Embedded Boards

SBC-210Industrial processes and applications continue to become more specialized and sophisticated. Furthermore, future technologies are rendering many off-the-shelf, stand-alone single board computers (SBC) expensive and/or unable to adapt. This is where customized embedded boards can be the simpler and more cost effective solution for large-scale operations.

Embedded boards are widely in use in a wide range of fields such as website hosting, laboratory equipment, energy generation, communications, manufacturing, traffic management and printing system management. Obviously, each fields requires its own unique features. But customized embedded boards needn’t be the complex headache that some organizations fear. With the right features and Read the full article →


Mini-ITX-Micro-ATX-NEEWhat are the pros and cons for Mini-ITX and Micro-ATX for embedded and industrial applications?

For consumer desktop and enterprise applications, it’s almost a no brainer to go for a Micro-ATX or ATX. In embedded applications, things tend to lean more to the Mini-ITX side of things. Let’s take a look at why that may be.

The Case for Mini-ITX

For industrial and embedded applications, this is pretty much the workhorse of the motherboards. They are in the highest demand and as a result there is a large selection to choose from.

Some of the benefits of the Mini-ITX:

  • Higher variety of product
  • Higher demand makes for a longer lifecycle by embedded manufacturers
  • The small form factor is very convenient for a lot of embedded applications
  • Because they are more “strictly embedded” it is easier to find Mini-ITX boards with fanless and rugged specifications.

For more info on Mini-ITX boards, check out our blog on “Selecting a Mini-ITX BoardRead the full article →


The Typical Embedded Board

When selecting an embedded board to fit a task, or when asked by a customer for an embedded board, 9 times out of 10 it is going to be a Mini-ITX board. There is plenty of reasoning as to why this is the case.

First and foremost is the subject of “real estate”, or space constraints. In many embedded industrial applications there is a limited amount of real estate, and the addition of extraneous size and weight in an embedded system can have a negative impact on the efficiency, feasibility and usability of that industrial design. However, going too small can have the opposite issues of heat and a general lack of onboard functionality. The goal is to have as much functionality as possible, while keeping the “real estate” relatively manageable and the Mini-ITX usually winds up being the best option to achieve that. While the consumer market seems to constantly be pushing things smaller and smaller, the industrial embedded market still seems to have a high demand for what Mini-ITX offers, and that is expected to remain the case, for some time.Industrial mini itx board

This brings us to the second point. Above, we determined that there is a lot of demand for the Mini-ITX. This results in a lot of product variants being available on the market to fill that demand, which draws even more people in to use the Mini-ITX form factor. This creates a sort of a vicious circle, which essentially results in there being an enormous library of boards to choose from, which reduces the chance that you will need to design a custom board or undergo the expense of purchasing expansions that are not already available onboard.

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What are Pico – ITX Boards?

The Pico-ITX board is a small sized x86 embedded motherboard that is 10 cm by 7.2 cm. This board carries the processor, cache, memory, a variety of video interfaces and several different I/O. These boards were introduced by VIA Technologies in 2007. Developed by VIA to be up to 75% smaller than the previous mini-ITX…

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Handle It: Wide-Temperature Motherboards and Embedded Computing

The industrial computing world has to react to the needs of its customers, buyers who range from high level database creators to manufacturing designers. Such varying kinds of use-cases can mean wildly different environments that must be endured by devices that need to keep operating as long and as effectively as possible. Typical commercial products…

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How an Embedded CPU can use the ARM Architecture

Something that shouldn’t be underestimated when creating embedded machines is the need for a strong processor. There are a whole suite of components that a developer or OEM needs to concentrate on, but most are not as important as the CPU. Understanding what power demands are allotted for the overall product and what it has…

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From Old to New: The Need for Evolution in Single Board Computers

Military designers must hold one of the most frustrating vocations in the tech field. They may have a seemingly infinite number of resources and get to play with some of the latest and most interesting technology in the world, but they also have to deal with an inherent problem baked into the industry. Military technology…

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