Whiskey Lake Squeezes onto Pico-ITX Board

By Eric Brown

Commell’s Linux-friendly “LP-178” Pico-ITX board features Intel’s Whiskey Lake-UE CPUs at up to 4.4 GHz turbo and offers up to 16 GB DDR4, triple displays, SATA III, 2x GbE and 2x 10 Gbps USB 3.1 Gen 2 ports.

Commell announced the first Pico-ITX board we’ve seen based on Intel’s 8th Gen “Whiskey Lake” U- or 10-year available UE-series processors. Commell has previously tapped Whiskey Lake on its larger, 3.5-inch LE-37N, which similarly uses UE chips. Other Whiskey Lake-UE SBCs include Vecow’s 3.5-inch EMBC-3000 and Congatec’s Conga-JC370 and thin Mini-ITX Conga-IC370. Whiskey Lake-U SBCs include Aaeon’s maker-focused UP Xtreme and ASRock’s 3.5-inch SBC-350 and thin Mini-ITX IMB-1216.


 
LP-178 and block diagram
(click images to enlarge)

The LP-178 is designed for gaming, surveillance, medical, defense, transportation, and industrial automation applications. The SBC offers a choice of Linux and Windows 10 running on either the quad-core, 8-thread, 1.7GHz/4.4GHz Core i7-8665UE or the 2.0GHz dual-core, dual-threaded Celeron 4305UE. Both offer low 15W TDPs.

Due to the compact, 100 mm x 72 mm Pico-ITX footprint, the LP-178 has sacrificed a few features compared to the 146 mm x 101 mm LE-37N, starting with a halving of maximum DDR4 to 16 GB. It offers only one SATA III interface instead of two, and there’s no mSATA. The SBC supplies half the 10 Gbps USB 3.1 Gen 2 host ports with two coastline ports.



LP-178 portside detail view
(click image to enlarge)

Triple displays are supported via coastline HDMI and DisplayPorts and an LVDS interface enabled via a DP-fed ADP-3460 converter module. An M.2 E-Key 2230 slot supports a WiFi/Bluetooth module. Other I/O includes 2x RS232, 2x USB 2.0, HD audio, and PS/2. There’s a 12V DC input and 0 to 60°C support.

Specifications listed for the LP-178 include:

  • Processor — Intel 8th Gen “Whiskey Lake” UE-series (FCBGA1528 package) with Intel Gen 9.5 HD Graphics (24 EU) and 15W TDP (configurable TDP of 12.5W to 25W); defaults to:
    • Core i7-8665UE — 4x octa-threaded cores @ 1.7GHz (4.4GHz Turbo); 8MB cache; Graphics 620
    • Celeron 4305UE — 2x cores @ 2.0GHz; 2MB cache; Graphics 610
  • Memory — up to 16GB of DDR4 via single socket (2400MHz on i7-8665UE, 2133MHz on 4305UE)
  • Storage — SATA 3.0
  • Networking — 2x Gigabit Ethernet ports (Intel I210-AT and 1219LM with AMT 12.0)
  • Display/media:
    • HDMI port
    • DisplayPort
    • LVDS (18/24-bit, single/dual channel) via converter module or optional DP-to-VGA
    • Triple display support
    • Realtek ALC262 HD audio mic-in, line-out interfaces
  • Other I/O:
    • 2x USB 3.1 Gen 2 host ports
    • 2x USB 2.0
    • 2x RS232
    • PS/2, LPC, SPI, SMBus, fan
  • Expansion — M.2 E-key 2230 slot for WiFi/Bluetooth
  • Other features — Watchdog; RTC with battery
  • Power — 12V DC
  • Operating temperatures — 0 to 60°C
  • Dimensions — 100 x 72mm (Pico-ITX form factor)
  • Operating system — Linux or Windows 10

Further information

No pricing or availability information was provided for the LP-178. More information may be found in Commell’s LP-178 announcement and product page.

This article originally appeared on LinuxGizmos.com on October 3.

Commell | www.commell.com.tw

3.5-inch SBC can load Ryzen Embedded V1000 or R1000

By Eric Brown

Ibase has launched a 3.5-inch “IB918” SBC that runs Ubuntu or Windows on an AMD Ryzen Embedded V1000 or R1000 and offers 2x GbE, SATA III via M.2, and up to four simultaneous displays via 2x HDMI 2.0a, eDP and LVDS.

Ibase previewed its IB918 back in April in conjunction with the release of AMD’s the Ryzen Embedded R1000 SoC. In announcing the release of this 3.5-inch SBC, the company as revealed that it can also run the earlier, more advanced Ryzen Embedded V1000, supporting both Ubuntu and Windows 10.


 
IB918
(click images to enlarge)

Customers can choose among the quad-core V1605B (IB918F-1605) and the dual-core V1202B (IB918F-1202), R1606G (IB918F-1606G), and R1505G (IB918F-1505G), which are detailed in the charts below. Like the V1000, the R1000 is a 14nm-fabricated SoC with essentially the same Zen CPU and Vega GPU cores. Although the R1000 lacks the ability to drive 4x independent [email protected] displays, as seen on the V1000, it does similarly support triple 4K displays, which is all that is possible on the IB918.

Since the two V1000 SoCs are the two lower end models, all four processors supported here have relatively low 12-25W TDPs. Applications are said to include panel PC, kiosk, POS, medical display and industrial scenarios.



Ryzen Embedded V1000 models (the IB918 supports the bottom two)
(click image to enlarge)

The IB918 supports up to 32 GB of dual-channel DDR4-2400, including ECC RAM. It exploits the power of the high-end Vega GPU with dual HDMI 2.0A ports with 4K support plus a 4K-ready eDP interface and HD-ready, 24-bit LVDS. There are dual Intel I211AT driven GbE ports and 4x USB 3.0 ports, which are now called USB 3.1 in the new wackydoodle USB naming scheme. (We cannot blame Ibase here for confusingly listing them as both USB 3.0 and USB 3.1 because that is sort of true.)



Ryzen Embedded R1000 models
(click image to enlarge)

The IB918 is further equipped with a RS232/422/485 DB9 COM port, as well as internal connections including 3x RS232, USB 2.0, and 4-in/4-out DIO. You also get a Realtek ALC269Q-VC3-GR audio interface and a class-D amplifier, as well as a Fintek F81964D-I I/O chip, a watchdog, HW monitoring, and TPM 2.0 security.



IB918 detail views
(click image to enlarge)

There’s a SATA III interface via an M.2 M-Key expansion slot plus two more user-accessible M.2 sockets. The second M-Key socket is a 2280-ready interface that supports NVMe storage. There’a also an E-Key 2230 with CNVi support.



