Archive

Posts Tagged ‘openwrt’

A5-V11 Mini Router Runs OpenWRT (Linux) For Just $8

March 29th, 2015 11 comments

In case you you still think OpenWRT capable NEXX WT1520 router is still too expensive at $15, what about an $8 OpenWRT router? That’s what LY mini wireless router costs including shipping, and it’s better known as A5-V11, the name of its PCB.

A5-V11_OpenWRT_RouterIt’s not exactly a 3G/4G router as the casing implied, but it does support external USB 3G/4G dongles like most other routers with USB on the market.

A5-V11 specifications:

  • SoC – Mediatek/Ralink) RT5350F MIPS processor @ 360MHz
  • System Memory – 32MB RAM (W9825G6EH-75). Some people reported theirs only have 16MB RAM, so YMMV.
  • Storage – 4MB NAND flash (Pm25LQ032)
  • Connectivity – Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n up to 150 Mbps; 1x 10/100M Ethernet
  • USB – 1x USB 2.0 host port, 1x micro USB port for power
  • Misc – Power LED, factory reset pinhole
  • Power – 5V via micro USB port
  • Dimensions –  6.1 x 2.3 x 1.4 cm

Contrary to WT1520, A5-V11 is already part of OpenWRT trunk, but the firmware image is not automatically built yet. Fully details can be found on OpenWRT Wiki. If you connect a serial board, you may have to add a 470 Ohm to 1 KOhm resistor to the Rx pin to prevent the board from hanging at boot time.

The router can be purchased on Aliexpress for $8.25 including shipping, DealExtreme for $10.86 (with 32MB RAM), or Ebay for $8.72. It might be on other websites too, but since it’s an OEM product without clear branding it may be difficult to find.

Thanks to Maurer for the tip.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

$15 NEXX WT1520 Wi-Fi Router Supports OpenWRT

March 29th, 2015 13 comments

TP-Link WR703N is a popular low cost router well supported by OpenWRT that costs about $23 shipped. But there’s now a new cheaper router that’s been mentioned in comments on CNX Software a few times, with a different processor, but otherwise similar specs plus an extra Ethernet port. NEXX WT1520 is powered by Mediatek RT5350F, sells for $15 including shipping from sites like Banggood, Aliexpress and eBay, and can run OpenWRT, although it’s not officially supported yet.

NEXX_WT1520NEXX WT1520(F/H) specifications:

  • SoC – Mediatek (previously Ralink) RT5350F MIPS processor @ 360MHz
  • System Memory – 32MB RAM
  • Storage – 4MB NAND flash
  • Connectivity:
    • Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n up to 150 Mbps with built-in PIFA antenna
    • 2x 10/100M Ethernet (LAN and WAN)
  • USB – 1x USB 2.0 host port, 1x micro USB port for power
  • Misc – Status LED, reset pinhole, power button
  • Power – 5V via micro USB port
  • Dimensions –  63 x 43 x 17mm
  • Operating temperature – 0 – 40  C

Some shops can the router WT1520F, while others WT1520H, or even just WT1520, and I’m not sure if there are differences between the two or three models. The router has already been teared down, and serial port connected as shown in the picture below (Source: OpenWRT Wiki).

WT1520 Board with Serial Connection (Click to Enlarge)

WT1520 Board with Serial Connection (Click to Enlarge)

GPIOs do not seem to be easily accessible, so in case you need I/Os or/and an even smaller form factor, you’d probably be better off with something like Vocore + Dock that currently sells for $45 with a serial board, as well as a larger NAND flash.

[Update: WT1520 big brother WT3020 based on Mediatek MT7620 seems to be more popular, sells for $17, and also officially supports OpenWRT]

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

$35 Tessel 2 IoT Board Features Atmel SAMD21 MCU and Mediatek MT7620n WiSoC

March 10th, 2015 3 comments

Tessel is a Wi-Fi IoT board based on NXP LPC1830 Cortex M3 MCU and Texas Instruments CC3000 modules, that’s designed to bring embedded development to web programmers with a system that can be programmed with JavaScript and Node.js.  At the time of the crowdfunding campaign in 2013, the board was available with external modules (Relays, sensors, Bluetooth LE…) for $100 and up, but now Technical Machine, the company behind the project, has announced Tessel 2 combining Atmel SAMD21 Cortex M0+ to control I/O and Mediatek MT7260n for Wi-Fi connectivity, still programmable with JavaScript ot Node.js.

