Embedded motherboard maker DFI has secured itself a “first.” The company’s new GHF51 board and EC90A-GH fanless PC stand alone as the first to have passed Canonical’s Ubuntu IoT hardware certification process.
The EC90A-GH appears to simply add a heatsink case and port and connectivity options to the GHF51. Both are built around the AMD Ryzen R1000 series, which marks another first as AMD’s only chip for embedded systems that has the ability to multithread. The dual-core Zen chips can be clocked up to 3.5Ghz and also pack three (up to) 1.2Ghz Vega GPUs, support for three external 4K displays and dual 10G gigabit Ethernet.
As for the board itself, DFI has outfitted the GHF51 with a pair of micro-HDMI outputs, USB-C and a single Ethernet port. The base configuration includes 32GB of eMMC storage but that can be upgraded to 64GB. 4GB of DDR4 RAM comes standard, but that can also be doubled. There’s even a mini PCIe slot for adding WiFi, 3G or 4G hardware. They’re capable of operating in temperatures ranging from -20° to 70° Celsius.
The GHF51 measures 84mm x 55mm, making it just a tad smaller than the Raspberry Pi 4.
DFI notes that this is the first board of its kind to feature a Ryzen processor. There’s no doubt this is an impressive little board and it should be well suited to intensive tasks like AI vision and distributed computing.
Apart from the performance these boards offer, there’s another very important reason they’ll be an attractive choice for industrial settings. The DFI boards and AMD chip are both promised 10 years of updates. Canonical will provide OS updates for the duration as well. In the often slow-moving industrial sector, it’s important that connected hardware will be protected from new threats for a good, long time.