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  • BBMW - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    I'm considering getting a nettop to hook up as a secondary computer/HTPC on my plasma panel. I was waiting for the Pine Trail platform to mature. But is it just hamstrung by Intels restrictions, and should I just get a last generation Atom based nettop, and not even deal with Pine Trail? Reply
  • LoneWolf15 - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    You're better off building something small off of a mini-ITX board. Even dual-core Celerons make all of this a non-issue, and you get a bit of upgradeability.

    Zotac makes Socket 775 and even 1156 mini-ITX boards, as do a couple of other vendors.
  • RandomUsername3245 - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    I doubt a dual Celeron can scale a 480p Hulu video to 1080p. A few months ago my 1.8Ghz Core2Duo (maybe an E4300) could not do that job smoothly. Hulu video is a CPU-hog, or at least it was in 2009... Reply
  • evilspoons - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    A dual Celeron may not be able to do it on its own, but a dual Celeron with the proper video card can.

    I have a Pentium Dual-Core E2200, which isn't exactly a speed demon. 720p h264 isn't totally smooth all the time in "regular" playback mode.

    ..but it's got a Geforce 9300 on the mainboard and when the correct drivers are installed, XBMC (under Linux) can do full 1080p scaling/playback with only about 15% CPU usage, and I suspect part of that 15% is my Bittorrent program.

    I think the point is the mini-ITX solution will allow you to have a video card that isn't connected by a retarded x1 link, but a more reasonable x8 link or so.
  • Voo - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    So he should get a better CPU.. because he still needs to use a GPU for video playback? Since the old ion could handle flash/decoding without problems, I don't see why spending more money, getting a larger system with more heat, but the exact same attributes (i.e. being able to decode 1080p video) is a good idea. Reply
  • therealnickdanger - Friday, June 11, 2010 - link

    I think he meant that a Zotac board (w/Ion-like 9300 IGP) using a dual-core Celeron would be a much better system. I would have to agree. The NVIDIA 9300/9400 GPUs can do 1080p video of all flavors with the newest drivers and Flash 10.1.

    Even in the review, it is stated that the system chugs on 1080p Flash whenever the cursor or video controls appear on screen. The extra CPU power should alleviate or eliminate stuttering in those cases... as well as provide a much more robust computing experience for all other tasks... even play games at decent fram rates.

    Personally, I believe the Atom is good for one thing only: quiet, low power servers.
  • Voo - Friday, June 11, 2010 - link

    Yeah but the old ION plattform had no problem with flash.

    No idea what anyone would want with the "new improved" version, since it can't even get the work done the old ion could handle..
  • mindless1 - Friday, June 11, 2010 - link

    Patience, there was a time when early drivers for 1st-gen Ion weren't 100% either. Why does everyone assume they need to jump on new tech the first day it appears? Reply
  • taltamir - Saturday, June 12, 2010 - link

    get an AMD CPU + integrated mobo on an mATX package... it is tiny, and it significantly faster for everything.

    The Atom is a cellphone class CPU. Intel never imagined anyone would build computers out of it, and for just a few bucks more you can get so much more in terms of performance.
  • mindless1 - Friday, June 11, 2010 - link

    I had an o'c E2180 (dual core "Pentium" 65nm(?) @ 3GHz now slower than dual core celerons oc'd and it upscaled and plays 1080P H.264 fine with a 7600GT which only has partial, non-HD decoding. Just about any video card in the last 3 generations should do fine with a dual core CPU from either camp running at 2.5 GHz or better, and providing your Flash version is new enough to support GPU offloading it should be sufficient for that too unless you have a system misconfiguration. Reply
  • sprockkets - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    If you get the nvidia itx 9300 board it will be a non issue Reply
  • clarkn0va - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    I can't think of one good reason to choose NG over the original ION. I have a first-gen Zotac ION-itx board and have enjoyed hours of 1080p goodness without issue.

    When Pine Trail was fresh I had hoped it would reduce power consumption significantly, but having toyed with a few systems I haven't really found that to be the case. My Zotac (Atom 330) with 2 3.5" drives runs around 36W (on a brick) under light load, which is very close to what I've seen on a couple D510 systems.
  • sprockkets - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    If you actually looked at the review, aside from this dumb issue, everything else about it is faster. Reply
  • BernardP - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    All the pieces are coming together for GPU-accelerated Flash video the final release of the required Flash update. Reply
  • Per Hansson - Friday, June 11, 2010 - link

    Not any more :)
  • Taft12 - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    Intel's refusal to license 3rd party chipsets for their CPUs is flat-out horseshit and worthy of antitrust action. Using a PCIE x1 lane is a terrible way to combine a GPU with Atom/NM10, but Nvidia have no choice but to spread 'em for Intel and their artificial limitation. Reply
  • Beaver M. - Thursday, June 17, 2010 - link

    Intel doesnt realize that its sales of the Atom will drop horribly when they cant be run with the ION properly.
    Seriously, the Atom is a POS without ION, and many people know that.
    I would have never bought one if the ION wouldnt have been there.

