5/10/2005 - Kontron Embedded Modules is the first company to offer a starter kit for evaluation of the latest computer-on-module technology based on the COM Express standard. The first of a limited quantity of starter kits with an ETXexpress-PM module based on an Intel® Pentium® or Celeron® M processor are now available and represent the first actually employable development solution for PCI Express-based COMs (COM stands for ‘Computer-On-Module’). With this starter kit, developers have all the tools they need to quickly analyze the possibilities of applying COM Express for their purposes and rapidly implement them as marketable applications with ETXexpress. Kontron has already been able to chalk up design wins.
Delivery of the first series of modules will begin at the end of Q2 2005.
With components such as an evaluation board, a power supply, a CD-ROM drive and documentation, the ETXexpress starter kit supplies all of the hardware and software needed for development work with COM Express. An ATX baseboard serves as the evaluation board, with PCI Express, PCI Express Graphics, serial ATA and USB 2.0 – all of the interfaces defined in the COM Express specification. Classic interfaces such as VGA, PS2 and Ethernet RJ45 as well as parallel and serial ports round out the communications possibilities. The ETXexpress-PM module can be freely configured in terms of processor and DDR2 SODIMM.
The Starter Kit Module
Kontron has introduced the ETXexpress-PM as its first COM Express product. This module is based on an Intel® Pentium® M processor and an Intel® 915GM chipset, the first mobile platform with PCI Express functionality and extended support over the entire product lifetime. PCI Express, serial ATA, USB 2.0, LVDS and serial DVO are all integrated into the module. ETXexpress-PM offers a clock speed of up to 2.13 GHz and up to 1 GB of DDR2 SODIMM RAM. ETXexpress-PM can handle demanding real-time video applications with Intel® Graphics Media Accelerator (GMA 900) and PCI Express graphics card support. A fast network connection is supplied via the 10/100 Base-T Ethernet interface, soon to be scalable to a Gigabit Ethernet. All of these features are offered on a mere 95 x 125 mm embedded module.
History of COM Express
In 2003 Intel and Kontron started a development initiative to integrate the PCI Express technology into COMs. In January 2004 the two players secured the support of other companies involved in embedded technology. Work on the COM Express specifications began at the beginning of 2004 in cooperation with the PCI Industrial Manufacturers Group (PICMG). The name ‘COM Express’ was chosen due to its neutrality. ETXexpress is the brand name of COM Express-based solutions offered by Kontron. Other companies have also decided to adopt the established ‘ETX’ brand name for their COM Express products. Thus, ETXexpress is currently being considered as a synonym for all COM Express-based solutions. As a next-generation embedded module standard, COM Express in general and ETXexpress in particular provide the foundation for future applications.
Kontron Embedded Modules GmbH
94469 Deggendorf, Germany
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