Looks like AMD’s Zambezi chips may not be the only ones to arrive later than expected. The guys at VR-Zone claim to have it on good authority that Intel has pushed back the release of its Sandy Bridge-E processors all the way until November. Barely two weeks ago, word on the web was that we’d see these bad boys as soon as August or September.
VR-Zone doesn’t really explain the delay, though it suggests that, if Sandy Bridge-E were to launch later than November, Intel would miss the next platform refresh on PC makers’ roadmaps. That prospect, rather than the desire to cash in on holiday sales, purportedly motivated Intel to avoid an even greater delay.
I’m not sure how much truth there is to that sentiment. After all, Intel often introduces new generations of chips in January, and PC makers are usually pretty quick to respond with new gear. Perhaps Sandy Bridge-E’s more upscale, enthusiast-oriented pedigree makes it different, since it’s supposed to replace Gulftown and slot above today’s Sandy Bridge offerings as part of a more expensive platform.
At least, one would hope the platform will be more upscale. The VR-Zone report goes on to say that Intel has changed its plans for Sandy Bridge-E’s accompanying X79 chipset, which may now have only two 6Gbps Serial ATA ports with the remaining four ports stuck at 3Gbps speeds. In that particular respect, the X79 may be no better than today’s Z68 and P67 chipsets.