Point of view ion 330: Point of View ION Atom 330

Point of View ION Atom 330

Geekbench 4 Score

476

Single-Core Score
989

Multi-Core Score
Geekbench 4.4.2 Tryout for Linux x86 (64-bit)

Result Information

System Information

Single-Core Performance

Single-Core Score 476
Crypto Score 27
Integer Score 491
Floating Point Score 268
Memory Score 868
AES
27

20.9 MB/sec

 

LZMA
594

950.5 KB/sec

 

JPEG
564

4.54 Mpixels/sec

 

Canny
424

5.89 Mpixels/sec

 

Lua
462

486. 7 KB/sec

 

Dijkstra
838

567.5 KTE/sec

 

SQLite
378

10.5 Krows/sec

 

HTML5 Parse
472

2.15 MB/sec

 

HTML5 DOM
269

244.1 KElements/sec

 

Histogram Equalization
421

13.2 Mpixels/sec

 

PDF Rendering
472

12.5 Mpixels/sec

 

LLVM
839

57.7 functions/sec

 

Camera
452

1.25 images/sec

 

SGEMM
73

1.55 Gflops

 

SFFT
265

660.7 Mflops

 

N-Body Physics
223

167.2 Kpairs/sec

 

Ray Tracing
251

36. 8 Kpixels/sec

 

Rigid Body Physics
466

1366.5 FPS

 

HDR
582

2.11 Mpixels/sec

 

Gaussian Blur
216

3.80 Mpixels/sec

 

Speech Recognition
426

3.65 Words/sec

 

Face Detection
266

77.8 Ksubwindows/sec

 

Memory Copy
465

1.29 GB/sec

 

Memory Latency
2978

145.3 ns

 

Memory Bandwidth
473

2.53 GB/sec

 

Multi-Core Performance

Multi-Core Score 989
Crypto Score 74
Integer Score 1296
Floating Point Score 747
Memory Score 891
AES
74

57. 3 MB/sec

 

LZMA
1560

2.44 MB/sec

 

JPEG
1626

13.1 Mpixels/sec

 

Canny
1234

17.1 Mpixels/sec

 

Lua
1070

1.10 MB/sec

 

Dijkstra
1807

1.22 MTE/sec

 

SQLite
1030

28.6 Krows/sec

 

HTML5 Parse
1277

5.80 MB/sec

 

HTML5 DOM
588

533.2 KElements/sec

 

Histogram Equalization
1227

38.3 Mpixels/sec

 

PDF Rendering
1268

33.7 Mpixels/sec

 

LLVM
2303

158.4 functions/sec

 

Camera
1351

3. 75 images/sec

 

SGEMM
141

2.99 Gflops

 

SFFT
722

1.80 Gflops

 

N-Body Physics
732

547.3 Kpairs/sec

 

Ray Tracing
740

108.1 Kpixels/sec

 

Rigid Body Physics
1347

3943.3 FPS

 

HDR
1714

6.21 Mpixels/sec

 

Gaussian Blur
612

10.7 Mpixels/sec

 

Speech Recognition
1094

9.37 Words/sec

 

Face Detection
855

249.9 Ksubwindows/sec

 

Memory Copy
584

1.62 GB/sec

 

Memory Latency
2468

175. 4 ns

 

Memory Bandwidth
491

2.62 GB/sec

 


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ASRock ION 330-BD Nettop — Affordable, Overclockable and 1080p HD

Computer Systems

SFF PCs

NVIDIA’s ION platform has quickly enlightened the nettop market with its promised abilities. Today we see just how capable a platform it really is.

Published Jun 17, 2009 2:09 PM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 7:03 PM CST

Manufacturer: ASRock

14 minute read time

Introduction

Intel’s low power consuming and low-cost Atom processor has been all the rage in the tech industry for the past year or more. ASUS helped make it famous and successful by implementing it into its extensive range of Eee PC netbook computers — but that was just the beginning.

Now there are countless manufacturers producing netbooks based on the Atom processor and many of these products have been very well received in the market, with truckloads being sold to consumers, who crave small systems with good battery life — and ones that won’t make a mess of their bank accounts.

Soon after the netbook craze really set it and some smart folk thought, «Hey, we can apply the same principles of the netbook to a desktop system«. In came nettop systems using the same hardware as the popular Eee PC style small notebooks, but in a desktop form.

Today we have one such system in for testing, but with a difference. Instead of using just the Intel Atom processor, it makes use of NVIDIA’s ION technology, which packs in a GeForce 9400M graphics processor chipset to really extend the capabilities of the system for HD video playback and some basic gaming. Regular nettop systems come with an Atom 230 single core processor, Intel 945G chipset and single channel memory. This is fine for basic office type computing, such as surfing the Internet or sending emails. However, if you want to do anything remotely entertaining with the system, purely Intel based nettops at this time just don’t have the hardware features or horsepower under the hood to do it.

ASRock realized this and recently announced the ION 330-BD Nettop system. This sexy baby built by Pegatron and designed by ASRock is the most high-end nettop system we’ve seen or laid our hands on. Not only does it pack in the ION processor, but it also comes with the more expensive Atom 330 dual-core processor and dual channel memory support. Compared to a full sized modern gaming desktop system, it cannot even begin to compare against it, but for the tiny size of this system and the low cost, we got quite a surprise by what it could do.

Let’s take a close look at this system now and see exactly what it can do!

Specifications, Availability and Pricing

Above we get a good look at the full product specifications of the ASRock ION system. The only thing we need to mention is that we are actually testing the ION 330-BD model, which is exactly the same as the ION 330 (listed above), except it replaces the standard DVD Super Multi drive with a Sony BC-5500S SATA Blu-ray slim type reader drive.

As far as availability goes, it is still a brand new system and we couldn’t find it listed online at this stage. The only place we saw it listed was on eBay and selling for $439 CAD, which works out to be $390 USD at the time of writing.

We asked ASRock for the RRP and it is listed at $399 USD, for the non Blu-ray model. The Sony BC-5500S SATA Blu-ray drive lists for $260 USD on Newegg, so it will obviously increase the price if you want Blu-ray playback ability on this system to roughly $650 USD.

ASRock also has a cut-down version of its nettop, the S330, without the NVIDIA ION chipset, and it has its RRP set at $329 USD. This means that you’re only paying $70 USD for the ION chipset, which right now we would say is easily worth the extra price for what it brings to the table.

It is also worth noting that ASRock does not bundle an operating system. You’ll need to buy a copy of Windows Vista or install a copy of Windows 7 RC1 as we did. You could also install a free Linux OS, too.

The Package

We have taken a slightly different approach with this review and have introduced the package on video.

As far as the overall package goes, there is nothing too exciting. However, you do have everything included that you will need to get the show on the road. The addition of the anti-slip pad by ASRock is a good idea and extra points must be added on for the added thought. It also works very well and the system does not move an inch with it applied.

On the included CD ASRock includes an electronic copy of the manual, as well as drivers, Acrobat Reader and Norton Internet Security, which we did not install as it’s shocking and chews system resources like mad. What we did like was the inclusion of ASRock’s OC Tuner software, which allows you to overclock the ION 330 in Windows.

This nettop also support ASRock’s clever Instant Boot feature that allows the system to boot up in four seconds according to the makers, as long as the AC power remains connected to the system. The system enters a type of power saving mode, it doesn’t fully turn off, but uses very little power. You can watch a video of exactly how it works below.

Lovely inclusion, especially for a device of this kind where you don’t want to be waiting around forever for the system to boot up to watch a movie.

The System

Now we get to move on to the more exciting stuff and get our first look at the system.

First impressions are great. After you unpack the ION 330 out of the box, which is packaged safely for shipping, you are greeted by the tiny system. It comes shipped with plastic covers on each side of the system to protect the fancy glossy finish.

As far as size goes, it’s small — a capacity of only 2.5 liters. The exact dimensions are 195mm (W) x 70mm (H) x 186mm (L). Compared to the size of a Nintendo Wii, it is about double the thickness, as you can see in the picture above.

Looking at the front of the system, from the top we see the Blu-ray drive. On the left side front of the unit are some air vent holes, which extract hot air generated by the Atom processor. Moving over we see the ASRock logo.

One bad point from a usability standpoint that we discovered while testing is that there are no front accessible USB 2. 0 ports. In our opinion this is a bad design flaw since it is crucial to have at least one USB port at the front of a system, not only for easy access swapping out pen drives, but also for USB receivers for cordless keyboards and mice. We were lucky in that we use a powerful USB receiver with our I/O Gear wireless keyboard and mice combo, but for those users products without as much range, they may run into issues by having the receiver plugged into one of the six USB ports on the back of the system. This could be remedied by using a USB extension cable, but you shouldn’t need to.

We can see how ASRock wanted to keep the front nice and clean from a design prospective, but usability suffers a little here. Next time we’d like to see the same style, but with a couple USB 2.0 ports at the front, which could be covered by a small door flap design mechanism.

On the right side at the front of the unit is the hard drive activity LED which flashes in a nice orange color. To the right of that is the power on switch, which glows blue when the system is turned on.

On the back of the system we have from left to right — power, S/PDIF (optical) output, analog audio output jacks, gigabit Ethernet LAN port, six USB 2.0 ports, fan cooling extraction point, HDMI output and finally VGA output. Using the included HDMI to DVI adapter in the package, you also add in the ability for DVI output.

As far as noise goes, the system is super quiet at default settings at around 25db. We used the ASRock EZ Overclocking feature in the BIOS to overclock the Atom CPU from 1.6GHz to 2.1GHz and to be safe we increased the fan speeds by using the «Overclocking» fan speed option. This does increase the volume from the system, but it’s not that loud and cannot even be noticed at all whilst playing a game or watching a movie.

We have a snazzy little box here and it is sure to impress. Just be sure to keep a cloth nearby as the glossy finish does mean that finger prints and marks add up real quick!

Inside The System

Inside the System

We thought it would be interesting to provide a video look inside the system, so you can see exactly what makes up the ASRock ION 330.

It’s incredible what ASRock was able to squeeze into such a small little case. ASRock throws in one of their AMCP7A-ION based motherboards into this system, which is more than likely purpose built only for this nettop product. As for the memory, ASRock throws in two 1GB PC2-6400 modules from Elixir and of course they are configured to work in dual channel memory mode for optimal performance.

For longer life and system stability, ASRock also use all solid capacitors, which is another great sign of high quality. There are two small fans inside the system — a tiny one that cools the Atom heatsink and another on the other side, which also extracts air out the back of the unit.

The hard drive included is a Seagate 2.5-inch Momentus 5400.6 320GB HDD which spins at 5,400 RPM and includes 8MB of cache and supports SATA 3Gb/s with Native Command Queuing. As we mentioned before, the model we are testing today is the ASRock ION 330-BD and that means it comes equipped with a Sony BC-5500S SATA Blu-ray slim type reader drive rather than a standard DVD drive. ASRock designed SATA cables for the system which don’t ruin airflow inside the system; another good addition rather than just using standard SATA system cables.

Testing — Blu-ray CPU Usage

Testing

Now we get up to the fun part — testing the system to see what it can do.

Today we are going to compare the ASRock ION 330-BD nettop against the mighty big AMD HTPC system, which we built earlier this year. Back then the total system cost came to around $1800 USD, but it will be cheaper now. It is important to remember that as we are comparing against a nettop, which costs only $650 USD. The full specs of the AMD HTPC system can be found here for comparison sakes.

We will be using the results we obtained using the AMD Athlon X2 4850E 2.5GHz processor. Keep in mind that the AMD HTPC system was running Windows Vista SP1 64-bit and the ASRock nettop is using Windows 7 RC1 build 7100 64-bit.

Drivers Used on the ASRock ION 330-BD: Latest Windows 7 updates and NVIDIA ForceWare 186. 08 BETA

To even up the playing field a little bit, we enabled the ASRock EZ Overclocking feature that is found in the BIOS. You can increase the Atom 330 CPU clock speed from 1.6GHz up to a maximum of 2.1GHz. We were surprised to find any type of overclocking at all on this system, and in this case, a 500MHz jump in CPU clock is quite big — almost 24% faster, in fact. All of our tests were completed with the CPU at 2.1GHz, since this proved to be rock solid stable.

Blu-ray CPU Usage

In our first test we measure CPU usage whilst playing back the «hospital» scene from the Blu-ray movie Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle.

