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Posts Tagged ‘arm’

ARM Unveils Cortex-R52 ARMv8-R CPU Core for Safety-Critical Systems

September 20th, 2016 No comments

ARM has introduced their very first ARMv8-R real-time 32-bit CPU core with Cortex-R52 designed for safety-critical applications in the automotive, industrial and health-care markets. It has been designed to address higher workloads with increased performance (up to 35%) compared to Cortex-R5 processor.

Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

The processor should be used in systems capable of fulfilling IEC 61508 SIL 3 and ISO 26262 ASIL D functional safety requirements. ARM explains the new processor address both random errors for example bit flipping from radiation, and systemic errors more related to software or design faults.

functional-safety-random-systematic-faults

The latter can be addresses with the right development processes, including following aforementioned functional safety standards, but random errors require some extra hardware features such as ECC memory, or dual core lock step processors, where instructions are run on two processors simultaneously and results compared.

Normally, the whole software stack must be validated and certified on safety-critical systems, even for part of the code that may not be safety-critical. This is a time-consuming and costly endeavor however, and as software becomes ever more complex becomes an issue. So Cortex R52 cores also implement a Level 2 MPU running monitor or hypervisor software, which can help separating safety code, critical safety code and non-safety code.

arm-processor-real-time-coreCortex-R52 cores would typically be used in conjunction with Cortex-A cores running non-safety code, and offering higher performance, throughput, and more peripherals. Some current processors featuring Cortex-Rxx cores include Xilinx Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC (Cortex-R5), and Renesas R-Car H3 automotive SoC (Cortex-R7).

You may want to visit ARM Cortex-R52 product page for a few more details.

Orange Pi One Development Board Sells for $3.69 Shipped (Promo)

September 19th, 2016 48 comments

[Update: Sorry the promo is over, and price is back at $13.79]

Last time, we had a promo for Orange Pi PC for $8.57 on GearBest, and it was legit, but quantity limited, so not so easy to get. There’s now another promo from the same parent company, as Orange Pi One is sold for $3.69 including shipping on Everbuying with 289 pieces and about 8 days left.

orange-pi-one-promo

In case you can’t recall Orange Pi One specs, it’s a development board based on Allwinner H3 quad core Cortex A7 SoC, with 512 MB RAM, micro SD card for storage, 10/100M Ethernet,  a USB ports, and HDMI output. The best Linux OS for the board is probably Armbian. The normal price is around $13 to $14 shipped.

Thanks to Theguyuk for the tip.

Explore M3 Board based on NXP LPC1768 Cortex M3 MCU Comes with Lots of Tutorials (Crowdfunding)

September 12th, 2016 No comments

Explore M3 is an ARM Cortex M3 development board powered by a micro USB port, with plenty of I/Os, Arduino compatible, and the developers have also written many tutorials to help people getting started as fast and easily as possible. A starter kit with cables and sensors is also available with the board.

explore-m3

Specifications:

  • MCU – NXP LPC1768 ARM Cortex M3 @ up to 100MHz with 512KB flash, 64KB RAM,
  • USB – 1x micro USB 2.0 OTG port for programming and power
  • Expansion Headers – 2x 20-pin male headers + 8-pin unpopulated header with 38x GPIOs, 4x UARTs, 2x CAN, 2x SPI, 2x I2C, 6x PWM, 5x ADC, 1x DAC, 2x interrupt pins, I2S audio, and power signal
  • Debugging – JTAG/SWD Debug connector
  • Misc – USB boot and reset buttons
  • Dimensions – 55mm x 25mm

The hardware is somewhat similar to mbed LPC1768 board but with a few more I/Os. The breadboard friendly board can be programmed with the Arduino IDE, but you can also go “bare metal” using ARM-GCC and Ellipse, or other tool chains like Keil or Co-IDE. Alternatively, the board also support FreeRTOS real-time OS. You can find close to 50 tutorials for all three programming options on ExplorerEmbedded Wiki, and some source code is also available on Github.

explore-m3-pinoutExplorer M3 developers are now raising funds via CrowdSupply to help reducing price for mass production. A $19 pledge should get your the board, but for bare metal programming you may want to add $20 for SODA SWD debug adapter, if you don’t already have your own programmer, and the starter kit goes for $49 with various other accessories. Shipping is free, and delivery is planned for mid November.

