2.93GHz Bloomfield-based system built, pictured
It?s the worst kept secret in the industry: Intel?s next-generation Penryn killer, codenamed Nehalem is just around the corner. We?ve been seeing leaked benchmarks based on early silicon for months, and Nehalem?s Wikipedia page is already packed with unconfirmed specifications. All indications ? and this is with more optimizations to come, mind you ? is that Nehalem may be a bad mother worthy of having Isaac Hayes pound out a theme song for it.
OK, we get it. It?s going to be fast, but just how difficult is it to build a Nehalem rig? What are the catches? Will the new motherboard and socket require some silly new BTX form factor?
To find out, we convinced one of our hardware contacts (who?ll remain unnamed) to let us into its lab so we could finally get our hands on the new chip. There, we were provided with the desktop version of Nehalem ? called Bloomfield ? and an Intel D58XSO ?Smackover? board.