Tessel_2Tessel 2 specifications:

  • MCU – Atmel SAMD21G14A-MU Cortex M0+ MCU @ 48MHz with 16KB SRAM and 2KB Flash
  • SoC – Mediatek MT7260n MIPS24KEc Wi-Fi SoC @ 580 MHz
  • System Memory – 64MB DDR2
  • Storage – 32MB flash for firmware (OpenWRT)
  • Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet, and Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n with dual PCB antennas
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports + 1x micro USB port for power and programming
  • Expansion – 2x Tessel module ports (10-pin headers) connected to SAMA21 MCU.
  • Power – 5V via micro USB.
  • Dimensions – N/A

OpenWRT (Linux) runs on MT7620n with io.js, an npm compatible platform originally based on node.js, which you can access with tessel command, or if you’re used to Linux, just as a standard OpenWRT router. While a custom firmware runs SAMD21, and both OpenWRT and Atmel firmware source code is available on github in respectively openwrt-tessel and v2-firmware repositories. Performance of the JavaScript engine is said to be 20 times better than on Tessel 1. Linux also brings more flexibility than the closed firmware found on CC3000, and Python and Rust programming languages have been added.

Rust Code Sample on Tessel 2

Rust Code Sample on Tessel 2

Most external modules for Tessel 1 are supported on Tessel 2, but the company has decided to get rid of some Tessel modules like Camera, Bluetooth LE, or micro SD card, as USB dongles with these functionalities already exist at a cheaper price, and only kept low speed Tessel module such as sensors, relays or servos since they are better suited to the I/O capabilities of an MCU. Check out the list of Tessel & USB modules for details.

Tessel 1 costs $75, and despite being more powerful Tessel 2 only costs $35 for single order. The great thing is that if you have a small scale project (10 units or more), they can customized manufacturing for example by leaving the Ethernet RJ45 connector and USB connectors unpopulated, and adding Tessel or USB modules. Price goes down with volume, and for order over 1,000 unit, Tessel 2 will cost less than $30.

Tessel 2 is up for pre-order until April 4 (for the first batch) on tessel.io, but the downside is that the boards are only expected to ship in August 2015.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

Mixtile LOFT-Q Allwinner A31 Board with SATA Can Now be Purchased for $90

March 4th, 2015 8 comments

Mixtile LOFT-Q and LOFT Kit were unveiled nearly a year ago, the first being a development board based on Allwinner A31 processor with 2GB RAM, 16GB RAM,  SATA connector, Gigabit Ethernet, etc.., while the second is a kit with an enclosure and power supply. The kit does not appear to be available yet, but the board has recently been listed on SeeedStudio for $90.

Mixtile_LOFT-Q

Mixtile LOFT-Q specifications:

  • SoC – Allwinner A31 quad core ARM Cortex-A7 processor with PowerVR SGX544 MP2 GPU
  • System Memory – 2GB DDR3
  • Storage – 8GB eMMC, SATA III connector for 2.5″ drives, and SD card Slot
  • Video Output – HDMI 1.4 up to 1080p60
  • Video Decoding – H.264 4Kx2K video decoding, multi-format FHD video decoding, including Mpeg1/2, Mpeg4 SP/ASP GMC, H.263, H.264,etc
  • Audio I/O – HDMI, 1 S/PDIF, high definition microphone
  • Camera I/F
    • Integrated Parallel & MIPI I/F sensor
    • Integrated powerful ISP, supporting Raw Data CMOS sensor
    • Supports 5M/8M/12M CMOS sensor
    • Supports 8/10/12-bit YUV/Bayer sensor
  • Connectivity – 10/100/1000M Ethernet, dual band WiFi 802.11 a/g/n + Bluetooth 4.0 (AP6234), and Zigbee (NXP JNS168)
  • USB – 4x USB 2.0 host post
  • Debugging – UART debug connector, JTAG connector
  • Expansion header – 180-pin header with access to I2C, SPI, LCD, MIPI DSI, RGB/LVDS, CSI, MIPI CSI, ADC, CTP, RTP, SPDIF-OUT, SPDIF-IN, GPIO, etc…
  • Sensor – Acceleration sensor, IR receiver
  • Misc- Battery slot for RTC
  • Power – 12V/4A (48W)
  • Dimensions – N/A
Mixtile_LOFT-Q_SATA_USB_Dongles

