Wednesday, November 11th 2009

Intel Readies P55 Chipset B3 Stepping Update

Intel's is readying a hardware update for its P55 Express chipset, currently the only core-logic for the company's brand new socket LGA-1156 processor platform. The new B3 stepping of the P55 PCH will bring with it a little more than new MM number and S-spec numbers. A list of changes is as follows:
  • New MM number and S-spec numbers for the converted products;
  • Firmware and minor BIOS updates are required with the conversion;
  • Processor MRC/microcode update required to enable future processors;
  • Recommended storage driver upgrade from Intel MSM 8.9 to Intel RST 9.5.
Although it is listed that the MRC update enables 'future processors', Intel, in a statement issued to X-bit labs assured that the current B2 stepping of the chipset (found on current socket LGA-1156 motherboards) does not leave out support for any of Intel's new LGA-1156 processors that are slated for release in the very near future. The dual-core "Clarkale" 32 nm processor will be supported by both B2 and B3 steppings of the chipset.

P55 B3 stepping is pin-identical to P55 B2, and hence motherboard vendors will not have to come up with new designs. Sampling of the new stepping began as early as on October 02, 2009, and it is scheduled for shipment to manufacturers by the 7th of December, 2009. P55 is the performance core-logic for the LGA-1156 platform. It supports Core i5 and Core i7 "Lynnfield" processors with discrete graphics.
Source: X-bit labs
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6 Comments on Intel Readies P55 Chipset B3 Stepping Update

Bird of Prey
I did not know that chipsets went through stepping updates.. thanks bta
Posted on Reply
Then what's the point? To be able to support the processors without a BIOS update? Are there any benefits to getting a new board?
Posted on Reply
Freshwater Moderator
this messes with things

imagine the confusion when some P55's support CPU's and others dont... mobo manfuacturers are likely to be slack with this
Posted on Reply
just as i was considering going to i7, tpu brings me this news. i will hold off a bit (npi) longer. thanks tpu
Posted on Reply
I'm pretty sure this is why motherboards have revision numbers on them.
Posted on Reply
Freshwater Moderator
pantherx12I'm pretty sure this is why motherboards have revision numbers on them.
indeed, but so few places list those revisions when you buy the board.

i've gotten stung with that before, ordered a motherboard online with no mention of revision and received an outdated one with inferior CPU support

(and recently too, with an AM2+ motherboard from gigabyte)
Posted on Reply