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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Based on the fairly detailed report on the german Heise IT news portal (editors of the excellent german IT magazine 'ct') directly from the CeBIT 2010, here is a brief overview of the new generation of Nvidia ION chips.


The new IONs (officially still called ION, not ION2) will be available in 3 variants, all three are purely GPUs not complete chipsets, since the Pineview Atoms already have a northbridge integrated and only offer 4 PCIe lanes for connection of external chips. All will be using a single PCIe lane, which means a maximum bandwidth of 250MB/s (roughly double the bandwidth of plain old PCI, or equivalent to first generation AGP). While this might not sound like much, it's still plenty for HTPC use.

Since these are discrete GPUs they come with dedicated graphics memory, which should improve performance compared to first generation ION.

1. variant (meant for netbooks up to 10")

8 shaders, 6 Watt TDP, support for hybrid Optimus technology

2. variant (meant for larger netbooks)

16 shaders, 13Watt TDP, (comparable to the Nvidia G210 GPU), support for hybrid Optimus technology

3. variant (for nettops)

16 shaders, support for HDMI, DVI-duallink and Displayport connections, will also be available on low-profile PCIex1 cards to upgrade existing Pineview Atom mobos (or any PC/mobo with PCIex1 slot), these cards might sell labeled as Nvidia-G210 PCIex1 too


Basically it looks like the 2nd gen. ION is equivalent to a G210, with the difference that it uses a PCIex1 connection rather than PCIex16.

This should mean full VDPAU spec. C support under Linux.

According to Nvidia over 30 different products using second generation IONs are expected to be released over the next few months.

Nvidia press release:
http://www.nvidia.com/object/io_1267553417952.html


There is already one Pineview Atom motherboard from the Dutch company 'Point of View' available ( Point of View MB-D510-MITX ), that can be bought bundled with a low-profile PCIex1 Nvidia-G210 card, which is basically the new ION in all but the name.

Nvidia ION2 products currently available to buy:

I will be updating my Nvidia ION products overview with 2nd gen ION products as soon as they become available to buy.


This thread is for Linux specific discussion of ION2 hardware, for Windows specific discussion please see the following thread:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1249364
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·

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Wow, these companies have really dragged their feet; people are either losing interest fast, or just getting older-generation ION systems because they don't want to wait.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by hpmoon /forum/post/18547233


Wow, these companies have really dragged their feet; people are either losing interest fast, or just getting older-generation ION systems because they don't want to wait.

True, their are taking their time, I think that's because they (Asus, Asrock, Zotac) only just released new DDR3 first gen. ION products, so now they first have to sell those for a while to get a return on the development costs.


Also because ION2 + Pineview Atom isn't really radically better than first gen. ION.


That said, the Shuttle looks very interesting if it will be completely passively cooled as anticipated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Shuttle will be (re-)unveiling an ION2 miniPC at Computex (not sure if that's again the XS35 or some new model):
Quote:
The world’s smallest 1-liter slim PC with next-generation NVIDIA® ION 2 graphics and a slim drive bay for internal DVD drives will also be unveiled.
http://www.shuttle.eu/news/view/shut...6162488e0b/29/


Meanwhile the launch of the Zotac-Zbox with ION2 appears delayed, places that list it seem to indicate mid-May delivery (it was expected early April...).


I have the impression sales of ION1 products are still too good to spoil them with ION2 products too soon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·

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Quote:
Originally Posted by tux99 /forum/post/18616837


Lenovo has announced a ION2 version of their ION1 Q110, called Q150:

http://shop.lenovo.com/us/landing_pa...ntre/2010/q150


Will be available from June.

Any thoughts, anyone, on how this will compare to the Zotac HD-ID11? I have issues with Zotac's pricing games and the reviews have been eh, so I hope to jump on this Lenovo if it's better.
 

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The title pretty much says it all - Newegg had it on Monday and sold out quickly. Logic Supply now has it in stock: http://www.logicsupply.com/products/zbox_hd_id11 .


