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2 March 2010

Kontron Releases Computer-on-Module with Improved Graphics and Performance

The new Kontron ETXexpress-AI COM Express computer-on-module offers OEMs a new level of design flexibility thanks to its 32nm Intel Core i7 / Core i5 processor technology, high energy efficiency, wide graphics support, customisable PCI Express configuration and ECC dual-channel RAM to ensure data accuracy. Kontron’s new computer-on-module offers improved computing and graphics performance in the high-end performance sector.

The Kontron ETXexpress-AI in the COM Express Basic form factor features the processor-integrated 45nm Intel HD graphics with DisplayPort support. Especially graphics-intensive applications benefit from Open GL 2.1 support and accelerated DirectX 10 capabilities through better and faster visual display. Thus, the new computer-on-module is able to achieve up to 2.6 times the graphics performance in comparison to Mobile Intel GM45 and GS45 Express based solutions (according to 3DMark 2006). For safety-critical applications, the Kontron ETXexpress-AI integrates up to 8GB of ECC system memory and an optional trusted platform module (TPM).

The performance of the new computer-on-modules is scalable right from the start with a choice of four different Intel Core i7 or Core i5 processors. By integrating the latest 32nm processor technology for power use efficiency, higher bandwidth, and greater integration, the Kontron ETXexpress-AI COM raises the performance bar compared to solutions based on embedded Intel Core 2 Duo processors. The new module not only speeds up multiprocessing tasks via hyper-threading technology (HTT), but also processes single-threaded tasks much faster thanks to the new Intel Turbo Boost technology.

Depending on the processor, this allows individual cores to operate between 25% and 100% above the nominal clock-speed without exceeding the defined TDP. OEMs in markets such as gaming, digital signage, network/telecommunications, automation, medical and military, aerospace and government (MAG), who require application-specific customisation, continue to take advantage of optimised time-to-market and now have an even more secure upgrade path to grow their application’s capabilities today and onto future generations.

Overview of the feature set

The Kontron ETXexpress-AI is available with the 1.06GHz Intel Core i7 620UE, the 2GHz Intel Core i7-620LE, the 2.4GHz Intel Core i5-520E, and the fast 2.53GHz Intel Core i7-610E processor. All versions support up to 2x 4GB of dual channel DDR3 SO-DIMM modules with ECC and offer a comprehensive range of interfaces via the COM Express COM.0 Type 2 connector: one PCI Express Gen 2 graphics (PEG) (also configurable as two PCIe x8), six PCI Express x1, four serial ATA, one PATA, eight USB 2.0, gigabit Ethernet, dual-channel LVDS, VGA and Intel high-definition audio.

Additionally, older non-PCI Express-compliant components can be incorporated via the integrated PCI 2.3 interfaces. The integrated Intel AMT 6.0 active management technology enables out-of-band remote management. An 8V-18V universal power supply for simplified power distribution rounds out the feature set.

Operating system support is offered for Windows 7, Windows XP, Linux (including Red Hat Enterprise, SuSE, Red Flag and Wind River Linux) and VxWorks. Evaluation samples of the new Kontron ETXexpress-AI computer-on-module are now available. Series production will begin during the first half of 2010.

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