ETX carrier card
Active Silicon has released a new feature-rich card based on the ETX form factor from Kontron. The card has two simultaneous Pal/NTSC/CCIR/RS-170 video inputs, 10 serial ports, VGA / flat panel output, Ethernet ports and various general purpose IO lines. Software support is provided for standard Windows XP and XPe as well as Linux.
The ETX form factor for embedded PC systems was introduced by Kontron in 2001 as a more elegant solution to medium-volume PC-based embedded systems. The standard is now widely accepted in many industries, although it is still relatively unknown in the machine vision industry.
The ETX form factor is a compact but powerful CPU module with four high density connectors, containing all standard PC connectivity along with a PCI bus, that plugs onto a custom designed carrier board.
The carrier card allows connector positions to be fixed for the lifetime of the product, so ETX is very well-suited to medical and defence applications with lifetimes of five or ten years. As processor power increases and cost reduces, the plug on processor module can simply be replaced without affecting anything else in the system.
In addition, all processor modules use a standard-sized heat-spreader that can be attached to a standard heat sink.