Test Setup

To test the systems we setup the boards on our usual test beds and added all the components needed to get a barebones system up and running. All the common components were not just identical but in fact the very same hardware - we just reinstalled Windows when we switched platforms.

Common System Components
* 150GB Western Digital Raptor
* 1GB Corsair Dominator CM2X1024-8500 DDR2 RAM
* Coolermaster 80-Plus 850W power supply
* Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium 32-bit

Atom Platform
* Gigabyte GA-GC230D Motherboard
* Integrated 1.6GHz Intel 230Atom CPU
* Intel 945GC Northbridge with Intel GMA 950 graphics
* Intel ICH7 Southbridge

Nano Platform
* VIA EPIA-SN18000G
Nano Reference Platform
* Integrated VIA Nano L2100
* VIA PT890 Northbridge
* VIA VT8251 Southbridge.



As the Intel platform uses the same Intel 945GC Northbridge and ICH7 Southbridge chips used in many of the netbooks we've already seen, its performance (hard drive not withstanding) will closely reflect what you'll experience on these devices. However this isn't necessarily the case for our VIA platform. Our reference board is an old one originally designed for use with the C7 processor so its performance may not truly reflect what we can expect from netbooks and nettops that use Nano. We can at least have some indication, though.

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