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Mezzanine card imparts high-res 2D/3D graphics

Posted: 07 Feb 2005 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:pmc graphics mezzanine card? mezzanine card? men micro? pmc card? vmebus?

A new PMC graphics mezzanine card from board maker MEN Micro gives you a way to include high-resolution 2D/3D graphics into systems that accommodate PMC cards. Typical systems include those based on VMEbus, compactpci and pxi. The new board will also work in bus-independent systems. At the heart of MEN's new P517 PMC card is an SM731 graphics controller chip from IC maker Silicon Motion. The device is capable of a maximum resolution of 1,600 x 1,200-pixels, with up to 16.7 million colors. It gives the board a maximum refresh rate of 85MHz.

"In recent years, there's been an increase in demand for high-resolution 2D/3D graphics displays on a wide variety of embedded systems," observes Ernest Godsey, president of MEN Micro.

"The capabilities of embedded systems have increased dramatically, and the sophistication of the graphical interface has to keep pace." In line with that comment, Godsey's P517 has 16MB of graphics memory and a 235MHz 24bit RAMDAC. It can support two independent digital display screens with either the same (DualScreen mode) or different images.

The P517 can control TFT (thin film transistor) LCDs, CRTs, or standard television screens. Two LVDS (low voltage differential signaling) channels, with a maximum pixel clock speed of 112MHz can be used to either drive two distinct screens (the DualMon mode) or a single high-resolution UXGA panel. The P517's two LVDS channels are accessible via an on-board connector or a rear-panel connector on the P517's carrier board.

Multiple connectivity options

Multiple connectivity options on the P517 also let you integrate high-resolution graphics into industrial systems. For example, a DVI-I (digital video interface) for analog and digital LCD and CRT screens, as well as PanelLink, is available on the P517's front panel. In addition, S-Video inputs and outputs, and a composite video output are also located on the front panel.

Price and availability
The P517 pricing starts at $594 for single units. In the United States, MEN Micro products are sold through a national network of technical manufacturers representatives.

- Alex Mendelsohn

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