SATA Connector and Wireless Dongles? are on the Back of Mixtile Board

You won’t find many details on Mixtile Hardare page, but there’s some recently updated documentation and software on Mixtile github account, with various repositories for documentation with a getting started guide, linux and u-boot source code, development tools, and BSPs for Android 4.4.2, Ubuntu Touch, and OpenWRT. What I failed to find however is a clear graphical description of the board and connectors.

Thanks to Embedded_Geek for the tip.
Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

Gateworks GW5520 Single Board Computer Features Dual Gigabit Ethernet Ports, Two mini PCIe Slots

February 4th, 2015 6 comments

If you need industrial grade ARM Linux boards with lots of Ethernet ports and several mini PCIe slots, you may want to check out Gateworks Ventana boards. The company has now released a smaller member of Ventana family with GW5520 SBC powered by Freescale i.MX6 dual, with two Gigabit Ethernet port, two mini PCIe slots, and support for PoE.

Ventana_GW5520_BoardGateworks Ventana GW5520 SBC specifications:

  • SoC- Freescale i.MX6 Dual Cortex A9 processor @ 800MHz with Vivante Vivante GC2000 / GC355 / GC320 GPUs. Option: i.MX6 Quad
  • System Memory – 512 MB DDR3-800 SDRAM (Up to 2GB RAM as option)
  • Storage – 256 MB Flash (Up to 2GB as option), serial configuration EEPROM
  • Video and Audio Output – HDMI 1.4
  • Connectivity – 2x Gigabit Ethernet ports.
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports
  • Expansion
    • 2x Mini-PCIe sockets
    • Optional mini-PCIe socket to supports a mSATA disk drive (i.MX6 Quad only)
    •  I/Os
      • Serial – CAN Bus 2.0B up to 1Mbps, 3x TTL serial ports
      • 4x GPIOs
  • Misc – RTC with battery backup,  voltage & temperature monitor, watchdog timer
  • Power Supply – 8 to 60V DC input voltage; Power via barrel or passive PoE Ethernet; reverse voltage and transient protection
  • Power consumption –  3W @ 25 C (Typical); 16W shared between mini PCIe slots
  • Dimensions – 100 x 70 x 21 mm
  • Operating Temperature – -40 to +85C

The company claims a 81.9 years MTBF at 55°C, but I’m not quite sure how this is computed… OpenWRT, OpenEmbedded Yocto, and Android BSPs are available for the board.. It’s also supported in mainline kernel since Linux 3.18 release. Documentation is available on Ventana boards Wiki.

Based on the block diagram below, they don’t use the GMAC inside i.MX6, and instead connected an external Gigabit Ethernet via PCIe, so they should not be subject to the 470 Mbps known limitation for Gigabit Ethernet on i.MX6 processor. [Update: The company confirmed that, and they measured 940 Mbps on their Ethernet ports]

Ventana GW5520 Block Diagram

Ventana GW5520 Block Diagram

Gateworks also offers  GW5520 Development Kit which includes GW5520 network computer, U-Boot bootloader, OpenWRT Linux Board Support Package, Ethernet, serial, USB, audio and video cables, as well as a passive PoE power injector and a 24V power supply, and a JTAG Programmer.The network board appears to be available now selling for about $400 on Avnet, while the development kit goes for around $500. You can visit Gateworks GW5520 product page for details, including download links to the datasheet and user’s manual.

