MXC960 CompactPCI Serial PCIe 4.0 & Gigabit Ethernet Switch

CompactPCI Serial PCIe 4.0 & Gigabit Ethernet Switch

Dolphin’s MXC960 CompactPCI Serial PCI Express and Ethernet switch is a powerful building block for CompactPCI Serial systems. The PCIe 4.0 switch supports standard CompactPCI Serial switching. Multi CPU systems and IO sharing is fully supported by Dolphins eXpressWare software suite. The MXC960 also comes with built in 1Gb Ethernet switch capabilities.

  • 40 Lanes PCIe backplane ports
  • Up to 16 GT/S per lane
  • Quad SFF-8644 Front Panel ports for PCIe over cable solutions
  • NTB or Transparent use
  • PCIe 4.0 SFF-8644 cables
  • 3U rack mountable
  • 8x Gb Ethernet backplane ports
  • 2x Gb Ethernet RJ45 front panel ports
  • Port status LEDs
  • Copper and Fiber-optic SFF8644 cables
  • Microchip Gen 4.0 PFX chipset

MXC960 Product Data

The MXC960 switch is designed to create a flexible and scalable CompactPCI Serial fabric solution using standard CompactPCI Serial components. The MXC960 enables multiple CPUs in the backplane to communicate and share IO devices.

CompactPCI Serial solutions can now easily scale out over external PCIe copper or fiber cables to similar cPCI-S chassis, PXIe chassis, standard PCIe servers and IO devices and expansion units. By loading the appropriate firmware, the MXC960 supports both transparent and non transparent bridging (NTB) use cases for clustering and I/O expansion applications. More information on eXpressWare.

PCI Express Gen 4.0

The MXC960 switch is designed for PCIe Gen 4.0 link speeds in the backplane and via the front panel PCIe cable port. It will auto negotiate to the highest speed supported (PCIe 1.0 - 4.0 ) by each component connected to individual port. This allows you to mix various generation of equipment without scarifying performance between high speed components.

Backplane support

The MXC960 follows the pinout defined in PICMG® CPCI-S.0 R2.0 for PCIe for the standard 40 lanes, using Amphenol Airmax VS2 connectors. This allows for up to 5 x8 + 1 x4 links. Please contact Dolphin for more information on PCIe clocking and configuration options.

PCIe Cable ports

The MXC960 switch has a quad SFF-8644 PCIe cable connectors to allow connectivity to external PCIe devices and servers. Each quad port can be used as four independent x4 links, two independent x8 links or one x16 link. Each SFF-8644 connector has a protected 3.3V supply to support up to four Optica Fiber Cables (AOCs). The MXC960 is carefully designed for maximum copper cable lengths. Fiber optics extends this distance to 100 meters. More info on cable alternatives for the MXC948 switch.


Onboard PCIe 4.0 x4 NVME support for 2280 Key M M.2. The M.2 connector follows the pinout defined in PCI Express M.2 Specification Revision 4.0 in table 3-25, Socket 3 PCIe-based Adapter Pinouts (Key M). Maximum allowed form factor is 2280.

The NVMe can be assigned to one of the connected CPU modules and shared with other CPU modules across the PCIe network using eXpressWare.

PCIe IO Expansion

Several CompactPCI Serial systems can be interconnected to multi rack CompactPCI Serial system using direct PCIe and Ethernet cables. The MXC960 switch used in combination with the MXH932 will support standard IO expansion, connecting a CompactPCI Serial rack to external PCIe Devices or PCIe Expansion chassis. The MXP924 and MXP908 / MXP909 enables connectivity between CompactPCI Serial and PXIe chassis. The MXS924 1 U Rack mount switch enables scale out to larger PCIe networks.

PCIe Clustering / Networking

The MXC960 can be used to connect several CPU boards inside a single CompactPCI Serial rack or several CompactPCI Serial racks can be interconnected to allow CPU to CPU and IO Sharing between racks. The MXC960 can also be used in combination with the MXH930 PCIe Host Adapters to establish connectivity to standard servers.

The MXC960 supports Dolphin’s extensive PCI Express Software libraries to create a powerful and reliable communication solution for applications that benefit from an ultra-low latency, high performance cluster interconnect. Dolphin’s PCI Express Software enables standard and embedded Linux, Windows, RTX and VxWorks network applications to benefit from PCI Express performance without modification. This comprehensive solution is ideal for real-time, technical and high performance computing, cloud computing, and enterprise business applications.

Reflective Memory

The MXC960 supports large reflective memory configurations and multiple multicast groups. Multicast can be utilized between CPU boards and IO devices in the chassis as well as to external equipment via the PCIe cable port.

Ethernet Switch

The MXC960 comes with an onboard Gigabit Ethernet switch. The switch has two RJ45 connectors on the front panel and 8 ports to the CompactPCI Serial backplane. Only 1 Gigabit/s speed is supported.

Please contact Dolphin for more information on this product.

Feature Description
Link Speed 16 GT/s per PCIe Lane.
Application Performance 100ns port latency
PCIe Switch Microchip PFX Switchtec ® PCI Express Gen4
PCI Express Base Specification 4.0
PCIe Backplane Switching 40 Lanes, up to PCIe 4.0 speed
PCIe Cable Connections Quad SFF-8644 x4 cable Ports
Copper cables and PCIe Fiber-Optic cable support 0.5 to to 100 meters
Ethernet switch Broadcom BCM53158
Ethernet, Front panel Two RJ45 - Gigabit Ethernet (No auto negotiation, fixed 1GB/s)
Ethernet, Backplane Eight ports - Gigabit Ethernet
Mechanical Dimensions

3U. The MXC960 is compliant to the PICMG® CPCI-S.0 R2.0 mechanical specifications.

Operating Environment Operating Temperature: 0°C - 55°C (32°F - 131°F)
Airflow : 350 LFM (preliminary)
Relative Humidity: 5% - 95% (non- condensing)
Storage Environment Storage Temperature: -25°C - 70°C
Relative Humidity: 10% - 95% (non- condensing)

SuperSockets™ Berkley Sockets API
Microsoft WinSock2/LSP support
TCP/IP Driver

Regulatory (pending) CE Mark
FCC Class A
EMC test (pending) EN 55032:2012
EN 55024:2010
EN 61000-3-2:2014
EN 61000-3-3:2013
Operating System Windows


MXC948 - PCI Express Gen 4.0 Switch, 48 lanes switch, Transparent and NTB eXpressWare license

MXC960 - PCI Express Gen 4.0 Switch, 40 lanes switch, Transparent and NTB eXpressWare license

MXC961 - PCI Express Gen 4.0 Switch, 40 lanes switch, Transparent

Please contact Dolphin for availability.

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  • Download Switch Users Guide (coming soon)
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