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Box PCs take a stroll down Intel’s ‘Cedar Trail’

Jan 6, 2012 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 5 views

Advantech announced two rugged industrial box PCs based on Intel's new dual-core “Cedar Trail” Atom processors. The ARK-2120L and similar ARK-2120F support both the 1.6GHz Atom N2600 or 2.13GHz D2700 processors, as well as up to 4GB of DDR3 memory, and provide CompactFlash, SATA, VGA, HDMI, and gigabit Ethernet connections, as well as varying amounts of USB 2.0 and serial ports.

Advantech announced its two new "Ark" branded box computers in conjunction with several embedded modules and single board computers (SBCs) covered here earlier this week. All the products share a foundation in Intel's recently announced, 32nm-fabricated N2000 (N-Series), pictured, and D2000 (D-Series) Atom chips, also known as the "Cedar Trail" processors. 

ARK-2120L, rear panel

The four dual-core Atom processors, all of which are offered with Intel's NM10 chipset, are primarily notable for their lower power consumption compared to earlier Atom processors, as well as video-related enhancements.

Although the N-Series is primarily aimed at netbooks, such as the models recently tipped from Acer, Asus, Lenovo, and MSI, it can be used in a broader set of embedded computing applications as well. Similarly, the D-Series, which targets entry-level desktops, can also be used for single-purpose systems such as digital signage.

ARK-2120F, front panel

Advantech's new box computers follow a long line of Advantech ARK boxes including the Atom D510-based ARK-5260. They join Advantech's other new Cedar Trail products including the tiny COM Express Mini SOM-7565 and larger COM Express Compact SOM-6765 computer on modules (COMs), as well as the 3.5-inch MIO-5250 MI/O-Compact SBC, the latter offering Advantech's MIO extension-board interface. Also available is a AIMB-214 industrial Mini-ITX motherboard.

Front view of ARK-2120L

Both the ARK-2120L and ARK-2120L box PCs are available with either a 1.6GHz Atom N2600 or 2.13GHz D2700. Each computer supports up to 4GB of DDR memory — 1066MHz RAM for the D2700 and 800MHz for the N2600, according to Advantech. The systems ship with a CompactFlash (CF) slot, as well as a 2.5-inch hard disk drive (HDD) bay for SATA storage. A Mini-PCI Express (PCIe) slot is available for expansion, says the company. Dual display support is provided for the available VGA and HDMI ports on both models, and the ARK-2120F also adds an LVDS interface. Both models feature dual gigabit Ethernet ports, GPIO, and audio ports, but differ in their remaining I/O.

Whereas the ARK-2120L supplies six USB 2.0 ports, the 2120F model provides five. The 2120F sports four RS232/422/485 ports and two RS232 ports, according to Advantech. The 2120L model, meanwhile, offers one RS232/422/485 and three RS232 ports, says the company.

As indicated below, the 2120F offers a wider power input range and is slightly heavier than its sibling. Operating temperatures, which include an extended range of  -4 to 140 deg. F (-20 to 60 deg. C), are the same, however, as are the systems' touted vibration and shock resistance (see spec list below).

Features and specifications listed by Advantech for the ARK-2120L and 2120F include:

  • Processor — Intel Atom N2600 (dual-core 1.6GH, 3.5 Watt TDP) or D2700 (dual-core 2.13GHz, 10 Watt TDP)
  • Chipset — Intel NM10
  • Memory — up to 4GB of DDR3 1066MHz (D2700) or 800MHz (N2600) RAM via single SODIMM
  • Storage — 2.5-inch bay for SATA HDDs; CompactFlash slot
  • Expansion — Mini-PCIe slot with SIM card holder
  • Networking — 2 x gigabit Ethernet ports with wake-on LAN
  • Other I/O:
    • VGA
    • HDMI
    • LVDS (2120F only, internal)
    • 6 x (2120L) or 5 x (2120F) USB 2.0 ports
    • 1 x (2120L) or 4 x (2120F) RS232/422/485
    • 3 x (2120L) or 2 x (2120F) RS232
    • Audio line-in, line-out, and mic (Realtek ALC892)
    • 8-bit digital IO
  • Power requirements — 12 V input (2120L); 12~24 V (2120F); AT/ATX, AC to DC adapter
  • Operating range — with HDD, 32 to 112 deg. F (0 to 45 deg. C) (more with air flow and HDD); with extended-temp. peripherals -4 to 140 deg. F (-20 to 60 deg. C)
  • Vibration resistance with CF only — 5 Grms IEC 60068-2-64, random, 5 ~ 500Hz, 1 hr/axis
  • Shock resistance with CF only — 50 G, IEC 60068-2-27, half sine, 11mm duration
  • Dimensions — 10.41 x 5.4 x 2.72 inches (2.69 inches on 2120F)
  • Weight — 5.07 lbs (5.51 lbs for 2120F)

The two ARK systems are supported by Linux 2.6, Windows 7/Embedded, Windows XP Pro/Embedded, and Windows CE 7.0, says Advantech. Also available are its  Advantech Industrial Cloud Built-in Services. These are said to include a partially chip-based self-management, auto-protection, and secure storage solution called iManager.

Other cloud services include the SUSE Linux-based SUSIAccess embedded configuration and monitoring service. In addition, a CloudBuilder service updates software and enables the development of industrial clouds, says the company.  


No pricing or availability information was provided for Advantech's Cedar Trail-based ARK systems. More information may be found at Advantech's ARK-2120L product page and ARK-2120F page.

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