[Update: I’ve also been informed about GW5510 based on i.MX6 Solo, but smaller (35x70mm), without Ethernet port (a mini PCIe card can be used to add Wi-Fi), and both HDMI in and out.[

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

TCL T1 (SL-WR5028J) is a $46 Wi-Fi Router with a 2.5″ SATA Bay

January 28th, 2015 10 comments

Many routers now come with one or more USB ports to let you connect 3G dongles or/and storage device(s) to share the data on your local network. If you want to go with a fully integrated solution, and obvious solution is to go with a NAS, but these usually cost a bit more, so instead TCL SL-WR5028J (aka TCl T1) router could make a low cost (and low performance) NAS alternative thanks to its internal 2.5″ SATA bay, and it can be had for just $45.99 on DealExtreme. [Update: GearBest sells it for $35.98 with coupon TCLT1]

TCL_T1TCL T1 specifications:

  • SoC – Mediatek MT7260 MIPS WiSoC @ 580MHz
  • System Memory – 64MB DDR2
  • Storage – 8MB Flash for firmware + SATA bay for 2.5″ HDD (5, 7.5 or 9mm thick hard drives are supported). Max capacity: unlimited… :)
  • Connectivity
    • 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi up to 300 Mbps with two external antennas
    • WAN – 10/100M Ethernet port
    • LAN – 2x 10/100M Ethernet port
  • USB – 1x USB 2.0 host port
  • Power – 9V/1A
  • Dimensions – 240 x 159 x 45 mm
  • Weight – N/A

The router comes with a power adapter, and a user’s manual in English. The user interface is said to be in English too.

TCL_T1_SATA_Bay

In order to insert the hard drive you just need to lift the top cover, and slide it in there.

Mediatek MT7620 is probably part of the reason for the low cost, but unfortunately it’s also why there’s no Gigabit Ethernet, and for a NAS it can be a serious limitation depending on how many people access the data at the same time, and the type of data. The SoC also supports OpenWRT, so it might be possible to hack the router too, and SATA should not be a problem, since it can only be achieved via a USB to SATA bridge [Update: It’s not clear whether MT7620N or MT7620A is used here, and the latter has a PCIe port too]. Strangely, I can’t find any information about TCL T1 anywhere else on the web.

Thank you onebir! (Which reminds it’s beer time too…).

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

Categories: Hardware, Linux, Mediatek Wi-Fi Tags: nas, openwrt, router, tcl

Black Swift is a Tiny OpenWRT Wi-Fi Board Powered by Atheros AR9331 (Crowdfunding)

January 28th, 2015 7 comments

In case you thought there were not enough Wi-Fi board in the market already, here’s another one with Black Swift. The board runs OpenWRT, is a little larger than Vocore, and quite smaller than WRTnode, is powered by Atheros AR9331, provides access to I/Os via headers, and comes with two micro USB ports which should make it easy to use, and allow some interesting applications with USB devices.

Black_SwiftBlack Swift specifications:

  • SoC – Qualcomm Atheros AR9331 32-bit MIPS 24K CPU core @ 400 MHz, or 200 MHz in energy-saving mode selectable by software
  • System Memory – 64 MB DDR2 SDRAM
  • Storage – 16 MB NOR flash
  • Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi (1×1, up to 150 Mbps) with PCB antenna
  • USB –  1 x microUSB for power, 1x microUSB 2.0 port
  • Expansion –  Headers for 26x GPIO, 2x Fast Ethernet, SPI, I²C, 1x 16550 UART, 1x USB 2.0
  • Misc – Factory reset button
  • Power Supply
    • 5 V (with full USB support), 3.3 V (w/o USB power), 3.4…6 V (using onboard voltage regulator, w/o USB power)
    • Integrated voltage regulators: 3.3 V (switching mode, 1 A max, at least 700 mA available for powering external devices), 2.75 V (linear LDO, 300 mA max)
  • Power consumption: 120 mA typical (400 MHz CPU frequency, Wi-Fi enabled), 60 mA in energy-saving mode (200 MHz, Wi-Fi disabled), 300 mA max
  • I/O Voltage / Current – 3.3 V max (5V non-tolerant), maximum load 24 mA
  • Dimensions – 25x35x4 mm
  • Weight – 3 g

Black_Swift_Pinout

The board runs OpenWRT 14.07 Barrier Breaker, and will allegedly be open source hardware with schematics, Gerber files, and BoM released once development is complete. The company will also release OpenWRT patchsets, and utilities they developed for the board.

