Feeds
55%

Intel Atom 230 ultra low-power desktop CPU

Build your own Eee

Business security measures using SSL

Gaming is out of the question but we were shocked to see that playing a Shrek DVD with CyberLink PowerDVD 7.2 brought the Atom to its knees with a CPU load of 80 per cent. The picture was jerky video and the audio stuttered. Again, you'd get better performance with XP on board instead of Vista.

For a laugh, we tried to watch a Blu-ray of Casino Royale but it wouldn’t play as the Intel graphics driver is incompatible with Blu-ray playback but that’s probably just as well.

As a comparison we tested another low-power Intel system that we’ve had on the shelf for some time. It’s an Asus N4L-VM DH motherboard with 945G chipset that supports Socket 479 mobile processors. We plugged in a 2.13GHz Core 2 Duo T2600 processor.

System Power Consumption Results

Intel Atom 230 - Power

Power consumption in Watts

Thanks to the layout of the Asus we could use 2GB of DDR 2 in dual-channel instead of a single module a la Atom.

This isn’t exactly an apples-to-apples comparison as the N4L-VM DH and T2600 cost £200 together but the result is a small, quiet, low-powered system that works like a proper PC. DVD playback is flawless and it only loads the CPU at 15-20 per cent.

Verdict

You can build an incredibly small and cheap PC around the D945GCLF, but the Atom CPU is a severe disappointment on the desktop as it doesn’t have the grunt to do any useful work. The bizarre form-factor and layout of the I/O panel also reduce the options for finding a niche for this incredibly cheap motherboard and processor. Perhaps the next-gen, dual-core Atom will make a world of difference but for now this is one to avoid unless you're really keen to build an internet-oriented PC.

New hybrid storage solutions

55%

Intel Atom 230 ultra low-power desktop CPU

Eee-style internet computers are the limit of this low-power but surprisingly low-performance desktop CPU.
Price: £49 / $80 RRP

More from The Register

next story
4K-ing excellent TV is on its way ... in its own sweet time, natch
For decades Hollywood actually binned its 4K files. Doh!
Oi, Tim Cook. Apple Watch. I DARE you to tell me, IN PERSON, that it's secure
State attorney demands Apple CEO bows the knee to him
Apple's big bang: iPhone 6, ANOTHER iPhone 6 Plus and WATCH OUT
Let's >sigh< see what Cupertino has been up to for the past year
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Get your Indian Landfill Android One handsets - they're only SIXTY QUID
Cheap and deafening mobes for the subcontinental masses
Apple's SNEAKY plan: COPY ANDROID. Hello iPhone 6, Watch
Sizes, prices and all – but not for the wrist-o-puter
A SCORCHIO fatboy SSD: Samsung SSD850 PRO 3D V-NAND
4Gb/s speeds on a consumer drive, anyone?
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.