Storage and memory manufacturer Innodisk announced this week an ultra-slim M.2 graphics card that's specifically designed for the industrial embedded market.
The M.2 form factor is widely employed in storage products like SSDs and wireless cards. However, Innodisk has discovered a new use for this form factor and built its own M.2 graphics card around it. We bet the Taiwanese manufacturer's new product will catch on in industrial operating environments where space is a luxury.
Innodisk's M.2 graphics card complies with the M.2 2280 standard, so the module measures 22 x 80mm (W X L). It utilizes Silicon Motion's high-performance SM768 4K graphics controller, which is capable of supporting resolutions of 1920×1080 at 60Hz and 3840×2160 at 30Hz. The SM768 features an ARM Cortex R5 processor, 128-bit 2D graphics engine and up to 256MB of onboard DDR3 memory on a single 19 x 19mm package. The controller can take advantage of up to 1GB of external DDR2 or DDR3 memory as well.
The Silicon Motion SM768 comes with its own USB 2.0 hub to connect as much as four peripherals. There is ample support for popular video formats, including H.264 MVC/AVS+, H.263, MPEG-4, MPEG2, M-JPEG, RealVideo, VC-1 and Theora. The SM768 controller communicates with the system via a USB 3.0 or PCIe 2.0 connection. In the case of Innodisk, the M.2 graphics card relies on the latter. Innodisk's solution is equipped with a HDMI, LVDS and DVI-D header for video output.
The Innodisk M.2 graphics card is constructed to withstand shock, vibration and an extreme range of operating temperatures varying from -40 degrees to 85 degrees Celsius (-104 degrees to 185 degrees Fahrenheit). The module is compatible with a long list of operating systems, including Windows (Windows 7, 8, 10, Windows Server and Windows Multipoint Server), Linux (Ubuntu, Red Hat, SUSE, etc.), macOS X, Android, ChromeOS and Linux Userful Multi-Seat Server.
Innodisk didn't list the M.2 graphics card's pricing or availability.