MSI shows sub-$60 Mini-ITX mobo with Bay Trail-D onboard

Intel’s Bay Trail Atom processor has popped up in plenty of tablets since its launch last September. This month, MSI will release a Mini-ITX motherboard featuring Bay Trail-D, the desktop incarnation of the processor. MSI had the board on display at CES, and Scott was on the scene with a camera and notepad at the ready.

Dubbed the J18001 (catchy, I know), the board features the Atom J1800, a dual-core version of Bay Trail-D with a 10W power envelope. The chip is presumably soldered onto the circuit board, and it’s cooled passively by a pretty small heatsink. I don’t know if that’s the final heatsink MSI will go with, though; pre-production boards shown at trade shows don’t always have the same cooling apparatuses as retail models.

Also included on the J18001 are two DDR3-1333 SO-DIMM slots, what looks like a single PCIe Express x1 slot, two Serial ATA 3Gbps ports, and six USB ports (two USB 3.0 and four USB 2.0). There are DVI, VGA, and HDMI display outputs, all hooked up to Bay Trail-D’s integrated graphics.

MSI plans to have the J18001 out at the end of this month with a price tag somewhere south of $60. A variant of the board with a quad-core Bay Trail-D chip will be out in the January-February time frame. MSI expects to price that model at a $10 premium. Given the small price difference and Bay Trail’s already modest performance, I’d say the quad-core offering is probably worth waiting for.

Comments closed
    • Hattig
    • 6 years ago

    It’s wrong to be considering buying one of these boards (the $70 one) simply because you have a couple of DDR3 SODIMMs lying around isn’t it? I even have a mini-itx case from about ten years ago in storage – it has an ancient VIA Epia800 inside… probably will just need a new PSU.

    • ronch
    • 6 years ago

    TR should do a Bay Trail vs. Kabini redux one of these days.

    • NeelyCam
    • 6 years ago

    This is screaming for a PicoPSU.

    (… which would make the PSU more expensive than the board+cpu…)

      • peterzrh
      • 6 years ago

      Spot on. The power supply requirements are really holding back this end of the market right now.

      Is ATX really relevant in the 10W arena? Surely these should ALL use 19V standard bricks now?

    • Deanjo
    • 6 years ago

    Hmmmm, $600 worth of boards would make for a nice little setup for beowulf cluster setup training.

    • srg86
    • 6 years ago

    I’m waiting for boards with the Pentium J2900 (replaced the J2850) to come out, then I’ll snap one of these up. I’m hoping ASRock, ASUS or Gigabyte will come out with one, I ever was a fan of MSI or ECS.

    • HisDivineOrder
    • 6 years ago

    The quad-core version–with sufficient clockspeed–could be a great SteamOS box for those who want to stream their games over gigabit. Assuming it has gigabit. I’d hope it does. Also, assuming it has UEFI and its Intel IGP is up to the requirements of what SteamOS needs.

    Boards and chips like this could turn into the low-cost Steam Streamers (Steamers?) that Valve must see as the box you put under your TV until such time as SteamOS is getting more games ported to Linux.

    What makes me hesitate is Steam not having XBMC built-in and not having Netflix.

    If it had those two things plus local-gigabit-network-powered-game-streaming, a Steam Machine with one of these would be a great option.

    • Deanjo
    • 6 years ago

    Cyril, you didn’t happen to glance at what make the NIC card is?

    /crosses fingers, please be intel, please be intel….

      • crabjokeman
      • 6 years ago

      It’s probably Marvell because those are awesome in Linux 😉

      • MadManOriginal
      • 6 years ago

      Exactly. I was aware of those, but I don’t need enterprise features or price.

    • MadManOriginal
    • 6 years ago

    Something like this with:

    A high quality NIC (or dual NIC for funsies)
    At least 6 internal SATA ports
    A PCIe 4x or *gasp* 16x slot if the CPU has the lanes

    Would be an ideal NAS motherboard.

    BUT wtf is up with the 4-pin ATX plug? For a 10W CPU? The 24-pin ATX plug doesn’t provide *any* power to the CPU?

      • dragosmp
      • 6 years ago

      The 24 pin ATX doesn’t provide any power to any CPU afaik. There has to be a document somewhere with Intel’s guidelines for CPU power delivery that explains it. For 10W it may pull from the 3.3V rail just as well, but it’s not the standard any more

      +1 on the NAS board even without the PCIe, as long as they put some SATA controllers on board tied to PCIe

        • Klimax
        • 6 years ago

        [url<]http://www.formfactors.org/developer/specs/ATX12V_PSDG_2_2_public_br2.pdf[/url<] page 13 [quote<]Typical Power Distribution DC output power requirements and distributions will vary based on specific system options and implementation. Significant dependencies include the quantity and types of processors, memory, add-in card slots, and peripheral bays, as well as support for advanced graphics or other features. It is ultimately the responsibility of the designer to derive a power budget for a given target product and market. Table 3 through Table 5 and Figure 1 through Figure 3 provide sample power distributions and a graphical recommendation for cross loading. It should not be inferred that all power supplies must conform to these tables, nor that a power supply designed to meet the information in the tables will work in all system configurations.[/quote<] Unless I misread something, it is up to board developer how they will use it. Might be simply design reuse.

