ASUS Sabertooth 990FX
Let’s start off with a quick look at the new 990FX chipset.
The 990FX looks very similar to its predecessor, the 890FX. There are no new innovations to the chipset to speak of but if you look closely, the a HyperTransport 3.0 processor link with previous 5.2 GT/s of peak interconnect bandwidth from the 890FX gets upgraded to version 3.1 and 6.4 GT/s of bandwidth on the 990FX. There are no changes to the silicon but perhaps the Hypertransport speed may be improved with the additional bandwidth.
The Northbridge is a PCI Express 2.0 switch with 42 lanes of connectivity and the 990FX now supports Nvidia GeForce cards (though not all motherboard models will feature this). This is a welcome sight, seeing AMD users were pretty much stuck with AMD/ATI graphic cards for some time.
The SB950 offers additional PCI express lanes and all 6 of the serial ATA ports use 6Gbps of connectivity. The USB ports still feature USB 2.0 as the next generation has not been embraced, seeing as the I/O blocks have not changed either. Folks, there really is no cutting edge differences on both the 990FX and SB950.