nVision 08: Native SLI For X58 Announced

Pushing the limit of "no product announcements". For the better.

When Jen-Hsun Huang (nVidia’s co-founder, President and CEO) told us that there would be (article:nVision-08–No-nVidia-Product-Launches-Here no product announcements at nVision) it turns out it could be argued he wasn’t being strictly, 100 per cent accurate. Wrapping up the show with a bit of good news, nVidia announced that it will be adding support for SLI to Intel’s X58 chipset-based motherboards, without the need for nVidia’s NF200 chip.

The catch – there always is one – is that motherboards will have to be submitted to nVidia for certification before SLI will be allowed to run on them. nVidia will provide motherboard makers with a “cookie” which the GeForce drivers will check for before allowing SLI to be enabled.

Testing won’t be free, so as with the NF200 chip, adding SLI certification will still add cost to the board. Further, some features are still being limited to NF200-fitted boards, presumably to reduce backlash from those manufacturers which have already developed motherboards using the chip suddenly having their development time wasted. Not that anyone needs quad x16 PCI Express lanes.

As nVidia doesn’t have a Core i7 chipset of its own, not adding SLI-support to as many Intel-based motherboards as possible would have been tantamount to declining GPU potential sales. Of course the fact nVidia pretty much had to make this decision doesn’t mean we’re any less glad it did. Now, who wants to give me a Core i7 system and a couple of GTX 280s?

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