Intel Skulltrail system benchmarked
The Skulltrail board is based on the Seaburg chipset and Stoakely platform, which we just reviewed. Seaburg is a potent beast, with dual 1600MHz front side-buses connected to dual CPU sockets, the ability to feed four PCIe x16 graphics slots with PCIe 2.0 support, four channels of FB-DIMM memory at 800MHz, and an advanced snoop filter to reduce cache coherency traffic. Intel has adapted Seaburg for enthusiasts by placing it on a motherboard with four full PCIe x16 slots and using Nvidia PCI Express switch chips to route the PCIe lanes to those slots. This arrangement has the disadvantage of confining Skulltrail’s PCIe slots to first-generation PCIe bandwidth, since the Nvidia chips don’t support PCIe gen 2, but it has the advantage of providing some cover for Nvidia’s decision to extend SLI support in its drivers to include the Skulltrail board.