Courtesy of ASRock, not Intel
It is hard to think of any product in Intel’s recent history that went through as many delays as the 32nm Cedar Trail Atom. [Larrabee anyone? Ed.]
After months of promises and delays the first Cedar Trail netbooks and nettops started appearing in retail a few weeks ago. However, micro-ITX boards were nowhere to be found, but now it seems they are coming in a matter of days.
Curiously, Intel is not leading the charge. Although about a dozen Intel Cedar Trail boards are listed in Europe, none are shipping yet. So it is up to vendors like ASRock to save the day. ASRock’s first two Cedar Trail boards should start shipping within 24 hours and what’s more, they ended up a bit cheaper than comparable Intel boards.
The ASRock AD2700-ITX packs a 2.13GHz Atom D2700 dual-core, 2 DDR SO-DIMM slots and one PCI slot. It features DVI, HDMI and VGA video outputs, two USB 3.0 ports, four USB 2.0 ports, Ethernet, 7.1 audio and even an ancient PS/2 connector. We failed to find any prices for this particular model, but the prices for the ASRock AD2700B-ITX start at €69. The boards are almost identical, but the B variant lacks HDMI and DVI, so you are stuck with VGA only, which not exactly a good deal in this day and age. Furthermore, the boards cling to PCI, another ancient technology, and no PCIe slots are available. On the upside, both boards are passively cooled.
On the whole we can’t say we are impressed. For some reason Intel and ASRock seem to think that VGA, PCI and PS/2 still have some life in them. We beg to differ. Anyone in the market for a cheap ITX board should just go for a Brazos board instead.