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The Mini-ITX Mainboard is 10 Years Old

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The 170x170 mm mainboard form factor Mini-ITX is celebrating its 10th anniversary.

Inventor VIA, which launched its mainboard business with Mini-ITX devices back in 2001, has released an ebook that offers some background of the technology as well as a history of memorable Mini-ITX computers.

VIA first showed a Mini-ITX board design in March of 2001, sold first samples in April and the VT6010 Mini-ITX reference design in November. The first commercially available board was the Epia-8000, which was released in April 2002 and was built for VIA's C3 800 MHz processor with Eden core.

Mini-ITX 2.0 was announced in 2008 and the first board to support the Nano CPU, the VB8001, was sold in October 2008. More recently, dual-core Nano support was added with the Epia-M900 in July of this year. Most Mini-ITX boards are sold into the industrial and embedded applications markets today.

VIA believes that the biggest opportunity for Mini-ITX in the future will be in developing countries and geographies, including China, India, the Middle East, and Latin America. As cloud computing gains traction and small form factor thin clients become more attractive, VIA also hopes that it can place Mini-ITX as a "standard platform for powering such devices."

Take a trip down memory lane with VIA here.

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  • 3 Hide
    imsurgical , December 2, 2011 9:47 AM
    Did a build not too long ago centered on the article talking about small form factor builds in a Lian-Li PC-Q08B case and its a little powerhouse. Used an ASRock A75M-ITX FM1 with an A6 3650 Llano, 8GB XMS3, EVGA GTX 580, Corsair H70 on the CPU, and a SeaSonic X650 Gold and its great. The little MiniITX board has newer I/O inputs too. First MiniITX build and I can understand why people would see little need for it, but for me saved lots of space for my living situation and its a low profile machine because of the board. So happy birthday or belated birthday to MiniITX!
  • 3 Hide
    digitalw , December 2, 2011 10:48 AM
    A lot of use.. plenty of use for mITX :)  why should you have a big ugly monster in your office when you use ms word, e-mail and a lot of facebook ?!!? :) ))
    big boards for "big" gamers and render work stations, evrything else should be small :) 
    and yes, my newest HTPC uses mini atx 17x17cm board made by Sapphire wit AMD 350 Hudson and all i can say it is a dream! included USB3.0, Bluetooth 3.0... LAN (no wifi) and my HTPC is build in to the shelf :)  i'have fallen in love in that little creature :) 
  • 1 Hide
    nordlead , December 2, 2011 10:56 AM
    My file server is mini ITX. Came with an Intel Atom and can house 4 storage drives but can be expanded up to hold a lot more either with SATA splitters or a PCIe x16 expansion card.

    I wish I got a mini ITX board for my HTPC, but my only problem with them is they cost more for less features. Also, at the time IGPs weren't that great on the mini ITX boards.
  • -1 Hide
    memadmax , December 2, 2011 11:19 AM
    They are not powerhouses, but they are cheap enough for single purpose machines.
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , December 2, 2011 11:26 AM
    I love my little GA-E350. It powers my Car PC. I was shocked when I actually saw an ITX board. Truly amazing.
  • 1 Hide
    belardo , December 2, 2011 11:48 AM
    Now compare these modern ITX boards to... an Apple II or Commodore 64 or even a PC from the 90s... In which the HD Controller card is bigger than an ITX board.
  • 0 Hide
    f-gomes , December 2, 2011 12:00 PM
    the memory lane link is dead
  • 0 Hide
    mavroxur , December 2, 2011 12:41 PM
    I still have an Epia 5000 ITX (533MHz Via C3) in use at home. It just sits on the top shelf in the closet, running XP and hosting a few applications. It's virtually maintenance free, being that it has no fans and no moving parts (boots XP off a 16GB CF card). Not to mention, power consumption is somewhere in the 5w-10w range (no fans or ventilation, and the phonebook-sized box never gets even warm.
  • 0 Hide
    Onus , December 2, 2011 1:06 PM
    The build I did in a PC-Q08R is running just fine as my backup PC. It is an i5-650 that right now has a HD6790 in it. In addition to the optical drive, it has an 80GB SSD and a 500GB HDD with room (and the port) for one more drive. Very few people (although they certainly exist, like anyone needing Crossfire or SLI) have needs that exceed what this form factor provides.
  • -3 Hide
    Anonymous , December 2, 2011 1:16 PM
    What's ITX?
  • 0 Hide
    nukemaster , December 2, 2011 1:44 PM
    memadmaxThey are not powerhouses, but they are cheap enough for single purpose machines.

    They range from cheap to fairly power house(in relative terms, 1 expansion card is the limit). I mean if you want, you can get a top end graphics card and I7 cpu on a MITX board if needed.
  • 1 Hide
    nukemaster , December 2, 2011 1:44 PM
    c123s456What's ITX?

    ITX is a board form factor like ATX. Made for more compact systems.
  • 0 Hide
    COLGeek , December 2, 2011 2:03 PM
    I have a couple ITX systems being used as HTPCs. Couldn't be happier. My favorite ITX rig was one of the original Via based systems right when they hit the market. I used one for a Linux based firewall. Like a Timex, it took a licking and kept on ticking for a very long time.
  • 1 Hide
    dasper , December 2, 2011 2:39 PM
    I have an ITX system as my portable gaming machine with an i5-2500k and a 560ti

    Thing is so sweet and fits in a backpack they sell as well.
  • 3 Hide
    gsacks , December 2, 2011 2:50 PM
    Mini-ITX is a great form factor for an HTPC. Zotac has carved out a nice market niche building solid low power ITX boards. But the big boys are starting to catch up. Unless you are building a multi-drive file server, a rendering powerhouse or a beastly gaming tower, and ITX board gives you pretty much everything you need in a small package.
  • 1 Hide
    loomis86 , December 2, 2011 4:50 PM
    Micro ATX, mini ITX, and eventually even smaller are the future of PCs. Standard ATX is going the way of the dodo.
  • 0 Hide
    DXRick , December 2, 2011 5:55 PM

    HAPPY B-DAY Mini-ITX !!!!
  • 1 Hide
    mineutsystems , December 2, 2011 7:15 PM
    I base most of my builds on Mini ITX boards. Everything from low power Atom and Fusion systems to "high end" gaming systems (ultimate gaming mini itx 2011 on youtube). Clients I show these products too always ask" what is that?" and "thats a computer?" Love seeing the look on their faces when they see the potential of what a small box can do. Happy Birthday Mini ITX and thank you VIA for a sucessful concept.
  • 0 Hide
    11796pcs , December 2, 2011 8:15 PM
    dasperI have an ITX system as my portable gaming machine with an i5-2500k and a 560ti is so sweet and fits in a backpack they sell as well.

    Nice Silverstone SG06, I had a mini-ITX build with that case and I loved it. Problem was I created so much heat with it that I believe I shortened its life prematurely. Or it could have just been my Zotac motherboard. Even though the build didn't last very long, I would completely build another mini-ITX system. But I would do it with the SG08 which can support cards up to 12.2 inches.
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