After a few years of speculations and developments about i.MX7 and i.MX8 processors, Freescale announced Freescale i.MX7 family this summer. The new processors are based on one or two Cortex A7 cores coupled with a Cortex-M4 MCU for real-time tasks, and are a low power alternative to Freescale i.MX6 processors. But so far I had only seen a few announcements such Toradex i.MX7 SoM or Freescale 96Boards, without any product actually shipping, and Compulab claims to the first to market with a Freescale i.MX7 system-on-module, namely their CL-SOM-iMX7 SoM which will ship in quantities in early January 2016.
- Freescale i.MX 7Solo single core Cortex-A7 @ 800MHz with NEON SIMD and VFPv4 + ARM Cortex-M4 @ 200Mhz
- Freescale i.MX 7Dual dual core Cortex-A7 @ 1GHz with NEON SIMD and VFPv4 + ARM Cortex-M4 @ 200Mhz
- System Memory – 256MB to 2GB DDR3L-1066
- Storage – 128MB – 1GB SLC NAND flash, 4GB – 32GB eMMC flash
- Up to two 2x 10/100/1000Mbps Ethernet ports (MAC+PHY)
- WiFi 802.11b/g/n (TI WiLink 8 WL1801 chipset) or Dual-band 2×2 802.11a/b/g/n WiFi (TI WiLink 8 WL1837 chipset)
- Bluetooth 4.1 BLE
- Other I/Os and peripherals via 204-pin SO-DIMM edge connector:
- 24-bit parallel display interface, up to 1920 x 1080 @60Hz
- LVDS up to 1400 x 1050 @60Hz
- 2-lane MIPI-DSI up to 1400 x 1050 @60Hz
- On-board 4-wire resistive touch-screen controller
- Capacitive touch-screen support through SPI and I2C interfaces
- Up to 24-bit camera interface
- 2-lane MIPI-CSI
- Audio codec with analog stereo output, stereo input and electret microphone support (via WM8731L on module)
- I2S & MQS audio interfaces
- 1x PCIe x1 Gen. 2.1
- External local bus interface, up to 32-bit
- USB – 1x USB2.0 OTG port + up to 3x USB2.0 host ports
- Up to 7x UART ports, up to 4 Mbps; up to 2x CAN bus, 3.3V levels
- 2x MMC/SD/SDIO
- Up to 3x SPI, up to 3x I2C, up to 4x general purpose PWM signals
- Up to 124x GPIO (multifunctional signals shared with other functions)
- Up to 6x Timer outputs
- 4x general-purpose ADC channels + 4x additional optional general-purpose ADC channel
- Misc – Real time clock, powered by external battery
- Supply voltage – 3.2V to 4.5V / Li-Ion battery
- Active power consumption – 0.5 to 3 Watts
- Dimensions – 42 x 68 x 5 mm
- Weight – 14 grams
- Temperature Range – Commercial: 0° to 70° C; extended: -20° to 70° C; industrial: -40° to 85° C.
The module is said to support mainline Linux, Yocto Linux, and U-boot, with software and hardware documentation “coming soon”.
For development and evaluation purpose, or even inclusion in your own products, the company also introduced SBC-iMX7 single board computer comprised of SB-SOM-iMX7 carrier board and CL-SOM-iMX7 module targeting industrial and embedded applications.
SB-SOM-iMX7 baseboard brings out the following connectors and features:
- Storage – Standard full-size SD socket.
- Parallel RGB and resistive touch-screen interfaces via FPC connector with support for Startec KD050C 5″ 480×800 TFT LCD panel
- LVDS interface via 100-mil header
- DVI via HDMI connector
- Connectivity – Up to 2 Gigabit Ethernet ports (RJ45), as well as on-module WiFi and Bluetooth.
- Analog – 3.5mm jacks for stereo output, line-in, and microphone
- USB – 1x micro USB2.0 OTG, 2x USB2.0 host ports, and 2 extra USB host port via 100-mil header
- 1x serial debug port via UART-to-USB bridge, micro USB connector OR
- 1x serial debug port via RS232 transceiver, ultra-mini serial connector
- mini-PCIe socket, full-size
- 100-mil headers with access to up to 3x UART, 1x CAN, 2x SPI, 2x I2C, 24x GPIOs
- Misc – RTC and coin-cell battery
- Supply voltage – Unregulated 8V to 15V
- Dimensions – 160 x 136 x 22 mm
- Weight – 165 gram
- Temperature range – Same as CL-SOM-iMX7
Compulab CL-SOM-iMX7 sells for as low as $39 for 1k orders in its simplest configuration (SOM-iMX7-C800-D256-N128) with Freescale i.MX 7Solo, 256MB RAM, 128 MB NAND flash, no wired n0r wireless connectivity, etc…, while the carrier board goes for $81 in commercial temperature range, with $10 extra for extended, and $50 extra for industrial temperature range.
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.
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