RISC-V International to give away 1,000 RISC-V development boards

RISC-V development board giveaway

The best way for a new platform to get good software support is to bring hardware into the hands of developers. That’s exactly what RISC-V International is doing by inviting developers to sign up for a RISC-V developer board sponsored by RISC-V and contributing members. There are 1,000 boards on offer with 1GB to 16GB RAM depending on the target project from five companies and organizations namely Allwinner, Beagleboard.org, SiFive, Microchip Technology (previously Microsemi), and RIOS. Here are the stated goals of the giveaway: Spur innovation Enable new opportunities for the next generation of developers to work with the RISC-V ISA Provide a platform For testing To write programs that run on RISC-V Develop software Integrate existing software stacks Optimize ecosystem software Share feedback on the product such as ease to integrate software stacks, develop and test extensions, etc. The company did not provide an exact list of development board but it should include Allwinner D1 SBC (1GB RAM), the […]

Allwinner D1 RISC-V processor SDK & Documentation

Allwinner D1 SDK

We published information about Allwinner D1 SBC and processor a few weeks ago. The news was pretty interesting as it’s the first RISC-V processor from the company, and one of the first affordable RISC-V SBC. But all we had at the time was hardware information from a leak, or rather from China-only Allwinner developer website. But now the company has added more information to its open-source development website with the release of documentation, now only in Chinese, as well as the Allwinner D1 Tina SDK. Eventually, there should be a better SDK via linux-sunxi community and some are already working on the Allwinner D1 SBC, but let’s try to get the SDK from Allwinner and build the code from source using the documentation. First, you’d need to register on Allwinner open-source website and click on signup. You’ll probably want to select Email registration. Now fill your username, select a country, enter a company name, password, and email. For the country, […]

Allwinner V831 NPU (Neural Processor Unit) reverse-engineered

V831 NPU open-source toolchain

When Sipeed introduced MAIX-II Dock AIoT vision development kit, they asked help from the community to help reverse-engineer Allwinner V831‘s NPU in order to make an open-source AI toolchain based on NCNN. Sipeed already had decoded the NPU registers, and Jasbir offered help for the next step and received a free sample board to try it out. Good progress has been made and it’s now possible to detect objects like a boat using cifar10 object recognition sample. Allwinner V831’s NPU is based on a customized implementation of NVIDIA Deep Learning Accelerator (NVDLA) open-source architecture, something that Allwinner (through Sipeed) asked us to remove from the initial announcement, and after reverse-engineering work, Jasbir determined the following key finding: The NPU clock defaults to 400 MHz, but can be set between 100 and 1200 MHz NPU is implemented with nv_small configuration (NV Small Model),  and relies on shared system memory for all data operations. int8 and int16 are supported with int8 preferred […]

Allwinner Processor 2021-2022 Roadmap – Allwinner T827, T723 and T1033 SoC’s

Allwinner 2021 2022 roadmap

Last year, we published the Allwinner A-series processor roadmap for 2020-2021 with notably Allwinner A33E, A100, and A200 SoCs. Allwinner A100 was supposed to be released in 2019, but a search on Aliexpress showed exactly zero matches. We did write about Allwinner A100 mainline Linux support a little while ago, and today, I eventually found one Allwinner A100 tablet with the $60 Hyundai HyTab 7WC1. I had no better luck in my search for Allwinner A33E and A200 platforms. But I also got lucky today with another Allwinner roadmap for 2021-2022 with some very interesting new processors, provided they happen. A look at 2020 processors But let’s look at the year 2020 first. We already have most details about Allwinner A133 quad-core Cortex-A53 processor, which is also called T509 apparently following the merging of the Allwinner A-Series business unit, focusing on tablets, into the Allwinner T-Series for industrial & automotive applications. You may have never heard about Allwinner T507/T517, but […]

