Ampro Computers Introduces Two Embedded SBCs with Low Cost, Low Power

9/20/2004 - Ampro Computers, Inc., the inventor and leading supplier of PC/104, EBX and EPIC single board computers, announced two embedded SBCs which significantly boost I/O performance without the need for costly, high performance CPUs. The ReadyBoardTM 560 and ReadyBoard 710 provide high performance AGP 8x video and graphics with MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 hardware decode, 1000BaseT (Gigabit) Ethernet, and high speed USB 2.0 ports. Overall system performance is increased with the use of DDR memory. Board cost is minimized by featuring the low power, low cost 1GHz Via EdenTM ESP 10000 processor on the ReadyBoard 560 and the Intel® 650MHz LV Celeron® processor on the ReadyBoard 710. Both boards improve system reliability compared to desktop-grade motherboards by operating 0 to 60C without a cooling fan.

"Ampro's new ReadyBoard 560 and 710 are the first entries in an unanticipated next generation of Pentium® III / Celeron / Eden SBCs," said Joanne Mumola Williams, president and CEO of Ampro. "Many system OEMs believe they need a 1GHz+ Pentium 4 or Pentium M design to get higher system performance, but the cost of these processors has proved to be an obstacle. The new ReadyBoard products significantly boost performance with a much lower system cost."

ReadyBoard 560 and ReadyBoard 710 distinguish their performance from earlier generations of low power, low cost CPU SBCs through a balanced system design. This design relieves many CPU processing burdens by moving functionality to intelligent and powerful peripheral chips. For example, the advanced video controller used on the boards (integrated in the Northbridge) provides 128-bit 200MHz independent 2D and 3D graphics engines and MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 hardware decoders which off-load video and graphic processing burden from the CPU and significantly speeds display of complex graphics and video. The on-board Intel 82541 Gigabit Ethernet controller processes packets with minimal involvement from the CPU, allowing the system to take full advantage of 1000BaseT network connections. In addition to CPU efficiency improvement, ReadyBoard 560 and 710 also enhance system and memory throughput. Both boards implement a memory controller that supports up to 1GB PC3200 (DDR 400) memory, an AGP 8X-performance memory interface that supports graphics engines, and high bandwidth (up to 533MB/s) system buses between Northbridge and Southbridge. Finally, both the ReadyBoard 560 and 710 offer four USB 2.0 ports to support new high-speed USB devices.

Like the previously announced ReadyBoard 550, 700, and 800, ReadyBoard 560 and 710 also offer an enhanced IDE (Ultra DMA 100) interface, floppy controller, parallel port, AC '97 audio, IrDA interface and other PC-compatible features. A second 10/100BaseT Ethernet controller is included on both boards. In addition, both boards offer embedded features such as four RS-232 serial ports, two of which also provide RS-422/485 functionality, eight General Purpose I/O (GPIO) pins, watchdog timer, battery-free boot, BIOS recovery, serial console, USB boot, and LAN (Local Area Network) boot. Each board can be expanded with PCI-bus compatible PCI-104 expansion cards. Ampro's MiniModuleTM ISA PCI-104 to PC/104-Plus transition module supports the software-transparent addition of hundreds of commercially available PC/104 and PC/104-Plus cards that use the ISA bus interface.

Both boards are implemented in the recently-announced EPIC standard form factor (4.5" x 6.5") and utilize PC-style connectors to simplify system cabling and mechanical design. Both boards are fully compatible with Ampro's ReadyBoxTM enclosure announced today, and both will be available in a ReadySystemTM configuration.

To learn about the powerful video capabilities of Ampro's new EPIC SBCs, please visit:

Pricing and Availability
Both ReadyBoard 560 and ReadyBoard 710 will be available for evaluation in October, with production quantities available beginning in November. Each is priced approximately $125 below the recently announced Pentium M-based ReadyBoard 800.

About Ampro Computers, Inc.
Ampro Computers, Inc. is the leading global provider of modular embedded computing solutions for OEM applications. Ampro's mission is to provide time saving solutions for embedded systems designers that accelerate the product deployment process. Ampro pioneered the embedded PC industry creating the popular PC/104 and EBX standards, and recently co-invented the new EPIC standard. The EnCore and ETX families are rugged Computers-on-Modules (COMs) products which enable designers to obtain all the benefits of an off-the-shelf CPU solution while maintaining the flexibility of a full custom design. In addition to EnCore and ETX, Ampro offers four product lines: PC/104-compatible CoreModule CPUs and MiniModule expansion products, EBX form factor LittleBoard single-board computers (SBCs), and EPIC form factor ReadyBoard SBCs. For more information about Ampro Computers, please visit

AMPRO is a registered trademark and EnCore, CoreModule, MiniModule, ReadyBoard, LittleBoard and Little Board are trademarks of Ampro Computers, Inc.

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