able to make RAID arrays across the various ports either, despite the SAS ports supporting SATA 3Gbps drives. We can't quite figure out why Intel has gone down this route if this proves to be the final solution.