Kontron has announced the expansion of its COM Express compact form factor portfolio, which will now include the high-performance dual-core Intel Atom processor D525 @1.80GHz on the redesigned Kontron microETXexpress-PV. This new offering delivers a greater overall performance in a tight power envelope with 4GB DDR3 of system memory and a higher CPU frequency.

The Kontron COM Express compact computer-on-module microETXexpress-PV is an ideal drop-in replacement for high-performance designs previously based on Intel Pentium M processors. This offers OEMs a seamless migration path to energy efficient upgrades and extended usage models, increasing both the availability and investment security of their applications.

With its high performance per watt ratio and powerful dual-core processor, the Kontron COM Express compact computer-on-module microETXexpress-PV enables OEMs to implement multi-core processing features such as asymmetric multiprocessing for dedicated 2-in-1 systems for hardware consolidation into cost-effective low power devices.

Its low overall power consumption of only 17W simplifies fanless designs, reducing R&D efforts for rugged and highly available applications in areas such as outdoor digital signage, medical, POS/POI terminals, and industrial automation. On request, a version for the extended temperature range from -40°C up to +85°C is available for harsh environments often found in transportation and military applications.

The feature set in detail

The new Kontron COM Express compact computer-on-module microETXexpress-PV utilises pin-out type 2 definition making the most of the features supported in the second generation 1.8GHz Intel Atom dual-core processor D525 with integrated memory controller and graphics core as well as the Intel 82801HM I/O controller. It now supports up to 4GB DDR3 of system memory bringing twice the RAM resources for memory intensive applications based on Intel Atom processors.

It provides LVDS and VGA simultaneous graphics support for maximum resolutions of 2048 x 1536 via VGA or WXGA (1366 x 768) via 18-bit single channel LVDS. With five configurable PCI Express lanes, as well as PCI, I2C, SPI and LPC bus, the module is a key COTS solution for interface-intensive ultra low power designs. Furthermore, via the COM Express type 2 connector, the new module includes 1x Gigabit Ethernet, 8x USB 2.0, 3x SATA II as well as optional 1x PATA.

A trusted platform module (TPM) and high-definition audio (HDA) are also provided. The wide range of supply voltages (8.5V DC – 18V DC) and MARS smart battery support further enhance the capabilities of mobile devices the module is designed into.

The Kontron COM Express compact computer-on-module microETXexpress-PV supports Windows XP, XPe, and Windows 7, as well as Linux and VxWorks. Samples are available now with mass production beginning in Q1 2012.