When AMD announced the Yukon platform, a lot of people were disappointed to find out that AMD had gone for its 690-series chipset rather than the 780-series which offers vastly better 3D and more importantly, HD video playback performance.
It seems like MSI has gone and rectified this issue all on its own by launching a mini-ITX motherboard with the 780E chipset which is a version of the 780G for the embedded market. The AM-780E as the board is known as isn't a consumer product which is a bit of a shame, but we can see this product ending up in a wide range of embedded systems which requires HD video playback.
The choice of CPU as of right now is limited to the Sempron 200U or 210U which are clocked at 1GHz and 1.5GHz respectively. Due to these CPU's being limited to single channel memory, there's only one SO-DIMM slot on the board, but it supports up to 4GB of DDR2 memory. MSI has equipped the AM-780E with a plethora of ports including HDMI, DVI, D-sub, eSATA, dual Gigabit Ethernet, four USB 2.0 ports, 5.1-channel analog audio jacks and optical as well as coaxial S/PDIF out.
The board also features a PCI slot and a mini PCI Express slot which accepts various notebook modules. Then there are three SATA ports, two headers for an additional four USB 2.0 ports, a TPM header, an LVDS connector and even an unknown amount of SidePort memory. We're not overly keen on the CPU and chipset cooling design, but this might yet change before the final product becomes available. Overall this is a very interesting product and we're still a few months away from AMD's Yukon refresh that will bring the 780-series chipset to the platform.