Rockchip RK1108 Cortex A7 + DSP SoC is Made for Audio & Video Conference and Recording Applications

September 8th, 2016 No comments

Rockchip has introduced RK1108 ARM Cortex A7 SoC with a 600 MHz DSP targeting visual communication, consumer electronics, automotive DVR, and security applications thanks to its 8-channel I2S audio codec and 1440p H.264 video encoder and decoder.

rockchip-rk1108Detailed specifications can be found on the official Rockchip Wiki:

  • CPU – Single-core ARM Cortex-A7 Core processor with NEON and FPU,  32KB/32KB L1 I-Cache/D-Cache, Unified 128KB L2 Cache, and Trustzone
  • Video/Image DSP – Up to 600 MHz, 32KB I-TCM and 32KB I-cache, 128KB D-TCM
  • Memory
    • 12KB internal SRAM
    • DDR3/DDR3L interface – 16 Bits data width, 1 ranks (chip selects), up to 512 MB RAM
    • NAND Flash Interface – 8-bit async NAND flash, 16-bit hardware ECC
    • eMMC Interface – Compatible with standard iNAND interface, eMMC 4.51 standard.
    • SD/MMC Interface – Compatible with SD 3.0, MMC 4.41
  • System Component
    • 2x 64-bit timers with interrupt-based operation
    • 8x PWMs with interrupt-based operation
    • WatchDog timer
  • Video
    • Video decoder of H.264 up to HP level 5.0; [email protected] (2560×1440) max
    • Video encoder for H.264 up to HP level4.2
  • JPEG decoder and encoder up to respectively 8176×8176 and 8192×8192
  • Display
    • 10-bit DAC TV encoder up to 480i/576i (CVBS)
    • HDMI 1.4 up to 1080p60
    • 4-lane MIPI DSI interface up to 720p @ 60fps.
  • Camera interface – Up to 5M pixels, 8-bit BT656 (PAL/NTSC), 16-bit BT601, and 8-/10-/12-bit raw data interfaces
  • Audio
    • Codec – 24-bit DAC with Line-out, up to 96 KHz sampling rate, mono, stereo, and 5.1 audio support.
    • I2S0 with 8 channels – I2S0/I2S1 supports up to 8 channels (8xTX, 8xRX);
    • I2S1/I2S2 (PCM) with 2 channels – Up to 2 channels (2xTX, 2xRX) ; 16- to 32-bit audio resolution; up to 192KHz sample rate
  • Peripherals
    • SDIO 3.0 interface
    • GMAC 10/100M Ethernet Controller
    • 1x SPI Controller, 1x SFC, 3x UART controllers, 4x I2C controllers
    • 3x USB 2.0 host interfaces
    • 1x USB 2.0 OTG interface up to 480Mbps
  • Misc
    • Temperature Sensor (TS-ADC) – 10-bits ADC up to 50KS/s. -40~125C temperature range and 5C temperature resolution
    • SAR-ADC (Successive Approximation Register) – 10-bit ADC up to 1MS/s. 6 single-ended input channels. Current consumption: 0.5mA @ 1MS/s
    • eFuse –  2x 256-bit (32×8) high-density electrical fuses
Rockchip RK1108 Development Board (EVB)

Rockchip RK1108 Development Board (EVB)

There’s no much more information at this stage, and beside the evaluation board shown above, I could not find devices based on Rockchip RK1108 processor yet. Some code has been pushed to GeekboxZone Linux kernel repo in Github.

The company also unveiled Rockchip PX5 octa-core Cortex A53 processor for automotive applications with support for ADAS algorithms, and 4K60 video decoding, but there’s even less information than for RK1108 so far.

Via Rockchip Twitter account.

Acer Chromebook R13 is Powered by Mediatek MT8173 64-bit ARM Processor

September 1st, 2016 5 comments

The just announced Acer Chromebook R13 is both the first Mediatek Chromebook and the first 64-bit ARM Chromebook thanks to its Mediatek MT8173(c) quad core processor with two ARM Cortex-A72 cores, and two ARM Cortex-A53 cores. The Chromebook is also fitted with a 13.3″ touchscreen display, 4 GB RAM, and up to 64GB internal storage.

Acer_Chromebook_R13
Acer Chromebook R13 specifications:

  • SoC – Mediatek M8173C quad core processor with 2x ARM Cortex A72 cores, 2x ARM Cortex A53 cores, and a PowerVR GX6250 GPU
  • System Memory – 4GB LPDDR3 RAM
  • Storage – 16, 32 or 64 GB eMMC flash
  • Display – 13.3″ touchscreen IPS display; 1920×1080 resolution; 10-point touch; 360-degree hinge design
  • Audio – Integrated microphone, dual built-in speakers, microphone and headphone jacks
  • Video Output – HDMI
  • Camera – HD webcam (1280×720 resolution) with HDR and 720p HD audio/video recording
  • Wireless Connectivity – 2×2 MIMO 802.11ac WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0
  • USB – USB 3.0 port, USB type C port for data, video, and power
  • Battery – Up to 12 hours of battery life
  • Dimensions – 326 x 228 x 15.5 mm
  • Weight – 1.49kg

The Chromebook will also support Android Apps via Google Play Store (WIP). The 360-degree hing will allow you to use your Chromebook as a “ChromePad”/”ChromeBlet”, or “ChromeTent” as show in the picture below.

