Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in

SLI Arrives on AMD 9-Series Motherboards

By - Source: Nvidia | B 41 comments

Nvidia is licensing its SLI technology for AMD 990FX, 990X and 970 chipsets.

As reported earlier, Nvidia is now licensing SLI technology to manufacturers of AMD motherboards despite its rivalry with the company in the GPU sector. SLI will be made available for boards playing host to AMD's 990FX, 990X and 970 chipsets.

"Long term gamers probably remember that for a long time AMD offered great high-end CPUs, but in recent years, AMD’s stature as the preferred gaming CPU fell by the wayside and Intel CPUs have been the gamers’ choice," Nvidia's Tom Petersen explained in an official blog. "For this reason, we’ve only licensed SLI for motherboards with Intel chipsets."

Previously AMD users required an unofficial patch to make SLI work on their AMD-based motherboards. But then news of Nvidia's official support for 9-series chipset boards surfaced last month by way of a leaked slide. It showed that the AMD 990FX chipset is capable of supporting two PCIe x16 slots or four PCIe x8 slots for running 2-way (2 x16) or 3-way (3 x8) SLI. As for the AMD 990X, the chipset only supports 2-way SLI (2 x8). There was no mention of the 970 chipset.

The slide also stated that SLI on AMD 9-Series chipsets use the same "key" technology that Intel SLI platforms use and the same certification process (the same SBIOS support is required). It also said there will be no support for Nvidia's nF200 bridge chip which was designed to work with Socket A AMD processor and DDR333/400 memory.

"We’ve been recently hearing chants of 'SLI for AMD CPUs,' and figured that now is a great time to do it," Petersen said. "After all, we want to make sure gamers can benefit from the new CPU competitive landscape and ensure they have NVIDIA SLI – the highest performance, most stable multi-GPU solution - to game on! According to Steam, 93-percent of all multi-GPU systems in use today use SLI."

ASUS, Gigabyte, ASRock, and MSI are among the first motherboard manufacturers to offer SLI support, with more coming on board shortly.

Display 41 Comments.
This thread is closed for comments
  • 2 Hide
    bobdozer , April 28, 2011 8:40 PM
    It's because Bulldozer smashes Sandy Bridge in gaming and not allowing it would have been suicide for Nvidia.
  • 5 Hide
    ajcroteau , April 28, 2011 8:44 PM
    THANK GOD!!! Right now i'm running an nForce board so i can run AMD & SLI but the nForce chipset does fall short a few areas...
  • 3 Hide
    desolair , April 28, 2011 8:47 PM
    bobdozerIt's because Bulldozer smashes Sandy Bridge in gaming and not allowing it would have been suicide for Nvidia.


    I'll believe it when i see it. I think AMD is just too far behind at this point.
  • 1 Hide
    aznguy0028 , April 28, 2011 8:57 PM
    desolairI'll believe it when i see it. I think AMD is just too far behind at this point.

    Exactly, I'll believe it when I see it as well. I would love to see AMD come back with something amazing. Imo, it will be damn hard though. AMD hasn't released something great for gamers in a LONG time, and Intel's prices are not that high for the 2xxx k series either. I got my i52500k for 194$ (tax included)from Microcenter.

    If Bulldozer can be ~200$ and performs better than the i5's, it will be nothing short of a miracle.
  • 3 Hide
    scrumworks , April 28, 2011 8:59 PM
    CrossfireX has better scaling. Nuff said.
  • -1 Hide
    Anonymous , April 28, 2011 8:59 PM
    I doubt Bulldozer will smash Sandy Bridge I have a I7-2600k and off of air it overclocks to 4.5ghz with no issue and so will any other I7-2600k if you have proper air flow in your case. This isn't P4 days when AMD was the best. Intel has left AMD in the Dust the last 5 plus years.
  • 2 Hide
    joytech22 , April 28, 2011 9:00 PM
    Oh Hell Yes!
    Finally!

    Now that makes me a Happy Camper :) 
  • 2 Hide
    mister g , April 28, 2011 9:07 PM
    I think the SLI thing was just to spite Intel, with whom some animosity remains since their recent break-up over Nehalem.
  • 1 Hide
    mikem_90 , April 28, 2011 9:24 PM
    Oh, sure, because not enough people game on that platform, lets make it harder to game on that platform! Self-fulfilling prophecy.

    Way to ask for a judge to find you guilty of anti-competitive practices buddy.

    Full Disclosure: The bulk of my systems are Intel / Nvidia.
  • 4 Hide
    kinggraves , April 28, 2011 9:24 PM
    Translation: NVidia found out people were doing it unofficially anyway and decided "now was the time" to collect licensing checks.

    Also, what's with the Intel fanboys? You can't knock Bulldozer until it's at least available. Sure Sandy Bridge is looking pretty strong (now that it's fixed), but there's no reason AMD can't do better. AMD has still done well in the mid to low end builds, and offers pretty good price/performance, they just stopped dominating once Intel got serious. Don't forget what made them get serious to begin with, no one wants AMD to fail.
  • 3 Hide
    pelov , April 28, 2011 9:25 PM
    mister gI think the SLI thing was just to spite Intel, with whom some animosity remains since their recent break-up over Nehalem.


