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Z68 and SSD Cache and other Questions

Tags:
  • CPUs
  • SSD
  • Sandy Bridge
  • Cache
  • GPUs
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March 1, 2011 3:51:39 AM

Hey I have some questions on the new Z68 platform coming out from Intel.

1. Will the SSD cache make the Disc HD and SSD perform at a much faster rate than separately? I understand that it integrates the drives

2. Will the Z68 platform require a new socket other than the 1155 Sandy Bridge P67 platform? I understand that it will require new mother boards

3. It is my understanding that Z68 platform does not come with an integrated GPU but will require a discrete GPU - is this correct?

4. Will Intel's "Quick Sync" work with the new Z68 platform and the discrete GPU?

5. Will the current I-7 2600K chipset bet upgraded so that "Quick Sync" will work with the discrete GPU?

6. Will the Sandy Bridge E series require a new socket other than the 1155 socket?

7. I am confused, will the Sandy Bridge E series work with the Z68 platform or will it have its own separate platform?

Thanks for your help. These are probably simple questions for the computer experts on this forum.

More about : z68 ssd cache questions

March 2, 2011 12:26:27 AM

Guys and Gals come on - these are probably pretty easy questions for the computer whizzes that read this forum and I believe that they are representative of a large number of the readers that come to Tom's Hardware forum for computer information.

For the non-computer expert, it is somewhat difficult to separate the key differences between the upcoming Z68 platform (and maybe a different Mobo socket), the Sandy Bridge revamp coming in March/April and the Sandy Bridge E series (which I don't fully understand what separates it from the Sandy Bridge non "E" series). Even after reading all the articles in this website and others like Bit Tech, it is difficult to separate out the differences.

I'm guessing the the Z68 chips will require a new Mobo and hence have a different socket. Is this true also of the Sandy Bridge E. It is also important to understand how much faster the Intel SSD cache will make computer response time. Intel usually hits the ball out of the park when it adds an integrated feature (and yes sometimes they strike out).

Anyway, I am willing to bet a lot of readers have the same questions I list above. Sifting through all of the different threads of the forum can be difficult and time consuming and it doesn't always yield a clear answer.

It could be that for some of the answers all of us will just have to wait till these other chipsets come out.
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a c 379 à CPUs
March 2, 2011 12:52:03 AM

flong said:
Hey I have some questions on the new Z68 platform coming out from Intel.

1. Will the SSD cache make the Disc HD and SSD perform at a much faster rate than separately? I understand that it integrates the drives

2. Will the Z68 platform require a new socket other than the 1155 Sandy Bridge P67 platform? I understand that it will require new mother boards

3. It is my understanding that Z68 platform does not come with an integrated GPU but will require a discrete GPU - is this correct?

4. Will Intel's "Quick Sync" work with the new Z68 platform and the discrete GPU?

5. Will the current I-7 2600K chipset bet upgraded so that "Quick Sync" will work with the discrete GPU?

6. Will the Sandy Bridge E series require a new socket other than the 1155 socket?

7. I am confused, will the Sandy Bridge E series work with the Z68 platform or will it have its own separate platform?

Thanks for your help. These are probably simple questions for the computer experts on this forum.


I'll give it a try:
1) Exactly how the ssd cache will work is unknown at this time. From the description, it might be a method where the chipset drivers will keep a duplicate of the most frequently used data on the ssd for faster access. Perhaps like the Seagate momentus XT hybrid drive.
2) Same 1155 socket.
3) I understand that the Z68 will allow both a discrete video card and use the video capabilities if the sandy bridge cpu.
4) I don't understand quick sync, but I think the purpose of Z68 is to enable every options at the same time.
5) I doubt the existing H67 and P67 chipsets will be changed.
6) Sandy bridge E is the follow on to the i7-9xx high end processors. It will require the 2011 socket. and presumably a new chipset.
7) Same answer as 7^ The socket is the attachment to the motherboard, it is identified by the number of pins or connections it has (1155/1156/etc)
The chipset(p67/H55/etc) is the electronics that determine how the cpu will operate.
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a c 163 à CPUs
March 2, 2011 3:10:52 AM

I believe you are confused on the meaning of chipset. Chipset is the motherboard, z68 is a chipset. I7 is not a chipset. This revamp you talking about is not a revamp, rather they are releasing more chipsets; all for socket 1155. IE they are releasing motherboards for the I7, I5, I3.

The CPU has the integrated GPU on it, not motherboard and quicksync can only work if the igpu is enabled (currently only H67 can use the igpu, P67 cannot). Z68 combines the features of H67 and P67, being able to use/OC the igpu and OC the CPU. Quicksync works the same way it does on H67 as it does on Z68. Having a monitor in the discrete card will disable the igpu so you have no quicksync, and not having the monitor in the discrete card will disable the card. I could go into solutions if you like.

SSD caching makes the SSD act as a big cache for the hardrive. The HDD and SSD will appear as one but the most commonly files will be used off of the ssd, like a regular cache. Like geofelt said, similarly to the seagate momentus xt. The effectiveness of SSD caching will be dependent on the controller which details are unknown.

Sandy Bridge E is socket 2011, the replacement for socket 1366. And it will therefore have its own chipsets different from socket 1155 and not be compatible with Z68.
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March 2, 2011 5:22:23 AM


k1114 said:
I believe you are confused on the meaning of chipset. Chipset is the motherboard, z68 is a chipset. I7 is not a chipset. This revamp you talking about is not a revamp, rather they are releasing more chipsets; all for socket 1155. IE they are releasing motherboards for the I7, I5, I3.