The swear-happy hospital scene is not super intensive, but it’s probably a good indication of standard movie playback in a typical conversation type scene. Hardware acceleration was enabled, which means that work was off-loaded to the NVIDIA ION processor, thankfully. We measured CPU utilization (maximum and average) using Windows 7 Performance Monitor.

The ASRock ION 330-BD nettop had no issues at all playing back 1080p HD content and it did it amazingly well for a system this size. Compared to the AMD HTPC, it actually showed better results in the CPU usage department, which means ION is doing its job very well here indeed.

Playback was silky smooth with no missed frames, overall very impressive.

Testing — PCMark Vantage 64-bit

PCMark Vantage 64-bit

Version and / or Patch Used: Nov 2007 Hotfix
Developer Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com
Product Homepage: http://www.futuremark.com/benchmarks/pcmark-vantage/
Buy It Here

PCMark Vantage is the first objective hardware performance benchmark for PCs running 32 and 64 bit versions of Microsoft Windows Vista. PCMark Vantage is perfectly suited for benchmarking any type of Microsoft Windows Vista PC from multimedia home entertainment systems and laptops to dedicated workstations and high-end gaming rigs. Regardless of whether the benchmarker is an artist or an IT Professional, PCMark Vantage shows the user where their system soars or falls flat, and how to get the most performance possible out of their hardware. PCMark Vantage is easy enough for even the most casual enthusiast to use yet supports in-depth, professional industry grade testing.

Without too many surprises here, we can see that the AMD HTPC is out in front — and so it should be. The ASRock ION 330-BD performs fairly well — not great, but we’ve seen worse.

Testing — CINEBENCH R10 64-bit

CINEBENCH R10 64-bit

Version and / or Patch Used: Release 10
Developer Homepage: http://www.maxon.net/
Product Homepage: http://www.maxon.net

CINEBENCH is a real-world test suite that assesses your computer’s performance capabilities. MAXON CINEBENCH is based on MAXON’s award-winning animation software, CINEMA 4D, which is used extensively by studios and production houses worldwide for 3D content creation. MAXON software has been used in blockbuster movies such as Spider-Man, Star Wars, The Chronicles of Narnia and many more.

MAXON CINEBENCH runs several tests on your computer to measure the performance of the main processor and the graphics card under real world circumstances. The benchmark application makes use of up to 16 CPUs or CPU cores and is available for Windows (32-bit and 64-Bit) and Macintosh (PPC and Intel-based).

Intel’s Atom processor takes a bit of a beating here, but at least it has four threads to work with thanks to ASRock going with the bigger dual-core brother rather than the single-core Atom 270.

Testing — Super PI

Super PI

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.5 Mod XS
Developer Homepage: http://pw1.netcom.com/~hjsmith/Pi/Super_Pi.html
Product Homepage: http://pw1.netcom.com/~hjsmith/Pi/Super_Pi.html

Developed by some folks from the University of Tokyo (yes, Japan), Super PI is a small utility that does just as the name implies. It figures PI to a set number of decimal places. Since PI is an infinite number to the right of the decimal point, the utility measures the time it takes to figure a set number of places. It runs the calculations a set number of times and gives a time for the completion of the task. This is a simple and effective way to measure the raw number crunching power of the processor being used to compile the results.

Here NVIDIA’s ION processor doesn’t get to come out and play and we can see that the Intel Atom 330 CPU struggles (even at 2.1GHz, let alone 1.6GHz stock), being much slower than the AMD Athlon X2 4850E processor.

Testing — Power Consumption, Boot Time

Power Consumption Testing

Now we come to probably one of the most important sections of our testing and that is power consumption!

Using the power tester you can see in the picture above, we measured power coming from the wall — it is measuring the full system, everything inside the box.

We used prime95 to fully load the CPU processor cores and a score was recorded after five minutes of loading. We recorded the highest wattage level hit and rounded up to the nearest decimal point. An idle wattage level was recorded after staying idle on the desktop for five minutes and here again we also rounded up to the nearest decimal point.

Wow! We couldn’t get the ASRock ION 330-BD over 40-watts, no matter what we tried. Also, sitting idle in Windows at 31 watts is very impressive; just compare it to the AMD HTPC system for reference.

We also measured power consumption during Blu-ray playback and again it never went over 40 watts, at maximum it hit 39.8 watts.

Boot Time Testing

We measured using a stopwatch and timed from the point we turned the system on until the very first point the desktop was reached and fully loaded.

We have enabled ASRock’s Instant Boot Fast Mode AC feature for this test to show just what it can do.

Well, ASRock Instant Boot works a treat. Around 10 seconds to boot up from its unique sleeping mode and 47 seconds to boot up from a normal turn on. That’s not too bad either.

The only thing that is a little annoying with the Instant Boot feature is that it’s an extra piece of software you need to run and when you shut down, it actually has to reboot once first and then shut down. Just small issues, but other than that, impressive!

Final Thoughts

Now that we’ve fully put the ASRock ION 330-BD through its paces, we get an idea of just how good it is and what it can do.

The good points? It’s tiny! Being not much bigger than a Nintendo Wii, it can be placed next to your TV and not look out of place like a big old beige computer case of the 90’s. And on that note, it also looks great. Its black glossy finish is stunning and suits it very well. It’s quiet too, barely audible from a distance and silent whilst playing movies or games. It never gets that hot either, with only luke warm air being exhausted from the back of the unit. That’s not enough? As far as power consumption goes, we were super impressed — no more than 40 watts of power used! Hey, don’t forget the ASRock Instant Boot feature for booting up the system in 10 seconds and also the EZ Overclocking BIOS feature that allowed us to take the CPU from 1.6GHz to 2.1GHz with ease — stable, too.

The bad points? There are no USB 2.0 ports at the front of the system. This could be an issue for users with cordless keyboards and mice with a poor USB receiver with little range. The issue could be resolved by using a USB extension cable, but you shouldn’t really have to do that. In upcoming models, ASRock please add a couple USB ports to the front. Another small issue is that no operating system is bundled with the system, which means you’ll need to pay extra to get one. You could just download and use Windows 7 RC1 like we did for the time being or use an alternative free Linux OS, too.

We were super impressed with the Blu-ray 1080p HD playback — it was silky and smooth and didn’t miss a beat at all. Audio quality is also impressive. One thing that should be noted is that the ION 330-BD doesn’t support HD audio pass-through for Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio, only regular DVD audio such as Dolby Digital 5.1 and others that use 640kbit rate audio. It will still playback these audio tracks on your Blu-ray discs, but compressed down. If you are an audiophile this will likely end up annoying you, but if you aren’t, you probably won’t even notice.

As far as gaming goes on the ASRock ION 330-BD, don’t expect too much, but you can get some basic gaming in on the system. Remembering that the ION uses an NVIDIA GeForce 9400M GPU, you can play the latest games such as Left 4 Dead and Call of Duty 4 at 1024 x 768 with low quality graphics settings. For serious gaming stick to your fully powered desktop PC.

The ASRock ION 330-BD nettop model will set you back around $650 USD when it is ready to buy, which should be soon. The addition of the Sony Blu-ray drive does add on to the price — you can pick up the ION 330 with standard DVD drive for $399 USD RRP — but we still think it’s worth it. You could go out and pickup a standalone Blu-ray player set top box for movie playback and it will do the same as this system or more. However, it still cannot replace a PC which can play games, fully surf the Internet, check e-mail and so on.

We really enjoyed the ASRock ION 330-BD nettop — it has plenty going for it and easily gets our recommendation for consumers wanting an affordable, but capable home theater PC or simply a small PC that doesn’t use a lot of power, but still has some decent hardware under the hood to do more than a standard low-end nettop, which is only for basic office computing.

Nice job ASRock for your first attempt at a nettop! Next time how about we see a premium ION model with an SSD installed? That should help give the Intel Atom processor the kick it needs to get its speed up for overall responsiveness.

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Cameron Wilmot

Cameron founded TweakTown in 1999 after it originally started off as his personal homepage. Cameron was once, many years ago, the only person at TweakTown producing content, but nowadays, he spends his time ensuring TweakTown operates at its best in his director position.

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Related Tags
  • ASRock
  • ION
  • NVIDIA
  • 330-BD
  • nettop
  • 1080p
  • HTPC
  • net top
  • 9400M
  • GeForce

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      Point of View Ion 330-1 moederbord

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      Specificaties

      Formaat Mini ITX
      Intel Coffee Lake compatible
      Chipset Nvidia Ion
      Type geheugen DDR2
      Formaat Mini ITX
      Intel Coffee Lake compatible
      Chipset Nvidia Ion
      Type geheugen DDR2
      Aantal geheugensloten 2
      Maximum intern geheugen 3,5 GB
      USB 2. 0 — extern 8
      IEEE 1394 — Aansluitingen achterzijde 0
      Serial ATA aansluitingen (totaal) 4
      eSATA aansluitingen 1
      RAID 0 ondersteuning
      RAID 1 ondersteuning
      D-Sub (VGA) uitgang
      DVI uitgang
      HDMI uitgang
      Aantal HDMI uitgangen 1
      Onboard audio — Kanalen 5. 1
      S/PDIF uitgang
      Aantal netwerkaansluitingen 1
      LAN — Snelheid 1.000 Mbit/s
      SKU ION-MB330-1
      EAN 8717344969970
      Toegevoegd aan Hardware Info maandag 3 augustus 2009

      Gebruikerservaringen

      Er zijn voor dit product nog geen gebruikerservaringen gepubliceerd.

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      Point Of View ION-MB330-1 Drivers Download for Windows 10, 8.1, 7, Vista, XP

      Home&nbsp&nbsp»&nbsp&nbspPoint Of View&nbsp&nbsp»&nbsp&nbspLaptops & Desktops&nbsp&nbsp»&nbsp&nbspION-MB330-1


      This page contains the list of device drivers for Point Of View ION-MB330-1. To download the proper driver, first choose your operating system, then find your device name and click the download button.

      If you could not find the exact driver for your hardware device or you aren’t sure which driver is right one, we have a program that will detect your hardware specifications and identify the correct driver for your needs. Please click here to download.

      Operating System:
      Windows 10 32bitWindows 10 64bitWindows 8.1 32bitWindows 8.1 64bitWindows 8 32bitWindows 8 64bitWindows 7 32bitWindows 7 64bitWindows Vista 32bitWindows Vista 64bitWindows XP 32bitWindows XP 64bit

      Graphics Drivers

      Device Name: NVIDIA ION (Microsoft Corporation — WDDM v1. 1)
      Driver Date 2013-09-12 File Size: 160.2M
      Driver Version: 6.14.13.2723 Vendor: NVIDIA
      Supported OS: Windows XP 32bit

      Download

      Device Name: NVIDIA ION (Microsoft Corporation — WDDM v1.1)
      Driver Date 2015-02-03 File Size: 216.02M
      Driver Version: 9.18.13.4144 Vendor: NVIDIA
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 bit, Windows 8.1 32bit, Windows 7 32bit, Windows Vista 32bit

      Download

      Device Name: NVIDIA ION (Microsoft Corporation — WDDM v1. 1)
      Driver Date 2009-06-10 File Size: 102.1M
      Driver Version: 6.14.11.8618 Vendor: NVIDIA
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 bit, Windows 8.1 32bit, Windows 7 32bit, Windows Vista 32bit, Windows XP

      Download

      Device Name: NVIDIA ION (Microsoft Corporation — WDDM v1.1)
      Driver Date 2015-02-03 File Size: 269.74M
      Driver Version: 9.18.13.4144 Vendor: NVIDIA
      Supported OS: Windows 10 64 bit, Windows 8. 1 64bit, Windows 7 64bit, Windows Vista 64bit

      Download

      Network & Wireless Drivers

      Device Name: Realtek PCIe GBE Family Controller
      Driver Date 2014-12-04 File Size: 5.73M
      Driver Version: 5.830.1204.2014 Vendor: Realtek
      Supported OS: Windows XP

      Download

      Device Name: Realtek PCIe GBE Family Controller
      Driver Date 2015-01-15 File Size: 5. 88M
      Driver Version: 106.13.0115.2015 Vendor: Realtek
      Supported OS: Windows Vista 32 & 64bit

      Download

      Device Name: Realtek PCIe GBE Family Controller
      Driver Date 2015-01-15 File Size: 5.93M
      Driver Version: 7.092.0115.2015 Vendor: Realtek
      Supported OS: Windows 7 32 & 64bit

