Intel’s Haswell-E HEDT (high-end desktop) processors and the X99 chipset are coming very soon. What is attractive about these processors is that they give you 40 PCI-Express lanes. Well that is true for the Core i7-5930K and the Core i7-5960X which both will have 40-lane PCI-Express 3.0 root complexes, but the entry-level Core i7-5820K will have a narrower 28-lane PCI-Express 3.0 root complex.
This information was revealed as manual’s for Gigabyte’s X99 motherboards were found online. This means that multi-GPU setups using the Core i7-5820K will not be much different than LGA1150 Haswell platforms. For example if you have a motherboard with three PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slots the i7-5930K and i7-5960X will let you run two slots at full x16 bandwidth and the third slot at x8 speeds. If you were to use the i7-5820K on the same motherboard the second slot would not go pass x8 and the third would cap out at x4 speeds. If you have a board with four slots one of them would run out of bandwidth completely.
Of course the trade-off is that with the Core i7-5820K you are getting six cores, twelve threads with HyperThreading, 12 MB of L3 cache, and DDR4 memory support. This is at a price point that is expected to be not too far off from the Intel Core i7-4790K. So if you are planning a system with no more than two graphics cards the Core i7-5820K could be an attractive way to get into Intel’s new HEDT platform.
Leaked manuals can be found here.