While not everything is clear about Intel Corp.’s new microprocessor introduction plans, it looks like the company has finalized its desktop chipset launch schedule. According to a media report, Intel’s new core-logic sets aimed at enthusiasts will debut in mid-May. Such a release timetable will allow Intel and its partners to demonstrate new solutions at Computex Taipei 2014 trade-show early in June.
VR-Zone web-site reports that Intel Z97 chipset, which is designed for new-generation enthusiast-class PCs, will debut on the 11th of May, 2014. It is noteworthy that the core-logic will debut after Intel begins to sell microprocessors that belong to “Haswell refresh” family in mid-April and before the company introduces its code-named Broadwell microprocessors in the third or the fourth quarter of the year.
Just like current 8-series Intel chipsets, the new 9-series core-logic sets – Z97 and H97 – will support various central processing units in LGA 1150 form-factor as well as general functions found on today’s platforms. Expect Intel 9-series chipsets to support six Serial ATA-6Gb/s ports, 14 USB ports (with up to six ports in USB 3.0 mode), PCI Express 3.0 x16 (via CPU, reconfigurable in case of Z97 only), PCI Express 2.0 x8 and so on.
There are three important enhancements that the Z97 and H97 bring: support for solid-state drives in PCIe M.2 form-factor (PCI Express 2.0 x2 interface with up to 1GB/s maximum bandwidth), Intel device protection with boot guard technology as well as Intel Rapid Storage technology with support for PCI Express-based storage drives.
As usual, Intel’s Z-series chipset (Z97) will support overclocking of microprocessors as well as Intel Dynamic Storage Accelerator. The H-series core-logic (H97) will not support overclocking/performance tweaking knobs, but will feature Small Business Advantage platform tech.
In general, both Z97 and H97 will be very similar to today’s platforms, but will be able to boost performance of solid-state drives to 1GB/s and will also enhance security. Those who already own PCs based on Z87 and H87 chipsets will hardly need to upgrade this year, at least before next-gen Core i-series 5000-sequence “Broadwell” processors arrive.
Intel did not comment on the news-story.
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