      • stdRaichu
      • 6 years ago

      May I present to you the [url=http://www.asrock.com/server/overview.asp?Model=E3C226D2I<]ASRock E3C226D2I[/url<]? Has the added benefit of being ECC-comatible and having a BMC. I'm going to be upgrading my home NAS with one in the next month or so. They also have the Avoton-based [url=http://www.asrock.com/server/overview.asp?Model=C2550D4I<]C2550D4I[/url<] with 12 SATA ports, although most of those are from a Marvell controller, but it does support a comparatively huge 64GB of ECC RAM. Personally I use an HBA (ye olde faithful IBM M1015 reflashed to 9211-8i IT mode) since it's faster than any non-Intel SATA controller and makes cabling easier.

        • Star Brood
        • 6 years ago

        WOW those are some sexy boards!

          • Deanjo
          • 6 years ago

          And bloody expensive. The E3C226DI retails for around the $350 mark and the C2550D4I goes for around $400.

            • stdRaichu
            • 6 years ago

            Really?! I’ve just picked up the E3C224DI for £145 and the E3C226DI is available here for £20 more. The Avoton boards are admittedly crazy expensive though, £400 here too (if they ever become available), but at the price I got it the E3C224DI is an utter steal, I think I paid £200 for my S1200KPR and thought that was a great deal for a mITX with ECC and dual Intel NICs.

            • Deanjo
            • 6 years ago

            You got a great deal on the E3C224DI. Because they are not so readily available on this side of the pond, the few suppliers that do have them charge a premium.

            • demani
            • 6 years ago

            Newegg has it for $290, and that doesn’t seem totally unreasonable when you factor in CPU is included, plus all the SATA ports (you’d need some sort of card to support those, and then you lose your single slot). Perfect for Open Media Server or something similar (not sure whether it would be sufficient for FreeNAS or other ZFS based system, but 4 cores and support for lots of ram could be good). But IPMI is always useful, and it’s got intel NICs. All in all a lot to like.

            I’m actually thinking about getting one now…

        • SomeOtherGeek
        • 6 years ago

        Not for 60 bucks, you can’t.

      • Reuel
      • 6 years ago

      This is an Atom. It doesn’t have the lanes. PCIe 4x only.

      [quote<]16x slot if the CPU has the lanes[/quote<]

      • Milo Burke
      • 6 years ago

      Does anyone know of an equivalent (cheap!) board that has 4 SATA ports? I’d really like to set up a NAS on the cheap.

    • Waco
    • 6 years ago

    2 sata ports? Come on!

    • zenlessyank
    • 6 years ago

    Do they make a Corsair 20 watt platinum rated power supply for those ATX leads??

    Guess I will be using my bandsaw and chisel to get my Dark Rock 3 and R9 290X on there too, since SOMETHING has to dissipate that power on those plugs!!!

      • Reuel
      • 6 years ago

      R9 290x with an Atom CPU? Wut?

        • derFunkenstein
        • 6 years ago

        The joke, she is up there! Way up there, over your head!

        • Theolendras
        • 6 years ago

        I’ve got the impression it’s for a crypto currency mining setup…

    • Theolendras
    • 6 years ago

    At this price, a freenas setup is now pretty much inevitable.

      • demani
      • 6 years ago

      Yeah-this perfect for a lot of home servers. And I look forward to swapping out my office FreePBX box for one running Bay trail.

        • continuum
        • 6 years ago

        Or maybe a bare-bones minimalist HTPC…

      • shaurz
      • 6 years ago

      Only 2x SATA though…

    • willmore
    • 6 years ago

    SO-DIMMs? So, cheap board uses no so cheap memory modules for seemingly no reason. I guess MSI can ignore that as an externality, but I–the potential buyer–can’t.

      • madmilk
      • 6 years ago

      SO-DIMMs are about the same price as regular DIMMs for DDR3-1333 modules.

        • Bauxite
        • 6 years ago

        1600 so-dimms were a few dollars cheaper for 8gb sticks before the price spikes, maxed out a couple laptops cheap.

      • MadManOriginal
      • 6 years ago

      I don’t understand why they went with SO-DIMMs either, but not for the reason you posted. SO-DIMMS are appropriate when they are used to save board real estate for something useful (although there are plenty of packed ITX boards that show that’s not even necessary, maybe there is too much additional production cost for those) but to do so they need to be stacked. These look like they take up as much or more space than standard DIMMs so it doesn’t make much sense.

        • Klimax
        • 6 years ago

        Simpler tracing?

        • NeelyCam
        • 6 years ago

        Saves space in vertical direction. If you don’t use the PCIe, and opt for a PicoPSU, you could fit this thing into a tiny (custom) case with an SSD attached to the top cover of the case with velcro.

        In fact, I may see a project coming. I’ve been thinking about making a PC in a wooden case for a while – maybe this will push me over the edge

          • MadManOriginal
          • 6 years ago

          This has full height I/O…you would have a point if it were slim ITX.

      • internetsandman
      • 6 years ago

      Considering the space savings and the fact that the price difference is negligible for 1333MHz sticks, I’d actually prefer more ITX board makers use SO-DIMMS, because it sold make boards less cramped and possibly allow the highest end models to have more features (though I’m hard pressed to think of additional features that could be added onto a board like the ROG Impact)

    • jdaven
    • 6 years ago

    Looks no different than all the solder CPU mini itx designs of the past.

    • NeelyCam
    • 6 years ago

    No SATA 6Gb/s…?

    • Deanjo
    • 6 years ago

    One NIC …… bummer.

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