System76 Virgo laptop PCB design open sourced ahead of release – Liliputing

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Linux PC company System76 has been selling laptop and desktop computers that ship with Linux software for years. But up until recently the company had primarily been sourcing its PCs from third-party manufacturers and slapping its own branding and software on those systems.
But in recent years System76 began making its own hardware, starting with desktops and keyboards. And now System76 is preparing to launch its first laptop that’s designed and built in-house. The company began sharing hints about the upcoming System76 Virgo laptop earlier this year. Now System76 has released the PCB design files, giving us a few more clues about what to expect.
System76 principal engineer Jeremy Soller announced the move, noting that the mainboard design is available at GitHub and shared under a GPLv3 license, making it “the most open, modern x86 motherboard design” that he knows of.
And if you were wondering which x86 processor the upcoming laptop would feature, the documentation has some clues: there’s plenty of mention of third-party datasheets for 13th-gen Intel Core processors, so it seems safe to assume that the laptop will sport Intel Raptor Lake mobile chips.
It’s noteworthy that Soller isn’t saying this is the most open motherboard overall – just the most open with an x86 processor. We’ve seen a number of interesting open hardware projects for laptops with ARM-based chips over the years.
It’s also interesting to see that System76 is opting for Intel over AMD, which has made some big gains in CPU and integrated graphics performance and efficiency in recent years. But as Phoronix points out, it’s hard to beat Intel’s ecosystem when it comes to Linux ecosystem support in the short term. That could change in the coming years thanks to the popularity of Linux on AMD systems like the Steam Deck, but it’s not that surprising that System76 opted for Intel chips for its first custom-designed laptop.
It looks like the designs (or at least the documentation) are still very much a work in progress. So we may have to wait a little longer for additional details about the laptop’s design, features, price, or availability.
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