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COM Express module taps 32nm ‘Cedar Trail’ Atoms

Jan 18, 2012 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 1 views

Portwell announced a COM Express Basic module that offers Intel's 32nm-fabricated, dual-core Intel Atom N2000 and D2000 series (“Cedar Trail”) processors. Equipped with a Type 6 pinout, the PCOM-B218VG supports up to 4GB of DDR3 memory and includes SATA, gigabit Ethernet, and USB connections.

The PCOM-B218VG jumps on Intel's newly announced Intel Atom N2000 and D2000 series ("Cedar Trail") processors. The 32nm-fabricated processors are primarily notable for their lower power consumption compared to earlier Atom processors, as well as several video-related enhancements.

(Click to enlarge)

The PCOM-B218VG is based on last year's PCOM-B217VG module, but since the design has switched from "Sandy Bridge" Core processors to the new Cedar Trail Atoms, the module has changed considerably. It also switches to the more compact Basic version of the COM Express format, measuring 3.75 x 3.75 inches instead of Type II's 4.92 x 3.75 inches.

The PCOM-B218VG supports three of the four Cedar Trail models, all of which offer dual cores: the 1.6GHz Atom N2600, which offers a mere 3.5 Watt TDP, the 1.86GHz N2800, which bumps up to 6.5 Watts, and the 2.13GHz D2700, which is clocked to 10 Watts. (There appear to have been few, if any, takers for the 1.86GHz, 10 Watt D2500, perhaps because it sacrifices clock speed while keeping the same 10 Watt TDP as the D2700.)

Like other newly announced Cedar Trail products (see farther below), the PCOM-B218VG uses Intel's well-traveled NM10 chipset. The data sheet, however, erroneously lists the Core-oriented QM67 chipset, which is used on the PCOM-B217VG.

The PCOM-B218VG supports up to 4GB of DDR3 RAM, while storage is handled via dual SATA 3Gbps ports, says Portwell. The module's Type 6 expansion connectors provide four PCI Express (PCIe) x1 lanes, which can be reconfigured to one x4 lane, says the company.

Standard I/O includes a gigabit Ethernet PHY, eight USB ports, as well as dual DisplayPorts that support multiple DisplayPort, HDMI, and DVI functionality, says Portwell. The module is also said to offer LPC, SMBus/I2C, and HD audio interfaces. A PCOM-C211 carrier board is also said to be available.

Features and specifications listed for the PCOM-B218VG include:

  • Processor — Intel Atom N2600 (dual-core 1.6GHz, 3.5 Watt TDP), N2800 (dual-core 1.86GHz, 6.5 Watt TDP), or D2700 (dual-core 2.13GHz, 10 Watt TDP)
  • Chipset — Intel NM10
  • Memory — up to 4GB 1067/1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM via 1 x SODIMM
  • Storage — 2 x SATA 3Gbps ports
  • Expansion — Type 6 pinout; 4 x PCIe lanes (4 x1 lanes configurable to 1 x4 lane)
  • Networking — gigabit Ethernet port
  • Other I/O:
    • 8 x USB ports
    • 2 x DisplayPort, supporting multiple DP/HDMI/DVI functionality
    • LPC interface
    • SMBus/I2C interface
    • HD audio interface
  • Other features — watchdog timer; hardware monitoring
  • Operating temperature — 32 to 140 deg. F (0 to 60 deg. C)
  • Dimensions — 3.75 x 3.75 (95 x 95mm); COM Express Basic

Other vendors that have announced Cedar Trail-based products include Acer, Asus, Lenovo, and MSI (netbooks), and Advantech, which announced several COM Express modules and SBCs. Advantech also unveiled two "ARK" box PCs based on the chips.


No pricing or availability information was supplied for the PCOM-B218VG, nor was operating system support detailed. More information may be found at Portwell's PCOM-B218VG product page.

Eric Brown can be reached at [email protected].

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