      Download

      Device Name: Realtek PCIe GBE Family Controller
      Driver Date 2015-01-15 File Size: 5. 84M
      Driver Version: 8.038.0115.2015 Vendor: Realtek
      Supported OS: Windows 8.1 32 & 64bit, Windows 8 32 & 64bit

      Download

      Device Name: Realtek PCIe GBE Family Controller
      Driver Date 2014-06-17 File Size: 5.79M
      Driver Version: 8.034.0617.2014 Vendor: Realtek
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 & 64bit, Windows 8.1 32 & 64bit, Windows 8 32 & 64bit

      Download

      Audio Drivers

      Device Name: High Definition Audio Device
      Driver Date 2013-06-16 File Size: 150. 45M
      Driver Version: 1.3.26.4 Vendor: NVIDIA
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 & 64bit, Windows 8.1 32 & 64bit, Windows 7 32bit

      Download

      Device Name: High Definition Audio Device
      NVIDIA High Definition Audio
      Driver Date 2013-11-28 File Size: 151.9M
      Driver Version: 1.3.30.1 Vendor: NVIDIA
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 & 64bit, Windows 8.1 32 & 64bit, Windows 7 32 & 64bit, Windows Vista 32 & 64bit, Windows XP

      Download

      Device Name: Realtek High Definition Audio
      Driver Date 2013-12-17 File Size: 244. 31M
      Driver Version: 5.10.0.7116 Vendor: Realtek
      Supported OS: Windows XP

      Download

      Device Name: Realtek High Definition Audio
      Driver Date 2013-12-10 File Size: 238.34M
      Driver Version: 5.10.0.7111 Vendor: Realtek
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 & 64bit, Windows 8.1 32 & 64bit, Windows 7 32 & 64bit, Windows Vista 32 & 64bit, Windows XP

      Download

      Device Name: Realtek High Definition Audio
      Driver Date 2015-06-18 File Size: 100. 74M
      Driver Version: 6.0.1.7541 Vendor: Realtek
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 bit, Windows 8.1 32bit, Windows 7 32bit, Windows Vista 32bit

      Download

      Device Name: Realtek High Definition Audio
      Driver Date 2015-06-18 File Size: 125.4M
      Driver Version: 6.0.1.7541 Vendor: Realtek
      Supported OS: Windows 10 64 bit, Windows 8.1 64bit, Windows 7 64bit, Windows Vista 64bit

      Download

      Device Name: Realtek High Definition Audio
      Driver Date 2014-06-01 File Size: 216. 84M
      Driver Version: 6.0.1.7259 Vendor: Realtek
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 & 64bit, Windows 8.1 32 & 64bit, Windows 7 32 & 64bit, Windows Vista 32 & 64bit

      Download

      System & Chipset Drivers

      Device Name: High Definition Audio Controller
      Driver Date 2004-03-05 File Size: 218M
      Driver Version: 5.10.00.5010 Vendor: Microsoft
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 bit, Windows 8.1 32bit, Windows 7 32bit, Windows Vista 32bit, Windows XP

      Download

      Device Name: Matrox Extio PCI Standard PCI-to-PCI Bridge
      Driver Date 2010-10-27 File Size: 97. 23K
      Driver Version: 1.3.4.61 Vendor: Matrox Graphics
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 bit, Windows 8.1 32bit, Windows 7 32bit, Windows Vista 32bit, Windows XP 32bit

      Download

      Device Name: Microsoft Away Mode System
      NVIDIA nForce System Management Controller
      Driver Date 2009-11-24 File Size: 140.91M
      Driver Version: 6.0.6000.115 Vendor: NVIDIA
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 & 64bit, Windows 8.1 32 & 64bit, Windows 7 32 & 64bit, Windows Vista 32 & 64bit, Windows XP

      Download

      Device Name: NVIDIA nForce PCI System Management
      Driver Date 2009-11-19 File Size: 73. 81M
      Driver Version: 4.7.8 Vendor: NVIDIA
      Supported OS: Windows Vista 32bit, Windows XP 32bit

      Download

      Device Name: NVIDIA nForce PCI System Management
      Driver Date 2010-03-22 File Size: 46M
      Driver Version: 4.7.9 Vendor: NVIDIA
      Supported OS: Windows Vista 64bit, Windows XP 64bit

      Download

      Device Name: NVIDIA nForce PCI System Management
      Driver Date 2008-08-21 File Size: 8. 57M
      Driver Version: 4.6.9 Vendor: NVIDIA
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 bit, Windows 8.1 32bit, Windows 7 32bit, Windows Vista 32bit, Windows XP

      Download

      Device Name: NVIDIA nForce PCI System Management
      Driver Date 2008-08-21 File Size: 239.15K
      Driver Version: 4.6.9 Vendor: NVIDIA
      Supported OS: Windows 10 64 bit, Windows 8.1 64bit, Windows 7 64bit, Windows Vista 64bit, Windows XP 64bit

      Download

      Device Name: NVIDIA nForce System Management Controller
      Driver Date 2010-04-09 File Size: 44. 53M
      Driver Version: 11.1.0.43 Vendor: NVIDIA
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 bit, Windows 8.1 32bit, Windows 7 32bit, Windows Vista 32bit, Windows XP

      Download

      USB Drivers

      Device Name: Standard Enhanced PCI to USB Host Controller
      Driver Date 2001-06-01 File Size: 117.26K
      Driver Version: 5.1.2600.0 Vendor: Microsoft
      Supported OS: Windows 10 32 bit, Windows 8.1 32bit, Windows 7 32bit, Windows Vista 32bit, Windows XP

      Download

      ASRock ION 330-BD Nettop Review

      By Ewdison Then/Updated: March 2, 2012 9:12 am EDT

      Where netbooks go, their deskbound nettop brethren eventually follow, and as NVIDIA’s Ion GPU has made its impact on the graphics capabilities of budget ultraportables, so it has its sights set on compact desktops too. ASRock and NVIDIA worked together on the ION 330-BD, a Blu-ray toting nettop that pairs Intel’s Atom processor with NVIDIA’s ION platform, and sent one over to prove to SlashGear that just because the footprint is small, it doesn’t mean the performance is too.

      First impressions are good, with the ION 330-BD a compact 195 x 70 x 186 mm box finished in high-gloss black paint. The front panel is relatively bare, save a narrow vent, slimline Blu-ray drive and power button, with all the ports around the back. There’s no shortage of them, either; ASRock have squeezed in a full six USB 2.0, together with both VGA and HDMI (supporting HDCP), S/PDIF optical audio output, three connectors for HD 5.1 audio, and gigabit ethernet. The slab-sided casing may not have the curves of some rival nettops, but it does mean the ION 330-BD can be positioned upright without needing an add-on stand.

      Inside, unlike the Acer Aspire Revo – one of the first NVIDIA Ion toting nettops to arrive on the market, but which was criticised heavily for its lackluster non-graphics performance – ASRock have fitted Intel’s Atom 330 dual-core processor rather than their single-core 230. Both chips run at 1.6GHz, but with the benefit of not only two cores but hyperthreading, the 330 can present four effective threads for service; not only that, but ASRock supply their EZ Overclocking BIOS app, which allows you to stably ramp the CPU up to over 2GHz. Of course, the real meat in this particular nettop is the NVIDIA Ion chip, which deserves a little explanation.

      Nettops and netbooks have generally paired Intel’s Atom processors with the company’s own 945G chipset, which while capable enough for internet browsing, basic media playback and standard Office applications falls well short of high-definition content. ASRock instead match the Atom 330 up with the Ion, which not only takes on the the graphics side – the same graphics, in fact, as the GeForce 9400M that you’ll find in many notebooks, including models from Apple’s MacBook Pro range – but northbridge and southbridge duties too. The company then throws in 2GB of DDR2 dual-channel memory (up to 4GB is supported) and a 320GB 2. 5-inch 5,400rpm SATA 3Gb/s hard-drive.

      To keep costs down, ASRock supply the ION 330-BD without an OS, expecting buyers to either install their own or resellers to offer OEM copies at checkout. Our review model was loaded with the Windows 7 RC, together with PowerDVD 9 with Blu-ray support and Media Player Classic. It’s important to note that both of these playback apps have full support for NVIDIA’s GPU hardware acceleration; otherwise, playback will rely solely on the Atom processor rather than take advantage of the Ion.

      We started off running benchmarks in GeekBench, as is our normal course of action in a computer review. The ASRock scored 1222 points overall, respectable for a nettop; remember, though, that GeekBench only measures processor and memory performance, not GPU, so the Ion had no say in things. Still, it does better than Lenovo’s similarly 330-based IdeaCentre C300 which has twice the RAM (though it’s slower, at 533MHz, than the ASRock’s 800MHz chips) but only scores 1080.

      To test out the NVIDIA side of the game, we threw some high-definition content at the ION 330-BD. Fitting a Blu-ray drive invites 1080p playback, and the ASRock certainly doesn’t disappoint. We hooked up a Full HD display via HDMI (an HDMI-to-DVI adapter is also supplied in the box) and enjoyed flawless, smooth video that left the CPU with plenty of headroom. The same was true when we tried a high-def video file played from the hard-drive, the ION 330-BD instantly cementing its position as a compact HTPC. Even during playback noise and heat from the system are both low, and ASRock’s quick-start app – which basically acts a sort of low-power standby mode, and boots back up to a working desktop in under ten seconds – made the nettop faster to play Blu-ray discs than some standalone decks we’ve seen.

      As for audio, there are plenty of options from using the ASRock’s onboard decoding through the separate S/PDIF output and then HDMI audio pass-through. Unfortunately, while Dolby Digital 5. 1 and 7.1 surround sound are supported, there’s no capacity for Dolby TrueHD or DTS-HD Master Audio pass-through, instead compressing them. It’s not something we noticed, however, and in use the nettop provided excellent sound quality.

      Media playback is one thing, but Ion has also been causing waves for its gaming credentials too. The ION 330-BD’s showing here isn’t quite as impressive as its 1080p outing, since games generally rely on a combination of graphics and processor performance, but you’re certainly able to do more gaming than you would on a standard all-Intel nettop. ASRock and NVIDIA claim to have tested sixteen modern games – including Call of Duty 4, Lego: Batman, Sims 3 and Left 4 Dead – with no problems pushing over 27fps at 1,024 x 768 resolution. We found the nettop certainly put in a decent showing at the titles we tried it with, though we’d still point you in the direction of a decent gaming PC or console if that’s going to be your primary use.

      In terms of what we’d change, issues are happily few and far between. The compact chassis has meant ASRock used a 2.5-inch hard-drive, which does limit capacity upgrades; that wouldn’t be so frustrating if the ION 330-BD didn’t do such a decent job as an HTPC. Still, we can live with a (current) maximum of 500GB onboard, and relying on a NAS – connected up with gigabit ethernet – for external storage. It might also be nice to see a couple of the nettop’s six USB 2.0 ports up front, rather than all clustered on the back panel, for plugging in external drives and other peripherals when the ION 330-BD is tucked underneath your TV. In a similar vein, it seems a little shortsighted not to add a multiformat card reader for viewing images and footage from digital cameras and camcorders.

      Still, when the MRSP is $499 for the Blu-ray toting model, it’s hard to argue too loudly about relatively minor issues such as these. A non-Blu-ray version is available for around $100 to $150 less, but unless you’re totally digital in your entertainment consumption we’d splash out on the more expensive model. It’s still well within the price bracket for a modern compact desktop, many of which will give you a slightly better processor at the expense of less capable graphics.

      NVIDIA’s Ion chipset turns the humble Atom nettop into a versatile, surprisingly capable PC that overcomes the limitations of today’s small form factor systems. The ASRock ION 330-BD isn’t for power users, certainly, but if you’re looking for a quiet, discrete, reasonably priced and above all well performing home media center or all-around everyday PC then it’s definitely worth considering.


      Recommended

      ASRock ION 330 — one ion for two atoms / Notebooks and PCs

      Design Features

      Unlike the already mentioned Acer Revo R3600, ASRock’s nettop has a fairly traditional and therefore very simple design.

      Although it can be installed vertically, the natural arrangement of the case is horizontal. The system board is fixed at the bottom of the case, above it, in a special removable basket, a DVD drive and a hard drive are placed. The motherboard is equipped with two Serial ATA interfaces, so both of them are occupied. It is noteworthy that the drives are powered by a separate cable connected to a four-pin connector on the system board.