More IB918 detail views
(click image to enlarge)

The 147 x 102mm board has a 12VDC input with consumption ranging from 2.34A to 2.55A, depending on the SoC model. The SBC supports 0 to 60°C temperatures with “90% ([email protected]°C)” humidity resistance. A heatsink with fan and heatspreader are optional.

 Further information

The IB918 is available now at an undisclosed price. More information may be found in Ibase’s IB918 announcement and product page.

This article originally appeared on LinuxGizmos.com on October 1.

Ibase Technology | www.ibase.com.tw

RK3328-Based Industrial SBC Eases Raspbian Porting

By Eric Brown

Novasom’s new M7+ version of its Pi-like, RK3328 based SBC-M7 board adds RS485, power over USB, an FPC connector for HDMI, and a library that lets Pi users recompile Raspbian apps for use with its industrial RASPMOOD stack.

In February, Novasom Industries launched its Linux-powered, Rockchip RK3328 based SBC-M7 single board computer, which Novasom now calls the Novasom M7, along with an SBC-M8 board based on a Snapdragon 410E. Now, Novasom has followed customer feedback to upgrade the somewhat Raspberry Pi-like Novasom M7 with a Novasom M7+ (or M7Plus) model that provides a variety of hardware and software improvements.



Novasom M7+
(click image to enlarge)

The Novasom M7+ has added 5V power input support to its USB 3.0 host port, although you can still use the 12V DC input instead. Novasom has also added a stronger backlight driver and has upscaled to 6A (@5V) backlight support for a brighter connected display.

The Novasom M7+ has added USB outputs to the J3 connector and has added a new RS485 serial interface. A new FPC cable connector for the HDMI port is said to make it easier to integrate with other equipment such as Novasom’s optional, fully assembled NovaPC configurations of its SBCs with displays and other accessories.

On the software side, Novasom’s RASPMOOD industrial spin of Raspbian, which ships free to its SBC customers, now offers a library that lets users run Raspbian applications directly on RASPMOOD by letting them recompile it on Novasom’s custom Linux kernel and library. “Instead of compiling your application software with the Raspberry-GPIO library on Raspbian, you compile it with the Novasom Industries RASPMOOD-GPIO library on Armbian,” says the company. Since our original report, Novasom has also added a Yocto Poky Rocko image for the M7 boards.

Otherwise, the Novasom M7+ appears to be identical to the M7. It has an RPi-like footprint and 40-pin GPIO, but switches to the 1.5GHz, quad-core, Cortex-A53 Rockchip RK3328 with a Mali-450 MP4 GPU. The RK3328 also powers the Rock64, Tinker Board S, and Radxa’s new Rock Pi E, among other Linux hacker boards.


 
New HDMI FPC connector on Novasom M7+ (left) and comparison chart for earlier M7 models, which also appears to hold true for the M7+
(click images to enlarge)

Like the Novasom M7, the M7+ can be configured with various extension boards called “Piggy” boards. There are also different model configurations based on other features. For example, the SBC-M7+FT model adds 16GB eMMC, and the M7+A model lacks the onboard WiFi/Bluetooth module found on the other boards. The M7+FT and MT+D ship with 2GB of DDR3 RAM instead of 1GB.

All the Novasom M7+ models provide a microSD slot and the 4K-ready HDMI port with capacitive touch support. You also get a 10/100 Ethernet port, parallel camera interface, audio output, and a micro-USB debug port in addition to the USB 3.0 host.

The industrial-focused SBC has a wide-range 6.5-18VDC input, a battery-backed RTC, an LED, and a reset button. There’s also an extended 0 to 70⁰C operating range.


 
Apollo Lake based Novasom M11FT (left) and earlier SBC-M7FT (Novasom M7FT)
(click images to enlarge)

It is unclear if the Intel Apollo Lake based Novasom M11 model that Novasom planned to ship in the second quarter is now available. Since our February report, Novasom has posted a photo for an M11FT model.

The M11 ships with up to 8GB RAM and offers eMMC, microSD, and SATA storage. Media features include HDMI, DP, LVDS, and MIPI-DSI and -CSI. You also get 2x GbE, WiFi/BT, 3x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0, mini-PCIe, and 4-lane, full-size PCIe among other features. The Linux- and Windows-ready SBC provides extended and industrial temperature support.

Novasom also sells an N-line of SBCs based on the NXP QorIQ Layerscape LS1012, as well as i.MX6-based P- and S-Line models and i.MX6 ULL based U-line boards. All these boards run Linux, but there’s also a U1 model that runs an RTOS on an ESP32. More information on all these boards may be found in our previous Novasom report.

 
Further information

The Novasom M7+ appears to be available with pricing undisclosed. More information may be found on the Novasom M7+ product page.

This article originally appeared on LinuxGizmos.com on October 9.

Novasom Industries | www.novasomindustries.com

Rugged Apollo Lake SBC is Credit-Card Sized

VersaLogic has announced a new SWaP-optimized embedded SBC with ECC memory. Named “Harrier”, this new embedded computer features the Intel’s latest 5th generation Apollo Lake Atom processors with error-correcting memory. The Harrier includes a TPM 2.0 security chip, on-board power regulation, USB and Ethernet I/O ports and Mini PCIe expansion sockets. The soldered-on ECC RAM enhances both the reliability and ruggedness of the product.

According to the company, applications such as High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) UAVs and High Altitude Pseudo Satellite (HAPS) systems present a considerable challenge related to memory errors. ECC memory is beneficial in environments where single bit memory errors may occur due to cosmic ray interactions, which increase dramatically at altitude. The Harrier is available with up to 8 GB of Error Correcting Code (ECC) memory to address the risk of memory errors in any high-reliability applications.

Within its 55 mm x 95 mm x 27 mm package, the Harrier is well suited for space-limited applications such as in unmanned vehicles, whether on land, underwater or in the air. The Harrier is designed and tested for full industrial temperature (-40°C to +85°C) operation and meets MIL-STD-202H specifications for shock and vibration. In addition, on-board power regulation ensures reliable operation with fluctuating or noisy power sources. The built-in TPM 2.0 security chip provides hardware-level security for applications that require secure log-ins, encrypted data storage, protected files and so on.

On-board I/O includes dual Gigabit Ethernet, one USB 3.0 and four USB 2.0 ports and two serial ports. A SATA interface, eMMC Flash, mSATA slot and a microSD socket provide a range of data storage options. Dual Mini PCIe sockets accommodate plug-in A/D, Wi-Fi modems, GPS receivers, MIL-STD-1553, Ethernet, FireWire and other mini cards.

