DFI motherboard combines Ion, P45 platforms

— 1:29 PM on September 18, 2009

The folks at ASRock definitely don't have a monopoly on weird and unusual motherboard designs. According to TweakTown, DFI has developed a motherboard that includes both a standard Intel P45 Express platform and a fully functioning Atom system with Nvidia Ion integrated graphics.

The Hybrid P45-ION-T2A2 is a sight to behold, as TweakTown's video can attest. DFI has put an LGA775 socket, P45 chipset, and three expansion slots (including one PCI Express x16) at the top of the board, just where you'd expect them on a normal mobo. Meanwhile, the bottom third plays host to Ion-backed Atom guts, which have their own SO-DIMM memory slots, expansion slots, and passive cooling.

Interestingly, DFI has shared some of the rear I/O ports like USB and audio between the two platforms. Other ports are tied exclusively to each platform, which should let you use the Ion system to run things in the background while using the P45 system—TweakTown mentions possible applications like a file server or even a Blu-ray playback device. Hey, this thing does have an HDMI port tied to the Ion chipset, after all.

DFI plans to release the Hybrid P45-ION-T2A2 in late October or early November for $399. The board will apparently come with a power brick for the Atom hardware and a front-panel controller, which will let you switch between the two platforms and also select which one you want tied to the audio ports.

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