      The cooling system consists of two fans — a miniature 3 cm fan is mounted on the processor heatsink, and the main 5 cm fan is mounted on the rear wall of the case. The NVIDIA ION chip is also covered with a radiator, but passive cooling is enough for it.

      But the processor, as the test results showed, needs active cooling — looking ahead, we note that in maximum load modes its temperature was close to 100 to C. Unfortunately, we were unable to measure the fan speed, but they are very quiet — even in an empty room you can hear their noise only by bringing your ear close to the case. So the maximum noise level declared by the manufacturer of 26 dB seems quite realistic.

      As already mentioned, the Intel Atom processor (like the NVIDIA ION chip) is soldered and cannot be replaced. But the user has the opportunity to increase the amount of system memory — he has two conventional slots for DIMM DDR2.

      The maximum amount of RAM can be up to 4 GB. An upgrade of the disk subsystem is also possible — the nettop uses a standard hard disk and an optical drive. If desired, you can also dismantle the entire motherboard — for this you need to unscrew the back wall of the case — but hardly any of the users will need this.

      We had no complaints about the quality of the assembly or individual components — the layout is well thought out, everything is very carefully assembled.

      Testing

      We have prepared a rather extensive test program, including tests of the graphics subsystem, power consumption, and heat dissipation. All tests were carried out under 32-bit Windows Vista. Of course, we will compare the performance results with the previously tested Acer Revo R3600, although it is not difficult to predict the victory of the ASRock nettop here — it has a clear advantage in CPU performance. Well, let’s start by tradition with tests of individual subsystems.

      While the ASRock ION 330 wins in terms of hard drive capacity, it falls short in performance. This is unlikely to be noticeable in real applications, so it is obvious that from the end user’s point of view, more volume is preferable.

      PC Mark 05 ASRock ION 330 Acer Aspire Revo R3600
      PCMark05 2181 1940
      CPU 1925 1405
      Memory 2273 2343
      Graphics 1778 2050
      HDD 4489 4590

      The PCMark05 test results show the advantage of ASRock ION 330 in processing power. The lag in the power of the graphics subsystem looks somewhat strange, because they are the same for the compared nettops. It is possible that the already outdated PCMark05 test package does not work correctly under Windows Vista.

      PCMark Vantage ASRock ION 330 Acer Aspire Revo R3600
      PCMarkSuite 1541 1239
      Memories Suite 873 1168
      TV and Movies Suite 1469 859
      Gaming Suite 1657 1181
      Music Suite 1600 1484
      Communications Suite 1239 982
      Productivity Suite 1501 1055
      HDD Test Suite 1239 2700

      The PCMark Vantage test results remind us that the ASRock ION 330 hard drive is somewhat slower than the Acer nettop. However, in most tests, a more powerful processor provides a noticeable advantage.

      3Dmark 06 ASRock ION 330 Acer Aspire Revo R3600
      3DMark Score, 3DMarks 1396 1298
      GT1 — Return To Proxycon, FPS 3.701 3.823
      GT2 — Firefly Forest, FPS 5.142 5.177
      CPU Score, CPUMarks 816 486
      CPU Test 1, FPS 0.272 0.156
      CPU Test 2 0. 392 0.242
      Fill Rate (Single-Texturing), MTexels/s 887.573 893.732
      Fill Rate (Multi-Texturing), MTexels/s 1782.856 1792.991
      Pixel Shader, FPS 47.343 47.733
      Vertex Shader — Simple, MVertices/s 115.898 115.171
      Vertex Shader — Complex, MVertices/s 25.903 25.749

      The 3Dmark06 test package once again demonstrated the clear advantage of the ASRock ION 330 in processor power, which also affected the final result.

      3DMark Vantage Entry Performance
      3DMark Score, 3DMarks 2489 374
      GPU Score 2974 297
      CPU Score 1671 1670
      GPU Test 1, FPS 8.30 0.73
      GPU Test 2, FPS 9.13 1.02
      CPU Test 1, plans/s 224.88 225.24
      CPU Test 2, steps/s 2. 38 2.36
      Feature Test 1, Gtexels/s 50.19 50.19
      Feature Test 2, Gpixels/s 0.43 0.43
      Feature Test 3, FPS 1.71 1.71
      Feature Test 4, FPS 3.81 3.81
      Feature Test 5, FPS 2.80 2.77
      Feature Test 6, FPS 2.66 2.71

      Unfortunately, the Acer Revo R3600 has not been tested in 3DMark Vantage, so we cannot compare the results of the ASRock ION 330 with this nettop. But this test allows you to compare ASRock ION 330 with gaming laptops. Obviously, records are not to be expected, but with some games (such as, for example, Call of Duty 4), he may well cope.

      As for heat dissipation, as you can see in the screenshot above (it was taken after another run of 3DMark Vantage), the processor temperature is quite high even in the nominal mode — about 70 about C, while under load it rises to 90 or even more degrees. But the temperature of the graphics core changes by only a dozen degrees — from peaceful 60 to safe 70 to C. There are no problems with the temperature of the hard drive either.

      As for the power consumption of the nettop, measured with a wattmeter, the consumption from the socket was 36-38 watts at rest, up to 46-48 watts under load in graphics tests. Above 50 watts, power consumption has never risen. It should be understood that the wattmeter we used has a rather large measurement discreteness and the indicated values ​​​​are average. However, this gives a fairly clear idea of ​​the overall power consumption of the system — it is 1.5-2 times higher than that of Atom systems based on Intel chipsets, but significantly less than that of conventional desktop PCs. In conclusion, we note that the nettop does an excellent job of playing FullHD-video — the processor load is 30-35%, and the power consumption does not exceed 40 watts.

      Conclusions

      Pros

    • Optical storage
    • Good performance
    • Low noise level

      Cons

    • No wireless adapter
    • No memory card slot
    • All rear connectors
    • Keyboard and mouse not included

      Summing up the results of testing the ASRock ION 330 nettop, it is difficult to refrain from comparing it with the previously tested nettop based on NVIDIA ION, although of course it would be more correct to evaluate it independently. The disadvantages of ASRock ION 330 include the lack of USB connectors on the front panel and an adapter for flash memory cards, and in comparison with the Acer Revo R3600, it is worth noting the lack of a built-in wireless adapter and a relatively modest bundle. But ASRock ION 330 boasts an optical drive, a powerful dual-core processor and really low noise. In addition, a plus for this nettop is to write down a very affordable price. The ASRock ION 330 is currently the best deal in terms of performance/price, but whether this is sufficient compensation for some of the inconveniences we noted is up to everyone to decide.

      — Discuss the material in the conference

    • Three generations of the NVIDIA Ion platform

      or
      Is there life on the Atom?

      As part of our special testing of compact systems (and semi-finished products suitable for them), we have already managed to get acquainted with two canonical «atomic» platforms. Partially, however, to get acquainted — if everything is clear with the PineTrail graphics (GMA 3150 can be called a 3D accelerator only out of courtesy, and everything is bad with video playback acceleration), then Cedar Trail drivers continue to spoil life. Theoretically PowerVR SGX545 9 core0441 something can break show (it’s not without reason that its analogues are actively used in SoCs not only based on Atom, but also on ARM), in practice, drivers for desktop operating systems, firstly, there are not at all for all such systems, but , secondly, they do not even support all the hardware capabilities of the kernel. In general, we cannot fully test even the latest generation of Atom in all applications of the methodology.

      Is there a way out? Yes, there is: you need to use non-Intel graphics solutions. It is clear that the idea of ​​using a discrete GPU with Atom is akin to a hangover nightmare, but some time ago, manufacturers didn’t have much choice: CULV processors have always been more expensive, and AMD hasn’t planed its “wooden soldiers” yet. Moreover, during the time of the first generation of Atom, strictly speaking, it was not required to use an additional video chip — they did not have an integrated GPU. And it was in the chipset, so by simply replacing it, the problem was easily and naturally solved. Thus, the first «platform» Ion was born, combining an Intel processor and an NVIDIA chipset. Here, her heirs have already had worse, which we have repeatedly touched upon, but very superficially and only from the point of view of theory. Now it is time to study the issue more thoroughly. Starting, as always, with theory.

      NVIDIA Ion — bringing the Atom platform to perfection

      So, let’s go back to 2008, when Intel released the first Atoms of the Diamondville family. Initially, it was stated that these processors are not some branch of the main line of development, but a completely separate implementation of the x86 architecture, where performance was initially sacrificed for simplicity and energy efficiency. Accordingly, not full-fledged computers (albeit portable ones) were considered as the main scope, but devices of a special kind: netbooks and nettops. Architecturally similar to real «personal computers», but intended (as it is fashionable to call it) for content consumption. And high productivity in this area is not needed, in contrast to the production or processing of the same content. That is, in order to mount the video and convert it into a format suitable for network use, you need a powerful computer — there’s no getting around it. And the more powerful, the better, because the faster you can finish the job and proceed to the next task. But here you can watch it on something simpler — if only there was enough strength to play it. And the extra power has already turned out to be redundant, since there is simply nothing to apply it to. However, video is just not the best example, since here and for playback you need not so few resources, but most content on the Internet is still text or simple pictures. Occasionally comes across a more or less complex interactive, but still not too often. And four years ago it was even less.

      But I met, which started to interfere with Atom. The fact is that the initial version was rather a training one — the company really wanted to see what would happen at all. Accordingly, to simplify work, all innovations were limited exclusively to processor cores, and the entire LGA775 infrastructure was suitable for creating ready-made systems, and nothing better was found for a standard platform than using the old i945 line. The i945GSE intended for netbooks, however, already surpassed even dual-core Atoms in terms of TDP, not to mention single-core ones, and the nettop i945GC generally looked within the framework of the platform like a saddle on a cow. And the most unpleasant thing is that all this was in no way compensated by functionality — the archaic three-chip layout of the platform was very poorly combined with compact systems, and the built-in GMA 950 GPU was not only a complete zero in terms of gaming use, but only Motion offered video lovers. Compensation for MPEG2 and that’s it.

      At the same time, NVIDIA’s chipsets for LGA775 reached their peak by that time. GeForce 9The 300/9400 supported DirectX 10 and contained 16 general purpose GPUs. Yes, and the video acceleration was complete, which is extremely important for weak processors, which still have no chance to cope with the same 1080p in a purely software mode. Another nice feature was the single-chip layout, i.e. the number of microcircuits on the board was reduced to two — the processor itself and the chipset. In addition, the 14W TDP was slightly higher than the i945GSE’s 9.3W, but was no match for the i9’s 25.5W.45GC.

      In general, initially NVIDIA planned to actively use these chipsets together with «full-fledged» processors, but they failed to achieve success. The fact is that manufacturers in high-level systems still used discrete video, and for the initial one they managed with a variety of Intel budgets, such as G31 or G41. As a result, there were few motherboards based on the GeForce 9300 (although they were popular), and the GeForce 9400 went down in history solely through the efforts of Apple. But paired with Atom, he quickly became popular. Why? But because there weren’t any special options: in the Ion platform, the GPU was tempted to give the leading role, but the processor played an auxiliary role, “slipping” data to the first one. Actually, this is how it was in multimedia applications — Atom itself would not have coped with video or games, but thanks to the chipset it could do something. We also managed to “fasten” normal digital outputs with the same normal resolution as line 945 did not allow. This was true for nettops, but netbook manufacturers were glad to be able to bypass the restrictions on the size of the display — Intel clearly indicated that a computer on a «standard» platform should have no more than 10 «, which it strictly followed. But on Ion it was possible to do 12″, for example. Well, yes — for a full-fledged laptop, the platform is still too slow, but it’s not like it’s more convenient to work (even if by “work” we mean banal browsing on the Internet)!

      In general, many people remember that Atom is really bad and cheap, and Ion is a little more expensive, but not much better in terms of functionality. Yes, that’s exactly what it was. But the first version of the platform was already being prepared for St. Bartholomew’s Night…

      NVIDIA Ion2 — a mixture of a bulldog and a rhinoceros

      At the end of 2009, the second generation of Atom, the Pine Trail platform, entered the market. Its main improvement was an increase in the degree of component integration — only two chips: Atom itself and a simple NM10 Express south bridge. The power consumption of processors has noticeably increased (for example, desktop dual-core models have grown in TDP from 8 to 13 W), but only formally — the former northbridge moved to the same die as the processor cores. Thus, the overall energy efficiency has increased — a bunch of Atom 330 and i9The 45GSE had a TDP of 17.3 W, but the Atom D525+NM10 already cost 15 W for two. In netbook models, progress was even more visible and even allowed the launch of dual-core models — in the first generation, these were intended only for nettops.

