Browse Prior Art Database

Variable I/O expansion slots

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000013886D
Original Publication Date: 2000-Jun-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-19
Document File: 2 page(s) / 38K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

Industry standard uATX motherboards have 4 PCI slots. Industry standard ATX motherboards have 6 PCI slots. Two different motherboards are required if an OEM wants to offer both ATX 6 slot systems and uATX 4 slot systems. The following implementation allows one industry standard uATX motherboard to be used either as a 4 PCI slot or 6 PCI slot system with different mechanicals.

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Variable I/O expansion slots

    Industry standard uATX motherboards have 4 PCI slots. Industry standard ATX motherboards have 6 PCI slots. Two different motherboards are required if an OEM wants to offer both ATX 6 slot systems and uATX 4 slot systems. The following implementation allows one industry standard uATX motherboard to be used either as a 4 PCI slot or 6 PCI slot system with different mechanicals.

This implementation has the following advantages:

1) One motherboard vs. two: Saves inventory dollars and allows more flexible manufacturing (can match build to customer demand much later in cycle).
2) Lower development cost

Current uATX motherboards have 4 PCI slots on the motherboard. ATX boards are 1.6 inches wider. The extra 1.6 inches allows the addition of two more PCI slots.

uATX Board

ATX Board

This implementation allows gold tabs (male connection) at the end of the uATX motherboard. An additional card with two extra slots and the female connector is created. The equalivent of an ATX board is created when this card is plugged into the uATX motherboard.

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Connection (tab on uATX, connector on extender)

PCI slots

uATX Board

Extender

The above is equalivent to an ATX motherboard and can be inserted into an ATX mechanical with 6 slot support. Therefore one motherboard can be used as either a 4 slot or a 6 slot design.

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