Congatec COM-HPC & COM Express Xeon modules target high-end IoT gateways, medical edge applications

Tiger Lake-H COM-HPC & COM Express CPU modules

Yesterday, we wrote about ADLink Express-TL COM Express Basic Size Type 6 module powered by the latest Intel Tiger Lake-H Xeon, Core, and Celeron processors designed for high-end industrial & embedded systems.

But as one would expect more such modules are coming to market, and Congatec announced both COM-HPC and COM Express CPU modules based on Intel Tiger Lake-H processors with target applications include high-end IoT gateways and medical edge applications. Let’s check out both conga-HPC/cTLH COM-HPC Client Size B modules (120mm x 120mm), as well as the conga-TS570 COM Express Basic Type 6 modules (125mm x 95mm).

conga-HPC/cTLH COM-HPC module

conga-HPC/cTLH moduleKey features and specifications:

  • SoC – Choice of ten Intel Xeon, Core i3/i5i/7, or Celeron 6600HE processors with Intel Xe Gen12 graphics part of Tiger Lake-H family
  • System Memory – Up to 4 SO-DIMM sockets for DDR4 ECC memory modules up to 32 GB each (128 GB total) with 3200 MT/s
  • Storage
    • 2x SATA III (6Gb/s)
    • 32 MByte serial SPI firmware flash for AMI UEFI BIOS
  • Video
    • 3x DP/DP++ and 1x eDP/LVDS
    • Up to 4 independent display units (4x 4k/2x 8K) | Enhanced media (AV1/12b) with up to 2 Vdbox | Next Gen IPU6 with DPHY2.1 | DP 1.4
  • Camera – 4x MIPI-CSI
  • Audio – I2S and SoundWire
  • Networking – 2x 2.5 GbE TSN Ethernet via Intel i225
  • USB – 2x USB 4.0, 2x USB 3.2, 8x USB 2.0
  • PCIe
    • 4x PCIe Gen4
    • PEG support x16 (PCIe Gen4)
    • 20x PCIe Gen3
  • Other I/Os
    • eSPI
    • 2x UART, I2C
    • 12x GPIOs
  • congatec Board Controller – Multi Stage Watchdog | non-volatile User Data Storage | Manufacturing and Board Information | Board Statistics | I²C bus (fast mode, 400 kHz, multi-master) | Power Loss Control | Hardware Health Monitoring | POST Code redirection
  • Security – Trusted Platform Module (TPM 2.0)
  • Power Management – ACPI 6.0 with battery support
  • Temperature Range
    • Industrial: Operating: -40 to +85°C | Storage: -40 to +85°C
    • Commercial: Operating: 0 to +60°C | Storage: -40 to +85°C
  • Humidity – Operating: 10 to 90% r. H. non cond. / Storage 5 to 95% r. H. non cond.
  • Dimensions – 120 x 120 mm (COM-HPC Client Size B form factor)
COM-HPC-Tiger Lake-H Block Diagram
Block Diagram

The conga-TS570 COM Express module which we’ll describe below has pretty similar specifications, but among other differences, offers fewer PCIe interfaces. Notably, the COM-HPC modules support 20 PCIe Gen 4 lanes (x16 and x4), while the COM Express versions support 16 PCIe lanes, and in addition, designers can leverage 20 PCIe Gen 3 lanes with COM-HPC, and 8 PCIe Gen 3 lanes on COM Express.

conga-TS570 COM Express Basic Type 6 modules

conga-TS570Specifications:

  • SoC – Choice of ten Intel Xeon, Core i3/i5i/7, or Celeron 6600HE processors with Intel Xe Gen12 graphics part of Tiger Lake-H family
  • System Memory – Up to 3x SO-DIMM sockets for DDR4 ECC memory modules up to 32 GByte each (96 GB total) with 3200 MT/s
  • Storage
    • 4x SATA III (6Gb/s)
    • 32 MByte serial SPI firmware flash for AMI UEFI BIOS
  • Video
    • 3x DP/DP++ and 1x eDP/LVDS
    • Up to 4 independent display units (4x 4k/2x 8K) | Enhanced media (AV1/12b) with up to 2 Vdbox | Next Gen IPU6 with DPHY2.1 | DP 1.
  • Audio – HDA
  • Networking – 1x 2.5 GbE TSN Ethernet via Intel i225
  • USB – 4x USB 3.1 Gen2, 8x USB 2.0
  •  PCIe
    • 8x PCIe Gen3
    • PEG support x16 (PCIe Gen4)
  • Other I/Os
    • SPI, 2x UART, LPC bus, I²C bus
    • 8x GPIOs
  • congatec Board Controller – Multi-Stage Watchdog | non-volatile User Data Storage | Manufacturing and Board Information | Board Statistics I²C bus (fast mode, 400 kHz, multi-master) | Power Loss Control | Hardware Health Monitoring | POST Code redirection
  • Security – Trusted Platform Module (TPM 2.0)
  • Power Management – ACPI 6.0 with battery support
  • Temperature Range
    • Industrial: Operating: -40 to +85°C | Storage: -40 to +85°C
    • Commercial: Operating: 0 to +60°C | Storage: -40 to +85°C
  • Humidity – Operating: 10 to 90% r. H. non cond. / Storage 5 to 95% r. H. non cond.
  • Dimensions – 95 x 125 mm (COM Express Basic Size Type 6)

COM Express-Tiger Lake-H Block DiagramOther differences include additional SATA interfaces, only one 2.5GbE port, USB 4.0 ports are gone, and memory is limited to 96GB RAM, which is interesting, as ADLINK design their COM Express module with the same processor family with support for up to 128GB. Maybe that’s due to space limitations in relation to the features set. I cannot see any camera interfaces for the COM Express module either.

congatec also offered some performance comparison for one of the new TIger Lake-H part (Core i7-11850HE) against an earlier Coffee Lake-H processor, namely Intel Core i7-9850HE:

up to 8 high-performance CPU cores that achieve up to 65% gain in multi-thread performance and up to 32% gain in single-thread performance. Moreover, visualization, auditory and graphics intensive workloads are enabled with a boost of up to 70% compared to predecessors (in 3DMark).

Software support and availability

congatec offers support for Microsoft Windows 10,  Windows 10 IoT Enterprise, Linux, the Yocto Project, and RTS Hypervisor.

The company did not provide any availability information, and pricing for this type of module will most certainly never be made public. I’d expect the Xeon based module to cost several thousand dollars, and be found in industrial & medical products sold for 5 or 6 figures.

More details may be found on the respective product pages for the COM Express and COM-HPC modules, as well as the press release.

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