    Nvidia is also losing ground fast to AMD GPUs. Remember tom's recent "best gpu for the money" breakdown? As it stands currently, AMD GPUs outperform and draw less power from nearly all similarly priced intel counterparts. To boot they're incredible in crossfire.

    Hopefully we see AMD CPUs perform well. The statistics from AMD have been 50% faster than phenom II and 25%-ish faster than the old corei7's, which would essentially put them smack dab in the middle of sandy bridge territory.

    And don't expect benchmarks before release. AMD has never done this and stays tight-lipped.
  • 2 Hide
    pelov , April 28, 2011 9:26 PM
    ^^ err, can't edit. Should read AMD GPUs outperform and draw less power from nearly all similarly priced nvidia counterparts :p 
  • 4 Hide
    BulkZerker , April 28, 2011 9:57 PM
    Nvidia... the way its meant to be paid.
  • 2 Hide
    maddy143ded , April 28, 2011 9:57 PM
    this does mean that we can expect something great from the Bulldozer platform......
    i for one cant wait for bulldozer to arrive.
    though i am not planning to do a sli or a Xfire in the near future, my next upgrade is definetly going to include a mother board that can provide me with the option for SLI/Xfire.
    and mobo upgrade is long overdue. 785G platform with ddr2 ram is really hitting my performance......
  • 3 Hide
    maddy143ded , April 28, 2011 10:01 PM
    yes intel fanboys should definetly want Bulldozer to kill Sandy Bridge in terms of performance,,,,, only the Consumer suffers in a market where there is no competition.

    kinggravesTranslation: NVidia found out people were doing it unofficially anyway and decided "now was the time" to collect licensing checks.Also, what's with the Intel fanboys? You can't knock Bulldozer until it's at least available. Sure Sandy Bridge is looking pretty strong (now that it's fixed), but there's no reason AMD can't do better. AMD has still done well in the mid to low end builds, and offers pretty good price/performance, they just stopped dominating once Intel got serious. Don't forget what made them get serious to begin with, no one wants AMD to fail.

  • 1 Hide
    Bigmac80 , April 28, 2011 10:26 PM
    Bulldozer might be faster then the new sandy bridge but when that happens intel will counter with the new Ivy Bridge or the X68...
  • 1 Hide
    iam2thecrowe , April 28, 2011 10:48 PM
    well they will get a few more sales this way, its not a bad move. If you have integrated amd gfx does nvidia disable physx???
  • 0 Hide
    Yuka , April 29, 2011 12:17 AM
    Actually, giving it a lil' thought it makes perfect sense.

    At the end, it seems that Intel is going to sit back over a corner and watch ARM getting stronger (and prolly spawning more RISC archs). So, AMD starts with ARM development again (the one that Meyer dropped/sold to Qualcomm if I recall correctly) and still have x86 licensing. Imagine getting something in between a CISC, RISC and parallel GPU archs. Maybe 3 archs on die, why not? XD

    This looks very good for nVidia actually, even more than the short term possible benefit AMD might get from SLI itself. Oh, and that's actually thinking down the road; SLI might be a first step into working together (again).

    Cheers!
  • 1 Hide
    mister g , April 29, 2011 12:28 AM
    YukaActually, giving it a lil' thought it makes perfect sense.At the end, it seems that Intel is going to sit back over a corner and watch ARM getting stronger (and prolly spawning more RISC archs). So, AMD starts with ARM development again (the one that Meyer dropped/sold to Qualcomm if I recall correctly) and still have x86 licensing. Imagine getting something in between a CISC, RISC and parallel GPU archs. Maybe 3 archs on die, why not? XDThis looks very good for nVidia actually, even more than the short term possible benefit AMD might get from SLI itself. Oh, and that's actually thinking down the road; SLI might be a first step into working together (again).Cheers!

    When did AMD and Nvidia ever work together?
  • 0 Hide
    tajisi , April 29, 2011 12:29 AM
    pelovNvidia is also losing ground fast to AMD GPUs. Remember tom's recent "best gpu for the money" breakdown? As it stands currently, AMD GPUs outperform and draw less power from nearly all similarly priced intel counterparts. To boot they're incredible in crossfire. Hopefully we see AMD CPUs perform well. The statistics from AMD have been 50% faster than phenom II and 25%-ish faster than the old corei7's, which would essentially put them smack dab in the middle of sandy bridge territory. And don't expect benchmarks before release. AMD has never done this and stays tight-lipped.


    I still remember certain AMD numbers that bragged that the high end triple/quad core Phenoms could beat out lower clocked, low cached Core 2 Duos. That being said, if they have to hit 4 GHZ with an 8 core Bulldozer to be 25% faster than an old i7 I'm staying with Intel.
Display more comments