In a move that is long overdue, NVIDIA’s Tom Peteresen announced on a blog post that SLI multi-GPU support was finally going to be offered on AMD platforms with the upcoming launch of the AMD 990FX, 990X and 970 chipsets. On previous AMD platforms users have not been able to use multiple NVIDIA graphics cards in SLI because NVIDIA simply did not allow licensing of the technology on them. As of this month, that policy is changing.
According to the post, NVIDIA has had a change of heart and wants to "make sure gamers can benefit from the new CPU competitive landscape and ensure they have NVIDIA SLI – the highest performance, most stable multi-GPU solution – to game on!" The lack of SLI on previous chipsets was the result of Intel being the dominate CPU platform of choice for gamers in recent years.
ASUS, Gigabyte, ASRock, and MSI are going to be the first out of the block with motherboard based on the AMD 990FX, 990X and 970 chipsets with SLI support according to NVIDIA’s Petersen.
This doesn’t change NVIDIA’s stance on the whole licensing and charging motherboard vendors to integrate SLI thing, however. In an ideal world, NVIDIA would have announced that they were opening up SLI to work on ANY motherboard, future or present, that has enough PCI Express slots on them, just like we see today with AMD’s own CrossFire technology. Despite pressure to do that, NVIDIA is standing by its current formula and expanding into the realm of AMD chipsets.
Regardless, today is a good day for AMD fans and gamers alike that want more choice and more variety in their system build options for the future. The AMD Llano and Bulldozer-based processors just got a little more gaming friendly.