J&W has now jumped on the Cedar Trail bandwagon in releasing a pair of mini-ITX motherboards for HTPC users in particular.
Falling under the company’s Minix line, the D2700-DC and D2500-DC are essentially the same board in terms of layout and specs, only they differ in the Atom chips embedded as indicative by their names. The D2500-DC uses Intel’s dual-core Atom D2500 CPU which runs at 1.86GHz, while the D2700-DC uses the Atom D2700 CPU with a 2.13GHz core clock speed.
Both boards are entirely passive cooled (using a chunk of metal that covers most of the PCB space) which is a highly attractive attribute in line of building a completely silent HTPC. To assist in the limited amount of space available on these mITX boards, the decision to go with two SO-DIMM memory slots instead of regular DIMM slots was made. On that subject, it’s possible to install up to 8GB (2 x 4GB) of memory on these boards.
Other features of the boards include two SATA 3Gbps ports, a PCI-E x1 slot, two USB 3.0 ports on the rear I/O thanks to the implementation of a third party (Renesas) controller, four USB 2.0 ports, dual PS/2 ports, dual Gigabit LAN ports and 5.1 audio support. Both D-Sub and HDMI outputs are also found on these boards along with a DC power input which allows the system to be powered using an external AC/DC adapter.
Pricing and availability details are yet to be disclosed on the Minix D2700-DC and D2500-DC mini-ITX motherboards from J&W.
In related news, the company is also planning to release to market a barebone PC based on these new boards. Measurements for it come in at 192 x 186 x 60mm which isn’t as small as some nettops out there, but for one using an mITX motherboard it’s not too shabby at all. There’s room for a 2.5-inch HDD/SSD inside and it will ship with a VESA mount.
KitGuru says: As usual with this particular market segment it all boils down to pricing. If they can get them out cheap enough they’ll no doubt become an attractive option for one’s next HTPC build.