AMD Announces Development of DTX Open Standard to Help Enable Broad Adoption of Small Form Factor PCs

SUNNYVALE, Calif. — 10th January 2007 —AMD (NYSE: AMD) today announced development of DTX, an open standard specification designed by AMD to enable the broad adoption of small form factor PCs. The DTX standard will be designed to empower OEMs, ODMs, and component vendors to deliver innovative solutions to market that are smaller, quieter, and desktop-friendly, while leveraging commonalities within the ecosystem that benefit both customers and end users. The DTX standard will take advantage of the existing ATX infrastructure and benefits, including cost efficiency, system options and backward-compatibility, to allow for ground-breaking PC design. A review copy of the DTX specifications is planned to be made available by AMD in Q1 2007.

“As a customer-centric company, AMD is constantly evaluating platforms and working with its ecosystem partners to bring innovation to the market in a way that minimizes disruption,” said Bob Brewer, corporate vice president, Desktop Division, AMD. “To help meet this need, AMD is taking the initiative to define an open standard for small form factor designs. The DTX specification will be designed to allow the broad ecosystem to develop small form factor solutions and deliver new, innovative and cost-effective systems to both businesses and consumers.”

The DTX standard will be designed to embrace energy-efficient processors from AMD or other hardware vendors, and allow an optimally designed small form factor system to consume less power and generate less noise. When processor power consumption is reduced, system size and cooling costs can also go down. Energy efficient processors can also help extend the longevity of PCs, while offering consumer and business users a quiet, more pleasant experience in their offices or living rooms.

OEMs will also be able to enjoy the inherent cost benefits of standardization. With the DTX open standard specification, the potential exists for the small form factor market to reap the similar benefits to what the ATX standard has done for the desktop market in recent years.

DTX will be designed to provide improved motherboard layout standardization, while being sensitive to the needs of OEMs, ODMs, and component vendors. As the desktop market moves to lower thermal design power (TDP) processors and works to lower costs, an eye to balancing interchangeability of components with small form factor products becomes critical. In addition, DTX chassis vendors can help mitigate the financial risk associated with proprietary small form factor designs by offering DTX-standard products to the channel, in either component form or as bare-bones systems. The general DTX specification will only define a minimum set of parameters necessary for interoperability, freeing vendors to innovate.

  • DTX, which will allow up to four motherboards – for low cost – per standard printed circuit board manufacturing panel sizes; and
  • Mini-DTX, which will allow up to six motherboards – for low cost – per standard printed circuit board manufacturing panel sizes;
  • DTX motherboards can be manufactured in as few as four-layers of printed circuit board wiring for motherboard cost savings.
  • By leveraging backward-compatibility with ATX infrastructure, vendors may gain a low-cost DTX product offering with little development expense.

“ASUS is pleased to work with AMD again to bring more innovation on desktop solutions, leveraging production efficiencies that will be available with the open DTX standard,” said Joe Hsieh, Vice President of ASUS MB Business Unit. “Together with ASUS’ excellent design and manufacturing ability, end users will enjoy a sleek and cool desktop computing experience using our motherboards.”

“We applaud AMD’s commitment to open standards in developing specifications that enable powerful system options and is backward-compatible with the existing ATX infrastructure,” said Norman Tsai, EPS Sales vice president, MSI. “MSI is dedicated to enabling customers to deliver innovative systems with minimal requirements or disruptions.”

The market pull for small form factors PCs is of particular interest in the small and medium business (SMB) and consumer markets that value the size advantage, power savings, and quiet nature of energy-efficient systems.

“The evolution of desktop systems into smaller form factors with lower thermal design power is a major step forward for the PC industry as a whole,” said Bob O’Donnell, program vice president, Clients and Displays, IDC. “OEMs and ODMs will be able to design new PCs that take up less space and are more aesthetically pleasing through the use of motherboard specifications promoting energy efficiency and smaller form factor designs. This will translate to better differentiated and more competitive solutions for their customers.”

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