M.2 "Graphics Card"

Discussion in 'News' started by el01, Dec 5, 2018 at 6:53 PM.

  1. el01

    el01 King of Cable Management
    Thread Starter

    https://www.anandtech.com/show/13677/innodisk-launches-m2-graphics-card-with-4k-output

    Innodisk now has a M.2-compatible "graphics card" (basically a video output device) available for potential consumer purchase.

    It is based off of a Silicon Motion SM768 controller (with 256MB of video memory) and can display 1080p at 60Hz or 4K at 30Hz. There was not enough space to put dedicated HDMI or other video out ports, so (presumably) video outputs will connect via an extension wire.

    While this device is mostly meant as a display adapter and not a "video card" in the gaming sense, consumer usage may include ultra-SFF PCs for streaming video or HTPC purposes that do not require such high power.
     
  2. chx

    chx Airflow Optimizer
    Silver Supporter

    Yes, and for that role the hardware video decoding engine is a good fit. But how far down can you pare a PC before a dedicated and surely cheaper Android TV box bceomes better?
     
  3. Flumper Dinkle

    Flumper Dinkle Trash Compacter

    Super excited to see what this could mean going forward. Low-end gaming grade m.2 GPU? Maybe in a few generations we have something of 1070 power in m.2 form factor? (fingers crossed)
    Could we be entering an era of fast, powerful, power efficient sub 2L gaming PCs that are as upgradable as full size desktops?

    Baby steps no doubt but the first baby steps are the most exciting.
     
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  4. Windfall

    Windfall King of Cable Management

    Hmmmm... STX LETS GO!
     
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  5. VELKASE Michael

    VELKASE Michael Average Stuffer
    Bronze Supporter VELKASE

    M.2 is currently only designed for 7 watts of power. We would need a completely different connection on the motherboard to allow for more powerful processors of a similar form factor.

    In what ways would M.2-like graphics cards be better than using MXM or chips with both a CPU and GPU?
     
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  6. thewizzard1

    thewizzard1 Cable-Tie Ninja
    Bronze Supporter

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  7. Windfall

    Windfall King of Cable Management

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  8. thewizzard1

    thewizzard1 Cable-Tie Ninja
    Bronze Supporter

    I'm kind of shocked they neglected to support DP / eDP.
     
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  9. Flumper Dinkle

    Flumper Dinkle Trash Compacter

    Yes and pci-e gen 3 is only rated to something like 75W (I think? Please correct if wrong) but we can get around that with external power connectors.
    And I think to ask why m.2 is better than MXM is the same as to ask why ITX is better than ATX. There will be sacrifice as with all SFF. It may well be a niche use case, especially with the power that APUs can provide right now, but my hope for this particular form factor going forward would be a super SFF PC that doesn't have the GPU tied to the CPU and both are completely upgradeable.
    I believe with the inventive minds we have on this forum and elsewhere we may well start seeing custom form factors that used to be restricted to high production companies.

    Or maybe I'm just overly hopeful. This is probably the same stuff people said about the first MXM cards.
     
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  10. el01

    el01 King of Cable Management
    Thread Starter

    I think this paves the way for more PCIe via M.2 dankness... Imagine video capture cards that fit into M.2...

    @VELKASE Michael

    It's not as good to use M.2. It's a cool implementation.
     
  11. chx

    chx Airflow Optimizer
    Silver Supporter

    Video capture cards in M.2 is nothing new. Both Avermedia and Magewell has several.
     
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  12. ExplodingWaffle101

    ExplodingWaffle101 Trash Compacter

    could be useful for powerful/server cpu only systems with no igpu
     
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  13. jØrd

    jØrd SCSI for life
    Moderator Gold Supporter Supporter of Efficiency LOSIAS Digital Seppuku

    two words

    Digital signage
     
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