Friday, March 27th 2009

NVIDIA nForce 980a SLI Reference Platform Motherboard Pictured

Pursuing legal action against Intel for bringing its Intel-compatible platform development to a grinding halt due to legal complications, NVIDIA has kept its platform development for AMD on track. The company has made the nForce 980a SLI platform official, that supports the latest Phenom II series processors from AMD. The company published the product page on its website, and has pictured its reference design motherboard based on the chipset. The motherboard carries the "designed by NVIDIA" marking, which makes it a design that several of its AIC partners such as EVGA, XFX, Zotac, etc., can use simultaneously.

The motherboard sports the nForce 980a SLI chipset, paired with the nForce 200 PCI-Express bridge chip. The motherboard features a GeForce 8300-class IGP, with DVI-D and D-Sub outputs. It supports NVIDIA 3-way SLI and Quad-SLI. As an AMD platform, the chipset supports AM2, AM2+ and AM3 socket processors, with DDR3 and DDR2 memory support (depending on the processor). A 5-phase digital PWM circuit powers the processor. The nForce 980a SLI and nForce 200 chips are located adjacent to each other, and are cooled actively by a fan-heatsink. The product design looks production-grade and may attract partners to sell it.
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85 Comments on NVIDIA nForce 980a SLI Reference Platform Motherboard Pictured

#26
DaedalusHelios
cdawall
that chipset cooler is in a PITA spot if you wand to do any upgrading
Waterblock with L-shaped nozzles could work I suppose.
Posted on Reply
#27
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
Weer
So how is this any different?
well seeing how with AMD you can get just about any board from both AMD and NV its not all the same chipset and each chipset has its own unike overclocking quirks i would for sure call that different. hell i'll list just the mid/high-end chipsets you can choose from for AMD then the ones you can choose from on intel

AMD
780G,790X,790GX,790FX,780A,980A,750A
intel
X58

anyone see something wrong here or am i just missing something

DaedalusHelios
Waterblock with L-shaped nozzles could work I suppose.
its probably just this mobo (XFX) that has it in an odd spot bet the EVGA and Asus have it in a better location
Posted on Reply
#28
KBD
cdawall
well seeing how with AMD you can get just about any board from both AMD and NV its not all the same chipset and each chipset has its own unike overclocking quirks i would for sure call that different. hell i'll list just the mid/high-end chipsets you can choose from for AMD then the ones you can choose from on intel

AMD
780G,790X,790GX,790FX,780A,980A,750A
intel
X58

anyone see something wrong here or am i just missing something
Yea, i agree with cdwall. Corei7 is not the only game in town. And those of us that want some variety not to mention somewhat lower prices brought to us due to some healthy competition look to what AMD has to offer as well. Because Intel is being such a bitch there is just one chipset supporting i7, its not clear whether nvidia will be allowed to make theirs for this Intel platform. AMD is not stopping Nvidia from making theirs for Phenom II which only makes them look better.
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#29
DaedalusHelios
The price of AMD motherboards are the only reason why I consider going AMD Phenom 2. They're are so many reasonable choices it makes up for a lack of a competitor to i7. I don't know how they keep the motherboard prices reasonable but it works. ;)
Posted on Reply
#30
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
DaedalusHelios
The price of AMD motherboards are the only reason why I consider going AMD Phenom 2. They're are so many reasonable choices it makes up for a lack of a competitor to i7. I don't know how they keep the motherboard prices reasonable but it works. ;)
its real simple how they keep prices low the have those option things that intel doesn't. look at X58 thats what a lack of cometition will do to prices.
Posted on Reply
#31
DaedalusHelios
cdawall
its real simple how they keep prices low the have those option things that intel doesn't. look at X58 thats what a lack of cometition will do to prices.
Well there were plenty of options before the i7 flagship which is still in infancy.

But back when C2D's were king, the same options on an intel board would be cheaper on an AMD board. It could be because the AMD chips perform more duties than the intel equivalents due to the built in memory controller possibly? So less on the AMD motherboard equals simpler design or lower costs to the motherboard manufacturers.

It could be "what the market will bare" coming into effect and AMD users demanding lower prices than intel users too.

