AMD may not have have much of a response to Sandy Bridge right now, but the situation will change later this year. The presence of a Socket AM3+ motherboard in MSI’s CES showcase was a reminder that Bulldozer, AMD’s next-gen desktop and server microarchitecture, is indeed on the way.
Understandably, MSI wasn’t very talkative about the board. However, we know the board features a next-generation AMD chipset, and we can infer a few things from its external appearance alone. The "Big Bang Conqueror" label signals this is a very high-end board, while port color-coding betrays the presence of two USB 3.0 ports and six Serial ATA 6Gbps ports.
This mobo should play host to Zambezi, Bulldozer’s desktop incarnation, which will feature four to eight cores and no integrated graphics. (Users seeking a desktop AMD CPU with built-in graphics will have to settle for Llano, which will be based on the existing Stars microarchitecture.) AMD has said it plans to start shipping Bulldozer-based CPUs for revenue this summer.