After doing some research, I've come to two conclusions. (Please correct me if I'm wrong)
1. nForce chipset motherboards will support multiple video cards in SLI mode, but don't have the extra oomph that will be needed to run a 45nm quad-core Yorkfield (Will a 780i board be able to support a new quad-core?)
2. X38 and X48 chipsets have better FSB speeds, and supposedly better onboard controllers for devices. They also allow better overclocking of processors like the Q9450. However, they obviously cannot run SLI. They can, however, run ATI Crossfire, but I'm much more interested in Nvidia cards at this point.
So this is a dilemma for me... Do I go with the 45nm Quad-Core Yorkfield (Q9450) in an X38/X48 board, or do I go with the nForce boards and run dual 9600GT cards with a 45nm Dual-Core Wolfdale (E8400)? Is there any way I can do both with the same board? If that's possible with a current chipset or possibly one that will be unveiled within the next three months or so, I'd like to know what board would support both.
Nvidia is planning to launch the next generation nForce 790i chipset in the second quarter this year. The chipset adopts Nvidia's C73 northbridge and MCP55 southbridge, and will support Intel processors with FSB up to 1600 MHz, according to sources at motherboard makers.
This is good news for me! I just hope it gets released by the time June comes around.
If you game better graphics cards are the thing to invest in and an E8400 will be more than enough for anything. Before you go for 2 x 9600GT's however I'd wait and see what the 9800's can do when they are released which is imminently. I have an 8800GT which will outperform a 9600Gt for relatively little extra $
Sli'd 9600GTs definitely. The LGA 775 mobo will be phased out by Late '08, while your 9600s will still be kickin'. I recommend getting Getting the 9600GTs and some cheap SLI mobo with an E2160/E2180, and hanging around with that until the storm blows over.
Here's something that will help you choose which motherboard you want. This is a direct quote from a article written on this website.
"This takes Nvidia another step closer to Quad-SLI, since the GeForce 9800GX2 already runs in SLI mode without any special hardware. Unlike dual-card solutions that require two similar Nvidia graphics cards and an SLI-compatible PCI-Express motherboard, the new GeForce 9800GX2 will even work in motherboards that don't support SLI." Source
I'm so damn happy to hear this. I just ordered a new pc that I spent around 2k on a few days ago. I have the Asus Maximum Extreme motherboard with the E8400. I just went ahead and spent less then $200 on this really nice video card. Clicky This card will be more then enough power to run any game thats currently out. In the mean time you can start saving money up for a 9800GX2 card and then if you wanted to, wait a bit and buy another.
I've decided that I probably will just go with an X38 board (either for a Wolfdale or a Yorkfield, depending on my budget), and go with a single, powerful card. Right now, I'm thinking an 8800GTS G92, but I might go for the 9800 series cards.
If you were considering SLI but are now going with a X38 (good choice), why not consider Crossfire? Or a single powerful card like the 3870x2 so you can add another down the road as an upgrade?
Just curious because if you really don't want an ATI card then I'd suggest you check out some of the cheaper P35 boards. The main difference between them and X38 is that the X38 has two PCIe lanes that run at 'full speed' (16x Electrical) and if you aren't gonna make use of that, might as well get a P35 such as the GA-P35-DS3L for like $100. They should support the 45nm with a BIOS update.