Intel announces 3-Series chipset family

Intel officially launched its 3-Series chipsets at Computex today. Formerly code-named Bearlake, the new chipset line offers support for future 45nm processors, 1333MHz front-side bus speeds, and DDR3 memory. An updated integrated graphics core inside the G35 chipset also claims "hardware support" for DirectX 10. Intel says the IGP supports Blu-ray and HD DVD playback, as well, although it's unclear how much of the playback process is accelerated in hardware.

We looked at the mid-range component of Intel's 3-Series lineup, the P35 Express, last month and found it to be a worthy successor to the popular P965. In 90 days, Intel says it will ship the X38 Express successor to its high-end 975X chipset. The X38 is targeted directly at enthusiasts, and it will also bring support for second generation PCI Express.

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