NVIDIA Ion Platform Benchmark PreviewTue, Jan 13, 2009 - 12:00 AM
The NVIDIA Ion Reference PC
Pictured above is what NVIDIA is calling the worlds smallest, most affordable, fully capable PC. The internal volume of this chassis is just a half liter, which is insane once you start thinking about what the PC is able to do. The NVIDIA GeForce 9400 has integrated core logic, so both the North Bridge and South Bridge are integrated into one chipset along with the graphics.
The front of the reference ION PC has six USB 2.0 headers, two eSATA connectors, analog 7.1 audio headers, digital SPDIF, and the power and reset buttons. On the back of the reference platform is a gigabit Ethernet port, another USB port, a single dual-link DVI output, HDMI with 7.1 surround sound audio, a VGA output and lastly the power connector.
Those of you that are paying close attention might have noticed that the reference platform has input and output devices on both sides of the system, but none of the pictures of the reference Ion Pico-ITX motherboard showed this on the previous page. That is because NVIDIA is using a secondary PCB below the Pico-ITX board that is known as the adaptor board. This adaptor board further expands functionality by adding more real estate to work with.
The single memory module used on the reference platform is a DDR3 SO-DIMM slot that was borrowed from the notebook industry as well as the 2.5″ SATA notebook hard drive. Both the memory and the hard drive fit under the circuit board and the finished product has a clean look. The picture above gives you a better angle and you can see both circuit boards as well as space under the lower adapter board that houses the memory module and hard drive.