As advanced as AMD's Bulldozer architecture may be, the accompanying chipsets are relatively pedestrian. Much of the blame lies with the SB850 south-bridge component, which anchors the 900-series chipset line and has been around for more than a year and a half. The chip may have six 6Gbps SATA ports, but we've found those to be slower than the two 6Gbps ports stemming from contemporary Intel chipsets. The SB850 also lacks the USB 3.0 connectivity built into AMD's recent Llano platform hubs.
According to the latest slide leaked by Turkish site Donanim Haber, AMD is prepping two new Bulldozer chipsets for 2012. The 1090FX and 1070 will reportedly rely on a new SB1060 south bridge that serves up eight 6Gbps SATA ports. USB 3.0 support will also be offered with the 1090FX, but it looks like that feature didn't make the cut for the 1070. The 1070 also seems to be missing dual-x16 CrossFire support, another perk reserved for the 1090FX.
The slide makes several references to Intel's current and upcoming platforms, noting the AMD line's lack of PCIe 3.0 support. Intel's Smart Response SSD caching scheme is also mentioned, and it doesn't look like AMD has an answer. Asus has already developed its own SSD caching scheme designed to work with a Marvell SATA controller, and I'd expect similar solutions to migrate to high-end 1090FX boards if AMD doesn't offer something itself.
Donanim Haber's sources have been pretty reliable, but I'd take these supposed plans with a grain of salt. Newly minted AMD CEO Rory Read is set to talk about the company's "path forward" tomorrow, and at least on the desktop, that direction may deviate from the one AMD has been following recently.
|Fractal Design's Define S is a leaner, meaner R5||29|
|Android Wear gets always-on apps, Wi-Fi support||4|
|Tiny MIT touchpad fits on your fingernail||17|
|OnePlus One sales now open to everyone||22|
|AMD says Windows 10 will be released in late July||32|
|Happy 50th birthday, Moore's Law||47|
|This week produced a bumper crop of security holes, patches||17|