Print 4 comment(s) - last by shecknoscopy.. on Aug 31 at 1:20 PM

AOpen i945GTt-VFA
AOpen announces Intel Core 2 Duo "Merom" compatible BIOS updates for its mini PC and motherboards

AOpen has announced its current mobile on desktop (MoDT) systems and motherboards fully support Intel’s recently announced Core 2 Duo Merom for notebook systems. All of AOpen’s Core Duo compatible systems and motherboards will accept Intel’s Core 2 Duo Merom with a simple BIOS update. This includes AOpen’s mini PC Duo MP945-VX, MP945-VXR systems and i975Xa-YDG, i945GTm-VHL and i945GTt-VFA motherboards.
DailyTech previously reported on AOpen’s mini PC Duo systems. AOpen sells the mini PC Duo systems as an OEM system manufacturers can customize accordingly. Specifications of the mini PC Duo MP945-VX and MP945-VXR systems include Intel’s 945GM chipset, integrated wireless 802.11b/g, six channel audio and TV out. Mini PC Duo MP945-VX and MP945-VXR systems feature Viiv technology as well.

The Core 2 Duo Merom motherboards vary from the full ATX i975Xa-YDG to the mini ITX i945GTt-VFA. The i975Xa-YDG features Intel’s 975X chipset with support for ATI’s CrossFire multi-GPU technology. It also features overclocking BIOS options as the ability to raise the front-side bus in 1 MHz increments. Expansion capabilities of the i975Xa-YDG include two half speed PCI Express x16 slots, two PCI Express x1, two PCI and four SATA ports.

The i945GTm-VHL is AOpen’s micro ATX variant and makes use of Intel’s 945GT north bridge with the ICH7M-DH south bridge. It features support for Intel’s Viiv technology and has a single PCI Express x16, one PCI Express x1 and two PCI slots.

Last on the list is AOpen’s i945GTt-VFA which is a mini ITX motherboard. It features limited expandability due to its size. The i945GTt-VFA uses SO-DIMM memory and has a single mini PCI and one PCI Express x1 slots.

These AOpen systems and motherboard have been available for a couple months now. Users who previously purchased these motherboards can download the Intel Core 2 Duo Merom compatible BIOS from AOpen’s website.

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By JeffDM on 8/30/2006 7:41:08 PM , Rating: 2
If Pricewatch is any guide, the MP945-VX goes for $385 each, MP945-VXR is $395. I think those are "bare bones" systems that are missing the memory, drives and CPU.

A complete system is $870 for one model, $920 for the other. I wonder how many they manage to sell.

The bare circuit boards aren't listed on Pricewatch.

RE: Price?
By shecknoscopy on 8/30/2006 9:53:26 PM , Rating: 2
Hoh yeah. I *still* think the Commell and Kontron Merom-compatible mini-itx boards are going to be a lot more solid than this Aopen offering. First, I've not been able to find a vendor for the Aopen mobo on its own, as JeffDM noted. (To be fair, though, the Kontron board's still not out yet either, and you have to buy directly from them...). Second, though, they offer PCIe X16 slots, in addition to the *cough cough* integrated graphics. Just because a PC's tiny, there's no reason why it shouldn't still rock. It's sad that the Aopen board's only got a PCIe x1 slot...

RE: Price?
By uksupramk3 on 8/31/2006 7:42:18 AM , Rating: 2
Commell make some good boards although this AOpen would look a lot better if it had a PCIe 16x slot like the commell boards have. I *hate* onboard graphics with a passion and i'd like to have some kind of option in this regard. Sure theres an X1300 card for PCIe 1x, but realistically, its not much better than the onboard :(

RE: Price?
By shecknoscopy on 8/31/2006 1:20:51 PM , Rating: 2
Sure theres an X1300 card for PCIe 1x, but realistically, its not much better than the onboard :(

Yeah, PCIe 1x ~= AGP 2x is it? I always forget the exact data rates. In any case, you're not going to be cranking out Oblivion on this puppy. Oldblivion's another story...

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