 

Mediatek_ChromebookJust like Rockchip made a specific RK3288C processor for Chromebooks out of its RK3288 processor, Mediatek provided MT8173C specifically for Chromebook, but it’s unclear what the differences are with the original MT8173 processor. You can find part of the source code, including the device tree file on Chromium OS public repositories.

Acer Chromebook R13 will sell for $399 and up in North America, and in Europe, Middle East and Africa zone for 399 Euros and up starting in October.

Via 9to5Google

$135 Redmi Note 4 Helio X20 Deca-core Smartphone Includes a 4,100 mAh Battery

August 25th, 2016 5 comments

A few months ago I wrote about sub $200 ARM Cortex A72 Android smartphones, but Xiaomi is now further lowering the price point with their Redmi Note 4 powered by Mediatek Helio X20 processor with 16GB storage, a 5.5″ display, a 13MP camera, and a large 4,100 mAh battery selling for just 899  RMB (~$135).

Xiaomi_Redmi_Note_4Redmi Note 4 Specifications:

  • SoC – Mediatek Helio X20 (MT6797) deca-core processor with 2x Cortex A72 cores @ 2.1 GHz, 4x Cortex A53 cores @ 2.0 GHz, and 4x Cortex A53 cores @ 1.4 GHz and ARM Mali-T880MP4 GPU @ 700 Mhz
  • System Memory – 2 or 3 GB RAM
  • Storage – 16 GB or 64 GB storage + micro SD slot up to 128 GB (shared with dual SIM slot)
  • Display – 5.5″ capacitive touchscreen, 1920×1080 resolution; 2.5D curved glass
  • Cellular Connectivity – 4G+ / 4G / 3G / 2G ; dual SIM slot for Nano and micro SIM cards
  • Connectivity – 802.11ac WiFi, Bluetooth 4.2, GPS/A-GPS
  • Camera – 13MP rear camera with phase-detection autofocus, 5MP front camera
  • USB – 1x micro USB OTG port
  • Audio – Speaker, microphone, and 3.5mm audio jack
  • Sensors – Accelerometer, gyro, proximity sensor, ambient light sensor, hall sensor, fingerprint sensor
  • Battery – 4,100 mAh battery
  • Dimensions – 151 x 76 x 8.35 mm
  • Weight – 175 grams

The phone will run Android (MIUI 8.0), and ship with a charger and USB data cable, a pin, warranty cards, and a quick start guide. For some reasons, the CPU and GPU frequencies are lower than the one advertised on other model, but I don’t know if it is because of honesty, or a desire to reduce power consumption.

As you’ve must have noticed from the specifications there’s also a 3GB/64GB model, and it’s selling for 1199 RMB (~$180). The phone is only available in China for now, but it will soon sell online worldwide like the other models. More details can be found on Redmi Note 4 page (in Chinese).

Via Liliputing and MIUI forums.

U-Boot Now Supports UEFI on 32-bit and 64-bit ARM Platforms

August 11th, 2016 17 comments

Intel/AMD x86 based computers now boot via a standard UEFI binary, which can load grub2, allows you to update the command line as needed, or select different version of the Linux kernel. On ARM everything is a little more complicated and messy, as bootloaders such as U-boot need to support different configurations formats.

Raspberry_Pi_UEFI_GRUB2_U-BootAlexander Graf has been working on implementing UEFI support in U-boot, and it’s now supported by U-boot mainline and enabled by default for 32-bit and 64-bit ARM platforms, but not x86-64 (yet). That means you should now be able to boot any ARM boards supported by mainline U-boot through UEFI. Alexander gave a presentation about his work at an openSUSE event in June, and demonstrated u-boot with UEFI, and GRUB2 support with an openSUSE image running on a Raspberry Pi board.

Thanks to David for the tip.

Intel Smartwatches are Hot! So Hot, They May Burn Your Skin

August 5th, 2016 2 comments

Low power in constrained spaces is a tricky business, even for ARM based SoCs with the Qualcomm 810 overheating saga a few months ago. Now it’s time for Intel to feel the heat, as the company has has to recall Basis Peak smartwatches / fitness trackers due to potential overheating causing skin burns.

Intel_SmartwatchJosh Walden – senior vice president and general manager of the New Technology Group at Intel Corporation – stated:

On behalf of the Basis Science team, I want to personally apologise for this situation, we know that many of you love using your Basis Peak watches and have made them part of your daily lives, and we are very sorry for the disruption this will cause you, we had hoped to update the software on your watch to address the problem, unfortunately, despite our best efforts, we aren’t able to develop such a solution without completely compromising the experience.

The watch sold for $234 in the US and €244 in Europe, and Intel will offer a full refund to customers.

Interestingly enough, the watch was not based on one of Intel low power processors, but Silicon Labs  EFM32 Wonder Gecko ARM Cortex-M4 MCU, which should be features in many other designs, so the overheating issue was likely caused by the overall system design, rather than the MCU itself.

Via Electronics Weekly