Like other VersaLogic products, the Harrier is designed from the ground up for long-term availability (10+ year typical production lifecycle). Customization services to help customers create unique solutions will be available for the Harrier, even in low OEM quantities. Customization options include conformal coating, revision locks, custom labeling, customized testing and screening, etc.

Harrier will be available in production volumes Q1 of 2020.

VersaLogic | www.versalogic.com

 

 

 

 

Next Newsletter: Embedded Boards

Coming to your inbox tomorrow: Circuit Cellar’s Embedded Boards newsletter. Tomorrow’s newsletter content focuses on both standard and non-standard embedded computer boards that ease prototyping efforts and let you smoothly scale up to production volumes.

Bonus: We’ve added Drawings for Free Stuff to our weekly newsletters. Make sure you’ve subscribed to the newsletter so you can participate.

Already a Circuit Cellar Newsletter subscriber? Great!
You’ll get your
Embedded Boards newsletter issue tomorrow.

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Don’t be left out! Sign up now:

Our weekly Circuit Cellar Newsletter will switch its theme each week, so look for these in upcoming weeks:

October has a 5th Tuesday. That’s means we’re giving you an extra Newsletter: Technologies for Drone Design! (10/29) Consumer and commercial drones rank as one of the most dynamic areas of embedded design today. Chip, board and system suppliers are offering improved ways for drones to do more processing on board the drone, while also providing solutions for implementing the control, comms and video subsystems in drones. This newsletter explores all these technology areas.

Analog & Power. (11/5) This newsletter content zeros in on the latest developments in analog and power technologies including DC-DC converters, AC-DC converters, power supplies, op amps, batteries and more.

Microcontroller Watch (11/12) This newsletter keeps you up-to-date on latest microcontroller news. In this section, we examine the microcontrollers along with their associated tools and support products.

IoT Technology Focus. (11/19) Covers what’s happening with Internet-of-Things (IoT) technology–-from devices to gateway networks to cloud architectures. This newsletter tackles news and trends about the products and technologies needed to build IoT implementations and devices.

Qualcomm IPQ4019-Based SoM and Dev Board Run OpenWrt Linux

By Jeff Child

The “Habanero” module from 8devices runs OpenWrt on Qualcomm’s IPQ4019 SoC. The $55 open spec board supports dual-band, MU-MIMO 802.11ac (Wave2). A development kit for with module adds 5 Ethernet ports and USB.

8devices has added the Habanero as a new member to its line of dual-band system-on-modules (SOMs). The SOM is available in two versions. The Habanero, based on Qualcomm’s IPQ4019 SoC, is open for pre-orders for $55. And the Habanero-I, based on Qualcomm’s IPQ4029 SoC can be bought on pre-order for $69. A $119 development kit, the Habanero DVK, provides the IPQ4019 SoC along with Ethernet, USB and other I/O.

8devices provides a number of modules that run OpenWrt Linux, the most recent of which was its Komikan SOM based on a MIPS24k-based Realtek SoC. The Habanero appears to be the company’s 2nd module based on a Qualcomm SoC, following its IPQ4018 SoC-based Jalapeno board.


 
Habanero SOM top (left) and bottom
(click images to enlarge)


The Qualcomm’s IPQ4019 and IPQ4029—used on Habanero and Habanero-I, respectively, both feature Wave2 (or Wave 2) — the revised version of 802.11ac (WiFi 5) radios with dual-band MU-MIMO technology for simultaneous WiFi connections to multiple devices. Incorporating a quad-core Arm Cortex-A7 processor with NEON and FPU, the 40nm IPQ4019/IPQ4029 SoCs have Qualcomm security features and support for up to 5x Ethernet ports. In June, we covered three boards that sport a Qualcomm IPQ4019 SoC: the Dakota DR4019, MicroTik’s RB450Gx4 and the Kefu DB11 dev kit.



Habanero SOM block diagram
(click image to enlarge)


The 45 x 49 mm Habanero module, which came to our attention from an electronics-lab.com post, has a QCA8075C PHY that supports 5x Gigabit Ethernet ports. It also has USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 ports and supports other miscellaneous interfaces (details below), which can be configured as general-purpose I/O pins. Hardware based NAT engine and security features like crypto engine and secure boot make the SOM well suited for high-end, fast and secure networking applications. The Habanero comes in commercial 0 to 65°C, and industrial -40 to 85°C temperature range versions.

For memory, the Habanero SOM provides 32 MB NOR flash and 512 MB DDR3L RAM. There’s also up to 1 GB NAND available externally on the Habanero-DVK. Interfaces on the module include 46x GPIO, 1x PCie 2.0, 1x USB 3.0, 1x USB2.0, 2x UART, 1x SPI, 2x I2C, 4x PWM, 1x JTAG, 1x I2S/TDM, 5x Ethernet ports, 1x RGMII, 1x SDIO3.0/eMMC and parallels for NAND flash memory and an LCD controller.



Habanero development board details
(click image to enlarge)


The Habanero DVK board provides several sockets and connectors that developers can use to take advantage of the SOM’s capabilities. The DVK has 5 Ethernet ports, an eMMC socket, an SD card socket, a USB 3.0 port, a USB 2.0 port, LEDs, buttons for GPI08 and Reset and 12V-24V power socket.


 
Habanero dev board with shield covering SOM (left) and shield (right)
(click images to enlarge)

 
Further information

The Habanero module and Habanero-DVK (including module) are available for pre-orders with shipments beginning September 23. More information may be found on 8devices’ Habanero product pages well as the HabaneroHabanero-I and Habanero-DVK shopping pages.

This article originally appeared on LinuxGizmos.com on September 12.

8devices | www.8devices.com

iWave Demos Xen Virtualization on its I.MX8QM-Based Module

iWave Systems has announced that it has successfully demonstrated the Xen virtualization hypervisor on their i.MX8 QM SoC based System on Module. The SMARC R2.0 compatible SOM is based on the i.MX8 QuadMax SoC. The SoC is comprised of 2x Arm Cortex-A72  cores at 1.8 GHz and 4x Arm Cortex-A53 cores at 1.2 GHz and 2x additional Cortex-M4F cores at 266 MHz.

On the i.MX8 QM, iWave has implemented the virtualization of hardware using the open-source type 1 Xen hypervisor. The Xen hypervisor enables multiple virtual machines to be created over a single hardware resource, each virtual machine capable of running its independent operating system. This enables i.MX8 QM SOM (shown) to run multiple operating systems concurrently on the same physical board. The Xen hypervisor allows maximum utilization of resources thereby improving overall system performance and efficiency.
Xen is an open-source type-1 hypervisor developed by the University of Cambridge and is now being developed by the Linux Foundation. Xen runs directly on the hardware to manage guest operating systems. Hence, it’s also considered as a bare-metal hypervisor. Xen has less overhead enabling faster performance and operating systems are more secure because they don’t rely on base OS for installing the hypervisor.