I think the old MAG was a better value at $299 w/ HDD and RAM, but I like the looks of the ZBOX a bit better, and it means I can throw either a fast, small SSD in there for a client player, or a 500GB HDD in for a standalone player.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toneloc427 /forum/post/18625864


The title pretty much says it all - Newegg had it on Monday and sold out quickly. Logic Supply now has it in stock: http://www.logicsupply.com/products/zbox_hd_id11 .


I think the old MAG was a better value at $299 w/ HDD and RAM, but I like the looks of the ZBOX a bit better, and it means I can throw either a fast, small SSD in there for a client player, or a 500GB HDD in for a standalone player.

It was actually available starting Saturday morning at Newegg. I called Zotac yesterday and they seemed to me like an amateur operation (at least, their U.S. presence is). They had no idea where their product is being sold (other than Newegg), nor did they have any idea where else it is sold now or will be sold anytime in the future, other than "with any of their partners." They also claimed that there are only "about 100 units" that have made it to the U.S. so far.


Because of all this and more, I'm waiting on the Lenovo Q150.
 

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Thread cleaned up. This IS a Linux sub-forum and the thread started off nicely in the proper direction. If anyone wants to discuss the ION in regard to another OS (or just discuss the GPU generically), then please start a thread in the main HTPC area.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Sorel /forum/post/18632955


If anyone wants to discuss the ION in regard to another OS (or just discuss the GPU generically), then please start a thread in the main HTPC area.

Already did (earlier reference deleted when you "cleaned up" the forum and the Linux enthusiasm became a Tea Party movement) here .
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
The first Ion2 based all-in-one is now available: the Asus EeeTop PC ET2010PN(T)


It looks quite decent with its 20" screen dualcore Atom D510 and 2GB of RAM, sadly the screen is only 1600x900, not full HD, but then at 20" that shouldn't matter too much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Jetway has presented a mini-ITX ION2 motherboard, the NC98-510-LF .


It's passively cooled and comes with on board 12V-DC power (i.e. all it needs is an external laptop style power brick), so should be very quiet in a case with a low-noise case fan.
 

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The only thing keeping me from ION/ION2 for Linux is the lack of horsepower for Flash. If my 2.8GHz Core2Duo struggles, then an Atom is going to be toast.


Come on Adobe, accelerate this somehow (VAAPI, VDPAU, carrier pigeon, I don't care)
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by zim2dive /forum/post/18773509


The only thing keeping me from ION/ION2 for Linux is the lack of horsepower for Flash. If my 2.8GHz Core2Duo struggles, then an Atom is going to be toast.


Come on Adobe, accelerate this somehow (VAAPI, VDPAU, carrier pigeon, I don't care)

True, if you need full screen HD Flash playback in Linux then unfortunately ION is not for you, regarless if 1st or 2nd gen. ION.



Meanwhile Asus has released the first ION2 netbook, the Asus Eee PC 1201PN .

It's available to buy already.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
The Lenovo IdeaCentre Q150 mini-PC with ION2 has recently become available.


This one is actually quite interesting due to it's very small size (quite a bit smaller than the Zotac Zbox ) and the nice small wireless keyboard with trackball included.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toneloc427 /forum/post/18625864


The title pretty much says it all - Newegg had it on Monday and sold out quickly. Logic Supply now has it in stock: http://www.logicsupply.com/products/zbox_hd_id11 .
Extensive review of the Zbox HD-ID11


A few glitches like fan speed controls have been worked out through BIOS updates that are now shipping. The next live CD release of XBMC is reported to support all the features of this device including its 802.11n Atheros WiFi card.


Conclusion: "Finally, a compelling nettop that enthusiasts can make their own."

Quote:
Originally Posted by tux99 /forum/post/18901901


Meanwhile Asus has released the first ION2 netbook, the Asus Eee PC 1201PN . It's available to buy already.

I've been looking at comparisons of the Asus 1201n and 1201pn. I'm not sure I really understand what the ION2 platform brings to the table. The 1201n has a dual-core Atom, but the pn has a single-core model. Benchmark testing places the 1201pn's CPU performance at just over half that of the 1201n. In return you get another hour or so of battery life, but if you're looking for a device that will be a more general-purpose computer than simply something to use for browsing, email, and video playback, is that a reasonable compromise? The two are priced almost identically at Amazon.
 
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