      But here’s the functionality… The functionality remained at the same level: the archaic GMA 3150 video core, in fact, not far removed from the GMA 950, was still not only not suitable for games, but it also couldn’t decode HD video. And then NVIDIA solemnly announced the Ion2 platform. On the wave of interest in the first version of the platform, the second one also attracted the attention of buyers. But the attention was quickly replaced by disappointment, which is easy to understand if you look at a simple picture:

      In general, everything is obvious: the «Ion MCP» completely replaced the poor (may the potentially existing i945 fans forgive us) Intel chipsets, turning the platform from a three-chip into a two-chip one, and the «Ion GPU» is nothing more than a discrete video chip that can improve only functionality, for which you had to pay quite a lot. After all, do not forget that Intel did not consider this Atom configuration option as viable, so the NM10 has only four PCIe x1 1.1 lanes, and only one of them can be assigned to an external adapter. Accordingly, there can be no question of using system RAM, therefore, in addition to the chip itself, up to 512 MB of its own video memory had to be soldered onto the board. In general, there were noticeably more chips than in the «canonical» version of Pine Trail. And this means that space was wasted and energy consumption increased. Well, by themselves, the GPU and memory manufacturers got far from free.

      However, do not forget that this was at the beginning of 2010, i.e. before the release of AMD Brazos, there was a whole year left. And Ion2 had practically no other potential competitors — the “standard” Pine Trail version had too low functionality, and everything else was even more expensive. More precisely, netbooks with Celeron CULV on Arrandale could somehow compete in price, but the first generation GMA HD core built into them was still too weak. And such (or more powerful) processor paired with discrete video had all the same disadvantages as Ion2 at a higher price. Thus, a potential market for such systems existed.

      Let’s take a closer look at the Ion2, more specifically the included GPU. In a separate form, such a solution was promoted under the name GeForce G210M on the GT218 chip, and all the changes compared to it concerned a “narrowed” bus (since it was still impossible to get more than x1 in Pine Trail) and reduced clock frequencies. To be absolutely precise, there were already three variants of Ion2. The older one, which has the same 16 GPUs as the Ion, operating at a frequency of 535 MHz (against 450 MHz of the previous generation integrated solution), was used only in nettops. For netbooks with a display diagonal of 12 inches, a similar chip was offered, but with a frequency of 475 MHz. The TDP of both full-fledged Ion2s was the same — 12 W, which had to be added to the processor and chipset. And for the most compact netbooks, a completely stripped-down chip was offered with only 8 pipelines at a frequency of 405 MHz. TDP, of course, managed to be driven into the 6 watts, but the performance was even lower than that of the first Ion. But it was required to pay for the GPU and video memory, so the younger solution did not leave any special marks on the market. The older ones were used both in netbooks and nettops, since, as we said above, manufacturers did not have much choice.

      NVIDIA Ion3 — a mirage in the desert

      Let’s make a reservation right away — NVIDIA has not announced a product called «Ion3», so it does not formally exist. But in fact, what can be called in this way is produced and sold through the efforts of some especially close partners. How could this happen? For example, Zotac buys a fair amount of GeForce GT520M for their LGA1155 mini-ITX boards. Accordingly, it is not so difficult for companies to start up some of the chips as partners for the new Atom. Moreover, a discrete GPU can also come in handy within the Cedar Trail, despite the updated video core of new processors. Since, as we already wrote, there are still a lot of problems with it due to drivers. Yes, and playing high-definition video is useful in itself, but some people want to play games. And here already PowerVR, even when fixing software problems, is unlikely to help much. At the same time GF119(this is the name of the core itself) is a low-level solution, but quite modern. In particular, it supports DirectX 11 and OpenGL 4.0, and with video drivers (and game compatibility), NVIDIA has always done better than Intel. 48 unified GPUs of the Fermi architecture at 740 MHz, again, should work much faster than the GT218, and since there were buyers for the last one, there will be those who will buy the new Atom with the GT520M. Moreover, the processors themselves have become faster, cheaper and more economical. Here with the GPU — not everything is clear: it was not possible to find its TDP level. But all forecasts revolve around 17 W for the chip and memory in total, which, in general, is more or less acceptable: the total power consumption should be kept at the level of the same Ion2. But how things are with performance, we will check today. 45 nm 45 nm 32 nm 40 nm 40 nm 45 nm Frequencies of the nucleus STD/MAX, GHC 1.6 1,1,000 1,1,DA 1.0/1.3 1,65 1.2 Nuclear core/Flowing Flows of calculation 2/4 2/4 2/4 2/2/2/2/2/2/2/2/2/2/2I 2/2 2/2 Graphics GeForce 9400M — — — DirectX 10 10. 1 11 11 11 10 Кэш L1, I/D, КБ 32/24 32/24 32/24 32/32 32/32 32/ ×512 2×512 1024 10 (+14) Tue

      So, three versions of Ion — two old, but really existing and one new, potentially capable of getting such a name. Accordingly, three top Atoms — all three generations. For comparison, of course, it makes sense to take the AMD C-60 and E-450 — now, after all, it’s not 2010, so there are plenty to choose from. And at the same time, let’s take the Celeron SU2300 as a guideline, since it fell into our hands paired with the same Ion as the Atom 330. So let’s compare the two oldies on equal terms.

      )

      )

      System board RAM
      330 3Q IPX7A-ION/330 KVR800D2S6/4G (1 × 800; 6-6-6-17)
      ASUS AT5IONT-I Deluxe Kingston KVR1333D3S9/4G (1×800; 6-6-6-15)
      D2700 Zotac D2700-ITX WiFi Supreme 2×Kingston KVR1333D3S9/2G (1×1066 ; 7-7-7-20)
      C-60 Acer Aspire One 722-C68 Kingston KVR1333D3S9/4G (1×1066; 7-7-7-20)
      E-450 ASUS E45M1-M Pro )
      SU2300 Zotac ZBox HD ND-22 Kingston KVR1333D3S9/4G (1×1066; 7-7-7-20)

      relaxation for surrogate systems — all (and not only them) will be tested with memory in a single-channel configuration. However, this remark fully applies only to the SU2300 and partly to the Atom 330. But the board with the latter generally supports only DDR2, so equalizing the conditions here would still be a difficult and thankless task 🙂

      Testing

      Traditionally, we divide all tests into a number of groups, and show the average result for a group of tests/applications on the diagrams (you can read the full testing methodology in detail in a separate article). The results in the diagrams are given in points, 100 points is the performance of the iXBT.com reference test system of the 2011 model for testing microsystems. It is based on the AMD E-350 processor using the integrated video core. The amount of memory for all systems is 4 GB, and in single-channel mode (and for systems with dual-channel controllers too — for ease of comparison). Those who are interested in more detailed information are again traditionally invited to download a table in Microsoft Excel format, in which all the results are shown both in converted points and in «natural» form.

      Interactive work in 3D packages

      We haven’t tested Atom in similar programs before, maybe it’s better for it. Since the results speak for themselves — the most productive Atom D2700, and even paired with a discrete video adapter, only caught up with the AMD C-60, which was previously the slowest. As for the D525 and, in particular, the 330, there’s not much to say — the latter is exactly twice behind the reference E-350, despite the good integrated chipset. Which, by the way, paired with Celeron SU2300 continues to hold the first place among all tested systems in this group.

      Final rendering of 3D scenes

      This area of ​​application does not apply to the target for microsystems, but is interesting as an example of a high computational load. And in these cases, Atom holds up well, largely due to support for Hyper-Threading. In any case, even the ancient 330 is faster than any AMD C-series processors, the D525 lags only behind the E-450, and the D2700 is only a little short of the Celeron SU2300, a feat other surrogates have not attempted.

      Packing and unpacking

      Yes, and here everything is relatively good. Largely thanks to 7-Zip, which, when compressing data, can use all four available streams. In general, even the 330 keeps at the level of the C-60, and the D2700 once again tries to reach the Celeron CULV modifications.

      Audio encoding

      And these tests welcome multithreading even more, so here even the Atom 330 falls just a little short of AMD’s E-series, which appeared much later. And the D2700 can already be compared not only with low-voltage, but also with conventional mobile Celerons. Naturally, not in the sense that the performance is equal (in fact, up to some B810 it still remains to work and work), but in the fact that at least CULV solutions are no longer something unattainable: they are behind in applications like this . The previous generation was not capable of this, but the new increase in the clock frequencies of the cores (albeit with the preservation of their equally primitive structure) provided the necessary acceleration.

      Compilation

      And in these tasks, «extra» computation threads are far from superfluous. Atom 330, however, their presence allows you to overtake only AMD’s C-series, but the already very old D525 also keeps at the level of a much more modern AMD E-450. Well, the D2700, which is not surprising, turned out to be the fastest of today’s six processors.

      Mathematical and engineering calculations

      Unfortunately, in a single-threaded code, all these advantages quickly disappear — the Atom architecture itself is too simplified to be able to talk about more or less serious performance of each computation thread. In the groups above, the problem could be solved by the number of threads, but here they are simply idle. So it turns out that only the D2700 managed to get ahead of the C-60 by the slightest. Accordingly, the position of older Atoms may deserve only not too censorship ratings at all 🙂

      Raster graphics

      Here the situation is only slightly better, due to the incomplete optimization of the group’s applications for multithreading. But, nevertheless, only the Atom 330 is already lagging behind the C-60, but the D2700 is closely approaching the E-350. However, it does not catch up with the latter, so the release of the E-450 widened the gap a little (and the E2-1800, again, will increase it a little more).

      Vector graphics

      Once again, a losing situation for the Atom ideology — in these tasks, simple single- or dual-core processors with high specific performance are out of competition. Atom, as has been said more than once, is able to demonstrate something interesting only in the case of a multi-threaded load.

      Video encoding

      For example, such as here. Moreover, as it turned out, some of the group’s programs are very susceptible to the video core. At least, Sony Vegas — he also has to display a picture in the process of work, so it seems that hardware support for video playback is relevant. That is why the D525 within the Ion2 platform managed to achieve a higher result than not only itself with the built-in GMA 3150, but also the N2800 with standard video drivers behind. In general, a little ahead, but not too far. Well, the D2700 (of course, also with a discrete GPU) is even faster. And it’s good that there are such groups…

      Office software

      …because more relevant for netbook applications are still dominated by low-threaded software with a natural (and more than once voiced) result: even the AMD C-60 easily outperforms the Atom D525. Yes, and with the D2700, he also sometimes butts at a close level. Thus, the only thing that can somehow justify Atom is that everyone in this class is slow. Even a single-core, but not “crushed” by energy efficiency Celeron is relatively fast. The dual-core CULV or AMD E-series is already almost one and a half times faster, while the Atom and C-series are quite weak. However, in some cases it is not so scary — you can write a letter to your grandmother in Word on any modern computer. Even if it is as specific as a netbook.

      Java

      At the very least, the Atom D2700 has reached the level of the AMD E-350, not so long ago one of the fastest surrogate processors. However, there is nothing to rejoice here — Atom was helped by four threads with a higher clock frequency, and all the same: we are not talking about leadership even now. Well, the D525 and, in particular, the 330, even Hyper-Threading does not save from a shameful defeat. Although the 330 is, of course, noticeably older than the C-60, it’s not exactly a netbook either. And how the single-core Atom, which was more common a year or two ago, will look here, you can imagine on your own (which, however, we recommend that those who are not sure of the strength of their nerves refrain from).

