Intel Skylake-U Processors Run as Low as 7.5W TDP. A Closer Look at Configurable TDP

I try to mostly cover low power systems on this blog, so when it comes to x86 processors I have a cut off TDP of 10 Watts. The next generation of Intel Skylake processors have a TDP of 15 Watts, but when I read Skylake-U lineup post on FanlessTech, I discovered Intel processors also have a configurable TDP option, and in the case of Skylake-U processor their configurable TDP (cTDP) can be as low as 7.5W or 10W depending on models. U-Processor family has Pentium and Celeron processors, but also Core i3, Core i5 and even Core i7 processors such as i7-6600U and i7-6500U clocked up to 3.4 GHz and all with a 15W TDP, but you’ll also notice a column called “cTDP Down” showing 7.5W and 10W values, which shows the great progress made by Intel with regards to low power design. So I decided to look into configurable TDP in a little more details. First, it’s not really […]

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ASRock N3150DC-ITX Mini-ITX Motherboard is Powered by a DC Adapter

Last week, I wrote about low cost ASRock Braswell motherboards with pricing starting at just under $60. But there were mainly two complaints about these boards: performance was about the same as similarly priced Bay Trail processors, and the requirements for a large – and relatively expensive – ATX power supply. There’s not much that can be done to improve performance, but ASRock also has launched N3150DC-ITX motherboard powered by a 19V DC adapter. ASRock N3150DC-ITX motherboard specifications: SoC – Intel Celeron N3150 quad core processor @ up to 2.08 GHz with Intel HD Graphics Gen8 @ up to 640 MHz – 6W TDP System Memory – 2x 240-pin DDR3/DDR3L 1600/1066 for up to 16GB RAM Storage – 4 x SATA3 6.0 Gb/s Connectors, support NCQ, AHCI and Hot Plug Audio Codec – Realtek ALC892 Audio Codec, 7.1 CH HD Audio Expansion – 1x PCI Express 2.0 x1 Slot, 1x half size Mini PCI Express slot Rear panel ports 1x […]

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Linaro 14.12 Release with Linux 3.18 and Android 5.0

Linaro usually releases images and source code on the last Thursday of the month, but since most people will have long holidays for Chritsmas and New Year, the last working Thrusday of this month was yesterday (18th). Linaro 14.12 release includes Linux kernel 3.18 (baseline), Linux 3.10.62 & 3.14.26 (LSK, same versions as last month), and Android 5.0.1 Lollipop. Here are the highlights of this release: Linux Linaro 3.18-2014.12 Based on v3.18 release GATOR topic: version 5.20 updated topic from Qualcomm LT (includes IFC6410 board support) updated integration-linaro-vexpress64 topic by ARM LT (FVP Base and Foundation models, and Juno support) updated LLVM topic (uses the community llvmlinux-latest branch) included ILP32 patch set v3  rebased on 3.18. Boot tested with aarch64 userland. Work is in progress to test with aarch64-ilp32 userland. config fragments updated – SELinux related config options enabled in linaro-base.conf, device tree runtime self tests enabled in distribution.conf Linaro builds of AOSP 14.12 built with AOSP toolchain All the […]

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Embedded Linux Conference Europe 2014 Schedule – IoT, ARM vs x86, Optimization, Power Management, Debugging…

The Embedded Linux Conference Europe (ELC 2014), CloudOpen, and LinuxCon Europe will jointly take place at the Congress Centre Düsseldorf, in Germany on October 13 – 15, 2014. The 3-day events will consists of keynotes, presentations, and tutorials. Each day will open with two or three keynotes by speakers including  Jim Zemlin (Executive Director, Linux Foundation), and Jono Bacon (XPRIZE), followed by presentation and tutorials. There will be 45 presentations for ELCE, 58 for LinuxCon, and 47 for CloudOpen, I’ll make a virtual schedule with a few sessions part of the Embedded Linux Conference Europe “track”. Monday, October 13 11:15 – 12:05 –  Performance Analysis Using the Perf Suite by Mans Rullgar, Consultant When faced with a performance problem, the initial steps towards a solution include identifying the sections of code responsible and the precise reasons they are time-consuming. To this end, the ‘perf’ profiling tools provide valuable insight into the characteristics of a program. The presentation will show, using real-world […]

