Intel X99

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Intel X99
CPU supported
Socket supportedLGA 2011-v3
Fabrication process32nm
TDP6.5 W[1]
Release date(s)August 2014
PredecessorIntel X79
SuccessorIntel X299

Intel X99, codenamed "Wellsburg", is a Platform Controller Hub (PCH) designed and manufactured by Intel, targeted at the high-end desktop (HEDT) and enthusiast segments of the Intel product lineup.[2]: 10  The X99 chipset supports both Intel Core i7 Extreme and Intel Xeon E5-16xx v3 and E5-26xx v3 processors, which belong to the Haswell-E and Haswell-EP variants of the Haswell microarchitecture, respectively. All supported processors use the LGA 2011-v3 socket.[3][4]

The X99 chipset was released in late August 2014, while the supported processors were released in late August 2014 (Haswell-E) and early September 2014 (Haswell-EP).[3][5] In May 2016, X99's processor support was extended to the Broadwell variants of the Intel Core i7 Extreme and Intel Xeon E5-16xx v4 and E5-26xx v4 processors, which belong to the Broadwell-E and Broadwell-EP variants of the Broadwell microarchitecture, respectively.[6][7]


High-level diagram of the Intel X99 high-end desktop (enthusiast) platform[8]: 2 

The X99 chipset uses a Direct Media Interface (DMI) 2.0 ×4 link for the connection between the processor and itself; that way, a total bandwidth of 20 Gbit/s is available to all connectivity options provided by the chipset. Up to eight PCI Express 2.0 lanes are provided by the X99 chipset, with speeds of up to 5 Gbit/s per lane and a possibility to configure these lanes into ×1, ×2 and ×4 links. Additionally, the X99 chipset supports a configurable layout of the PCI Express 3.0 lanes provided by the processor, which may be bifurcated into up to two ×16 links and one ×8 link, or into up to five ×8 links (the total number of available PCI Express 3.0 lanes depends on the used processor).[1][2]: 4–10, 70, 71 [8][9]

Two Serial ATA (SATA) 3.0 controllers are integrated into the X99 chipset, providing a total of up to ten ports for storage devices and supporting speeds of up to 6 Gbit/s per port, with hardware support for the Advanced Host Controller Interface (AHCI) logical interface. Each SATA port may be enabled or disabled as needed. Six SATA ports provided by the first controller may be configured for Rapid Storage Technology (RST) 13.1, which supports RAID 0, 1, 5 and 10 levels; additionally, Smart Response Technology (SRT) disk caching allows the creation of hybrid volumes.[1][2]: 4–10 [8][9]

SATA Express and M.2 are also supported, providing the ability for interfacing with PCI Express-based storage devices. Each of the X99's SATA Express ports requires two PCI Express 2.0 lanes provided by the chipset, while the M.2 slots can use either two 2.0 lanes from the chipset itself, or up to four 3.0 lanes taken directly from the processor. As a result, the X99 provides bandwidths of up to 3.94 GB/s for connected PCI Express storage devices.[9]

One Extensible Host Controller Interface (xHCI) controller and two Enhanced Host Controller Interface (EHCI) controllers are integrated into the X99 chipset, providing a total of up to 14 USB ports. Out of those ports, up to six can be configured as USB 3.0 ports with speeds of up to 5 Gbit/s per port, while the remaining are USB 2.0 ports with speeds of up to 480 Mbit/s per port. Each USB port may also be enabled or disabled as needed. Integrated Intel High Definition Audio (HD Audio) supports up to four hardware audio codecs and multi-channel audio streams.[1][2]: 7, 9 [8] An Intel Gigabit Ethernet controller is also integrated, supporting (among other features) receive-side scaling (RSS) with two hardware receive queues.[2]: 7, 76–83 

Some of the connectivity options and interfaces provided by the X99 chipset are configurable via Flexible I/O, which allows certain hardware capacities of the chipset to be selectively distributed between the PCI Express, USB 3.0 and SATA interfaces. That way, connectivity options of the X99 chipset may be adjusted to fit the needs of a particular motherboard implementation; for example, some of the SATA or USB 3.0 ports may be exchanged for additional PCI Express 2.0 lanes.[2]: 7, 15, 16, 69 [10]

The X99 chipset supports Virtualization Technology for Directed I/O (Intel VT-d), which provides hardware support for virtualization by implementing an input/output memory management unit (IOMMU). The chipset also integrates a Low Pin Count (LPC) interface, supporting interrupt controllers, timers, power management, super I/O, real-time clock (RTC), etc. Integrated Serial Peripheral Interface (SPI) allows interfacing with devices such as Trusted Platform Modules (TPMs) and serial flash devices. System Management Bus (SMBus) is also provided, with additional support for I2C devices.[1][2]: 4–10 [8][9]

Overclocking is available for unlocked variants of the supported processors. As a significant new feature, the X99 enthusiast platform as a whole was the first to support DDR4 memory. Thanks to the features of integrated memory controllers (IMCs) of supported processors, the X99 platform also supports dual- and quad-channel memory layouts, with optional support for registered ECC memory.[9][11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Intel X99 Chipset (Intel DHX99 PCH)". Intel. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "Intel C610 Series Chipset and Intel X99 Chipset Platform Controller Hub (PCH) Datasheet" (PDF). Intel. September 8, 2014. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  3. ^ a b Ian Cutress (August 29, 2014). "The Intel Haswell-E CPU Review: Core i7-5960X, i7-5930K and i7-5820K Tested". AnandTech. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  4. ^ Michael Larabel (November 5, 2014). "Intel Xeons Running Great On MSI's X99 Motherboard With Linux". Phoronix. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  5. ^ Sebastian Pop (September 9, 2014). "Triple Performance Enabled As Intel Releases Haswell-EP Xeon E5-2600/1600 v3 CPUs with Up to 18 Cores". Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  6. ^ Hassan Mujtaba (May 10, 2016). "ASUS X99 Motherboards For Broadwell-E Unveiled – ROG STRIX X99 Gaming and X99-Deluxe II Fully Detailed". Retrieved June 4, 2018.
  7. ^ "MSI X99 motherboards now fully support Intel next-generation LGA 2011-3 Broadwell-EP". April 4, 2016. Retrieved June 4, 2018.
  8. ^ a b c d e "Intel X99 Chipset: Product Brief" (PDF). Intel. August 29, 2014. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  9. ^ a b c d e Ian Cutress (September 25, 2014). "The Intel Haswell-E X99 Motherboard Roundup with ASUS, GIGABYTE, ASRock and MSI". AnandTech. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  10. ^ Ian Cutress (June 27, 2013). "Intel Z87 Motherboard Review with Haswell: Gigabyte, MSI, ASRock and ASUS". AnandTech. Retrieved April 4, 2015.
  11. ^ Hassan Mujtaba (August 14, 2014). "Gigabyte and ASRock Preview the X99 UD7 WiFi and X99 Killer FATAL1TY HEDT Motherboards For Haswell-E". Retrieved April 4, 2015.

External links[edit]