The CPU giant has been forced to halt production of anymore Sandy Bridge chipsets. There is a design flaw in a support chip (on the P67 and H57 boards) that may cause the SATA connections on the motherboards to degrade over time and cause hard drives or optical drives to under-perform. This blunder is going to delay replacement boards until late February and cost the company a cool $1 billion in sales.
Intel started shipping the dodgy chips on the 9th of January and it appears both the next-generation i5 and i7 chipsets are affected. To be sure, there is no design flaw with the Sandy Bridge processor itself, rather a support chip on the motherboard that hosts the CPU.
Intel will be working with OEMs to take back the faulty chipsets and replace them for customers, but although they have already begun re-manufacturing the new boards it may take until late February before customers are sent out their replacements.
Has this new development cast a terminal sting for the much lauded Sandy Bridge? Only time will tell. One thing remains certain, AMD fanboys are going to eat this up like a t-bone steak.