News Archive (1999-2012) | 2013-current at LinuxGizmos | Current Tech News Portal |    About   

PICMG 1.0 board features choice of Atoms

Oct 14, 2011 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 16 views

Advantech announced a full-size PICMG 1.0 single board computer (SBC) that's available with Intel Atom N455 or D525 processors. The PCA-6012 supports ISA and PCI expansion, includes VGA and optional LVDS video, has dual gigabit Ethernet ports, and offers up to nine USB 2.0 ports.

At 13.3 x 4.8 inches, Advantech's PCA-6012 is rather large for an Atom-powered SBC, since it uses the full-length PICMG (PCI Industrial Computer Manufacturers Group) 1.0 format. (PICMG 1.0 presents ISA and PCI interfaces to the backplane, whereas PICMG 1.3 offers PCI Express and/or PCI/PCI-X interfaces.)

Advantech's PCA-6012

Where most PICMG boards we've covered recently have emphasized performance by using Intel Core processors, the PCA-6012 goes the power-saving route. It's offered with Intel's Atom N455 (1.66GHz, single core, 5.5-Watt TDP) or D525 (1.88GHz, dual core, 13-Watt TDP).

Both these processors are coupled here with Intel's ICH8M I/O controller, but the D525 can address more memory: Therefore, the PCA-6012's two DIMM slots accept up to 2GB of RAM in the board's N455 version, and 4GB of RAM in the D525 version. However, only the N455 version can run fanlessly, Advantech notes.

The edge of the PCA-6012 in its N455 version (left) and D525 version (right)

The N455 and D525 variants of the PCA-6012 also differ in what externally accessible ports they offer. As shown above left, the N455 version has a PS/2 port, a DB9 serial port, a single gigabit Ethernet port, and a VGA port. The D525 version (above right) has a PS/2 port, two gigabit Ethernet ports, and a USB 2.0 port.

According to Advantech, the D525 version also comes with a CompactFlash slot that's optional on its N455 sibling. Both, however, include three SATA ports, along with headers for eight USB 2.0 ports and two RS232 ports.

Advantech's PCA-6012 (detail)
(Click to enlarge)

Advantech says the PCA-6012 SBCs also include headers for a parallel port, a floppy disk connector, and 8-bit GPIO. An optional module can add four RS-485 ports with auto flow control, and LVDS video output is also available, the company adds.

Specifcations listed by Advantech for the PCA-6012 include:

  • Processor — Intel Atom N455 or D525
  • Chipset — Intel ICH8M
  • Memory — 2 DIMM slots accept up to 2GB of RAM on N455 version; 4GB on D525 version
  • Storage — CompactFlash slot (optional on N455 model)
  • Expansion — ISA and 32-bit, 33MHz PCI via backplane
  • Networking — 1 x gigabit Ethernet (N455); 2 x gigabit Ethernet (D525)
  • Other I/O:
    • 3 x SATA
    • VGA
    • LVDS (optional)
    • 8 x USB 2.0 via headers
    • 1 x USB 2.0 via Type A connector (D525 version only)
    • 1 x RS232 via DB9 connector (N455 version only)
    • 2 x RS232 via headers
    • 4 x RS485 (optional module)
    • 1 x PS/2
    • 8-bit GPIO
    • high definition audio
  • Power — 12V, 5V, 3.3V
  • Operating range — 32 to 140 deg. F
  • Dimensions — 13.3 x 4.8 inches

Further information

Advantech did not cite operating system support or pricing for the PCA-6012, but the board appears to be available now. More information may be found on the PCA-6012 product page.

Jonathan Angel can be reached at [email protected] and followed at

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

Comments are closed.