Intel's Core 2 Extreme QX9770 is due out this quarter, bringing with it not only four Penryn cores clocked at 3.2GHz, but also a front-side bus running at 1600MHz. That faster FSB presents a bit of a problem, though, because Intel's current P35 and X38 Express chipsets only support front-side bus speeds up to 1333MHz. So the QX9770 needs a new chipset, or at least a new north bridge, which is where the X48 Express comes in.
Based on Intel's existing X38 Express, the X48 brings with it official support for 1600MHz front-side bus speeds. With this faster bus, the X48 looks poised to supplant its predecessor atop Intel's chipset lineup, which means a new wave of motherboards is coming from all the usual suspects.
Gigabyte's X48T-DQ6 is the first X48 offering to hit our labs, and in addition to packing Intel's latest chipset, it comes with an innovative Dynamic Energy Saver mechanism designed to lower power consumption. Join us as we put this power saving scheme to the test and run the X48 Express through it paces against the rest of Intel's chipset lineup.