A first look at Allwinner D1 Linux RISC-V SBC and Processor

Allwinner D1 RISC-V SBC

Last year, we reported that Allwinner was working on an Alibaba XuanTie C906 based RISC-V processor that would be found in low-cost Linux capable single board computers selling for as low as $12. The good news is that we won’t have to wait much longer as Allwinner D1 RISC-V processor is slated for an announcement next week, and a business card-sized SBC, also made by Allwinner, will become available in May. Some of the information is already available to developers in China, and CNX Software managed to obtain information about the Linux RISC-V SBC and Allwinner D1 processor. Allwinner D1 development board Let’s check out the board first which comes with the following specifications: SoC – Allwinner D1 single-core XuanTie C906 64-bit RISC-V processor @ 1.0 GHz with HiFi4 DSP, G2D 2D graphics accelerators Memory – 1GB DDR3 memory Storage – 256MB SPI NAND flash, MicroSD card slot Video Output – HDMI 1.4 port up to 4Kp30, MIPI DSI & […]

Year 2020 in review – Top ten posts and stats

CNX Software Year 2021

It’s this time of the year when we look back at what happened, and what may be next. 2020 did not pan out as planned in more ways than one, but there were still some interesting developments. Based on 2019 announcements, 2020 was promising to be an exciting year for Amlogic and Rockchip with the expected launch of RK3588 and S908X high-end processors for 8K capable devices,  but we’ll have to wait for 2021 for this to happen. Instead, the most interesting processor of the year from the Allwinner, Amlogic, and Rockchip offerings was probably Amlogic S905X4 processing adding AV1 hardware decoding. As pointed out in our “RISC-V 2020 highlights” post, it was a fairly eventful year for RISC-V architecture, although there’s still a long road ahead, especially for application processors. We had seen some general-purpose and Bluetooth RISC-V MCUs in 2019, but 2020 saw the launch of the first WiFi IoT RISC-V chips with ESP32-C3 and BL602, Alibaba making […]

Allwinner A133 tablet processor pairs with XR829 or AW859A WiFi & Bluetooth chip

Allwinner A133 Tablet Block Diagram

Last year, Allwinner published an updated roadmap for tablet processors that included A100, A200, and A300 SoC’s. None of those have been launched yet, but I’ve just noticed the Allwinner A133 quad-core Cortex-A53 processor showed up on the company’s website. That’s yet another entry-level processor coupled with a PowerVR GE8300 GPU, but you’d get support for Android 10, instead of the older Android 7.1/8.1 SDK provided for the earlier Allwinner A-series tablet processors. This time around, the company also pairs A133 processor with its own wireless chips, either XR829 WiFI 4 and Bluetooth 4.2 chip, or AW859A dual-band 802.11ac WiFi 5 and Bluetooth 5 chip. Allwinner A133 specifications: CPU – Quad-core Arm Cortex-A53 @ 1.6GHz with 32KB L1 I-cache + 32KB L1 D-cache per core, 512KB L2 cache, and CoolFlex power management architecture GPU – Imagination PowerVR GE8300 with support for OpenGL ES3.2, Vulkan 1.1, OpenCL 1.2 Memory I/F – DDR3/DDR3L/DDR4/LPDDR3/LPDDR4, 32-bit width, up to 4GB Storage I/F – eMMC […]

Allwinner T5 Processor to Power Android 10 and Linux Multi-Camera Infotainment Systems

Allwinner T5

Allwinner T-series processors are designed for transportation applications such as automotive infotainment systems, smart rear-view mirrors, and navigation systems. The Zhuhai-based company has now added a new T-series processor to its website with Allwinner T5 processor featuring four Cortex-A53 cores and a Mali-G31 MP2 GPU that’s a nice upgrade to the Mali-400 MP2/4 GPUs used in their other automotive processors. Allwinner T5 specifications: CPU – Quad-core Arm [email protected] GPU – Arm Mali G31 MP2 with support for OpenGL ES 3.2/2.0/1.0, Vulkan 1.1, OpenCL 2.0 Memory I/F – 32-bit DDR4/DDR3/DDR3L/LPDDR3/LPDDR4 interface up to 4GB Storage I/F SD3.0/eMMC5.0 interface 8-bit Nand flash interface with maximum 80-bit/1KB ECC Video Engine Video decoder H.265 MP decoder up to 4K @ 60fps H.264 BL/MP/HP decoder up to 4K @ 30fps VP9 decoder up to 4K @ 60fps AVS2 decoder up to 4K @ 60fps Multi-format 1080p60 video playback including VP8, MPEG1/2 SP/MP, MPEG4 SP/ASP, AVS+/AVS JIZHUN, VC1 SP/MP Video encoder -H.264 encoder up to 4K […]