A system running the Xen hypervisor contains three components:

  • Xen Hypervisor
  • Domain 0 (Dom0) – Privileged virtual machine running on the hypervisor that can access the hardware directly and interact with other unprivileged virtual machines running on the system.
  • Multiple Domain U (DomU) – Unprivileged virtual machine running on the hypervisor and have no direct access to the hardware (e.g. CPU, memory, timer, and interrupts cannot be directly accessed)

During the initial system start-up, Xen hypervisor launches the Dom0 that runs the Linux operating system. The Dom0 has unique privileges to access the Xen hypervisor compared to other Domains. Dom0 manages the DomU, the unprivileged domains running on the system. Dom0 allocates and maps hardware resources for the DomU domains.

The solution has the follow advantages:

  • Less overhead compared to type-2 hypervisors since type-1 hypervisors make use of ARM virtualization extensions.
  • Having faulty/buggy OS in the DOM-U domain will not disrupt the functionalities of DOM-0 OS.
  • DOM-U driver domains can support legacy hardware drivers no longer supported by the new OS.
  • Have completely isolated workspaces with different requirements. For example: gaming and multimedia.
  • Better resource management since resources rarely used will not be powered on if the domain it belongs to is not booted.

In iWave’s Xen Demo on i.MX8QM Board, the DOM-0 OS runs Linux 4.9.88 from eMMC and DOM-U runs Android Oreo 8.1 from USB drives. Such a system can be used where there is a need for both faster, highly reliable OS (such as Linux) and more multi-featured slightly slower OS (such as Android) to be running on the same hardware.

iWave Systems | www.iwavesystems.com

 

Tuesday’s Newsletter: IoT Tech Focus

Coming to your inbox tomorrow: Circuit Cellar’s IoT Technology Focus newsletter. Tomorrow’s newsletter covers what’s happening with Internet-of-Things (IoT) technology–-from devices to gateway networks to cloud architectures. This newsletter tackles news and trends about the products and technologies needed to build IoT implementations and devices.

Bonus: We’ve added Drawings for Free Stuff to our weekly newsletters. Make sure you’ve subscribed to the newsletter so you can participate

Already a Circuit Cellar Newsletter subscriber? Great!
You’ll get your IoT Technology Focus newsletter issue tomorrow.

Not a Circuit Cellar Newsletter subscriber?
Don’t be left out! Sign up now:

Our weekly Circuit Cellar Newsletter will switch its theme each week, so look for these in upcoming weeks:

Embedded Boards.(10/22) The focus here is on both standard and non-standard embedded computer boards that ease prototyping efforts and let you smoothly scale up to production volumes.

October has a 5th Tuesday. That’s means we’re giving you an extra Newsletter: Technologies for Drone Design! (10/29) Consumer and commercial drones rank as one of the most dynamic areas of embedded design today. Chip, board and system suppliers are offering improved ways for drones to do more processing on board the drone, while also providing solutions for implementing the control, comms and video subsystems in drones. This newsletter explores all these technology areas.

Analog & Power. (11/5) This newsletter content zeros in on the latest developments in analog and power technologies including DC-DC converters, AC-DC converters, power supplies, op amps, batteries and more.

Microcontroller Watch (11/12) This newsletter keeps you up-to-date on latest microcontroller news. In this section, we examine the microcontrollers along with their associated tools and support products.

SMARC 2.0 module runs Linux on i.MX8M Mini

By Eric Brown

Congatec’s “Conga-SMX8-Mini” SMARC 2.0 module runs Linux on NXP’s i.MX8M Mini with up to 4GB LPDDR4 and 128GB eMMC and optional WiFi and -40 to 85°C. There’s also a new carrier and coolers for Congatec’s Epyc 3000 based conga-B7E3 module.

NXP’s power-efficient, 14nm FinFET fabricated i.MX8M Mini has attracted considerable support among computer-on-module manufacturers, starting with Variscite’s DART-MX8M-Mini. Yet, Congatec’s new Conga-SMX8-Mini is only the second SMARC 2.0 form-factor module we’ve seen after Avnet’s MSC SM2S-IMX8MINI. The new product follows Congatec’s similarly SMARC-compliant Conga-SMX8, which uses the higher-end i.MX8 QuadMax, QuadPlus or DualMax.


 
Conga-SMX8-Mini, front and back
(click images to enlarge)

Congatec touts the module for its MIPI-CSI-2 interface and support for an upcoming SMARC MIPI-CSI-2 starter kit to be released in cooperation with industrial camera manufacturer Basler. No more details were available about this “highly integrated embedded vision platform” that support the “development of cost-efficient vision devices for sparse modeling based AI.” Congatec offers a similar Conga-CAM-KIT/MIPI kit for its Intel Apollo Lake based Conga-PA5 Pico-ITX SBC that uses a Leopard Imaging sensor instead of a Basler camera.

Congatec did not mention support for standard carrier boards such as the Conga-SEVAL SMARC 2.0 carrier supported by the Conga-SMX8. Congatec did, however, announce a new Conga-STX7 carrier board and new cooling solutions for its recently released AMD Epyc Embedded 3000 based conga-B7E3 module. The combined offerings are billed as a “100 Watt ecosystem.” (See farther below.)

Inside the Conga-SMX8-Mini

The 82 x 50mm Conga-SMX8-Mini offers Linux, Yocto Linux, or Android BSPs with “ready-to-go boot loader implementation” for the single, dual, and quad-core versions of the i.MX8M Mini. The Cortex-A53 cores are clocked at 1.8GHz on the standard 0 to 60°C models and 1.6GHz for the industrial -40 to 85°C SKUs.

NXP’s i.MX8M Mini uses a more advanced 14LPC FinFET process than the more expensive i.MX8M, resulting in lower power consumption and higher clock rate for the -A53 cores and 400MHz Cortex-M4 MCU. NXP’s first embedded heterogeneous multi-core SoC has lower-powered GCNanoUltra (3D) and GC320 (2D) graphics cores with video acceleration that tops out at 1080p60 instead of 4K. The Mini also provides a slate of security features from secure boot to crypto.


 
Conga-SMX8-Mini (left) and i.MX8M Mini block diagrams
(click images to enlarge)

You can load up to 4GB LPDDR4 (3200 MT/s) and up to 128GB eMMC 5.1 on the Conga-SMX8-Mini, which also offers a GbE controller and an optional WiFi/Bluetooth M.2 card. The module defaults to dual-channel, 24bit LVDS, or you can alternatively use an optional eDP or 4-lane MIPI-DSI interface. There are also dual I2S interfaces for digital audio.