Its hard to say.
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#32
pentastar111
I trhink it would be really cool if they came out with an AMD board that allowed the end user to be able to go with either cross-fire or sli.
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#33
ShadowFold
pentastar111
I trhink it would be really cool if they came out with an AMD board that allowed the end user to be able to go with either cross-fire or sli.
The AsRock 780A does that
Posted on Reply
#34
suraswami
Woo Hoo, one more decent AMD mobo. Good to see.
Posted on Reply
#35
Weer
cdawall
well seeing how with AMD you can get just about any board from both AMD and NV its not all the same chipset and each chipset has its own unike overclocking quirks i would for sure call that different. hell i'll list just the mid/high-end chipsets you can choose from for AMD then the ones you can choose from on intel

AMD
780G,790X,790GX,790FX,780A,980A,750A
intel
X58

anyone see something wrong here or am i just missing something
Well, that's just with the new Core i7. It's too new to have more than one chipset. Not to mention that it does not, in any way, need anything more than X58, because X58 has everything. More revisions do not equal a better product.

If you want to compare Core 2, then you got 680i, 650i, 630i, P33, P35, P45, X38, X48, etc.
The only difference is that AMD is trying to sneak in backwards compatibility to win over consumers, at loss of performance.
Posted on Reply
#36
p_o_s_pc
F@H&WCG addict
Weer
Well, that's just with the new Core i7. It's too new to have more than one chipset. Not to mention that it does not, in any way, need anything more than X58, because X58 has everything. More revisions do not equal a better product.

If you want to compare Core 2, then you got 680i, 650i, 630i, P33, P35, P45, X38, X48, etc.
The only difference is that AMD is trying to sneak in backwards compatibility to win over consumers, at loss of performance.
performance loss isn't that great considering the money you save and the performance you gain upgrading to a better chip.im NOT disagreeing that there is a performance loss because there is
Posted on Reply
#37
Hayder_Master
nice but i expect they increase the IGP much , ok they say it is nforce200 so this can do haybard SLI with GTX200 series or only it is just a name and only SLI with 8400 and 8500 cards
Posted on Reply
#38
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
Weer
Well, that's just with the new Core i7. It's too new to have more than one chipset. Not to mention that it does not, in any way, need anything more than X58, because X58 has everything. More revisions do not equal a better product.

If you want to compare Core 2, then you got 680i, 650i, 630i, P33, P35, P45, X38, X48, etc.
The only difference is that AMD is trying to sneak in backwards compatibility to win over consumers, at loss of performance.
ummm hold on i'm calling bullshit right there. pop a Q9450 in a 6x0i board and tell me if it works. thats intel saying f you to nvidia again. oh and AM3 is brand new newer that i7 in fact and we already have 790GX, 790FX and 980A so again this i7 is too new crap is straight up BS
Posted on Reply
#39
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
cdawall
ummm hold on i'm calling bullshit right there. pop a Q9450 in a 6x0i board and tell me if it works. thats intel saying f you to nvidia again. oh and AM3 is brand new newer that i7 in fact and we already have 790GX, 790FX and 980A so again this i7 is too new crap is straight up BS
OK, now find me a nForce 590 SLI (AMD), or AMD 580X CrossFire motherboard that supports Phenom II.

People tend put Phenom II with its competitive class and product generation as that of the Core i7. That is so wrong. Phenom II belongs to the generation 45nm Core 2 processors (Wolfdale/Yorkfield) belong to, not Core i7. Technically, an AM2 socket should be able to run Phenom II, just like how the Intel 945P did support FSB 1066 MHz, and could hence extend support to some Core 2 Duo CPUs, but market forces made sure the benefit of backwards-compatibility never got passed on to the consumer. Both Intel and AMD are equally victim to this.
Posted on Reply
#40
Weer
btarunr
OK, now find me a nForce 590 SLI (AMD), or AMD 580X CrossFire motherboard that supports Phenom II.

People tend put Phenom II with its competitive class and product generation as that of the Core i7. That is so wrong. Phenom II belongs to the generation 45nm Core 2 processors (Wolfdale/Yorkfield) belong to, not Core i7. Technically, an AM2 socket should be able to run Phenom II, just like how the Intel 945P did support FSB 1066 MHz, and could hence extend support to some Core 2 Duo CPUs, but market forces made sure the benefit of backwards-compatibility never got passed on to the consumer. Both Intel and AMD are equally victim to this.
It looks like I'm really not needed on this forum with bt covering for me. Perfect post.
It's not Intel saying "eff you" to nVidia. As btarunr so eloquently said, the 6x0i chipset was simply outdated and was not meant to run Quads at all. Only the A1 edition of the XFX/eVGA 680i chipsets were capable of sustaining any real speed on Quad-core CPU's. If anything, it's nVidia saying "eff you" to Intel, or their fans; depends on you look at it.. by knowing of Quads ahead of time and not fashioning a good enough chipset to go along with it, as part of their line-up in any way. Even 780i which came out a year later, and was basically a re-hashed 680i wasn't capable of doing a good enough job. Only 790i, and that was dwarfed by X48. There's a fair amount of history here.