      Games

      We use the «hard» mode only for sporting reasons. Well, at the same time, to evaluate the assessment of the graphic component. Although in general, as we can see, even if it is as weak as in chipsets from three years ago (albeit «good» chipsets from this point of view), the processor still matters — Atom 330 is about 15% slower than Celeron SU2300 in equal conditions. The gaming performance of the Ion2 is noticeably higher than the Ion, although the absolute results make it immediately clear why this three-chip assembly instantly lost relevance after the introduction of Brazos: the performance of the Radeon HD 6310/6320, of course, is lower than that of the GT218, but this is a separate GPU with its own dedicated memory. That is, the design of the AMD platform is much simpler and cheaper to manufacture. Functionality, by the way, is higher — at least there is support for DirectX 11, which the GT218 could not boast of. Well, we initially had no doubt that the GT520M would win everyone in this test. Still, junior integrated solutions lag noticeably behind equally junior, but discrete ones. Even the younger versions of GMA HD cannot boast of anything here, as we have already seen. Only one thing is confusing — the lack of places where discrete graphics would be distributed for free 🙂 Moreover, it is easy to make sure that high relative power does not give anything in the global sense — to “pull out” at least one game with the settings we have chosen, a bunch of D2700 and The GT520M is still incapable.

      Games: low quality

      The picture doesn’t change too much even with a decrease in quality — the Ion3’s performance is slightly higher than that of the AMD E-450, however, only Aliens vs. Predator. Which, however, is also a step forward, since the Ion2 dangled somewhere at the level of the E-350, but the first Ion took the title of the slowest gaming platform from the C-60: it was not possible to reach 30 frames per second in any application. Even in Batman. VLC (DXVA) 53 70 64 37 32 28 VLC (SW) 148 167 155 134 99 94

      Comparing the processor load in this test, it is worth remembering that, to be more correct, the results of all Atoms should be divided by two — because of their four threads. Which, unfortunately, gives too little to the codecs we use in practice: otherwise, something worthwhile could have turned out in program mode. So far, the verdict is the same as for the other tested systems: if hardware acceleration works, then there will be no problems. If it doesn’t work, then kina will not be 🙂 And what will be better not to watch.

      Total

      Let’s start with the performance of the processor part itself (which, as it turned out, also somewhat depends on the graphics, but only in especially clinical cases). As you can see, even AMD’s C-series is quite at the level of the best Atom of the first generation, and already the E-350 (it may very well be that the E-300) is enough to overtake all the second. In general, at the start, Brazos significantly outperformed the Intel surrogate platform, which was noted by us (and not only by us) more than once. The only problem is that AMD has gone too far from the start over the past year. Well, increased productivity by 5%. Well, squeezed out another 5% in Brazos 2.0. And then what? And, most importantly, when? The pace of development of Atom is very good. In any case, judging by the tops. Performance in a pair of D525 / 330 correlates as 1.17. D2700/D525 — 1.19. At the same time, if we compare the TDP of the most economical platform options in a similar way, then for the 330/D525 we have 17. 3/15~1.15, and the D525/D2700 is 15/12, i.e. generally 1.25. In general, from the point of view of efficiency as the ratio of productivity to the heat pack, at the first step it increased by 34%, and at the second — by almost one and a half times. Moreover, progress went in both directions: both consumption decreased and productivity grew. It is clear that it is still a little low, but if desktop or at least laptop processors developed at such a pace … Many would be just happy 🙂

      Alas, the progress in the area of ​​the processor part turned out to be in no way consistent with the graphical component: at first there was a purely cosmetic transition from the GMA 950 to the GMA 3150, and the adaptation of the more functional PowerVR core to desktop and netbook Atom still cannot be considered complete from -for driver problems. It is quite possible that the best solution would be to switch to GMA HD, but there are serious suspicions that even the 32 nm process technology is still too «fat» in order to «shove» this video core into the «atomic» class. That is, the release of processors with a TDP of 17 W is quite possible (which is demonstrated by quite real ULV modifications of Celeron, Pentium and higher), but not cheap. Yes, and to fight for a platform with a consumption of up to 10 W, and then roll back so much would not be too correct. Will this be done within the 22nm Silvermont? It is not yet known, because it is still necessary to live before their appearance.

      And at the moment, as before, the only option to endow an Atom-based system with good graphics is still to use a discrete GPU. True, there is not much sense in this — as we can see, a bunch of D2700 and GT520M is able to overtake AMD E-450 in terms of integrated performance, but this is where all its advantages end. And the disadvantages begin: firstly, it is expensive, secondly, it takes up a lot of space (= expensive), thirdly, power consumption increases to the level of much more productive Celeron-based systems. Well, even if things aren’t perfect with the graphics, there are Brazos for fans of the latter. Moreover, in terms of processor performance, the latest platform very often outperforms even Cedar Trail, and just where it is needed 🙂 In general, against such a background, Intel’s recently announced decision to discontinue the flagship D2700 does not seem unexpected.

      Modern Atoms look good in the market for which they were intended — the cheapest netbooks. There are no full-fledged competitors for the N2600/N2800 yet: the S-60 is sometimes faster, but a little more expensive and more gluttonous. There are suspicions that the updated Z-family will show itself well in tablets. But the existence of the desktop line is not too justified — it turned out neither one nor the other. Yes, a cheap processor, but is it cheap enough to justify the low performance and problems with the video part? Brazos still looks like the more interesting platform. And to compete with it, it’s better to go the other way — dual-core processors based on the Ivy Bridge core will be very cheap to manufacture (after all, 22 nm), surpassing other competitors in other indicators. So there is nothing to catch in the consumer market of the D-series. For miniservers and NAS, in the same second half of this year, Centerton will appear with a TDP at the level of just netbook (and not desktop) models. Well, let their performance be a little lower than that of the D2700 — for this market, this is somewhat less important than the decrease in TDP. In the end, the ancient single-core Atom D410/D425 also work fine in dual-disk NAS, which is more than enough even for models with extended functionality.

      In general, in fact, today we are to some extent saying goodbye to the whole direction of Atom. The reasons for this “farewell” after reading the article are easy to understand — this processor, despite the progress, has not managed to reach the required absolute level of performance, continuing to lose even to the old CULV Celeron. At the same time, we almost completely closed the Atom topic, leaving behind the scenes only the very notorious new-generation video core (but there is separate material on it. And in the next articles of the cycle, we will most likely return to a slightly different level again — in the segment of minimum performance, white spots are practically no left 🙂 945GCLF2D based on the less cool 945GC Express chipset. Coincidence or not, it’s not ideal to have a system with a name that outputs one thing and delivers another. At least now you all know what you’re getting.


      Aside from the dual-core Atom 330, the main features of the Ion Fusion are the same as most netbooks, including an underpowered integrated Intel GMA 950 graphics chip. However, before we get into the performance implications, let’s take a look at Novatech’s overall package.

      Even before you unpack everything, you can tell that this is a compact package where the box (with monitor, peripherals and PC) takes up no more space than a regular PC box. Inside, everything is well protected, but it is easy to unpack.


      Starting with peripherals, the keyboard and mouse are cheap, standard Logitech models finished in matte black to match the monitor and PC. As usual, complete with rodents, a fairly comfortable optical mouse looks ambiguous. It glides smoothly on four small Teflon feet and has two buttons that operate with a positive click and a rubberized four-way scroll wheel with gear feedback.

      The
      keyboard does not offer a wrist rest, which makes typing somewhat awkward for me. Regardless, key feedback is good, if a bit spongy. The layout is uncomplicated, without any shortcuts or other special keys.

      As for the monitor, our Ion Fusion sample comes with the LG Flatron W1934S — a 19-inch model with 1440 x 900 resolution — that is as simple as it is affordable. In fact, the last monitor I looked at without any digital connection was a 16″ Chimei CMV-633A that came through our offices over a year ago. Of course, this isn’t such a big deal, since the Ion Fusion only supports VGA anyway, and given that the system only costs £310 with monitor, keyboard and mouse, it’s hardly something to complain about.


      To assemble the monitor, simply insert the neck of the stand into the round base. Its styling is simplistic, though not eye-catching, with its quirky blue-lit power button. Other than that, there are other controls that are easy to use despite their rather weak shortcuts. The menu structure is logical with plenty of presets and even basic aspect ratio controls (a feature that the cheapest monitors sometimes lack).

      Picture quality is average, with the usual TN panel deficiencies such as poor grayscale. Viewing angles are reasonable and text is nice and crisp. There was a slight hint of ghosting, which is very rare these days, but since the combination of an Atom processor plus a GMA 950 with 1GB of RAM isn’t exactly a gaming rig, it’s not much of an issue.


      Although the standby power consumption of the W1934S is 1W, it is very low, but after an amazing maximum of 30W on Samsung’s 23-inch EcoFit SyncMaster P2370, its typical power consumption of 36W seems less impressive.

      So, on the Ion Fusion device itself. Taking this desktop out of the box, I was immediately disappointed. With dimensions of 270 x 75 x 325mm (W x H x D), its chassis is much larger than I expected. Since the Ion Fusion is equipped with an optical drive and a dual-core processor, it would be unrealistic to hope for something like the Asus Eee Box, but we are still mainly talking about a netbook in a desktop case, and Novatech’s efforts are to double the my 2 year old Core 2 Duo desktop work PC.


      At 3.65 kg, it’s also heavy. Admittedly, this is mainly due to the metal casing, which gives the Ion Fusion excellent build quality and durability, and means you can confidently mount the monitor on top of a PC (horizontally).

      The front of the machine is finished in piano black with a broken silver strip that contains the power button. It would look pretty stylish if it weren’t for the unusually matte compact DVD recorder sitting at its center.


      In the meantime, the connectivity options are a little dated, although they will no doubt be attractive to some companies. Starting from the back, we have two PS2 ports, parallel and serial ports, and VGA. In addition, we have three 3.5mm audio jacks (for analog 5.1 channel surround sound output), four USB 2.0 ports and of course Ethernet.

      On the front of the Novatech, on the left side (or bottom of it in a vertical position) are two more USB ports, headphone and microphone jacks, and, surprisingly, an eSATA port. In fact, I was quite excited about this — a rather rare addition on a nettop — until I remembered that the D9 motherboard45GCLF2D only supports two SATA ports. Opening the Ion Fusion up (which is easy to do by removing three screws), my fears were confirmed, as the cable connected to the eSATA port is simply disconnected. This can be construed as misleading, but in fairness to Novatech, Ion Fusion eSATA is not on the spec sheet.

      While we’re talking about the inside of the case, you guessed it, there’s a lot of empty space. At the very least, this means that most components are easy to access if you want to upgrade, which you probably want to do with memory — 1 GB is enough to run Windows XP SP3, but when multitasking or running more intensive programs 2 GB will make all the difference.


      There is also a free PCI Express 1x slot, but since there is no expansion card slot in the back of the case, its use is limited. The hard drive is 3.5 inches, so it’s also very easy to replace, although 160GB should be plenty for most users, who will be happy with the Atom’s performance right from the start.

      With an extremely efficient Novatech Ion Fusion processor, large chassis, passive graphics cooling, and modest 120W PSU, you’d expect this machine to be very quiet, but sadly it’s not; in fact it is very noisy. So far, two of the four major benefits of buying an Atom-based system have been negated: it’s not particularly small or quiet, leaving only power consumption and price as possible incentives. But before we get to them, let’s take a look at how Novatech works.

      The one exception to all the netbook-like Ion features (1GB RAM, 160GB HDD, GMA 950 graphics) is of course the Atom 330 processor. Although it still only runs at 1.6GHz, the 330 is Atom’s only dual-core processor, and it not only doubled the number of cores, but also doubled the cache of any other Atom. The question is, how significant is this compared to the same fast standard Atom as the N270?

      Unfortunately, the simple answer is not much for most users. For example, both the Novatech Ion Fusion and the standard N270-based netbook (single-core 1.6GHz Atom) ran a multi-tasking script running multiple video streams, word editing, and browsing at the same time without any issues.


      For gaming and most other applications, the rest of the hardware is not designed to handle anything that requires dual core, leaving purely numerical calculations (like de/encoding video/music, applying effects to images, or using intensive calculations in a spreadsheet) as the main scenario where a dual core Atom has a major impact.

      To show how many of them, we ran an MP3 encoding test that took 15 minutes on the N270 compared to seven and a half minutes for the same file on the 330. That’s a reasonable performance boost, but then again, if you’re planning on doing this sort of thing, you’re better off getting a PC with even a low-end Core 2 Duo or AMD Phenom processor.


      However, one area where the Atom excels is in the use of energy. Obviously, two cores use more than one core, but even so, under heavy load (with video files running from a USB flash drive and optical drive, as well as other tasks running in the background), Ion Fusion’s power consumption never exceeded 46 W. In «everyday» scenarios, such as word processing or networking, this figure dropped to about 30 watts — less than the bundled 19 uses.inch LG monitor. That might seem like a lot compared to the Linutop 2’s 8.5W max, but this little box is so simple it can’t even run under Windows, while we’re talking about a full-fledged (albeit weak) PC here.

