AMD DTX Small Form Factor System Sneak Peek
With the chassis top panel removed, you can see the arrangement of the prototype DTX system’s internal components. Having worked with a number of Micro-ATX enclosures, we can’t help but see many similarities.
The motherboard and power supply are mounted using screws and the optical and hard disk drives are mounted in a removable tray / arm. As you can see the motherboard is designed so that the CPU socket resides roughly in the middle of the system and the size of the chassis can accommodate a good sized CPU cooler. Between the CPU and PSU, the system’s dual memory slots are visible. And on the opposite side of the CPU you’ll find the system’s pair of expansion slots (a mini-DTX board would have only one slot). The design of the motherboard and chassis means only half-height cards can be used, basically because there is no room for a riser. The slots can be any combination of PCI Express or standard PCI slots, however. Perhaps if the new DTX standard takes off, half-height cards for Graphics and other functionalities will become more commonplace.
To access the various connectors and cables at the front of the system, the tray holding the drives must be removed. It is held in place by a couple of screws and the tray itself features two small tongues that fit into grooves in the main body of the chassis. Remove the screws, tilt the tray upwards, disconnect the power and data cables, and the whole assembly comes right out. We should note that the drives used standard power and data cables.
Underneath the tray, there is a secondary PCB that houses the system’s front-mounted ports and card reader. This was obviously an early prototype, as is evident by the wire jumpers. Because these ports reside on a secondary PCB, it is likely that future designs will have a varied array of connectivity options.