Embedded systems just aren't what they used to be. And by that, we mean that they're far more potent and useful to the masses than they were just a few years back, when they were only powerful enough to handle mundane enterprise chores and the like. VIA has been capitalizing on the uptick in power and power efficiency lately, and their newest board is living proof. The next-gen EPIA-M720 Mini-ITX motherboard features the VIA VX900 MSP, and acts as the upgrade to the EPIA-LN. There's DDR3 and SATA II support, as well as a VIA
1GHz C7 processor coupled with the VA VX900 all-in-one media system processor.
All combined, what you're left with is a small footprint that's plenty powerful to chew through most HD video, and there's even HDMI support for carputers or small HTPCs. Measuring just 17cm x 17cm the VIA EPIA-M720 features the 1.0GHz VIA C7 processor for fanless configurations with ultra low power requirements. The VIA C7 processor is combined with the VIA VX900 MSP, supporting up to 4GB of DDR3 1066 DIMM system memory and featuring the VIA ChromotionHD 2.0 video processor. The VIA EPIA-M720 also adds support for Windows
7 and Windows Embedded 7 operating systems.
Rear panel I/O includes two PS/2 ports (KB/MS), one HDMI port, one VGA port, one COM port, one Gigabit LAN port, two USB 2.0 ports and three audio jacks. An onboard PCI slot is accompanied with two SATA II connectors, an additional COM port, a further three USB 2.0 pin headers for 6 USB ports (including two optional ports), SPDIF out, one pin header for LPT and an SMBus header. There's no word on pricing just yet, but it should be hitting retailers soon.