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Posts Tagged ‘sdk’

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.

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Atmel SAMA5D4 Xplained Ultra Development Board Adds HDMI, 720p Video Decoding

January 19th, 2015 No comments

Atmel has introduced an upgrade to their Atmel SAMA5D3 Xplained development board with SAMA5D4 Xplained Ultra replacing SAMA5D36 by SAMA5D44 embedded micro-processor for 720p hardware video decoding support, and adding HDMI output, extra storage and memory, etc… but losing one Ethernet port.

Atmel_SAMA5D4_Xplained_Ultra

Atmel SAMA5D4 Xplained Ultra (XLUT) specifications:

  • MPU – Atmel SAMA5D44 Cortex-A5 Microprocessor @ 536 MHz
  • System Memory – 2x 2Gbit DDR2 memory
  • Storage – 4 Gbit NAND Flash, 1x 4-bit SD card connector (not populated), 1x 4-bit micro SD connector, optional serial EEPROM (SPI), one EEPROM with MAC address and serial number.
  • Connectivity – 1x Ethernet 10/100M
  • Display – 1x LCD interface connector, 1x HDMI port
  • USB –  1x micro USB device connector, 2x USB host connectors
  • Debugging – 1x 20-pin J-TAG connector, 1x EDBG connector (not populated), 1x serial DBGU interface (3.3V)
  • Expansion – Arduino R3-compatible headers, XPRO set of connectors; ADC inputs and CAN interfaces
  • Misc – Reset, wake-up, and user push buttons, 1x user/power LED, 1x user LED, RTC battery slot (CR1225)
  • Power Supply – 5V from USB, power jack or Arduino headers; On-board regulation with PMIC; Power measurement straps
  • Dimensions – 135 x 88 x 20 mm
The kit also includes a micro USB cable and a welcome letter.SAMA5D4-XULT_BoardSome documentation is available on Element14 page, including the user’s guide, SAMA5D4 eMPUs datasheet, and two application notes. There’s little information about software support for now, and we are being redirected to Atmel’s SAMA5D4 Software Package page with IAR and some GNU tools. But if we go to Linux4SAM instead we’ll find a Linux4SAM Yocto/Poky distribution for the board, as well building and flashing instructions.  There’s also an Android 4.4.2 image with source code. Just like SAMA5D3 Xplained,  SAMA5D4 XULT board is open source hardware, and you can find the hardware design and manufacturing files on SAMA5D4 Xplained Ultra product’s page.

SAMA5D4 Xplained Ultra is apparently available now, and sells for $99 on Atmel store, but you can also find it on Element14 for $93.50.

Via Embedded.com

 

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LinkIt Connect 7681 is a Wi-Fi IoT Board Powered by Mediatek MT7681

January 19th, 2015 2 comments

So it looks like Mediatek has decided to carry on with its Mediatek Labs endeavours, as after launching LinkIt ONE last year, they’re about to introduce LinkIT Connect 7681, a development board with a Mediatek MT7681 based Wi-Fi module, and access to various GPIOs.

LinkIt_Connect_7681LinkIt Connect 7681 HDK (Hardware Development Kit) specifications:

  • SoC – Mediatek MT7681 Andes N9 processor @ 80 MHz with 64KB RAM,
  • Storage – 1MB SPI Flash for firmware
  • Connectivity – Wi-Fi: 802.11 b/g/n for Station mode; 802.11 b/g for AP mode via a MT7681 module by AcSIP
  • Headers – 12-pin header for UART, 5 GPIOs (also usable as software PWM), RESET, and 3.3V/5V/GND; 6-pin header for SPI, 3.3V and GND.
  • USB – 1x micro USB for power and programming/debugging
  • Misc – Reset push-button, 2x UART LEDs
  • Power Supply – On-board 1A 3.3V voltage regulator (can be powered from USB connector)
  • I/O Voltage – 3.3V for GPIO and UART
  • Dimensions – 50 x 31 mm (board); 15 x 18mm (Wi-Fi module)

LinkIt_Connect_7681_Block_Diagram

A Wiki has been setup for the board, and already contains a short overview, and links to hardware files (free registration required), API reference, a developer’s guide, and the SDK for Linux or Windows (Cygwin required). Key features of the SDK include:

  • Libraries for all the MediaTek LinkIt Connect 7681 APIs, including Smart Connection and FOTA firmware updates
  • C-like language
  • Command line compiler, based on Andes Development Kit
  • Firmware upload tool
  • MediaTek Smart Connection app examples for Android and iOS, including source code
  • Example source code such as IoTServer, AT Command Parser, Data Command Parser and X-Modem

 

MT7681 Software Architecture

MT7681 Software Architecture

The board is not available yet, but Mediatek Labs MT7681 page indicates LinkIt Connect should be available early 2015 via Seeed Studio. The price has not been disclosed either, but this looks somewhat similar to WRTnode selling for $25, and the HLK-M30 Starterkit, also based on MT7681 and very similar to LinkIt Connect, sells for $16.32 including shipping and a power supply, so I’d expect the new board to cost between $10 to $20.