Let me just add one thing. Core i7 doesn't need anything more than X58, as I've said. X58 has everything one could need. X58 + 920 = perfect; if you can afford it. It's not quantity, it's quality.
Posted on Reply
#41
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
btarunr
OK, now find me a nForce 590 SLI (AMD), or AMD 580X CrossFire motherboard that supports Phenom II.

People tend put Phenom II with its competitive class and product generation as that of the Core i7. That is so wrong. Phenom II belongs to the generation 45nm Core 2 processors (Wolfdale/Yorkfield) belong to, not Core i7. Technically, an AM2 socket should be able to run Phenom II, just like how the Intel 945P did support FSB 1066 MHz, and could hence extend support to some Core 2 Duo CPUs, but market forces made sure the benefit of backwards-compatibility never got passed on to the consumer. Both Intel and AMD are equally victim to this.
it doesn't "support" it but go on AMD game forums and several users have old 480X boards with phenom II's on them. just about any board that supports phenom's will boot and run a phenom II it will just not take advantage of the added benifits of the chip IE unlocked chips wont give the full range of multi's


Weer
It looks like I'm really not needed on this forum with bt covering for me. Perfect post.
It's not Intel saying "eff you" to nVidia. As btarunr so eloquently said, the 6x0i chipset was simply outdated and was not meant to run Quads at all. Only the A1 edition of the XFX/eVGA 680i chipsets were capable of sustaining any real speed on Quad-core CPU's. If anything, it's nVidia saying "eff you" to Intel, or their fans; depends on you look at it.. by knowing of Quads ahead of time and not fashioning a good enough chipset to go along with it, as part of their line-up in any way. Even 780i which came out a year later, and was basically a re-hashed 680i wasn't capable of doing a good enough job. Only 790i, and that was dwarfed by X48. There's a fair amount of history here.

Let me just add one thing. Core i7 doesn't need anything more than X58, as I've said. X58 has everything one could need. X58 + 920 = perfect; if you can afford it. It's not quantity, it's quality.
only issue i have is that the X58 chipset is still not all that great AMD chips show better scaling on there chipsets than i7 does on X58. this is true when you look at just about any multi card setup, there was a thread on XS with about 100 examples of this. same clocks on the cards and comparable clocks on the chips the single card was all X58 but as soon as they put a second card on the board AMD gained 20-30% intel may gain 15% max. AMD caught up in performance to i7 as soon as another card was added. tell how even x8/x8 790GX can scale multi card better than X58?

and 780i wasn't all bad with quads several people got good clocks out of it. not the best but good clocks for sure. 6xi supported all of the 65nm quads it may not have clocked them to a 1600mhz FSB but it supported them it however did not support even the same clocked 45nm quads which is what i was trying to say.
Posted on Reply
#42
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
cdawall
it doesn't "support" it but go on AMD game forums and several users have old 480X boards with phenom II's on them. just about any board that supports phenom's will boot and run a phenom II it will just not take advantage of the added benifits of the chip IE unlocked chips wont give the full range of multi's
Well, I'm definitely not the 1337-hax0r that can somehow get new processors to run on old chipsets. I'm the kind that looks up CPU-support lists, sees if a BIOS from the manufacturer can get the board to work, and then back my claims that the typical AM2 motherboard does not support Phenom II. Even ASUS' best AM2 motherboard, the Crosshair, doesn't do so.
Posted on Reply
#43
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
btarunr
Well, I'm definitely not the 1337-hax0r that can somehow get new processors to run on old chipsets. I'm the kind that looks up CPU-support lists, sees if a BIOS from the manufacturer can get the board to work, and then back my claims that the typical AM2 motherboard does not support Phenom II. Even ASUS' best AM2 motherboard, the Crosshair, doesn't do so.
just cause a chip is not on the support list doesn't mean it wont work electronically phenom II and phenom I wont have a huge difference hence them working on the same chipset. this is why even though Asus sent my crosshair II with the old 0502 Bios i could boot with a phenom II no issues. that BIOS only supports phenom I.



