The Skulltrail leads to gaming bliss

At last the long awaited ultimate hardware for the ultimate performance junkie has been launched at the Games Developer Conference today.

I have written blogs about Skulltrail before, and here for you is another peak at the beast bellowing in the depths of the Intel performance dungeon:

The beauty of the system lies in the choices it allows you to make. You can choose to install 1 or 2 CPU’s for up to 8 cores of power, you can choose to install between 1 and 4 graphics cards from either ATI or nVidia (subject to the right driver support from those guys). You can choose any cooling solution you like, and you can choose to overclock until you melt the earth’s crust.

Simply said, Skulltrail is the Bugatti Veyron of the PC world. It is gorgeously fast and an engineering marvel, but it doesn’t score points in the fuel efficiency stakes. 😉

Game developers are giddy about Skulltrail, the press release has this quote from id software:

“For the team creating world-class games here at id, time is one of our most valuable assets,” said Robert A. Duffy, Programming Director, id Software. “Having eight powerful Intel cores in a single machine helps our team create and test our latest titles at record speed. We have seen one of our most time-consuming asset generation processes cut from over 4 hours to under 20 minutes by utilizing all eight cores and threading the generation code. Long term this translates to better games on the market faster than previously possible.”

The press LOVE it, just check these quotes out:

Tech Report“It’s the coolest codename known to geekdom, and it has the hardware to back it up.”

“We’re also immensely gratified to see that Intel has made a full-bore effort to deliver a truly acceptable enthusiast-class motherboard this time around. This is what we asked for back when we reviewed the V8, and Intel deserves major kudos for taking that criticism into account.”

HardOCP“Skulltrail is the first and currently the only platform to support BOTH NVIDIA’s SLI technology, and ATI’s Crossfire technology. Sounds interesting? You bet it is.”

“The QX9775 processors were outstanding. They ran cool enough and were extremely fast and responsive at all times. They also were both overclocking demons.”

The Inquirer (8/10 Beers award!)

“There are a lot of superlatives about Skulltrail: the first to run eight CPU cores at 4GHz, and the first to fit in four PCIe x16, both physical and electrical, graphics – or other – card slots.”

“In summary, a watershed product – the first real dual-socket Intel desktop mainboard, and pretty good one at that.

If you want one, you can buy one now either from your favourite gaming OEM or you can buy the bits and build it yourself. If you are too poor to buy the worlds meanest gaming rig, pop down to HotHardware, they are giving one away. Good luck!

PS: If you ever doubted if you needed 8 cores for gaming, look here:

2 thoughts on “The Skulltrail leads to gaming bliss

  1. WoooHoo 1st post
    I have been looking forward to skulltrail…I still have lots of concerns though.
    a) Will it run 3-way SLI out of the box?
    b) with sustainability a big thing…will it require it’s own dedicated substation?
    c) Will gaming softward programmers take advantage of the hardware capabilities?
    d) Why call it Skulltrail…why not…MindFreak?
    e) The Memory selection is wrong for performance gaming?
    f) will it beat 30,664 on 3dmark 06?
    Thanks for listening

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