The amount of people that have sat down and gently *sighed* I wish there was an Intel version of the nForce chipset would be countless. nVidia entering the chipset market had really given former chip leaders a knock about. The release of the nForce 4 only made those *sighs* louder because all the loyal Intel followers wanted SLI support on the Pentium 4 platform, even if they weren't going to jump on it straight away...at least the option was going to be there.
We might finally have someone to compete with Intel in the enthusiast market. Intel makes great chipsets, there is no denying that but variety is the spice of life especially with SIS and VIA being quiet on the Intel front at the moment. The rumor has been floating around for a long time now that nVidia were going to release an Intel version of the nForce 4 and it became all official a few weeks back. This is one chipset that could have severely impacted the sales of DDR2 memory and PCI Express graphics cards. If people were thinking, "I will wait to see what nVidia bring to the party before I upgrade", we could begin to see an increase in sales towards the middle of this year.
Being a reference board, we are going to be looking at what the Intel Pentium 4 version of the nForce 4 chipset offers, what its performance is like against the 925XE chipset from Intel and give you a general understanding of the new chipset which will help you decide if its worth while moving to the newest Intel player on the market or stick with old faithful.
Throughout the article we'll refer to the nForce 4 Intel Edition as the NF4 IE. This isn't an official abbreviation of the chipset but we like to set trends so let's find out what everyone is calling it in a few months.