IN the past few months, an interesting set of Mini-ITX motherboards made it to the market. There are two primary classes of ITX boards: embedded CPU and those with CPU sockets. VIA and Intel have boards based on their small-footprint embedded processors, while others made innovative solutions with CPU sockets. The Minix-ITX
, an AM2+ socket based ITX board, took it to the next level with a motherboard that fulfills most requirements of HTPC users.
Magic Pro, a Chinese company that concentrates on Asian markets has now come up with another solution based on the AMD 780G chipset. The board, MP-NC81 comes with 128 MB of Sideport memory to assist the integrated graphics processor (IGP) that's housed in the 780G chipset. The IGP supports UVD, it accelerates H.264, VC1 and MPEG2 1080p playback. It comes with SB600 southbrige which routes to four SATA II ports with RAID support. The board features a single SO-DIMM slot to hold notebook DDR2 memory. It supports AM2+ processors with TDP of up to 95W. A striking feature however, is that the board optionally ships with a wireless ethernet riser-card, much in the same way as some high-end motherboards from ASUS do. The riser card is said to support 802.11n standard.