      So energy usage is the single biggest advantage of the Novatech Ion Fusion over other SFF PCs, but what about the price? Even though the Novatech ion range starts at £188.99, this is for the Atom 230 system. The one reviewed here is priced at 309£.35 including Windows XP.


      For the money, the biggest threat to Novatech’s latest Atom computer is probably the good old laptops. It’s not hard to find a 15.4″ laptop with a 2GHz or faster Intel Celeron processor, 2GB RAM, a similar 160GB hard drive and Windows Vista for £300. This type of configuration offers the most (including Wi-Fi and a card reader) and will do everything the Ion Fusion can and maybe a little more.

      However, if you prefer the tabletop route, the Ion Fusion will be harder to get through, but there are other options worth considering. A great alternative is the Asus Eee Box, which is available with a mouse and keyboard (though no monitor) for just £246.16. It gives you a similar configuration minus a single core Atom and no optical drive, but it makes up for it by being smaller, lighter, quieter and more attractive, and offers digital connectivity in the form of DVI, built-in Draft-N Wireless and a memory card reader. . However, add the cost of the standard 19inch monitor and you get around £330 which also makes it £20 more expensive.


      Also, there are actual nVidia Ion nettops to consider: for example, the upcoming Acer Aspire Revo is available for pre-order at the same price as the Eee Box, offering double the memory, Vista Premium instead of XP, six USB ports, eSATA and HDMI — and best of all, thanks to the excellent graphics card, it can handle not only light games, but also Full HD movies.

      Overall, if you’re looking for power, the average laptop will offer more, although if you prefer a desktop, Novatech offers a reasonably priced dual-core Atom system. However, this dual core processor is not worth its advantage over a single core on such a system and in terms of cost you are better off using the alternatives above or even Novatech’s own Ion system which is a decent price just under £190.0027


      While its price will appeal to many, the Novatech Ion Fusion system isn’t exactly a bargain. For the type of user that might use it, its dual-core Atom 330 doesn’t offer much of a performance boost over a single-core one, though we also think it’s too big and noisy for a low power system.


      Addendum — 12/05/09: This review, both its content and estimates, has been amended to reflect a pricing error in the original review. We apologize, both to our readers and the manufacturer, for any confusion.»

      Evaluation in detail

      • Value 6

      • features 6

      • View 6

      • design 6

      Unlike other sites, we thoroughly test every product we review. We use standard industry benchmarks to properly compare features. We will always tell you what we find. We never, ever accept money for a product review.
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      NVIDIA ION: The Right Platform for the Intel Atom

      The Intel Atom processor family has taken the laptop market by storm with its excellent balance of performance and economy. It is not surprising that interest in them has also appeared from the desktop market, but only now such their use has ceased to be a set of conventions.

      We help

      The use of Atom processors in desktop PCs of different classes and purposes is associated with rather large and not always acceptable compromises. Until recently, the only chipset on which such a system could be built was Intel 945GC/GSE that does not meet the performance requirements of users. First of all, this is due to the low performance of the integrated graphics core Intel GMA 950, which is unable not only to process three-dimensional graphics with an acceptable frame rate, but also to decode high-resolution video in hardware.

      No place is empty, and the lack of an optimal performance/power consumption Intel chipset for Atom aroused the interest of one of the corporation’s main competitors in this market, the California company NVIDIA. The developers did not reinvent the wheel and simply optimized the already existing GeForce 9 integrated chipset for Atom300/9400 mGPU dubbed ION.

      This chipset provides significantly enhanced capabilities compared to Intel 945GC. First of all, the graphics subsystem has been radically strengthened: the GPU used in the ION is identical to the GeForce 9400 and contains 16 stream processors operating at a frequency of 450 MHz, shader units operate at 1100 MHz. The GPU’s RAMDAC supports absolutely all modern video outputs: D-sub, DVI Dual-Link, HDMI and even DisplayPort. The framebuffer for graphics is allocated from the shared RAM, which is accessed by a dual-channel memory controller that supports both DDR2 and DDR3. Recall that the Intel chipset provides only one access channel to DDR2-533/667 memory.

      course

      UI/UX Design

      REGISTER!

      Other features that give NVIDIA ION superiority over Intel chipsets for Atom processors include support for 12 USB ports, 20 PCI Express 2.0 lanes (including PCI Express x16 2.0 for video cards), 5 PCI ports and 6 SATA channels. The chipset contains a built-in Gigabit Ethernet network controller, in addition, all ION-based systems are equipped with a high-quality audio codec with an output formula of 7.1.

      Interestingly, NVIDIA has not limited itself to supporting Intel processors: in the 4th quarter of 2009, it promises to present a modification that ensures the operability of VIA Nano CPUs. As we saw last year (ko-online.com.ua/37541), these processors often outperform Atom.

      The first working sample of NVIDIA ION was presented at CES 2009 in early January, and today commercial devices have finally begun to go on sale. The first two products to hit our Test Lab targeting different application models are Zotac’s mini-ITX motherboard and the Acer Aspire Revo media center.

      Зміст

          • 0.0.1 Zotac IONITX-A-E
      • 1 Zotac IONITX-A-E
          • 1.0.1 Acer Aspire Revo
      • 2 Acer Aspire Revo
          • 2.0.1 Testing results

      Zotac Ionitx-A-A-A-A-E

      Processor Intel Atom 330 (2 nuclei, 1.6 GHz)

      Type DDR2-667/800, up to 4 GB, up to 4 GB, up to 4 GB, up0005

      Chipset NVIDIA ION

      Form factor mini-ITX

      Interfaces USB 2.0 (6), Gigabit LAN (1), PS/2 (1), D-sub (1), DVI Dual-Link (1), HDMI (1), 3.5″ Audio (6), S/PDIF (2), eSATA (1), SATA II (3)

      Audio HDA 5.1 Realtek ALC662, HDMI 7.1

      Network interfaces 10/100/1000 Ethernet Base-T, IEEE 802.11b/g/n

      Price $199

      Provided by ELKO Kiev

      Great performance and functionality

      No PCI/PCI Express slots

      Perfect base for home media center

      This device is a miniature platform for building media centers. Under the massive aluminum heatsink are two chips — a dual-core Intel Atom 330 and an NVIDIA ION chipset. Due to their low heat dissipation, such a cooling system is quite enough, but for cases of dense layout and just for reinsurance, a silent 40mm fan is included in the package.

      This product has an interesting power supply scheme: an external PSU with a power of up to 90 W is connected to the connector on the rear panel. The drives are powered by a special splitter for three SATA ports, which is connected to the molex connector on the edge of the board. Such a solution will allow you to assemble the system in a very small case. For traditional power planners, Zotac supplies another version of the IONITX boards with the familiar ATX 24-pin connector.

      The board has two DDR2 DIMM slots and supports up to 4 GB DDR2-800. Up to three internal SATA drives can be installed in the system — given the availability of hard drives up to 2 TB on the market, this is more than enough. Unfortunately, this platform does not allow for any major functionality expansion: the only interface slot is a mini-PCI Express occupied by a Wi-Fi controller.

      The set of outputs on the rear panel should satisfy most consumers: six USB 2.0 allow you to connect a variety of peripherals, eSATA — to expand disk space without sacrificing performance. A set of video outputs is represented by analog D-sub, digital DVI Dual-Link with support for resolutions up to 2560 × 1600 and HDMI. Both traditional 3.5-inch audio outputs and coaxial and optical S/PDIF are available.

      An essential advantage of the Zotac product is the pre-installed IEEE 802.11n wireless controller, which should solve the problem of watching high-definition video directly over Wi-Fi without first copying files to the media center’s internal drive. The usual 802.11g standard with a bandwidth of up to 54 Mb / s, unfortunately, cannot cope with such a volume of data.

      In general, the Zotac IONITX-A-E has a favorable impression: the system fully complies with the requirements for its use model, is equipped with all the necessary interface connectors. Among the additional features that increase the convenience and usefulness of the product, it is worth highlighting the 802.11n Wi-Fi controller and the power management scheme with an external unit. Perhaps the only drawback is the lack of PCI and PCI Express slots, which could provide the system with more flexibility.

      Acer Aspire Revo

      Processor Intel Atom 230 (1 core, 1.6 GHz)

      Type DDR2-800, 2 GB

      Chipset NVIDIA 9000 SATA

      SATARI GB

      Interfaces USB 2.0 (6), Gigabit LAN (1), D-sub (1), HDMI (1), 3.5″ Audio (2), eSATA (1)

      Audio 2.1 Realtek ALC662, HDMI 7.1

      Network interfaces 10/100/1000 Ethernet Base-T, IEEE 802.11b/g

      Dimensions 180×180×30 mm

      Price $479

      Provided by from Acer in Ukraine

      Small size; nice design

      Single core CPU; uncomfortable stand

      Good media center out of the box

      This model is the first commercially available media center based on the NVIDIA ION platform. The device is made in a miniature case with a pleasant design: a white base with textured black side walls looks great. The plastic is of high enough quality and does not create a feeling of fragility. The stand is an oval plate made of transparent plexiglass with a rubber «leg» around the perimeter. Unfortunately, its fastening cannot be called reliable: it is simply inserted into the cutout of the Aspire Revo case and pops out of it quite easily. Another installation option is to mount it on the back of a monitor or TV using the included VESA compatible bracket. The media center is powered by an external unit, similar to those used with laptops.

      The undeniable advantage of the Aspire Revo is the large number of USB ports, a characteristic that is often criticized for such devices. Four ports of this standard are located on the rear panel, one more — on the top edge and bevel of the case near the power button. The front panel has an eSATA connector, a multi-format card reader, and audio outputs for a microphone and headphones. Video interfaces on the rear panel are D-sub and HDMI — a controversial decision, because there are a lot of Full HD monitors equipped with DVI. In our opinion, it would be better to prefer the digital interface to the analog one and include a D-sub adapter in the package. The network capabilities of the Aspire Revo are represented by Gigabit Ethernet and Wi-Fi 802.11b/g controllers — the wireless interface, unfortunately, is also not optimally chosen.

      The internals of the new Acer media center include a single-core Atom 230 processor, 2GB DDR2-667 memory (two modules for more bandwidth) and a 160GB Seagate hard drive. Cooling is carried out by a similar turbine installed in laptops, which is quiet enough not to annoy even at night.

      The Acer Aspire Revo comes with a set of input devices, consisting of a wired keyboard and mouse, as well as an original wireless pointing device, similar to the WiiMote from the Nintendo Wii. Despite the pleasant appearance and miniature dimensions, the keyboard and mouse will certainly be the first candidates to replace more suitable wireless models. As for the wireless device, it can be quite convenient for navigating Windows Media Center Edition and even simple games: the cursor moves by tracking the movement of the manipulator with an accelerometer, the keyboard and mouse arrows are duplicated by the corresponding keys. In general, the solution is quite interesting and worthy of separate consideration.

      Test results

      The performance of the NVIDIA ION platform was evaluated in two ways: performance in typical home PC «office» tasks, and video viewing comfort.

      First of all, we note that the dual-core Intel Atom 330 greatly affects the comfort of working in the OS: although this processor does not provide the expected performance increase compared to a single-core one, the distribution of tasks between cores radically changes the responsiveness of the entire PC. This is most evident when working with several «heavy» tabs in browsers: where Atom 230 often fails to cope with the load, forcing Internet Explorer and Firefox to stop responding to user actions, 330 works without any complaints.

      Unfortunately, despite the presence of a fully functional graphics core in NVIDIA ION, streaming video on services like YouTube remains problematic. Standard definition video plays normally only in a browser window, expanding it to full screen most often makes viewing impossible even on Zotac IONITX-A-E. Playing YouTube HD is also awkward in a browser, even though it’s actually an H.264 stream in an MP4 container that needs to be played by the GPU. Obviously, the problem is software, since the necessary DirectShow filters are not involved.

