NXP i.MX 93 processor combines Cortex-A55 cores with Ethos U65 microNPU

NXP has unveiled the i.MX 93 processor family comprised of i.MX 935x, 933x, 932x, and 931x parts at this time with up to two Cortex-A55 cores, one Arm Cortex-M33 real-time core, as well as an Ethos U65 microNPU for machine learning (ML).

We wrote about i.MX 9 family back in March with NXP telling us it would include an Arm Ethos U-65 microNPU and EdgeLock secure enclave, be manufactured with a 16/12nm FinFET class process, and includes the “Energy Flex” architecture to optimize power consumption by turning on/off specific blocks in the processor. The NXP i.MX 93 is the first family leveraging those new features, and we know have some more details.

NXP i.MX 93 (935x/933x)

NXP i.MX 93 processor specifications:

  • CPU
    • 1x or 2x Arm Cortex-A55 @ 1.7 GHz with 32KB I-cache, 32KB D-cache, 64KB L2 cache, 256KB L3 cache with ECC
    • 1x Arm Cortex-M33 @ 250 MHz low power microcontroller with 256KB TCM/OCRAM with ECC
  • GPU – 2D GPU with blending/composition, resize, color space conversion
  • AI accelerator – Optional Arm Ethos U-65 microNPU up to 1 TOPS
  • Memory I/F – Up to 3.7GT/s x16 LPDDR4x with inline ECC
  • Storage I/F
    • 3x SD 3.0/SDIO3.0/eMMC 5.1
    • 1x Octal SPI, including support for SPI NOR and SPI NAND memories
  • Display I/F
    • 1x 4-lane MIPI-DSI (1.5Gbps/lane) with PHY up to 1080p60
    • 1x 4-lane LVDS up to 720p60
    • 18-bit parallel RGB
  • Camera I/F
    • 1x 2-lane MIPI-CSI (1.5Gbps/lane) with PHY up to 1080p60
    • 8-bit parallel YUV/RGB
  • Audio
    • 7x I2S TDM (32-bit @ 768KHz), SPDIF Tx/Rx
    • 8 channel PDM microphone input
    • MQS: Medium Quality Sound output (sigma-delta modulator)
  • Networking – 2x Gigabit Ethernet: AVB & IEEE 1588 for sync, and EEE for low power. 1 with TSN
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 Type C with PHY
  • Serial
    • 2x CAN-FD
    • 8x UART/USART/Profibus,
  • Other peripherals
    • 8x I2C, 8x SPI, 2x I3C
    • 1x 4-ch, 12-bit ADC
    • 2x 32-pin FlexIO interfaces (camera, bus, or serial I/O)
  • Security – EdgeLock secure enclave
  • Packaging
    • 11×11 mm2 0.5 mm pitch with 198 IO pins
    • 9×9 mm2 0.5 mm pitch with 138 IO pins
    • 14×14 mm2 0.65 mm pitch with 198 IO pins
  • Temperature Ranges & Qualifications
    • Consumer – 0 ºC to 95 ºC
    • Standard Industrial – -40 ºC to 105 ºC
    • Extended industrial – -40 ºC to 125 ºC
    • Automotive – -40 ºC to 125 ºC (the ranges are the same for the last, but the difference must be in the “qualification” part)
i.MX 93 product family matrix

While the Cortex-A55 cores will run Linux, the  Arm Cortex-M33 processor handles real-time compute and control optionally running FreeRTOS, Green Hills Integrity, or QNX RTOS. NXP also says the Cortex-M33 core is associated with the CAN FD interfaces and can be used for low-power wake-word detection in combination with the NPU. Microsoft Azure Sphere will also be supported in the i.MX 93-CS products with Microsoft Pluton enabled on the EdgeLock secure enclave, just like on NXP i.MX 8ULP Cortex-A35/M33 secure processors.

Target applications include:

  • Automotive such as domain controller compute off-load engine, driver monitoring system, audio, speech recognition, gateway
  • Industrial Automation with, for instance, gateways, remote I/O controllers, industrial scanners, HMI, machine vision
  • Building Control and Energy with energy meters, EV charging
  • Smart Home – home security hub, smart doorbell, smart lock, smart thermostat, AV receivers…
  • Smart City: smart lighting, safety & security, traffic control, and so on

The i.MX 93 applications processors are still at the pre-production stage and based on previous release schedules for NXP i.MX SoCs, I’d expect the NXP i.MX 93 family to become broadly available sometime in 2023. Once the release is official, the processor will be supported for 15 years, which would mean supplies until 2038.

Thanks to RL for the tip.

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5 Replies to “NXP i.MX 93 processor combines Cortex-A55 cores with Ethos U65 microNPU”

  1. I do not know the current financial results of NXP. But one or two cores cortex-A55? What is it for? Microsoft Azura and Linux BSP ???? Can’t afford ARM licenses???? They cheat on the ARM cores? When Nvidia takes over ARM, they will probably focus only on microcontrollers … The CEO will come and say: We can’t afford us !!! … In my opinion, they are the first to be shot on the market along with the declining automotive industry in Europe. Whom only he sustains them …

  2. Quote:
    “I’d expect the NXP i.MX 93 family to become broadly available sometime in 2023.”
    This expectation was not true. It have not become available currently in mid 2024.

    1. OK. I’ll extend my NXP product announcement to launch timeline from 2 years to 3 years in the future 🙂

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