hell look at the nforce 3 based asrock board with the riser card it will run phenom II now if that doesn't show backwards compatibility i dont know what will
Posted on Reply
#44
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
cdawall
just cause a chip is not on the support list doesn't mean it wont work electronically phenom II and phenom I wont have a huge difference hence them working on the same chipset. this is why even though Asus sent my crosshair II with the old 0502 Bios i could boot with a phenom II no issues. that BIOS only supports phenom I.
Ah, now going by the same logic, Core 2 Extreme QX6700 should run on Intel 925X chipset (supports FSB 1066, 4 logical CPUs), something that's generations older than even AM2, but that doesn't.
Posted on Reply
#45
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
btarunr
Ah, now going by the same logic, Core 2 Extreme QX6700 should run on Intel 925X chipset (supports FSB 1066, 4 logical CPUs), something that's generations older than even AM2, but that doesn't.
phenom II on 690G

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/257095-28-phenom-690g-works






phenom II on NV 560



phenom II on NV 570SLI



phenom II on NV 590SLI

http://valid.canardpc.com/show_oc.php?id=506438



phenom on nforce 3

http://www.asrock.com/support/Phenom2.asp


full support on 590SLI

http://valid.canardpc.com/show_oc.php?id=527094

Posted on Reply
#46
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
Now look at the CPU-Support list from the said manufacturers and see if Phenom II lists. It most likely won't, except for that ASRock nForce 3 motherboard. ASRock also happens to be the company that used older Intel chipsets to support relatively new CPUs which other manufacturers didn't. People may have gotten Phenom II to work on older chipsets, but motherboard manufacturers officially don't list it. That doesn't hurt my argument one bit, which is that you cannot place Phenom II and Core i7 in the same generation, and say that Phenom II offers backwards platform compatibility. The same can also be said for LGA-775 processors and their multiple instances of working on older chipsets.
Posted on Reply
#47
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
btarunr
Now look at the CPU-Support list from the said manufacturers and see if Phenom II lists. It most likely won't, except for that ASRock nForce 3 motherboard. ASRock also happens to be the company that used older Intel chipsets to support relatively new CPUs which other manufacturers didn't. People may have gotten Phenom II to work on older chipsets, but motherboard manufacturers officially don't list it. That doesn't hurt my argument one bit, which is that you cannot place Phenom II and Core i7 in the same generation, and say that Phenom II offers backwards platform compatibility. The same can also be said for LGA-775 processors and their multiple instances of working on older chipsets.
you said to find 590SLi supporting phenom II and the asus M2A32SLI does. the older chipsets that will support phenom I will support phenom II its as simple as that
Posted on Reply
#48
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
cdawall
you said to find 590SLi supporting phenom II and the asus M2A32SLI does. the older chipsets that will support phenom I will support phenom II its as simple as that
The ASUS boards you linked to, did get Phenom II to work, but neither of their CPU-support lists say they do i.e. the manufacturers didn't list support for Phenom II, they didn't release BIOS that did so. My argument doesn't cover people somehow getting it to work, it covers that which when a manufacturer lists its nForce 590 SLI supports it. You should get the idea.
Posted on Reply
#49
cdawall
where the hell are my stars
btarunr
The ASUS boards you linked to, did get Phenom II to work, but neither of their CPU-support lists say they do i.e. the manufacturers didn't list support for Phenom II, they didn't release BIOS that did so. My argument doesn't cover people somehow getting it to work, it covers that which when a manufacturer lists its nForce 590 SLI supports it. You should get the idea.
the only way for cpuz to read a phenom as a 940 X4 as opposed to a phenom unknown is for there to be bios support


bios support

no bios support



and there is no somehow getting it to work any board that supports phenom I supports phenom II. i could plug my phenom II 955 into a POS nvidia 6150 based board and it would work with the phenom I bios
Posted on Reply
#50
erocker
*
Weer
Well, that's just with the new Core i7. It's too new to have more than one chipset. Not to mention that it does not, in any way, need anything more than X58, because X58 has everything. More revisions do not equal a better product.

If you want to compare Core 2, then you got 680i, 650i, 630i, P33, P35, P45, X38, X48, etc.
The only difference is that AMD is trying to sneak in backwards compatibility to win over consumers, at loss of performance.
Lets not forget P31, G31, G35, P41, P43.... There are plenty of Intel options that directly compete with AMD and do it in the same price bracket.
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