Thanks to deets for the tip.

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Project Ara Modular Phone Update

January 15th, 2015 1 comment

The modular phone concept started with PhoneBloks, whose founders shortly got to work with Motorola Project Ara, and since Google bought parts of Motorola, the concept is now part a Google’s project. Project Ara Developers Conference 2015 has taken place yesterday in California, but if you’ve missed it, another one is planned in Singapore on January 21, and it will also be live-streamed.

Ara Phone MDK 0.2 (Click to Enlarge)

Spiral 2 Hardware  (Click to Enlarge)

We’ve now got a bit more information, a neat video has been uploaded to YouTube showing how a battery, a (broken) display, speakers, and camera modules would slide into the phone, and a pilot project has started in Puerto Rico.

Google has very recently shipped Spiral 2 developer hardware enable prototyping and development of modules for the Ara platform. The kit consists of:

  1. A board with the UniPro Switch in the Ara endoskeleton and multiple modules interfaces with UniPro Bridge ASICs (Tosbiba T6WM8XBG-0001) supporting multiple bridged  and tunneled protocols;
  2. An Application Processor (AP) board with a custom version of Linaro Android
  3. Connectors and cables.

The Module Developers Kit (MDK) is freely available for download and contains Ara MDK v.02 specifications, hardware schematics, PCB layout, and BoM for the main board and some prototype modules, and 3D printing files (STP). There are AP boards for Nvidia Tegra K1 and Marvell PXA1928 processors in the MDK, also with all hardware design files, but I’m not entirely sure which one is provided with Spiral 2 hardware. For now, Project Ara looks mostly looks like an 100% hardware project (and open source), at least from the community perspective, but the company is also developing APIs that will let people create ways for users to customize their devices. Some code is available on github too, but nothing about Android for now, except an empty Wiki.

That’s the video. Looks cool, right?

People living in Puerto Rico will be able to try out Project Ara thanks to a pilot program, scheduled to start in H2 2015, where Google ATAP will start selling modular phone in partnership OpenMobile and Claro carriers, as well as roll out trucks where people will be able to try and buy modular phones, and a few of the 20 to 30 modules available at launch.

Ara_TruckYou can find more details about the pilot program on The Verge.

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$60 MarsBoard Rockchip PX2 Development Board Runs Ubuntu, Debian, openSUSE, or Android 4.4

January 10th, 2015 No comments

Haoyu Electronics has made a new board similar to their MarsBoard RK3066, but instead of using a CPU module with Rockchip RK3066, they’ve used the industrial version of the chip called Rockchip PX2 dual core Cortex A9 processor.

MarsBoard PX2 Development Board (Click to Enlarge)

MarsBoard PX2 Development Board (Click to Enlarge)

The board is also comprised of a baseboard and CPU module (CM-PX2), and based on the name of the pictures it’s using the exact same PCB: CM-RK3066 SoM, and SOM-RK3066 baseboard, but they simply replaced RK3066 by PX2, and increased the NAND flash capacity to 8GB.

  • CM-PX2 Computer-on-Module:
    • SoC – Rockchip PX2 dual core ARM Cortex A9 @ 1.4 GHz + Mali-400MP4 GPU
    • System Memory – 1GB DDR3
    • Storage – 8 GB NAND
    • Power Management Unit – TPS659102
    • Misc – TX indicator LED use for debug, Power Indicator LED
    • 10/100M Ethernet PHY – LAN8720A
    • Connectors – 2x 100- pin for baseboard connection, 40-pin connector (unsoldered)
    • Dimensions – 70 x 58 mm
  • SOM-RK3066 Baseboard:
    • Storage – micro SD card socket up to 128 GB
    • Video Output – HDMI A Type socket, LCD + capacitive touch interface
    • Audio – Headphone and speaker output, microphone (not soldered), Audio Codec IC ALC5631Q
    • Connectivity – RJ45 10/100M Ethernet
    • USB – 4 x USB 2.0 Host port, Micro USB DEBUG port (via CP2102), Micro USB OTG port
    • Misc – IR Receiver (not soldered), CR1220 battery holder for RTC, VOL+ (Recovery Key), VOL-, ESC, and Power Keys
    • Expansion Port – 2x 20 pin headers
    • Power Supply – 5V/2A
    • Dimensions – 105 x 78 mm
SOM-RK3066 Baseboard (Click to Enlarge)