Black_Swift_Electricty_MeterThey also have developers three projects to showcase their board capabilities:

  • A network music player with a Sound Blaster audio card connected to the USB port via a USB OTG adapter, which can be controlled with MPDroid on Android, QMPDClient on PC, or other MPD compliant clients.
  • A Christmas tree lights controller. A little out of season, but it shows the GPIO capabilities of the board with several Betlux’s BL-FL7600 ultrabright LEDs, and a L293 quadruple H-bridge driver.
  • An electricity meter (pictured on the right) to show a more professional use of the board.  Power measurement is done via  Analog Devices ADE7757 chip with frequency output.

You can have a look at these demos, right after the product introduction in the video below.

https://d2pq0u4uni88oo.cloudfront.net/projects/1609299/video-490528-h264_base.mp4

The project is on Kickstarter trying to raise $33,000 NZD (about $24,700 US) to fund mass production. There are three version of the board / kits available:

  • Black Swift Basic – $35 NZD pledge (~$26 US)
  • Black Swift PRO with on-board USB-UART adapter, and an extra baseboard (1.27mm to 2.54 mm header adapter) – $42 NZD pledge (~$34 US)
Black Swift PRO

Black Swift PRO Connected to a Relay

Perks all include shipping worldwide, and delivery is scheduled for June 2015. You can also visit Black Swift website and its Wiki for a few more details.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

Vonets VM300 Wi-Fi & Ethernet IoT Board with Mediatek MT7620 Runs OpenWRT

January 23rd, 2015 2 comments

Mediatek MT760 is a recent Wi-Fi SoC found in some Nexx WT3020 routers, and WRTnode development board. Both run OpenWRT and costs $17 to $30 depending on the amount of flash, and ports with the former featuring two Ethernet ports, and the latter access to GPIOs. You could probably open the case of the Nexx routers and solder some wires to get access to GPIO, and you can hack an Ethernet cable for WRTnode, but another options could be Vonets WM300 kit that includes a board with Wi-Fi and Ethernet, a cable for USB / Ethernet connection, headers for GPIOs, and two external antennas for less than $30. An OpenWRT SDK is also provided for the kit.

Vonets_VM300Specifications listed for VM300 board:

  • Processor – Mediatek MT7260N MIPS processor @ 580MHz
  • Storage – 4MB SPI Flash (option: 8MB/16MB) for firmware
  • System Memory – 32MB or 64MB SDRAM
  • Connectivity
    • Wi-Fi
      • Single band 802.11 b/g/n 2T2R up to 300 Mbps with two external 2dB antenna.
      • Output power: 15dbm – 16.5dbm
      • Supports 1-14 Wi-Fi channels
      • Working modes – Routing, Bridge (also support AP Client and AP Station), Repeater
    • 10/100M Ethernet
    • 3G/4G supported via USB dongle (no USB port, but signal are available on headers)
    • Functions – Firewall, QoS, VPN
  • Expansion – Mini PCIe, 2x 6-pin and 8-pin headers with access to Ethernet signals, UART, USB host, 2x GPIO, reset signal, status signals
  • Power Supply – 3.3V – 3.4V DC, or 4.5V – 15V DC; Consumption:  <2W
  • Dimensions – 51 x 30 mm
  • Weight – 86g
  • Temperature Range – -25°C – 55°C (operating)

Vonets_VM300_Development_BoardThe mini PCIe connector is probably not following any standard, and can be use in case you make some baseboard for the module. You can find the pinout and a little more in WM300 datasheet. The quick start guide shows the board is not running OpenWRT by default, but you can download the OpenWRT SDK and instructions.

Vonets WM300 can be purchased on several sites including DealExtreme, Aliexpress or Ebay for $25 and up. The only problem is that everybody has just copied and pasted the specs showing 32 or 64MB RAM, and 4 and 8MB Flash, so you don’t know exactly what you are buying, and this could be an issue if you want to run OpenWRT as 64MB SDRAM and 8MB flash are required according to the company. Visit Vonets VM300 product page for details.

Thanks to Onebir for the tip.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter