AMD develops open specification for small form factor PCs

Posted by Wolfgang Gruener

Sunnyvale (CA) - AMD said that it is developing guidelines for computer case and motherboard design that will allow the creation of improved small form factor PCs (SFF PCS). "DTX" is intended to become an open standard with specifications scheduled to be released during Q1 2007.

According to the company, DTX builds on the existing ATX infrastructure, which was created by Intel in 1995. Despite the fact that Intel tried to establish a successor with BTX a few years ago, ATX is still being considered as the standard for case and board design in large parts of the industry. AMD said that DTX will take advantage of ATX and its "benefits, including cost efficiency, system options and backward-compatibility, to allow for ground-breaking PC design."

As open specification, DTX will enable vendors to use AMD processors as well as CPUs from "other hardware vendors." The design will enable SFF PCs to consume less power and generate less noise than today's systems, AMD promises. The company said that DTX will only define "a minimum of parameters" to allow "vendors to innovate." Many SFF PCs offered today are built using the micro-ATX standard, which uses a 9.6" x 9.6" motherboard design.

Asus and MSI are among the first vendors to have agreed developing products based on DTX.