The CPU has the integrated GPU on it, not motherboard and quicksync can only work if the igpu is enabled (currently only H67 can use the igpu, P67 cannot). Z68 combines the features of H67 and P67, being able to use/OC the igpu and OC the CPU. Quicksync works the same way it does on H67 as it does on Z68. Having a monitor in the discrete card will disable the igpu so you have no quicksync, and not having the monitor in the discrete card will disable the card. I could go into solutions if you like.

SSD caching makes the SSD act as a big cache for the hardrive. The HDD and SSD will appear as one but the most commonly files will be used off of the ssd, like a regular cache. Like geofelt said, similarly to the seagate momentus xt. The effectiveness of SSD caching will be dependent on the controller which details are unknown.

Sandy Bridge E is socket 2011, the replacement for socket 1366. And it will therefore have its own chipsets different from socket 1155 and not be compatible with Z68.


Yes I agree that I do not fully understand the computer world terminology yet. If "chipset" indeed refers to the mother board chip arrangement and not the CPU then I have it backwards.

So we have the Sandy Bridge E with the 2011 socket and the Z68 - what will be the difference between the two? Based on your responses, it appears that the Z68 primarily is an improvement on Sandy Bridge. The Sandy Bridge E appears the be the next generation 1366 socket improvement.
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March 2, 2011 5:26:13 AM

Thank you for your answers.

If the Z68 and Sandy Bridge have the same socket (1155) will they require different mother boards - I hope that this is not a stupid question?
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a c 379 à CPUs
March 2, 2011 1:09:34 PM

flong said:
Thank you for your answers.

If the Z68 and Sandy Bridge have the same socket (1155) will they require different mother boards - I hope that this is not a stupid question?


The Z68 chips will be placed on the motherboard, along with a 1155 socket and other components. The sandy bridge cpu is then placed in the 1155 socket.
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a c 163 à CPUs
March 2, 2011 2:43:04 PM

Z68 is a mobo for sandy bridge, sandy bridge is a cpu microarchitecture. z68-mobo, sandybridge-cpu.

The releases of these new motherboards are just allowing its users to pick a mobo that has the features they want without features they dont want. Although its questionable why they would release so many since its confusing a lot of people.
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Best solution

a b à CPUs
March 2, 2011 3:38:49 PM

Answer 1:
We don't know much about SSD Cache yet.

Answer 2:
Z68 boards will have the 1155 socket.

Answer 3:
None of the new chipsets have integrated graphics. The H67 and Z68 simply take advantage of the Sandy Bridge processor's built-in graphics.

Answer 4:
They are already working on ways for this to happen. It will likely involve special chips on the H67 mainboards. The Z68 chipset may have this ability built-in, but we don't know yet.

Answer 5:
The i7 2600K is the CPU. It will not be changed.

Answer 6:
"Waimea Bay" High End Desk Top (HEDT) platform: Sandy Bridge E and "Patsburg" PCH/chipset...
130W TDP.
LGA 2011 socket.
No processor graphics -- discrete graphics only.
Four or six cores.
Hyperthreading.
Up to 15MB of L3 cache.
Quad-channel memory controller, supporting up to 32GB.
Official support up to DDR3-1600. (may or may not happen)
40 PCIe Gen 3 (PCIe 3.0) lanes, enabling support of three-way SLI without extra bridge chips. (X58 platform has 36 PCIe Gen 2 lanes)
Overclocking-friendly Extreme Edition(s) available.
Four SATA2 3Gbps ports, two SATA3 6Gbps ports, eight SAS/SATA3 6Gbps ports.
Supports PCI without bridge chip. (unlike Cougar Point)
14 USB 2.0 ports. (no USB 3.0 yet)

Answer 7:
Z68 boards have the 1155 socket, so it will not be compatible with Sandy Bridge E processors.

Answer for your follow-on questions:
You are still confused.

The H67/P67/Z68 chip is permanently soldered onto the mainboard. It does not go into the 1155 socket.

The Sandy Bridge processor goes into the 1155 socket on the mainboard, and can be removed and placed onto a new mainboard that has the 1155 socket. The Sandy Bridge processor works with any of these chipsets: H67 or P67 or Z68 (or the business versions that I won't go into now).
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March 2, 2011 9:49:41 PM

You guys are great. I feel a little stupid the Z68 is a new mobo setup like the P67 - duh. In my defense, when a lay person reads the computer articles much of this information is taken for granted that it is already understood by the reader. I am trying to educate myself to be fluent in this new "computer-speak" language.

Perhaps the most important thing I have learned is that it is probably worth waiting for the Z68 release to build my computer (I plan on using the 2600K CPU) as it will allow both quick sync and have SSD caching.

Thanks to all of you again for taking the time to educate me and other non- computer experts in this audience.
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March 8, 2011 4:01:32 AM

On the Z68, I am confused as to how the graphics on a chip works. Does it work through the video card to use the integrated for normal use and it switched to the video card for gaming and high video usage?
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a b à CPUs
March 8, 2011 4:53:08 AM

Either you use two monitors (one for 2D and one for 3D) or one monitor with multiple inputs.
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March 8, 2011 1:18:00 PM

Ahh. Well, if I can use 2 monitors without loss of performance, that's not bad. One reason I stopped using multiple monitors on my gaming rig.
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March 18, 2011 2:38:26 AM

Best answer selected by flong.
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