The Conga-SMX8-Mini supports up to 5x USB 2.0 interfaces, one of which can be an OTG port. Other I/O includes 3x UART, multiple GPIOs, and single PCIe 2.0, SDIO 3.0, I2C, and SPI connections. There’s also a watchdog, JTAG debug, and an optional RTC. The module ships with up to 15 years lifecycle support.

 100 Watt ecosystem extends Epyc 3000 module

This week Congatec announced a “100 Watt ecosystem” for its COM Express Type 7 modules that support 65 to 100W TDP processors. The product line initially targets its Conga-B7E3 Basic Type 7 “server-on-module,” which runs Linux or Windows on AMD’s up to 16-core Epyc Embedded 3000, available in up to 100W TDPs.



Congatec’s 100 Watt ecosystem
(click image to enlarge)

Until now, Congatec’s cooling solutions were limited to modules with processors that have 65W or lower TDPs. Its 100 Watt ecosystem of new heat spreaders and heatpipe adapters extends that to provide “efficient heatpipe cooling even of extremely low profile 1U servers” running up to 100W processors, says Congatec. “This enables an impressive performance boost of 53% for rugged fanless COM Express Type 7 designs,” stated Nano Chu, R&D Manager at Congatec’s Taipei office.

The 100 Watt ecosystem also includes a new Conga-STX7 carrier that joins the larger Conga-X7EVAL Type 7 carrier. We saw no further details on the Conga-STX7, which similarly supports four 10GbE interfaces, “which are server-compatible with SFP+ cages for both copper and fiber optic cables,” says Congatec.

The first 100W ecosystem photo above shows the Conga-STX7 carrier, the Conga-B7E3 module, and a fan-equipped Conga-B7E3 cooling solution. The image below also shows a heatspreader and an unidentified add-on board.



Another view of the 100 Watt ecosystem
(click image to enlarge)

The Conga-B7E3 was announced in March and appears to have begun shipping. The module offers up to 96GB DDR4, 4x 10GbE ports, 32x PCIe lanes, and an optional 1TB NVMe disk.

The Conga-B7E3 supports Epyc Embedded 3000 models including the up to 16-core, 32-thread Epyc Embedded 3451 with 2.15GHz/3GHz (boost) performance and 32MB L3 cache. In addition to this 100W model, there are Epyc Embedded 3351 (12-core, 24-thread) and 3401 parts (16/16) with 80W and 85W TDPs, respectively, as well as six more models with 65W or under.

Congatec currently offers only two other Type 7 modules, neither of which supports processors with more than 65W TDPs. One is the Conga-B7AC with a 16-core Intel Atom C3000 that tops out at 31W TDP. There’s also a Xeon-based Conga-B7XD that does not exceed 45W. Congatec may be planning on future Eypc Embedded 3000 modules or modules based on Intel’s 75W TDP Xeon E5 or new 2nd Gen Xeon Scalable processors.

 Further information

No pricing or availability information was provided for the Conga-SMX8-Mini module. More information may be found in Congatec’s Conga-SMX8-Mini announcement and product page.

More information on the 100W ecosystem for the Conga-B7E3 may be found in Congatec’s 100W announcement and product page.

This article originally appeared on LinuxGizmos.com on September 17.

Congatec | www.congatec.com

Raspberry Pi Clone Sports 1.84 GHz Intel Cherry Trail Processor

By Jeff Child

Radxa has posted specs for a new member of its community backed “Rock Pi” Raspberry Pi lookalike SBC family, this time with an Intel Cherry Trail Atom x5-Z8300, USB 3.0, microSD, HDMI, eDP/MIPI, and GbE, plus optional WiFi and Bluetooth 4.2 LE.

In June, Radxa unveiled its Rock Pi S SBC that runs Linux on a RK3308 and updated its RK3399-based Rock Pi 4 with extra memory. Now, Radxa is preparing to add to that family of Raspberry Pi pseudo clones with an SBC called Rock Pi X, based on the Intel “Cherry Trail” Atom x5-Z8300. We learned about the new board from our friends at Hackerboards, who added the Rock Pi X to its database yesterday.


 
Rock Pi X, front and back
(click images to enlarge)

While this is Radxa’s first Intel Atom SBC, several open spec boards are based on the Atom x5-Z8300, including the Atomic Pi from Team IoT (DLI) and the UP board and UP Core board from Aaeon UP. Intel’s “Cherry Trail” Atom x5 Z8350 SoC can be clocked at up to 1.84GHz and has a 500MHz Intel Gen 8 HD 400 GPU featuring 12 Execution Units.

Aside from having different processors, spec-for-spec, the 85 x 51mm Rock Pi X is most similar to Radxa’s 85 x 54mm Rock Pi 4. Both provide 4GB of RAM, microSD, HDMI and a Gigabit Ethernet port. The Rock Pi X’s USB ports include 1x 3.0 and 3x 2.0, while the Rock Pi 4 has 2x 3.0 and 2x 2.0 as its USB offerings. Both run Linux, but where the Rock Pi 4 also runs Android, the Rock Pi X does not. The Rock Pi X does also supports Windows 10.

Like the Rock Pi 4, the Rock Pi X offers Raspberry Pi shield support. But it lacks some I/O that the Rock Pi 4 has—including SPI and UART. The Rock Pi X is offered in model A and model B versions, with model B adding WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac and Bluetooth 4.2 Classic + LE. The Rock Pi X will have a pricing scheme based on the amount of RAM (just like the Rock Pi 4). Pricing for the Rock Pi X model A will be $39, $49 or $65 for 1GB, 2GB or 4GB respectively, while the model B will be priced at $49, $59 or $75 for 1GB, 2GB or 4GB respectively.

Preliminary specifications listed for the Rock Pi X include:

  • Processor — Intel Atom x5-Z8350 (4x Cherry Trail cores @ 1.44GHz / 1.84GHz burst); Intel HD 400 Graphics (200MHz/500MHz); Intel Integrated Sensor Hub (ISH)
  • Memory/storage:
    • 1GB, 2GB, or 4GB LPDDR3 RAM
    • eMMC socket for 8GB to 128GB (bootable)
    • microSD slot for up to 128GB (bootable)
  • Wireless — 802.11b/g/n/ac (2.4GHz/5GHz) with Bluetooth 5.0 with antenna (Model B only)
  • Networking — Gigabit Ethernet port; PoE support on Model B only (requires RPi PoE HAT)
  • Media I/O:
    • HDMI 1.4 port (with audio) for up to 4K at 30fps
    • Other display interaces: eDP, MIPI
    • Camera interface: 1x MIPI
    • 3.5mm audio I/O jack
    • Mic interface
  • Other I/O:
    • 1x USB 3.0 host ports
    • 3x USB 2.0 host ports
    • USB 3.0 Type-C OTG with power support and HW switch for host/device
  • Expansion — 40-pin GPIO header
  • Other features — RTC
  • Power:
    • 5-20V input
    • Supports USB PD and QC powering
    • Power consumption — not listed
  • Operating temperature –not listed
  • Dimensions — 85 x 51 x 18mm
  • Operating system — Linux, Windows 10

 Further information

Radxa does not have a product page yet for the Rock Pi X. More information can be found on Radxa’s wiki page for the Rock Pi X.

