VIA launch C7 EPIA CN boards
June 04, 2006

VIA Technologies have officially launched their C7 powered EPIA CN range of Mini-ITX motherboards, just in time for Computex 2006. As first spotted at CeBit, the CN boards feature a VIA C7 Processor; VIA CN700 Chipset with integrated Unichrome Pro Graphics with MPEG-2 Decoder; one DDR2 400/533 DIMM slot; VGA connector; S-Video & RCA TV Output; PCI slot; 2 x IDE; 2 x SATA with native RAID 0/1; 6 Channel Audio; Firewire; 4 x USB 2.0 ports (& pin headers for 4 more); 1 COM port; 10/100 Ethernet.

Full specifications (VIA website)

Like most previous EPIAs, the EPIA CN board will be available in two versions: The fan cooled EPIA CN 13000, featuring a 1.3GHz C7 processor, and the fanless EPIA CN 10000E, with a 1.0 GHz C7 processor. This is a step up from the C3 processors, which generally require fan cooling at 1GHz - and according to VIA, their 90nm process C7 processors consume less power than their earlier cousins, as well as producing less heat and running slightly faster. The EPIA CN's support for DDR2 memory saves more power, running at 1.8 Volts compared to 2.5 Volts for DDR memory - though adding to upgrade costs for some.

With RoHS compliance deadlines and Intel licence issues to contend with, the EPIA range is set for a long awaited shake up over the coming months. Some existing boards are already proving hard to source. Once the dust settles, it will be clearer where in the range the CN sits. We look forward to taking a closer look.

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