AMD-Driven Open-Standard for Small PCs Takes Physical Shape

AMD Releases Mechanical DTX Form-Factor Specifications

by Anton Shilov
02/21/2007 | 06:49 AM

Advanced Micro Devices has released mechanical specifications of its DTX form-factor for small form-factor (SFF) personal computers (PCs). The specs will allow makers of mainboards, computer cases, cooling systems, power supply units and other components to create industry-standard products for SFF PCs, which have been so far using proprietary components.

 

The mechanical specifications cover such aspects of DTX and mini-DTX mainboards as:

The DTX standard is not going to replace ATX, which is BTX supposed to do, but to define mechanical specifications for small form-factor computers, which have been gaining popularity in the recent years, but which currently use proprietary mainboards and other components, something, which reduces ability of component makers to supply appropriate devices in mass quantities.


Desktop PC form-factor trends by IDC

With mechanical specifications standardized, makers of mainboards, computer cases, cooling systems, power supply units and other components may start mass production of DTX-compliant devices with the aim at the channel market at first, while large system integrators can start evaluation of DTX components for assemble of PCs in the coming quarters. So far the world’s largest mainboard maker Asustek Computer and another large producer of motherboards and other components MicroStar International openly supported the DTX standard.


An example of DTX system by AMD

While the DTX is aimed at SFF PC market, it will be possible to install two add-in cards there, which provides additional features and performance required for entertainment PCs, such as high-performance graphics cards, TV-tuners or any other devices, which gives system integrators flexibility not available on, for instance, ITX mainboards.

Small form-factor PCs, which use low-power processors and other components, not only can benefit end-users and businesses by offering silent operation and power savings, but will eventually allow AMD to tap into emerging markets with low-cost highly-integrated products.