Remember when running a couple of GeForces in SLI mode required the use of an Nvidia nForce chipset? Things may have changed in the Intel camp, but AMD users are still faced with that old conundrum—and today, SLI-capable nForce 980a motherboards have all but disappeared from online listings.
A solution appears to be on the way, though. VR-Zone has nabbed a presentation slide, seemingly from Nvidia, that teases SLI support for AMD's next-gen 990-series chipsets. Those chipsets should accompany Bulldozer-based Zambezi desktop processors when they come out later this year. According to the slide, makers of 990FX and 990X motherboards will be able to license SLI support just like they presently do with their Intel P67 offerings.
The slide reveals a few other noteworthy points. The "same 'key' technology" and certification process used with Intel boards will be involved; Nvidia's NF200 bridge chip won't be part of the picture; and only current SLI licensees will get to offer SLI-capable 990-series mobos. I'm guessing that means we won't see new players serve up SLI-capable 990FX or 990X boards without Intel alternatives to match.
If there's any truth to this (very much unconfirmed) report, Zambezi will be a more compelling alternative to Sandy Bridge than it might otherwise have been. I'm surprised official, license-dependent SLI support will have taken this long to hit AMD motherboards, though. Nvidia decommissioned its chipset business a year and a half ago, and SLI capabilities made their way into X58 boards way back in late 2008.
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