This article originally appeared on LinuxGizmos.com on September 11.

Radxa | wiki.radxa.com

Tuesday’s Newsletter: Microcontroller Watch

Coming to your inbox tomorrow: Circuit Cellar’s Microcontroller Watch newsletter. Tomorrow’s newsletter keeps you up-to-date on latest microcontroller news. In this section, we examine microcontrollers along with their associated tools and support products.

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Our weekly Circuit Cellar Newsletter will switch its theme each week, so look for these in upcoming weeks:

IoT Technology Focus. (10/15) Covers what’s happening with Internet-of-Things (IoT) technology–-from devices to gateway networks to cloud architectures. This newsletter tackles news and trends about the products and technologies needed to build IoT implementations and devices.

Embedded Boards.(10/22) The focus here is on both standard and non-standard embedded computer boards that ease prototyping efforts and let you smoothly scale up to production volumes.

October has a 5th Tuesday. That’s means we’re giving you an extra Newsletter: Technologies for Drone Design! (10/29) Consumer and commercial drones rank as one of the most dynamic areas of embedded design today. Chip, board and system suppliers are offering improved ways for drones to do more processing on board the drone, while also providing solutions for implementing the control, comms and video subsystems in drones. This newsletter explores all these technology areas.

Analog & Power. (11/5) This newsletter content zeros in on the latest developments in analog and power technologies including DC-DC converters, AC-DC converters, power supplies, op amps, batteries and more.

Tuesday’s Newsletter: Analog & Power

Coming to your inbox on Tuesday: Circuit Cellar’s Analog & Power newsletter. This newsletter content zeros in on the latest developments in analog and power technologies including ADCs, DACs, DC-DC converters, AC-DC converters, power supplies, op amps, batteries and more.

Bonus: We’ve added Drawings for Free Stuff to our weekly newsletters. Make sure you’ve subscribed to the newsletter so you can participate.

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Our weekly Circuit Cellar Newsletter will switch its theme each week, so look for these in upcoming weeks:

Microcontroller Watch. (10/8) This newsletter keeps you up-to-date on latest microcontroller news. In this section, we examine the microcontrollers along with their associated tools and support products.

IoT Technology Focus. (10/15) Covers what’s happening with Internet-of-Things (IoT) technology–-from devices to gateway networks to cloud architectures. This newsletter tackles news and trends about the products and technologies needed to build IoT implementations and devices.

Embedded Boards.(10/22) The focus here is on both standard and non-standard embedded computer boards that ease prototyping efforts and let you smoothly scale up to production volumes.

Industrial Embedded Computing Technology for Smart Robots

Modules for Cooperative Robotics

The Service Robotics Research Center of Ulm University of Applied Sciences is developing a modular software framework to make it easier to program robots. The goal is to provide software components that can be used universally, for instance to swap robotic gripping arms from different manufacturers as required to generate new robotics solutions via plug and play. The team at Ulm University relies on congatec to address the need for highly scalable and standardized embedded computing hardware.

By
Zeljko Loncaric

Marketing Engineer, congatec

Prof. Dr. Christian Schlegel
Service Robotics Research Group’ Ulm University of Applied Sciences

Today’s modern robots are highly complex constructions with numerous subsystems. They use manipulators with various axis and drive units, at the ends of which specific tools, gripper systems or measuring instruments are installed. Additional sensor systems are needed for controlling the kinematics as well as for object and position recognition, for example in pick-and-place applications. With the advent of autonomous and collaborative robots—sharing the same workspace with humans—many more tasks and building blocks are added. Examples include localizing and navigating mobile robots in industrial settings and safe man-machine interaction. In Industry 4.0 environments, an M2M interface to the surrounding machines and systems is also required. The goal is mutual task coordination. All of these different robot types—from autonomous to cooperative to collaborative—require enormously powerful software components and high-performance embedded systems.

Collaborative robotics needs hardware and software components that can be modularly assembled to suit their task. There should be minimal to no programming effort—it should be enough for the modules to be parameterized. (Source: Zentilia |
Dreamstime.com (ID 18864362)

High market demand for smart robots

Market demand for smart robots will grow rapidly in the coming years. For example, the market for autonomous robot systems is expected to grow at a CAGR of 23.7% until 2023, while the new market segment of collaborative robots is due to grow twice as much at an average 59% per annum. OEMs are under immense pressure to develop and to bring such new systems to market maturity as quickly as possible in order to participate in this high market growth. But the software development is a particularly great challenge for OEMs, system integrators and users: More subsystems have to be integrated into the already complex autonomous robotics solutions if they are to become collaborative and/or cooperative.

The Software Challenge

Today, the software for robots is frequently still implemented as a closed system— usually with individually tailored x86 or Arm hardware including ASICs or FPGAs. Often, the software is even individually tailored for each robot making reuse difficult. All tasks such as manipulator control, navigation, machine vision, task coordination and HMI are programmed as a unit. It is therefore currently nearly impossible to exchange software components even for the most frequently required functions or to use them on another hardware platform. This means that for every new design, the robotics software has to be re-implemented. This is both error-prone and time-consuming, and can significantly delay the rollout of much-needed innovative solutions—not to mention the hassle this causes operators who have to program each robot initially for its specific task.

Modular and Reusable

The development team of the Service Robotics Research Center of Ulm University of Applied Sciences under Professor Schlegel is now replacing this closed system approach, which perpetually creates new software projects for the system integrator and user, with a modular software approach that divides the complex overall robot system into several independent functional units, and then in a second step specifies the interaction between the individual units via fully and transparently defined interfaces. This concept, which is called SmartSoft, is now being expanded and widely marketed at the European level (EU H2020 project “RobMoSys – Composable Models and Software for Robotic Systems”) and national level (BMWi PAiCE project “SeRoNet – a platform for the joint development of service robot solutions”) in cooperation with partners from industry and research.

Essentially, this approach aims to make it possible to assemble robotic systems from fully developed and tested modular software building blocks. This allows software developers to focus on individual function modules without having to consider the internals of the other components. More importantly, it makes it possible to combine functions such as the cooperative or collaborative elements as well as the logic for specific manipulators and a lot more in a modular way – even across manufacturers. Ultimately, this also reduces the effort required for system integrators and end users to make customer-specific adaptations, and will significantly drive the widespread adoption of robotics.