SOM-RK3066 Baseboard (Click to Enlarge)

The schematics in PDF are available for both the CoM and baseboard, but the latter is also claimed to be open source hardware, and you’ll find a license file, and a DSN file in the company’s server, but no PCB layout, BoM, and other required document. Images (Ubuntu 14.04, Debian 7.7, openSUSE, Android 4.4.2), source code (Linux kernel, and Android SDK), as well as tools and documentation can be found on the download page. There you’ll notice a single image is provided for both PX2 and RK3066, so both processor are not only pin-to-pin compatible, but also software compatible.

MarsBoard PX2 is sold with a USB Wi-Fi dongle based on RTL8188EU for $60 + shipping on hotmcu.com. MarsBoard PX2 is not the only Rockchip PX2 available, and Rayeager PX2 board is another option for $99 that includes a Wi-Fi + BT module on-board, and a SATA port (via a USB to SATA chip) among other things.

Thanks to Freire for the tip.

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Merrii A80 Hummingbird Octa-core Development Board Supports HDMI, VGA, and eDP Video Outputs

December 8th, 2014 5 comments

Up to now at least three boards based on Allwinner A80 processor were available: A80 OptimusBoard by Merrii, pCDuino8 by Linksprite, and Cubieboard4  by Cubitech, and the first two boards are basically the same. Merrii has now introduced a new board which they call “A80 Hummingbird H8″, with more features and ports including HDMI, VGA and eDP video outputs,  LVDS / MIPI DSI display interfaces, MIPI CSI camera interface, an RTC with battery and more.

A80 HummingBird H8 Board (Click to Enlarge)

A80 HummingBird H8 Board (Click to Enlarge)

Merri H8 specifications:

  • SoC – AllWinner A80 octa-core processor with 4x Cortex 15, 4x Cortex A7 cores in big.LITTLE configuration with Imagination Technologies PowerVR GC6230 GPU compliant with OpenGL ES 3.0/2.0/11, OpenCL 1.1, and DirectX 9.3
  • System Memory – 2GB DDR3
  • Storage – 8GB internal storage (Sandisk SDIN7DU2 iNAND Flash), micro SD slot up to 32 GB
  • Video Output/ Display Interfaces
    • HDMI 1.4 up to 4K UHD resolution
    • VGA port
    • eDP v1.2 up to 2560×1600 @ 60 Hz
    • MIPI DSI, LVDS,  LCD RGB interfaces via expansion connectors
  • Audio – HDMI, headphone jack, built-in microphone, speaker header. AC100 Codec
  • Camera I/F – MIPI CSI
  • Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet, dual band Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n & Bluetooth 4.0 (AP6330 module)
  • USB – 1x USB 3.0 OTG, 2x USB 2.0 host ports
  • Debugging – UART
  • Expansion – Via 2x headers on the side shared with display and camera interfaces.
  • Misc – IR receiver, reset and power LEDs, reset, power on and u-boot buttons, RTC with battery
  • Power management – AXP806, AXP809 PMIC
  • Power Supply – 12V via power barrel or input header, LCD power header (12V/5V), and connector for external LiPo battery
  • Dimensions – N/A

Based on my experience with A80 OptimusBoard, Merrii does not always provide full documentation and source code for their board. But either A80 OptimusBoard came out a little too earlier, or Merrii has decided to improve, as some documentation (mostly in Chinese), and source code has been released on their forums.

Most downloads are available via Baidu, which can be slow, and for some, difficult to use if you live outside of China, so mininodes re-uploaded the product brief and user’s manual.

Other downloads include:

  • A80 HummingBird H8 Android image (Android 4.4.2 with Linux 3.4.39)
  • A80 HummingBird H8 Lubuntu images for SD card or internal boot (I guess)
  • A80 HummingBird H8 SDK (5.51 GB) – a80_hummingbird_20141015ok.tar.gz (password: 96qo)

I’m not sure when the board will be available, and but it should eventually show up on Merrii Aliexpress store.

Via Mininodes.

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MIPS Creator CI20 Development Board is Now Available for $65

December 5th, 2014 3 comments

When Imagination Technologies first announced their developer program for MIPS Creator CI20 board, they did not disclose the price, but based on the specifications I estimated that a decent price would be $70 o $80. The company has now announced broad availability of the board, which can be pre-ordered for just $65 or 50 GBP depending on the continent you live in, with shipping scheduled for the end of January 2015.

