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Fleet management PC offers Nano, 3G

Mar 15, 2011 — by Jonathan Angel — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 3 views

Via announced a rugged, fanless box PC that targets fleet management applications with Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and 3G connectivity. The ART-5450 has a 1.0GHz Nano E series processor, up to 2GB of RAM, CompactFlash storage, three video outputs, and multiple serial ports, according to the company.

According to Via, its new ART-5450 embedded box PC offers a range of wireless 3G communications, and is primarily intended for logistics and fleet management applications. When CompactFlash storage is employed, the fanless device can withstand vibrations of up to 5Grms and shocks of up to 50G (11ms duration), the company says.


Via ART-5450
(Click to enlarge)

As we review later in this story, the ART-5450 (above) employs a variety of previously released Via components, including the 1.0GHz Nano E series U3500 processor and VX800 northbridge/southbridge. A single SODIMM socket accepts up to 2GB of DDR2 memory, while persistent storage of embedded operating systems is supplied via a Type I/II CompactFlash slot, says Via.

Via says the ART-5450 has dual Mini PCI slots and internal connectors reserved for the addition of wireless networking options. The device is available with either an Ericsson Mobile F3307 broadband module that supports HSPA/WCDMA/EDGE/GPRS data rates up to 7.2Mbps downlink and 2Mbps uplink, or a Motorola HTM1000 module that supports up to 10.1Mbps downlink and 5.56Mbps uplink over the same networks, according to the company.

Other options are said to include 802.11b/g wireless networking, Bluetooth 2.1. and a SiRF starIII-based GPS receiver. The ART-5450 has an externally accessible SIM socket, Via adds.


Ports on Via's ART-5450
(Click to enlarge)

As the images above show, the ART-5450 also comes with plenty of wired interfaces. Its front panel offers four serial ports (two RS232 and two RS232/422/485), two USB 2.0 ports, a power input, plus audio I/O (line in, mic in, and speaker out), according to Via.

The rear panel has two additional DB9 connectors, one for 8-bit GPIO and one providing UART plus GPO and GND signals. Also cited are two additional USB 2.0 ports, two gigabit Ethernet ports, and three video outputs — two LVDS connectors (up to 1280 x 1024 pixels) and one VGA port (up to 1920 x 1200).

According to Via, the ART-5450 may be operated in temperatures ranging from -4 to 158 deg. F and using DC power supplies from 10 to 30 Watts. An optional PWM-1000 power management adapter provides over- and under-voltage protection and selectable on/off delay times, the company adds.

Specifications listed by Via for the ART-5450 include:

  • Processor — 1.0GHz Via Nano E series U3500
  • Chipset — Via VX800
  • Memory — up to 2GB DDR2 RAM via single SODIMM socket
  • Storage — Type I/II CompactFlash card
  • Expansion:
    • 2 x Mini PCI Express
    • SIM slot
  • Networking:
    • LAN — 2 x gigabit Ethernet
    • WLAN — 802.11b/g (optional)
    • WWAN — HSPA/WCDMA/EDGE/GPRS (optional)
    • PAN — Bluetooth 2.1 (optional)
  • Other I/O:
    • 4 x USB 2.0 (2 front, 2 rear)
    • 2 x LVDS
    • VGA
    • 4 x serial (2 x RS232, 2 x RS232/422/485)
    • 1 x UART/GPO/GND
    • GPIO (4 in, 4 out)
    • audio — mic in, line in, speaker out
  • Power:
    • 7~36VDC input; 5VDC output
    • consumption — 19.56W typical, 31.15W maximum
  • Operating range — -4 to 158 deg. F
  • Dimensions — 9.15 x 4.91 x 2.36 inches (232.6 x 124.8 x 60mm)
  • Weight — 3.52 pounds (1.6kg)

Background

Frankly acknowledged by Via is the fact that the ART-5450 employs a previously released motherboard, along with a newly designed expansion module. At its heart, for example, is the EITX-3000 motherboard (right).

First released in March 2009, the EITX-3000 was Via's first (and, we think, remains the only) use of the Em-ITX format, billed as an "open industry standard." A key advantage of the 6.7 x 4.7-inch Em-ITX format was said to be its form factor's rectangular shape, providing dual "coastlines."

Em-ITX provides 19 percent more room for real-world connectors than if a square had been utilized, Via says. Another touted benefit is Em-ITX's "Em-IO" expansion bus, capable of supporting optional add-on modules.

Last April, Via followed up by releasing three such modules, the EMIO-3110, EMIO-3210, and EMIO-3430. As shown at right, they snap onto the EITX-3000's expansion connector and stack horizontally on top of the main board. Since Em-IO does not include any pass-throughs, however, only one module may be installed at a time, or so it would appear.


Via's EMIO-3450

Via's ART-5450 employs a new module known as the EMIO-3430. Pictured above, this includes two Mini PCI Express slots primarily designed to accept the mobile broadband and Bluetooth modules mentioned earlier in this story.

The EMIO-3430 also provides a SIM slot and has room for an optional 802.11b/g wireless networking module and a GPS receiver, according to Via. This module also provides the ART-5450 with a microphone input, line output, speaker output, and its six-Watt audio amplifier, the company says.

Further information

Via says the ART-5450 is available now, though pricing was not disclosed, nor was operating system support detailed. More information may be found on the ART-5450 product page.

Jonathan Angel can be followed at www.twitter.com/gadgetsense.


This article was originally published on LinuxDevices.com and has been donated to the open source community by QuinStreet Inc. Please visit LinuxToday.com for up-to-date news and articles about Linux and open source.



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