So, let’s assume you have a manipulator from company A, combined with a chassis from manufacturer B, and a stereoscopic machine vision system from manufacturer C. The dedicated control software, for instance for use in intralogistics applications, is then easily assembled from the ready-made software components thanks to the high level of abstraction and requires only minor adjustments. This application is by no means a dream of the future, but already being tested in the real world. For example, the Ulm team has already implemented the service robotics duo Larry and Robotino, which, in a pharmaceutical intralogistics application for Transpharm Logistik GmbH, assembles drug packages from individual trays completely autonomously and takes them to a specified delivery point. In a slightly different configuration, the two robots have autonomously taken coffee orders and delivered them to the customer’s table. Thanks to the ready-made, freely combinable software components, the redesign took only a few hours. The video to see the two robots in action is posted here:

Containers with Clearly-Defined Interfaces

To enable virtually any assembly of elements, the team from the Service Robotics Research Center of Ulm University of Applied Sciences has developed a software model with individual service-oriented components and a model-driven open-source software toolchain for the Eclipse development environment. This environment provides component developers with tools that they can use to build their own code for each functional unit and then secure those algorithms by automatically generated component containers. These containers communicate with other containers based on uniform communication interfaces. In addition, the wrapping also protects the component developer’s IP. The team has already developed several such functional modules and makes them available for use in own projects. These include navigation modules, machine vision, HMI, manipulator control and task coordination, to name just a few examples. As a unifying communication interface, SmartSoft also relies on OPC UA. This allows manufacturers to focus on specific containers and build their core competencies here. Customers benefit from a much more flexible offer.

The SmartMDSD Toolchain allows component developers to develop software components for individual functional units that can be combined as required and reused in new robot designs. The underlying hardware should therefore be flexibly scalable.

Generic Embedded Hardware Instead of
Proprietary Designs

For the logic hardware, the Ulm team uses x86 technology to decouple the software development as far as possible from any specific hardware. With the appropriate glue logic, such an approach is particularly easy to implement with x86 technology also as far as the later migration of such systems is concerned.

Embedded x86 hardware is also particularly apt in this context because of the high standardization and comprehensive documentation. The form factors are standardized not only as regards dimensions but also in terms of the application programming interface. This facilitates replacement of hardware – provided the boards comply with the eAPI specification of the PICMG or SGET’s UIC standard. Under those circumstances, it is even possible to vary freely between different form factors such as motherboards and Computer-on-Modules depending on the requirements of the application without having to significantly change the way of accessing the hardware during the migration. One supplier who attaches great importance to this standardization and its documentation as well as the simplest possible hardware integration is congatec, whose products the Service Robotics Research Center of Ulm University of Applied Sciences uses in its projects.

“Next to basic requirements such as maximum computing power, energy efficiency and reliability, we also attach great importance to high standardization and the capability to migrate universally,” explains Matthias Lutz from Ulm University of Applied Sciences. “Every additional abstraction level in the software requires additional computing performance, so we’re currently working with powerful dual-core technology. A standardized approach to board components and GPIOs to control the robotics modules also gives us the abstraction required for independence at the embedded computing level.”

The autonomous picking robot Larry with congatec conga-IC175 Mini-ITX carrier board: High computing power, little heat waste, small form factor and highest reliability are the key factors here.

The choice ultimately fell on the fully industrial Mini-ITX carrier board conga-IC175. That’s because the standardized Mini-ITX form factor offers many advantages for developing the prototypes of the innovative software components into real systems: It already integrates all interfaces on a standardized board, and congatec lets you realize the power supply via standard ATX power supplies, industrial 12 V feed-in, or SMART batteries, which is essential for mobile robots such as Robotino and Larry. Extensions can also be implemented quickly and efficiently via PCIe expansion cards. The board is highly energy efficient and uses robust embedded components, so it can be operated without expensive cooling.

Evolution of embedded computing hardware from congatec for smart robots: Depending on the design concept and lot sizes in the series, OEMs can choose either embedded Mini-ITX motherboards (1), standardized carrier boards (here Mini-ITX) with Computer-on-Modules (2), customized carrier boards with Computer-on-Modules (3), or full custom designs (4), which congatec can implement comparatively quickly and easily on the basis of module upgrades.

Future commercial robot designs from Ulm will be implemented on Computer-on-Modules. But regardless of whether it’s a Mini-ITX motherboard, module with standard Mini-ITX carrier, module and individual carrier, or full-custom design: It is the Total cost of Ownership (TCO) that ultimately matters to OEMs, and when using modular software this is also determined by the software support of the hardware. To make it even easier to integrate more functionalities in the future, comprehensive support for real-time hypervisor technology can bring added benefits. This will give customers the option to integrate additional functionalities, such as their own IoT gateway, without having to use a dedicated hardware platform, which saves hardware costs.

“We see clear benefits in such modular approaches as they mirror the modular approach of our software. In this respect, it is very interesting to see that with the acquisition of Real-Time Systems congatec now has virtually direct access to the hypervisor technology of these robotics and automation experts,” concludes Lutz.

Coupled with the Technical Solution Center (TSC), in which congatec consolidates all its OEM services, this results in a complete package for customers such as the Service Robotics Research Center of Ulm University of Applied Sciences or Transpharm Logistik GmbH.

SIDEBAR:

Intralogistics Application at Transpharm Logistik GmbH
Picking tasks are performed by a heterogeneous robot fleet in an intralogistics application at congatec’s industrial partner Transpharm Logistik GmbH. The autonomous picking robot Larry is equipped with a UR5 manipulator module and uses a Segway chassis. The transport robot Robotino has a conveyor belt instead of a manipulator to take the picking robot to any point. Orders are received directly from the warehouse management system via WLAN. The fleet management system selects two picking robots, which then execute the order. The application is based on results from the BMBF project “LogiRob – Multi-Robot Transport System in a Shared Human-Machine Workspace” and “ZAFH Intralogistics – Collaborative Systems to Increase Intralogistics Flexibility”
(Baden-Württemberg and EU ERDF 2014-2020).

About the Authors
Zeljko Loncaric is Marketing Engineer, congatec. Prior to joining congatec mid-2010, he held various positions with international companies in product management, marketing and sales marketing in Germany and Australia. Zeljko holds an MBA in business management and a degree in Media Technology from the University of Deggendorf.

Prof. Dr. Christian Schlegel is in the ,Service Robotics Research Group’ Ulm University of Applied Sciences. Christian Schlegel (45) has been a professor at the Faculty of Computer Science at Ulm University of Applied Sciences since 2004. Schlegel, who received the Science Prize of the City of Ulm in 2010, is the coordinator of the “Service Robotics” joint project.

THIS ARTICLE IS SPONSORED CONTENT BROUGHT TO YOU BY:
congatec is a leading supplier of industrial computer modules using the standard form factors COM Express, Qseven and SMARC as well as single board computers and EDM services.                  www.congatec.com

This article appeared in the September 350 issue of Circuit Cellar
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RK3399-Based Raspberry Pi Clone Starts at $75

By Jeff Child

FriendlyElec has released an upgraded version of its Rockchip RK3399 based SBC, the NanoPi-M4. Called NanoPi M4V2, the new $70 board is mostly identical to its predecessor, but offers 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM, along with two user buttons for power and recovery.

A little over a year ago, FriendlyElec rolled out its third RK3399 based SBC of 2018, the NanoPi-M4. The board seemed to hit on a sweet spot tradeoff in terms of an affordable SBC with a decent amount of RAM. Now the company has launched an upgraded version, the NanoPi-M4 that has 4GB or RAM while moving to the more advanced LPDDR4, in contrast to the NanoPi M4’s LPDDR3. While the NanoPi-M4 costs $75 in its 4GB version ($50 for 2GB), the new NanoPi-M4V2 with 4GB costs only $70. The new board adds two new users buttons—for power and recovery—that were not on the original NanoPi-M4. Other differences on the new NanoPi M4V2 include 2×2 MIMO support and an inconsequential heavier weight of 50.62 grams (versus 47.70g).


 
NanoPi M4V2, front and back
(click images to enlarge)

Some power management features are listed in the specs of the new NanoPi M4V2 that aren’t in the NanoPi M4’s specs. On the new board, the RK808-D power management chip in cooperation with the DC/DC converter provides support for enabling DVFS, software power-down, RTC wake-up and system sleep mode.


 
NanoPi M4V2, with and without optional heatsink
(click images to enlarge)

Like its predecessor, the NanoPi M4V2 has the same form factor as the Raspberry Pi B3+ and has ports and interfaces that are compatible with the RPi B3+. The compact 85 x 58mm board, has an onboard 2.4G & 5G dual-band WiFi and Bluetooth module, 4x USB 3.0 Type A host ports, 1x Gigabit Ehternet port, 1x HDMI 2.0 port, 1x 3.5mm audio jack and 1x Type-C port. You also get a Raspberry Pi compatible 40-pin connector, dual MIPI-CSI camera interface, PCIe x2, USB 2.0, eMMC socket and an RTC. The NanoPi M4V2 can be booted from either an SD card or an external eMMC module.



NanoPi M4V2 layout and interface details
(click image to enlarge)

The NanoPi M4V2 supports Ubuntu Desktop 19.04 (64-bit), Lubuntu 16.04 (32-bit), Ubuntu Core (64-bit), Android 8.1 and Lubuntu Desktop with GPU and VPU acceleration. According to the company, the NanoPi M4V3 is designed for applications including machine learning, AI, deep learning, robots, industrial control, industrial cameras, advertisement machines, game machines, and blockchain.

Specifications listed for the NanoPi M4 include:

  • Processor — Rockchip RK3399 (2x Cortex-A72 at up to 2.0GHz, 4x Cortex-A53 @ up to 1.5GHz); Mali-T864 GPU
  • Memory:
    • 4GB LPDDR4 RAM (dual-channel)
    • eMMC socket
    • MicroSD slot for up to 128GB
  • Wireless — 802.11b/g/n/ac (2.4GHz/5GHz) with Bluetooth 4.1; 2x IPX antenna connectors
  • Networking — Gigabit Ethernet port
  • Media:
    • HDMI 2.0a port (with audio and HDCP 1.4/2.2) for up to 4K at 60Hz
    • MIPI-DSI (4-lane) with MIPI-CSI co-lay
    • 1x or 2x 4-lane MIPI-CSI (up to 13MP) with dual ISP support; (2nd CSI available via DSI)
    • 3.5mm analog audio I/O jack
    • Mic interface
  • Other I/O:
    • 4x USB 3.0 host ports
    • USB 3.0 Type-C port (USB 2.0 OTG or power input)
    • Serial debug 4-pin header
  • Expansion:
    • 40-pin RPi compatible header — 3x 3V/1.8V I2C, 3V UART, 3V SPI, SPDIF_TX, up to 8x 3V GPIOs, 1.8V 8-ch. I2S
    • 24-pin header – 2x USB 2.0, 2x PCIe, PWM, PowerKey
  • Other features — RTC; 2x LEDs; optional heatsink, LCD, cameras, power button and recovery button
  • Power — DC 5V/3A input or USB Type-C
  • Operating temperature — -20 to 70℃
  • Weight — 50.62 g
  • Dimensions — 85 x 56mm; 8-layer PCB
  • Operating system — Android 7.1.2; Lubuntu 16.04 (32-bit); FriendlyCore 18.04 (64-bit), FriendlyDesktop 18.04 (64-bit)

 Further information

The NanoPi M4V2 with 4GB RAM is available now for $70. More information may be found at FriendlyElec’s NanoPi M4V2 shopping pagewiki, and GitHub page.

This article originally appeared on LinuxGizmos.com on September 10.

FriendlyElec | www.friendlyarm.com

Next Newsletter: Embedded Boards

Coming to your inbox tomorrow: Circuit Cellar’s Embedded Boards newsletter. Tomorrow’s newsletter content focuses on both standard and non-standard embedded computer boards that ease prototyping efforts and let you smoothly scale up to production volumes.

Bonus: We’ve added Drawings for Free Stuff to our weekly newsletters. Make sure you’ve subscribed to the newsletter so you can participate.

Already a Circuit Cellar Newsletter subscriber? Great!
You’ll get your
Embedded Boards newsletter issue tomorrow.

Not a Circuit Cellar Newsletter subscriber?
Don’t be left out! Sign up now:

Our weekly Circuit Cellar Newsletter will switch its theme each week, so look for these in upcoming weeks:

Analog & Power. (10/1) This newsletter content zeros in on the latest developments in analog and power technologies including DC-DC converters, AC-DC converters, power supplies, op amps, batteries and more.

Microcontroller Watch (10/8) This newsletter keeps you up-to-date on latest microcontroller news. In this section, we examine the microcontrollers along with their associated tools and support products.

IoT Technology Focus. (10/15) Covers what’s happening with Internet-of-Things (IoT) technology–-from devices to gateway networks to cloud architectures. This newsletter tackles news and trends about the products and technologies needed to build IoT implementations and devices.