We’ve already known that a new, faster and cheaper BeagleBone is on the way for a little while, but very few details were provided at the time. There are now better pictures, the specifications are available, and it looks like the new BeagleBone will be called BeagleBone Black.
BeagleBone Black Specifications:
- SoC – Texas Instruments Sitara AM3359AZCZ100 Cortex A8 @ 1 GHz + PowerVR SGX530 GPU
- System Memory – 512 MB DDR3L @ 400 MHz
- Storage – 2GB eMMC + micro SD slot
- USB – USB0 (client mode) via mini USB, USB1 (host) type A socket
- Serial Port – UART0 via 3.3V TTL header
- Ethernet – 10/100, RJ45
- Video Output – micro HDMI with EDID support, up to 1280×1024 resolution.
- Audio Output – Via HDMI
- Expansion Connectors – Power, McASP0, SPI1, I2C, 65x GPIOs, LCD, GPMC, MMC1/2, 7x AIN (1.8V MAX), 4x timers, 3x serial ports, CAN0, EHRPWM0/2, XDMA interrupt, power button, expansion board ID (Up to 4 can be stacked).
- Debug Ports – Optional onboard 20-pin CTI JTAG + Serial Header
- Indicators – 1 for Power, 2 for Ethernet, and 4 user’s LEDs
- Input – Reset, boot, and power buttons
- PMIC – TPS65217C PMIC regulator and one additional LDO
- Power – mini USB, DC Jack, or 5VDC via expansion header
- Power Consumption – 210 to 460mA @ 5V.
- PCB – 6 layers. Dimensions: ~8.64 x ~5.34 cm
- Weight – 39.68 grams
I did try to find more information about AM3359AZCZ100 processor, but I can’t find any references, and I can’t even find any 1GHz Sitara AM3359 processor anywhere, so that could be a new one then…
We’ve also got a table that shows the key differences between the White (Old) BeagleBone and be Black (New) BeagleBone.
|Processor||AM3359AZCZ100 @ 1GHz||AM3359ZC272 @ 720 MHz|
|DRAM||512MB DDR3L||256MB DDR2|
|Flash||2GB eMMC, microSD||microSD|
|Onboard JTAG||Optional||Yes, over USB|
|Power||210-460 mA@5V||300-500 mA@5V|
Everything looks like an improvement, expect maybe for those who want to use JTAG. Most BeagleBone capes, the name given to expansions boards, will work, but not all due to some modifications on BeagleBone Black:
- The onboard HDMI driver uses the LCD pins, and even they are still connected to the expansion header, in some cases, they could cause an LCD cape to have some noise issues.
- The onboard eMMC uses the MMC1 signals. In order to use these signals on the header, the eMMC device on the BeagleBone Black will need to be disabled.
- In order to use the NAND or NOR capes, the eMMC on the board will need to be disabled.
- The 10 pin power expansion header has been removed.
The BeagleBone Black and, I assume, the new Sitara processor will officially be announced at Design West on the 23rd of April. Once the board is announced, all hardware design files (reference manual, schematics, BoM, gerber…) for the production board (Revision A5A) will be available here. The only thing that remains a mystery is the price, but I’ve read that it should cost about half of the price of the original BeagleBone, which means we might be able to get the BeagleBone Black
for $49. We’ll know for sure in 5 days. [Update: Even better than that: it will just cost $45]
If you want to reserve one of the BeagleBone Black, head over to the teaser page, and select one of the resellers.
Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011.