ASUS P9X79 Pro Intel X79 Motherboard ReviewMon, Nov 14, 2011 - 2:00 AM
The Intel X79 Chipset
In order to understand the Intel X79 platform it is best to take a look at the motherboard chipset that is going to be used.
The Intel X79 Express looks familiar as it very similar to the Intel Z68 Express Chipset that is shown below. One of the main differences between the two platforms is, of course, the sockets. The Intel X79 platform only supports LGA2011 Sandy Bridge-E processors, while the Intel Z68 Express Chipset supports LGA1155 Sandy Bridge processors. The Intel Z68 Express chipset supports Dual Channel Memory architecture while the Intel X79 Express supports Quad Channel Memory Architecture. There are also a number of smaller differences as well.
The Intel X79 Express chipset supports 40 lanes PCI Express 2.0 for the Graphics, while the Intel Z68 Express supports only 16 Lanes for the Graphics. This means that while the Intel Z68 platform can run dual graphics, the Intel X79 Express Chipset will support up to five graphics cards in a 1×16, 2×8, and 2×4 configuration. One of the features that was not included on the Intel X79 platform is the Intel Smart Response Technology. We aren’t terribly surprised that it isn’t included; after all, if you are paying $999.00 for the Intel Core i7 3960X you will likely be using a good sized SSD for your boot drive.