MIPS_CI20_Development_BoardThis development board is based on Ingenic JZ4780 dual core MIPS processor with 1GB DDR3, 8GB flash,  and features an HDMI output up to 1080p, Audio in and out, a Fast Ethernet RJ45 port, a Wireless module with Bluetooth 4.0 and Wi-Fi, an IR receiver, and expansion headers.

Several projects have already been ported by developers who got their free board a few months, ago including XBMC/Kodi, several games such as Spiral Episode 1, and beside Android 4.4 and Debian 7 officially supported by Imagination, operating systems have also been ported to MIPS Creator CI20 with NetBSD, Express Logic ThreadX RTOS, and Haiku inspired from the defunct BeOS.

XBMC 13.2 on MIPS Creator CI20

XBMC 13.2 on MIPS Creator CI20

XBMC 13.2 is not based on the Android version, but based on Debian, as the last blog update posted at the end of October, mentions the OpenGL ES user interface runs smoothly (30 fps @ 1080p resolution), but FFmpeg/Libav were crashing at the time, so video could not be played. Hopefully this is fixed. At least that means that 2D/3D graphics acceleration is working in Linux.

Hardware and software documentation, as well as Debian 7, Android 4.4, and other distributions images and source code are available on MIPS Creator CI20 Wiki. You can also go directly to MIPS github account to get the source code for Linux, U-Boot, mplayer, and others.

If you live in North America, you can pre-order the board for $65, and people living in the European Union or the United Kingdom can purchase it for 50 GBP on the UK store. If you feel lucky, three boards will be given away on a Rafflecopter draw embedded on Imagination Technologies blog post.

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Firefly-RK3288 Development Board in Mass Production, Selling for $140

November 27th, 2014 20 comments

Firefly-RK3288 development board has been an interesting, yet confusing story, at least to me. We’ve first heard about the Firefly board on July, but I was privately told in September that the board would only be sold in China by a T-Chip sales person, only to see it become available for $189 on Ebay, as well as on Taobao a few days later. But those first boards may have only been engineering sample, or more likely from a limited trial runs, as the company has now announced mass production had started.

Firefly-RK3288_Mass_ProductionLet’s refresh our memory with the specifications:

  • SoC – Rockchip 3288 quad core ARM Cortex A12 / A17 up to 1.8 GHz with Mali-T764 GPU supporting OpenGL ES 1.1/2.0 /3.0, and OpenCL 1.1
  • System Memory – 2G DDR3
  • Storage – 16 GB eMMC flash + micro SD slot
  • Video Output
    • HDMI 2.0 up to 3840×2160@60p
    • VGA out (D-SUB connector)
    • Dual MIPI, Dual LVDS and and EDP signal available via expansion headers
  • Audio Output / Input – HDMI, optical S/PDIF, microphone header, and built-in MIC
  • Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet, dual band 802.11 b/g/n and 802.11ac Wi-Fi with external antenna, and Bluetooth 4.0
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x micro USB OTG
  • Debugging – Serial console
  • Expansion Headers – 2x 42-pin headers with access to MIPI, LVDS, EDP, SPI, UART, ADC, GPIO, I2C, I2S…
  • Misc – IR receiver, 2x user LED, power, recovery and reset buttons.
  • Power Supply – 5V/2A
  • Dimensions – 118 x 83 mm

The board is sold with two acrylic plates (bottom and top) with corresponding stands, a Wi-Fi antenna, and a power cable.

MP Version of Firefly-RK3288

MP Version of Firefly-RK3288

The company has published an extensive WiKi for the board inspired from Radxa website, which explains how to setup Android or Ubuntu, build the images from source. make use of drivers (ADC, I2C, GPIO. PWM, etc..) , and they’ve also released the schematics (PDF), and some other documentation.

It’s now quite cheaper to get the board, as GeekBuying sells it for $139.99 including shipping, and T-Chip also sells it by themselves on Aliexpress for $129.99 + shipping by DHL, which ends up costing $164.37 to Thailand, but at least you should get it in a couple of days, instead of a couple of weeks if you choose the cheaper option.

When it comes to Rockchip RK3288 development board, you basically have two options: Firefly-RK3288, or Radxa Rock 2. Radxa community has been setup in 2013 with the first Rockchip RK3188, and has many followers, but the company has opted for a more professional design for their RK3288 board comprised of a baseboard and a SoM. It has lots of features (including a 3G modem, a Gigabit switch, etc..), making it more expensive. So for hobbyists Firefly-RK3288 is probably the best choice for an RK3288 board, but for more professional usage, especially if you want to design your own product with an RK3288 SoM, the solution by Radxa should be more suited to your needs.

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