Unistorm AK1 Intel Celeron J3455 mini PC Sells for $158

August 3rd, 2017 5 comments

Last month, I wrote about MeLE PCG35 Apo mini PC based on Intel Celeron J3455 “Apollo Lake” processor. It has started to sell for $179 this week, but there’s now a cheaper option with similar specifications thanks to Unistorm AK1 mini PC going for $158.30 instead. Unistorm AK1 mini PC specifications with highlights in bold or stricken-through showing differences with PCG35 Apo: SoC – Intel Celeron J3455 quad core “Apollo Lake” processor @ 1.50 / 2.30 GHz with a 12 EU Intel HD Graphics 500 @ 250/750 MHz (10W TDP) System Memory – 4GB LPDDR3 Storage – 32GB eMMC flash, 1x 2.5″ SATA HDD slot, 1x M.2 SSD slot, 1x micro SD slot Video Output – HDMI 1.4 up to 4K @ 30 Hz, and VGA Audio – Via HDMI, 3.5mm headphone jack Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet, dual band 802.11b/g/n/ac WiFi & Bluetooth 4.0 USB – 2x USB 3.0 ports, 2x USB 2.0 port, 1x USB Type-C port Misc –…

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Rockchip Has Setup an Official Open Source Website with Software & Hardware Documentation, Source Code

August 3rd, 2017 27 comments

As a young engineer, I first understood the importance of good documentation thanks to an incomplete Holtek MCU datasheet that made us waste weeks of development, and the value open source software thanks to Sigma Designs’ SDK that was full of binary blobs with our applications often crashing inside those, leading to software development delays, especially since we had access to limited support. More recently, if you ever worked with the most popular Chinese processors found in ARM Linux development board, usually made by Allwinner, Amlogic, or Rockchip, you must have gone through roadblocks due to a lack of documentation and software support. So far, Allwinner is purely relying on linux-sunxi community and “leaks” of their documentation and SDKs, while Amlogic has had their “open linux” microsite  for several years, but you won’t find complete documentation like technical reference manual, schematics, and part of the source code requires you to sign an SLA. I’ve heard people who signed the later,…

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DLP LightCrafter Display 2000 EVM Adds a Pico Projector to BeagleBone Black for $99

August 3rd, 2017 2 comments

Back in 2012, Texas Instruments introduced DLP LightCrafter pico projector evaluation module powered by a TMS320DM365 ARM9 processor @ 300 MHz running embedded Linux, and selling for $599. Since then, we have seen many products including projectors based on DLP technology such as standalone tiny projectors, Windows mini PCs, Android TV boxes, tablets, an even light bulbs. However, so far I can’t remember seeing any easy way to easily integrate DLP projector with the cheap ARM Linux development boards available today. Texas Instruments has now filled that void with DLP LightCrafter Display 2000 EVM that adds a pico-projector to BeagleBone Black (or Green) based on the new 0.2″ DLP2000 DMD (Digital Mirror Device) chip. The board is comprised of two subsystems: Light engine (top) with the optics, red, green, and blue LEDs, and the 640 × 360 (nHD) DLP2000 DMD configured to deliver around 20 lumens by default (this can be adjusted) Driver board (bottom) with DLPC2607 display controller and…

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iPazzPort SY-20-19RS TV Box Doubles as an Air Mouse Holder and Charger

August 2nd, 2017 2 comments

iPazzPort SY-20-19RS is yet another Amlogic S905X powered Android TV box. But it sells with an air mouse with qwerty keyboard and touchpad by default, and includes a slot right in the middle to hold and charge the air mouse / remote control. iPassport SY-20-19RS TV box specifications: SoC –  Amlogic S905X quad core ARM Cortex-A53 processor @ up to 1.5 GHz with  penta-core Mali-450MP GPU System Memory – 1GB DDR3 Storage – 8GB eMMC flash + micro SD card slot up to 32GB Video Output – HDMI 2.0, AV Video Codecs – 1080p/4k2k H.264, H.265, VP9; HD AVC/VC-1, HD MPEG1/2/4, RM/RMVB, Xvid/DivX 3/4/5/6, RealVideo 8/9/10 Audio – HDMI, AV, coaxial S/PDIF Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet (N.B.: Sellers mention GbE, but S905X does not support it), dual band 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports Power Supply –  DC 5V/3A Dimensions – 124 mm ∅ x 80.7 mm The box runs Android 6.0.1, and ships with a…

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Microchip SAM D5x and SAM E5x ARM Cortex-M4 Micro-Controllers Launched with Optional Ethernet and CAN Bus

August 2nd, 2017 No comments

Microchip has just introduced two new families of micro-controllers based on ARM Cortex-M4F with SAM D5x and SAM E5x series sporting up to 1 MB of dual-panel flash and 256 KB of SRAM both with ECC support. Both families also support QSPI flash with XIP (eXecute In Place) support, features an SD card controller and a capacitive touch controller, with SAM E5x family also adding support for two CAN-FD ports and Ethernet. Microchip SAM A5x/E5x key features and specifications: MCU Core – ARM Cortex-M4F core running at 120 MHz with single precision Floating Point Unit (FPU) Memory – Internal memory architecture with user configurable Tightly Coupled Memory, System memory, Memory Protection Unit and 4KB Combined I-cache and D-cache; up to 256KB ECC SRAM, up to 1MB ECC flash Storage I/F – Quad Serial Peripheral Interface(QSPI) with Execute in Place (XIP) Support Peripherals Up to 2x Secure Digital Host Controller (SDHC) Peripheral Touch Controller (PTC) supporting up to 256 channels of…

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Intel’s Movidius Neural Compute Stick Supports Raspberry Pi 3 Board

August 2nd, 2017 8 comments

Last month, Intel introduced Movidius Neural Computer Stick to accelerate applications such as object recognition, and do so offline, i.e. without the cloud, and at low power. While there was not that much information available at the time, the minimal requirements for the host machine were that it had to be a x86_64 computer running Ubuntu 16.04, and come with at least 1GB RAM, and 4GB storage. So I understood the stick would only work attached with 64-bit Intel or AMD processors, and ARM development boards would not be an option. But today, I’ve found that Movidius had uploaded a new video showing a Python based object recognition demo with the Neural Compute Stick connected to the the Raspberry Pi 3 board. You just need to add a USB camera, copy ncapi directory from the SDK installed on your Ubuntu 16.04 development machine to the Debian Jessie installed on RPi 3 board, install the relevant .deb packages from that directory, and…

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STMicro Introduces 20 Cents STM8S001J3 8-Bit MCU in 8-Pin Package

August 1st, 2017 4 comments

STMicro has launched a new 8-bit micro-controller that sells for $0.20 per unit in 10k quantities, a price not too far from the one of cheapest MCU, especially considering it comes with flash. STM8S001J3 is also the first STM8 MCU offered in 8-pin package (SO8N), and should compete with some of the Microchip Attiny or PIC12F series micro-controllers. STM8S001J3 specifications: Core – 16 MHz advanced STM8 core with Harvard architecture and 3-stage pipeline,extended instruction set System Memory – 1 Kbyte RAM Storage 8 Kbytes Flash memory; data retention 20 years at 55 °C after 100 cycles 128-byte true data EEPROM; endurance up to 100 k write/erase cycles Clock, reset and supply management 2.95 V to 5.5 V operating voltage Flexible clock control, 3 master clock sources: external clock input; internal, user-trimmable 16 MHz RC; internal low-power 128 kHz RC Clock security system with clock monitor Power management – Low-power modes (wait, active-halt, halt); switch-off peripheral clocks individually; permanently active, low-consumption…

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Categories: Hardware, STMICRO STM8 Tags: mcu, stmicro

Realtek RTL8195AM Ameba WiFi + NFC Module Sells for $9 Shipped

August 1st, 2017 1 comment

Last year, Realtek Ameba IoT SoCs and development kits launched with boards such as Ameba Arduino, and later, the family got some buzz thanks to $2 RTL8710AF modules like Pine64 Padi IoT stamp, which looked competitive priced against ESP8266 SoC, and featuring an ARM Cortex-M3 core. Back to 2017, ESP8266 appears to still be the preferred platform for makers, and the community around Reatek Ameba processor is relatively small, but maybe the solutions are being integrated into commercial products rather than hobbyists project. Today, as I browsed the web, I noticed that are also some Realtek RTL8195AM module with WiFi, and NFC starting with an “Realtek Ameba-RTL8195AM WiFi & NFC Module” I first found on DFrobot for $15 per unit, but after spending a bit more time searching, I ended finding what looks like the same model for $8.99 including shipping on IC Station. RTL8195AM module (MJIOT-AMB-02) specifications: SoC – Realtek RTL8195AM ARM Cortex-M3 processor @ 166 MHz with 1MB…

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