Renesas RA8D1 Arm Cortex-M85 SoC features LCD display interfaces, 2D graphics accelerator

Renesas RA8D1 is a new Arm Cortex-M85 microcontroller with graphics capabilities such as a 2D graphics accelerator and MIPI DSI and parallel RGB interfaces to connect an LCD that will make the chip suitable for HMI applications.

Renesas introduced the world’s first Arm Cortex-M85 microcontroller with the RA8M1 just a few weeks ago, but the MCU has limited multimedia capabilities with just a 16-bit Capture Engine Unit (CEU) interface to connect a camera. The second member of the Renesas RA8 family fills this void with the RA8D1 microcontroller adding an LCD controller and a 2D graphics drawing engine on top of the CEU camera interface.

Renesas RA8D1

Renesas RA8D1 specifications:

  • MCU core – Arm Cortex-M85 clocked at 480 MHz with Helium MVE (M-Profile Vector Extension) with 32KB I/D caches, 12KB data flash
  • Memory & Storage
    • 1MB SRAM with TCM (128KB)
    • 1MB to 2MB Flash memory
    • 32-bit external SDRAM interface
  • Display interfaces and features
    • Graphics LCD Controller (GLCDC) up to WXGA (1280×800)
    • Optional MIPI DSI
    • 2D Drawing Engine (DRW)
  • Camera – 16-bit Capture Engine Unit (CEU) interface
  • Communication interfaces
    • Ethernet controller with DMA
    • USB – USB 2.0 High-Speed and Full Speed interfaces
    • 2x CAN-FD
    • Octal SPI with XIP & DOTF
    • Up to 6x SCI (UART, Simple SPI, Simple I2C)
    • SPI/ I2C/I3C multi-master interface
    • 2x SSI, 2x SDHI
  • Analog
    • 12-bit ADC and 12-bit DAC
    • 2-ch high-speed analog comparator
    • Temperature sensor
  • System
    • Low power modes
    • Battery backup function (VBATT)
    • Event Link Controller (ELC)
    • Data Transfer Controller (DTC)
    • 8-channel DMA Controller (DMAC)
    • Power-on reset
    • Programmable Voltage Detection (PVD) with voltage settings
  • Timers
    • 32-bit & 16-bit Timers, 32-bit Ultra-Low-Power Timer
    • Watchdog
    • RTC
  • Security
    • ARMv8-M TrustZone Security
    • Renesas Secure IP (RSIP-E51A)
    • On-chip immutable ROM for First Stage Bootloader with hardware Root-of-Trust
    • Octal SPI with Decryption-on-the-fly (DOTF)
    • Secure authenticated debug
    • Secure factory programming
    • Tamper protection
  • Packages – 176-pin (LQFP176 24 x24 mm) and  224-pin (BGA224 13x13mm) packages

Renesas RA8 RA6 RA4 RA2 MCU portfolio December 2023

The Renesas RA8D1 is the second member of the RA8 family and mostly adds 2D graphics and LCD display interfaces compared to the previously-announced RA8M1 Cortex-M85 microcontroller. The new RA8D1 MCUs are supported by Renesas’ Flexible Software Package (FSP) and the e2 studio IDE which include reference software to build AI, motor control, and cloud solutions allowing customers to integrate legacy code and choice of RTOS with FSP.

Renesas also developed two “winning combinations” for the RA8D1 with an off-road GPS guidance system and a high-efficiency 7KW+ smart heat pump that can serve as reference designs or a starting point to design solutions around the new microcontroller. The company also provides the RA8D1 evaluation kit (EK-RA8D1) with an RA8D1 development board, a 4.3-inch display, a camera module, and various cables.

Renesas EK-RA8D1 evaluation kit
Renesas EK-RA8D1 evaluation kit

Renesas says the RA8D1 Group MCUs are available now, along with the FSP software, but I could not find any stock on the websites of listed distributors (DigiKey and Avnet). The RA8D1 Evaluation Kit is however available now for $332.52 bought directly from Renesas or distributors. Further information may be found on the product page and in the press release.

Thanks to TLS for the tip.

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