Home | News Archive | July 2004

The "Mac-ITX"
July 29, 2004

Iain Sharp probably has the fastest Mac SE/30 in the world. But (soz Woz) he did it by stuffing an EPIA MII 12000 inside. It still runs Mac OS though, in glorious emulation courtesy of Basilisk II. Return of the Mac?... Eeep!

Iain Sharp's "Mac-ITX"

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Future EPIAs explained...
July 21, 2004

Perhaps we should explain where the ever-growing EPIA Mini-ITX range is headed over the next few months. Each VIA EPIA board generally has 2 variants, a silent "E" variant with a fanless Eden processor, and a slightly faster but fanned one using the C3 processor. Dividing the model number by 10 usually reveals the CPU speed in MHz. An EPIA with an "A" after the model name is normally a variant without TV Output.

The popular EPIA CL with 2 LAN ports has morphed into the EPIA PD, with improved powering options for the RS232 pin headers and a new digital I/O interface. EPIA PDs have started reaching retailers, and CL supplies are drying up. The EPIA V range will most probably be discontinued shortly.

The EPIA MS is the low-profile CLE266 chipset board mentioned in Day 5 of our Computex 2004 report, and uses SODIMMs to keep its svelt figure. It will actually be available in 3 versions, the fanless EPIA MS 8000E, EPIA MS 10000E and the fanned EPIA MS 12000.

The EPIA SP will be the first MPEG-4-decoding CN400 chipset Mini-ITX board, and will be available in EPIA SP 8000E and EPIA SP 13000 variants. Pictures of this are in Day 1 of our Computex report.

The EPIA ML is a curious beast, a cut-down EPIA M without TV output and with slower CPU speeds. The models available will be the EPIA ML 5000EA and EPIA ML 8000A. At first glance and at a similar price it would make a good EPIA 5000 / 800 replacement, but without the TV output VIA may have trouble convincing some people it is a worthy replacement. New EPIA boards are often the product of large orders from industry, which may be how this board came about. Maybe 10,000 of us should club together and request our own custom EPIA design?

All the above 3 boards should hit all good retailers sometime in September.

Slightly further down the line are the now almost mythical CN400-based EPIA N Nano-ITX boards, possibly to be available in 3 different variants. Working versions we've recently used had early BIOS revisions and didn't have their final heatsink designs. The 12x12cm EPIA Ns are scheduled for release towards the end of the year.

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Tadpole's Nehemiah Notebook
July 20, 2004

Legendary SPARCBook manufacturers Tadpole Computer have released details of the Talin 12, an ultra portable notebook available in both 1Ghz Nehemiah C3 and 1.2Ghz Pentium M variants. The Talin 12 is fully supported dual-boot - with Windows XP Home on one partition and SuSE Linux running Sun's Java Desktop System on the other. Tipping the scales at just 3lbs and measuring 10.6" x 8.7"x 1.0", the Talin 12 includes a 12.1" TFT display and the usual plethora of interfaces. We've seen a trickle of C3 and Antaur-based notebooks over the past year or two, but with both Intel and AMD producing low-power chips suitable for notebooks, VIA will have a struggle gaining market share.

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VIA announce Windows CE 5.0 Support
July 20, 2004

VIA have announced support for Windows CE 5.0 for both their range of Mini-ITX and forthcoming Nano-ITX motherboards in an effort that will include "dedicated technical compatibility and full driver support." Actually they announced this a few weeks ago, so you lucky embedded device developers should expect Board Support Packages any day now..

VIA announces support for Windows CE 5.0

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The "Moo Cow Moo"
July 14, 2004

When we herd about Stanley Maynard's Mini-ITX masterpiece we were mooved - we thought it was a thing of udderbovine beauty. Having been raised on a dairy farm, Stanley had a steak in getting this cowmputer just right. Barning no setbacks, Stanley milked it for all it was worth. He cut into this project with complete veal, no calf-measures here. Not to toot his own horn, he could easily have butchered this project, but his perserverance hayed off. Old McDonald would be proud - this veally gets our stampede of approval. You could say his project is truly out standing in its field.

Hoove you created a project as good or even butter than this? Why not send it to us? We actually like this kind of stuff...

Stan "The Man" Maynard's "Moo Cow Moo"

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Scythe e-Otonashi Review
July 09, 2004

Larry Matter has kindly donated his review of Scythe's e-Otanishi case, which he uses as a MiniMyth box. In case you don't know what MiniMyth is, it's Larry's media player designed to run on EPIAs without a hard drive attached. How is this wizardy achieved? Find out at LinPVR.org...

Larry Matter's Scythe e-Otonashi Review

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The "Mini Mesh Box"
July 02, 2004

Lincoln Stein doesn't care much for power tools. But he still wanted to mate a wireless Linux powered Mini-ITX PVR with his television. So what's a guy to do? Armed with just a bottle of glue and some wire cutters, Lincoln set upon a mesh wire box found at his local stationery store and emerged victorious with the possibly electric field-cancelling "Mini Mesh Box"...

Lincoln Stein's "Mini Mesh Box"

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