    Even a faster GMA from Intel wouldnt help the Atom much, because they wouldnt support GPGPU. The Atom NEEDS GPGPU to be somewhat viable.
  • Lonyo - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    Do these playback issues occur with HTML 5 based video playback? Is h264 hardware supported? (I don't know how it works). Reply
  • sprockkets - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    look for dxa support. I sidestep the whole issue by simply ripping the flash videos from the website and playing them with smplayer. Reply
  • Klinky1984 - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    I wonder if there is a way that nVidia could losslessly compress the uncompressed portions of data in real-time. A lot of times you can get 2:1 reductions using just lossless compression on an uncompressed source. Though if this were implemented in Flash or by nVidia it would probably require more CPU power to decode the compressed stream, though perhaps not enough to cause stutter. Reply
  • SlyNine - Thursday, June 10, 2010 - link

    The whole point is to decompress the VC1 and H.264 streams for the CPU, Unless you mean using a less intense compression that the CPU can more easily decompress.

    But this sounds more like a transcoding job, I have my doubts that this GPU could do that in real time, maybe I'm wrong though.
  • Klinky1984 - Friday, June 11, 2010 - link

    Well the problem is bandwidth. The H264 stream probably takes less than 1Mbit/sec to transfer over to the GPU, but the uncompressed stream going back to the CPU is the killer. If they'are doing 1080p RGB24 it's 143MB/sec. Which actually shouldn't have a problem even if he does have to be copied back as PCIe should be full duplex & 1x is 250MB/sec. So I am not sure where the saturation is coming from, perhaps some other inefficiency.

    Point is, if they could compress the raw RGB stream with a lightweight algorithm and have the CPU decode it, then perhaps they could cut the bandwidth requirements in half. Doing it in HW on the GPU would probably not be an issue, but doing it on the CPU might be a problem as they'd decompress to memory, then recompress going back over the PCIe bus, perhaps they could do it only where the CPU is decompressing and sending back the final render uncompressed.

    An Atom is not going to be able to render 1080p video by itself, so even if it takes 70 - 90% CPU usage, the goal is for it to be smooth, regardless of situation. Having it stutter in a likely scenario(player controls or ad pop-up) is going to make the NG-ION a pointless expense.
  • Klinky1984 - Friday, June 11, 2010 - link

    Sorry, that should be less than 1MByte/sec, not bit... :) Reply
  • bruceb - Friday, June 11, 2010 - link

    test post Reply
  • Hrel - Saturday, June 12, 2010 - link

    If someone could do a review on the laptop that I
    currently suspect is the best "bang for your buck" out
    there. It's made by compal, and available on who's
    machines you've reviewed before.
    If you'd like it configured like I did, which I think is the best bang
    for buck, do this:
    Go to the website.
    mouse over 15.6" Laptops and click on the $999 Xplorer X6-8500. It has a 1080p screen.

    (I'm not sure why the people who run this site do this, but even though the other
    configurations use the same chassis when personalized they
    come out to cost more than this one; annoying since it makes me configure all 3
    or 4 machines built on the same base chassis to figure out which one is
    cheapest/best for me.)

    Then I configured
    it with the Core i7-620M CPU. (to get it over 1K so I can take advantage of the 5%
    off.) 4GB 0DDR3-1333, hopefully 7-7-7-21, probably not, but
    ATI MR HD5650 1GB GDDR3
    320GB 7200rpm HDD (I did this cause I'm gonna take that HDD out
    and use the Seagate Momentus XT 500GB, thanks for that
    Everything else on that page I left untouched.
    The only thing I did on page 2 was switch to Intel wifi with bluetooth;
    Though I'm curious if the MSI option is
    equal/better; 17 bucks isn't nothing.

    It has HDMI out and a fingerprint reader. This page says 3 USB ports,
    the specs sheet says 4USB ports; not sure which is true. (I do wish
    they were USB 3.0 ports, but I was hoping you guys would test some stuff and
    tell me if that even matters for use with an external hard drive, mechanical
    disk 7200rpm. Transferring large files like movies and games mostly.)

    On page 3 I select "none, format only" for
    the OS. And select "LCD perfect assurance" cause even 1 dead pixel is
    unacceptable to me.
    This brings the total to $1008.90 after 5% off, or $992.75 if
    you get the MSI network card.

    So yeah, I really hope you guys can get a hold of one of these
    for review; as a loner or given as a review unit or maybe
    someone will just buy one and review it cause it's really tempting me right now...
    like a lot!
    If you're review is good I'm gonna start
    saving up and hopefully be able to buy it around Christmas. Thanks
    guys! A loyal reader. - Brian
  • paihuaizhe - Sunday, June 20, 2010 - link

    (nike-alliance).(com)=>is a leading worldwide wholesaler company (or u can say

  • cactusjuggler - Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - link

    "For a bunch of licensing reasons I described here"

    Is "here" supposed to be a link to another article, or were you saying the licensing reasons are described in the link "Pine Trail Atom platform"?

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