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ARM TechCon 2014 Schedule – 64-Bit, IoT, Optimization & Debugging, Security and More

ARM Technology Conference (TechCon) 2014 will take place on October 1 – 3, 2014, in Santa Clara, and as every year, there will be a conference with various sessions for suitable engineers and managers, as well as an exposition where companies showcase their latest ARM based products and solutions. The detailed schedule for the conference has just been made available. Last year,  there were 90 sessions organized into 15 tracks, but this year, despite received 300 applications,  the organizers decided to scale it down a bit, and there will be 75 session in the following 11 tracks: Chip Implementation Debugging Graphics Heterogeneous Compute New Frontiers Power Efficiency Safety and Security Software Development and Optimization Software Optimization for Infrastructure and Cloud System Design Verification There are also some paid workshops that take all day with topics such as “Android (NDK) and ARM overview”, “ARM and the Internet of Things”, or “ARM Accredited Engineer Programs”. As usual, I’ve gone through the schedule […]

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Low Power Mode (Suspend to RAM) in uCLinux for Freescale Kinetis K70 MCU

All ARM based micro-controllers and processors implement multiple power mode in order to save optimize power usage depending on the tasks. However, I’ve been told by some hobbyists/developers/makers that low power modes are not always implemented in Linux, especially for low cost systems either because of hardware limitations or the software is not implemented. EmCraft Systems has just released their latest embedded (uC-) Linux distributions for the MCU boards, and one of the features now available is “suspend to RAM” for their K70 SoM development kit, based on Freescale Kinetis K70 Cortex M4 MCU, which consume just around 600 to 700 uA @ 3.3V (2 to 2.3 mW) in this low power mode. They have connected a multimeter to measure the current drawn at different power modes. If you want to know all the details, you should probably read the company’s article on “Linux Low-Power Mode on Kinetis“, but I’ll summarize the key points in this posts. They checked the […]

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Renesas DevCon Extension Organizes Free One-Day Courses About IoT, Low Power, Sensors and More

I’ve just come across a YouTube video called Ultra-Low-Power Solutions for Wearable Technology and the ‘Internet of Things’ On Renesas channel. The video itself promotes Cymbet EnerChip Solid State Batteries and Kits, working together with Renesas MCUs, and the interesting part is that they’ll provide a free training session for the kit as part of Renesas Devcon Extension 2014. This is not a single event as you may think, but instead the company hosts one-day workshops in various cities in the US and Brazil covering various tracks all year long, as you can see in the simplified schedule below. RTOS & Middleware track is not available anymore, but you can still attend training sessions for Human Machine Interfaces, Low Power designs, the Internet of Things and Sensors. As an example, the following lectures are available for the Low Power track: Renesas Low-Power MCU Lineup (30 minutes) – Updated technology roadmap for Renesas’ broad portfolio of low-power MCU Working with Renesas e² […]

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AMD Announces ARM and x86 pin-to-pin Compatible APUs and SoCs for 2015, ARM K12 Core for 2016 and Beyond

AMD has designed x86 processor since its inception, and recently they’ve announced ARM Cortex A57 “Seatlle” SoCs targeting servers would be available later this year. They’ve now decided to merge their product line-up even further with Project Skybridge that aims to provide pin-to-pin compatible ARM and x86 SoCs and APUs by 2015, manufactured using a 20nm process. That means AMD’s customers should be able to leverage AMD’s “ambidextrous computing” solutions to design one and only board for x86 and ARM processors for server, embedded, semi-custom and ultra-low power applications. Processors of the “Project Skybridge” family will also be the first ARM based AMD processors to include a GPU (Graphics Core Next GPU), contrary to Seatlle SoCs, which are destined to be used for the server market, and do not come with a GPU. ARM processor will be based on low power ARM Cortex A57 cores and x86 processors will make use of “next generation” Puma+ cores. An other interesting news […]

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