      As for video files, any configuration based on NVIDIA ION has no problems with this. We tested both fragments in Matroska containers with resolutions of 720p and 1080p with x.264 and VC-1 codecs, as well as MPEG-2 files captured from satellite HD broadcasts with a stream of up to 60 Mbps and movies from Blu-ray. With the right software settings, ION has no problems with video, and even a single-core Atom load does not exceed 40% in the worst cases (VC-1 at 40 Mb / s is an extremely resource-intensive task, beyond the strength of even the top dual-core CPUs from Intel and AMD). Recall that a system with an Atom 330 based on the Intel 9 chipsetThe 45GC can only handle 720p video and occasional 1080p samples at low bitrates.

      The performance of ION platforms in games is still extremely low: only 16 stream processors and a frequency of 450 MHz for the GPU do not allow you to count on comfort in modern games. However, with a low resolution and at medium and low settings, it is quite possible to play, for example, games based on the Quake 3 engine or casual games, of which there are a great many. In any case, this platform is not positioned as a gaming platform, so you should not demand the impossible from it.

      Overall NVIDIA ION makes a great impression: the platform allows you to build ultra-efficient compact media centers at an affordable price without sacrificing functionality. From the point of view of the possibilities provided, it is head and shoulders above the existing solutions based on Intel chipsets — it is not surprising that netbooks based on it are already beginning to appear.

      As for the products we reviewed, they also do their job very well. Zotac IONITX-A-E will satisfy system performance requirements, but assembling a media center based on this board can be difficult, since there are still few suitable cases on sale. Acer Aspire Revo is a very interesting device, however, it needs some improvements: more reliable stand and replacing the CPU with Atom 330, and the wireless controller with 802.11n support. In this case, it will become one of the best options for organizing a home theater out of the box.

      Nvidia Ion — Nvidia Ion

      Nvidia Ion was Nvidia’s product line designed for low-end notebook motherboards. It used GPUs and chipsets designed for smaller products.

      Contents

      • 1 Description
      • 2 Features
        • 2.1 Ion (Nvidia Ion 1st generation)
        • 2.2 Ion 2 (Nvidia Ion next generation)
        • 9Microsoft has certified the Ion platform for Windows Vista. [1] Small Form Factor Ion computers were released in mid-2009. [ citation needed ]

          Ionic GPUs DirectX 10.0 and OpenGL 3.3 compliant. They also support CUDA and OpenCL. They can play 1080p H.264, MPEG-2 and VC-1 video using the VPSAU or PureVideo HD. [2] ION-LE based systems used the same basic hardware as ION, but did not support Vista or DirectX 10. [3]

          Nvidia has announced that it will release the Ion platform for the VIA Nano processor sometime in the fourth quarter of 2009. [4]

          Features

          This section of needs additional citations to check . Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Material not obtained from source may be disputed and removed (December 2019) (Learn how and when to delete this message template)

          Ion (NVIDIA ION first -generation)

          Maternal payment Zotac

          Rear calls Zotac

          • Chipl GeForce 9400M processor)
          • Suggested operating system: (Ion): Microsoft Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7, Linux; (Ion-LE): Microsoft Windows XP, Linux, MacBook
          • Memory interface: DDR3-1066 or DDR2-800
          • DirectX 10 support: yes, no (Ion-LE)
          • Graphics cores: 16
          • Core/shader clocks: 450/1100 MHz
          • Texture fill rate: 3. 6 billion per second
          • Maximum anti-aliasing sampling rate (AA): 16x
          • RAMDAC: 300 MHz
          • Maximum high dynamic range (HDR) Accuracy: 128 bit
          • Maximum analog resolution: 2048 x 1536
          • Maximum digital resolution: x62 1600
          • Graphics API: DirectX 10.0, OpenGL 3.3
          • Full HD Decode (1080i/p): Yes, PureVideo Gen 3
          • Display Options: HDMI, Dual Link DVI, DP, or VGA (any 2)
          • HDMI Version: 1.8 (according to zotac ION itx-f board manual)
          • PCI-Express 2.0: 20 lanes (1×16 and 4×1)
          • SATA drives: 6
          • SATA speed: 3Gb/s
          • RAID: 0, 1
          • Network: 10/100/1000 BASE-T
          • USB ports: 12 / 2C
          • PCI slots: 5
          • Audio: HDA (Azalea)

          Ion 2 (Nvidia Ion next generation)

          • CUDA cores: up to 16
          • Standard memory configurations: 512MB D12MB DDR2, 25MB
          • Memory interface width: up to 64-bit
          • Video decoding hardware acceleration: Yes, PureVideo Gen 4
          • nVidia CUDA technology: Yes
          • Windows 7 certified: Yes
          • Microsoft DirectX: 10. 1
          • OpenGL: 3.3
          • Audio: HDA
          • Maximum digital resolution: 2560 × 1600
          • Maximum VGA resolution: 2048 × 1536
          • Multi-monitor: Yes
          • HDCP: Yes

          Existing products

          This list may not be comprehensive.

          Motherboards

          • ASRock A330ION Motherboard (Intel Atom 330 Processor, DDR3, PCI Express x16 Slot)
          • ASUS AT5IONT-I motherboard (Intel Atom D525 processor, DDR3, USB3, PCI Express x4 slot @ speed x1, latch)
          • ASUS AT3N7A-I motherboard (Intel Atom 330 processor)
          • ASUS AT3IONT- motherboard I (Intel Atom 330 processor, DDR3, PCI Express x16 slot)
          • ASUS AT3IONT-I DELUXE motherboard (Intel Atom 330 processor, DDR3, PCI Express x16 slot, DC power connector, 802.11n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, media -remote)
          • Industrial motherboard IEI KINO-PVN D5251 ION2, DDR3, HDMI, Dual GbE, SATA, PCI / PCI Expr.x1 slot, mini-PCI, CF TypeII
          • Jetway NC63-230 ITX Card (Intel Atom 230 processor, 20-pin ATX power connector)
          • Jetway NC63-330 ITX card (Intel Atom 330 processor, 20-pin ATX power connector)
          • Jetway NC63P-230 ITX card (Intel Atom 230 Processor, 12VDC on board)
          • Jetway NC63P-330 ITX Board (Intel Atom 330 Processor, 12VDC on board)
          • Point of View POV / ION230 Motherboard (Intel Atom 230 Processor)
          • Point of View POV / ION330 Motherboard (Intel Atom 330 Processor)
          • ZOTAC IONITX A-B Motherboard (Intel Atom 330 Processor, 90W DC Power Connector, Wireless PCIe Module Installed)
          • ZOTAC IONITX A-U Motherboard (Intel Atom 330 Processor, DC Power Connector, Wireless PCIe Module Installed)
          • ZOTAC IONITX B-E motherboard (Intel Atom 230 processor, 20-pin power connector)
          • ZOTAC IONITX C-U motherboard (Intel Atom 230 processor, DC power connector)
          • ZOTAC IONITX D-E Motherboard (Intel Atom 330 Processor, 20-pin power connector, Wireless PCIe module installed) Express x16)
          • ZOTAC IONITX G-E motherboard (Intel Atom 330 processor, 20-pin power connector, PCI Express x1 slot, mini-PCIe x1 slot)
          • ZOTAC IONITX N-E motherboard (Intel Celeron 743 processor, 20-pin connector power supply, PCIe wireless module installed, PCI Express x16 slot)
          • ZOTAC IONITX P-E motherboard (Intel Celeron SU2300 processor, 20-pin power connector, PCIe wireless module installed, PCI Express x16 slot)

          Desktop systems

          An ASRock ION 330HT-BD

            AcerRevo Mediatop No AcerRevo Mediatop with Remote Control
          • Aleutia h2 Hotel computer (with ZOTAC IONITX A-U above), fanless in single core version. [5]
          • aOpen GP7A [6] [26]
          • Mobii ION Point of View [27]
          • Samsung N510 [28]

          End of support for Windows

          9002 Windows 1 series Nvidia ION1 6 April 20202 driver support ended [29]

          • Windows XP 32-bit and Media Center Edition: version 340.52 (WHQL) released July 29, 2014; Download
          • Windows XP 64-bit: version 340.52 (WHQL) dated July 29, 2014; Download
          • Windows Vista, 7, 8, 8.1 32-bit: Version 342.01 (WHQL) released December 14, 2016; Download
          • Windows Vista, 7, 8, 8.1 64-bit: Version 342.01 (WHQL) released December 14, 2016; Download
          • Windows 10 32-bit: Version 342.01 (WHQL) released December 14, 2016; Download
          • Windows 10 64-bit: Version 342.01 (WHQL) released December 14, 2016; Download

          See also

          • Comparison of Nvidia GPUs 9 EOL driver support for legacy products
          • external link

            • Official NVIDIA review page on NVIDIA ION platform
            • AnandTech: NVIDIA Ion platform: high resolution for netbooks
            • bit-tech. net — Nvidia Ion platform: Atom gets GeForce
            • Techgage: NVIDIA ION Platform Hands-On
            • X-bit labs: Nvidia ION Platform: HD Video Playback Study
            • LinuxTECH.NET: Independent Review of All Currently Available Nvidia ION 9 Based Products0411

            Atom 330 processor [in 5 benchmarks]

            Intel
            Atom 330

            • Interface
            • Core frequency
            • Video memory size
            • Memory type
            • Memory frequency
            • Maximum resolution

            Description

            Intel started Intel Atom 330 sales on September 22, 2008 at a suggested price of $43. This is a Diamondville architecture notebook processor primarily aimed at home systems. It has 2 cores and 4 threads and is manufactured using 45 nm process technology, the maximum frequency is 1600 MHz, the multiplier is locked.

            In terms of compatibility, this is a PBGA437 socket processor with a TDP of 8W.

            We have no test results for the Atom 330.

            Features

            Atom 330 quantitative parameters such as number of cores and threads, clock speeds, manufacturing process, cache size and multiplier lock state. They indirectly speak about the performance of the processor, but for an accurate assessment, you need to consider the results of the tests.

            9182

            Cores 2
            Threads 4 9048 40028

            Permissible nucleus voltage 0.9V -1.1625V

            02 compliance

            compatibility computers computers
            Information on Atom 330 compatibility with other computer components. Useful, for example, when choosing the configuration of a future computer or to upgrade an existing one.

            Please note that the power consumption of some processors can significantly exceed their nominal TDP even without overclocking.

            Some may even double their claims if the motherboard allows you to adjust the power settings of the processor.

            EDB +

            Virtualization Technologies

            The technologies supported by Atom 330 that speed up the operation of virtual machines are listed.

            9000 9000

            0 9,0000000022
            Types, maximum size and channels of RAM supported by Atom 330. Higher memory frequencies may be supported depending on the motherboard.

            VT -D
            VT -X

            9182

            Permissible memory volume 8 GB of 786 (Xeon E5-2670 V3)

            Built -in video — characteristics

            222222222222222222222
            General parameters of the integrated video card in Atom 330.

            Video core

            Benchmark tests

            These are the results of the Atom 330 performance tests in non-gaming benchmarks. The overall score is set from 0 to 100, where 100 corresponds to the fastest processor at the moment.


            • Passmark
            • Cinebench 10 32-bit single-core
            • Cinebench 10 32-bit multi-core
            • 3DMark06 CPU
            Passmark

            Passmark CPU Mark is a widely used benchmark that consists of 8 different tests, including integer and floating point calculations, extended instruction tests, compression, encryption, and game physics calculations. Also includes a separate single-threaded test.

            Benchmark coverage: 68%

            Atom 330
            371

            Cinebench 10 32-bit single-core

            Cinebench R10 is a very outdated ray tracing benchmark for processors developed by the authors of Cinema 4D — Maxon. The Single-Core version uses a single CPU thread to render a futuristic motorcycle model.

            Benchmark coverage: 20%

            Atom 330
            542

            Cinebench 10 32-bit multi-core

            Cinebench Release 10 Multi Core is a variant of Cinebench R10 that uses all processor threads. The possible number of threads in this version is limited to 16.

            Benchmark coverage: 19%

            Atom 330
            1530

            3DMark06 CPU

            3DMark06 is an outdated set of benchmarks based on DirectX 9 by Futuremark. Its processor part contains two tests, one of which calculates the pathfinding of game AI, the other emulates game physics using the PhysX package.

            Benchmark coverage: 19%

            Atom 330
            825


            Other processors

            Here we recommend several processors that are more or less similar in performance to the one considered.

            Recommended video cards

            According to our statistics, these video cards are most often used with Atom 330:


            HD
            Graphics

            8.5%


            UHD
            Graphics

            7.4%


            ION

            5.