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COM Express module maximizes PCIe expansion

Apr 8, 2010 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — views

Axiomtek is readying a Linux-ready COM Express Type-II module that supports up to 19 lanes of PCI-Express, plus up to four PCI slots. The CEM831 includes an Intel Atom N270, up to 4GB of DDR2 memory, gigabit Ethernet, and dual channel LVDS, says the company.

Measuring 4.9 x 3.7 inches (125 x 95mm), Axiomtek's CEM831 complies with the COM Express Type-II format, says Axiomtek. The module is said to be aimed at telecommunication, medical equipment, gaming, industrial automation, test and measurement, and industrial control devices.

Built around an Intel Atom N270 CPU (with the 945GME northbridge and ICH7M southbridge), the CEM381 is equipped with dual DDR2 400/533/677 SODIMM sockets that together support up to 4GB memory, says Axiomtek. The CEM831 supports high-resolution CRT and 24-bit single/dual channel LVDS displays, and the chipset's SDVO bus can be used to connect to DVI, TMDS, or other LVDS device controllers, says the company.

Axiomtek CEM381

The CEM381 stands out with its expansion capabilities, offering a single PCI-Express (PCIe) bus with 16 lanes, as well as three PCIe x1 buses and four 32-bit PCI buses. An available ATX baseboard extends the module's I/O, which includes a gigabit Ethernet port, eight high-speed USB 2.0 ports, two SATA-150 ports, and LPC, among other interfaces. The combo is said to support Linux, QNX, plus Windows 7, Vista, and XP.

CEM381, rear view

Specifications for the CEM831 module include:

  • Processor — Intel Atom N270 @ 1.6GHz with FSB 533MHz
  • Chipsets — Intel 945GME and ICH7M
  • Memory — Up to 4GB DDR2 memory via 2 x SODIMMs
  • Expansion:
    • 1 x PCIe x16
    • 3 x PCIe x1
    • 32-bit/33MHz PCI for 4 x bus masters
  • Display:
    • VGA up to 2048 x 1536 @ 75Hz with 32-bit color
    • SDVO supports up to 1600 x 1200 @ 60Hz in single-channel mode or 2048 x 1536 @ 75Hz in dual-channel mode
    • CRT/HDTV up to 1920 x 1080 @ 85Hz
  • Networking — 1 x gigabit Ethernet with optional wake-on-LAN, PXE boot ROM, and auto MDI-X
  • Other I/O:
    • 8 x USB 2.0
    • 2 x SATA
    • 1 x PATA-100 IDE
    • 1 x LPC interface
    • 1 x SMBus
    • HD audio interface for external codec
  • Other features — Watchdog timer (255 levels, 1~255 sec.)
  • Operating temperature — 32 to 140 deg. F (0 to 60 deg. C)
  • Dimensions — 4.9 x 3.7 inches (125 x 95mm)
  • Operating system — Linux, QNX, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP


The CEM831 COM Express module will be available around mid-May, says Axiomtek. More information may be found here.

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