Olimex RP2040-PICO-PC “computer” to feature RP2040-Py Raspberry Pi Pico compatible module

RP2040-PICO-PC board

We previously wrote it was possible to create a Raspberry Pi RP2040 board with HDMI using DVI and programmable IOs to output video up to 640×480 at 60 Hz with the microcontroller’s Cortex-M0+ cores clocked at 252 MHz. At the time, we also noted Olimex was working on such a board with RP2040-PICO-PC designed to create a small Raspberry Pi RP2040 computer with HDMI/DVI video output.  The Bulgarian company has now manufactured the first prototype, but due to supply issues with the Raspberry Pi Pico board, they also designed their own RP2040-PICO module since they’ve got a reel of Raspberry Pi RP2040 microcontrollers. RP2040-PICO-PC small computer board Specifications: Support for Raspberry Pi Pico board Storage – MicroSD card Video Output – HDMI port with DVI signal (note no audio through this interface) Audio output – 3.5mm audio jack Expansion UEXT connector with UART, SPI, I2C, 3.3V, and GND to attach external modules or sensors from Olimex Grove compatible 4-pin JST2.0 […]

LiPo battery powered Olimex boards use ESP32-S2’s USB OTG interface

Olimex ESP32-S2 LiPo USB Boards

Last year, Olimex introduced ESP32-S2-DevKit-LiPo and ESP32-S2-WROVER-Devkit-LiPo boards optimized for battery-powered applications with as little as 30uA deep sleep power consumption. ESP32-S2 processor comes with a USB OTG interface, but at the time, Espressif Systems ESF-IDF SDK did not support programming via the built-in USB interface, so Olimex added CH340T USB to serial converter for programming. The good news is that the SDK can now support USB programming without an external chip, so the company designed new versions of the boards without a USB to serial chip with namely ESP32-S2-DevKit-LiPo-USB and ESP32-S2-WROVER-Devkit-LiPo-USB boards. The specifications are basically the same as previously except for the removal of the USB to serial chip, support for USB OTG, and even lower power consumption: Wireless module: ESP32-S2-DevKit-LiPo – ESP32-S2-WROOM with Espressif ESP32-S2 single-core 32-bit LX7 microprocessor up to 240 MHz with  128 KB ROM, 320 KB SRAM, 16 KB SRAM in RTC, 4MB SPI flash ESP32-S2-WROVER-Devkit-LiPo – ESP32-S2-WROVER – same as above plus 2MB […]

ESP32-S2 board targets battery-powered applications with 30uA deep sleep power consumption

ESP32-S2-DevKit-LiPo vs ESP32-S2-WROVER-Devkit-LiPo

A few months ago, Olimex unveiled renders of ESP32-S2-Devkit-LiPo WiFi board that was supposed to consume as little as 2uA in sleep mode, follows ESP32-S2-Saola-1 board form factor and pinout, and adds an ultra-efficient circuitry to support LiPo batteries. The good news is that Olimex has now launched two versions of their ESP32-S2 board optimized for battery-powered applications with ESP32-S2-DevKit-Lipo and ESP32-S2-WROVER-DevKit-Lipo (with 2MB PSRAM) going for 5.56 Euros and 6.36 Euros respectively. ESP32-S2-DevKit-LiPo specifications: Wireless module: ESP32-S2-DevKit-LiPo – ESP32-S2-WROOM with Espressif ESP32-S2 single-core 32-bit LX7 microprocessor up to 240 MHz with  128 KB ROM, 320 KB SRAM, 16 KB SRAM in RTC, 4MB SPI flash ESP32-S2-WROVER-Devkit-LiPo – ESP32-S2-WROVER – same as above plus 2MB PSRAM Wireless connectivity – 2.4 GHz 802.11 b/g/n WiFI 4 up to 150 Mbps Expansion – 2x 20-pin I/O headers with SPI, I2S, UART, I2C, touch sensors, PWM, etc… (pin-to-pin compatible with ESP32-S2-SAOLA-1) Debugging – Micro USB port via CH340T USB to serial chip Misc […]

Linux 5.8 Release – Main Changes, Arm, MIPS, and RISC-V Architectures

Linux 5.8 Release

Linus Torvalds has just released Linux 5.8: So I considered making an rc8 all the way to the last minute, but decided it’s not just worth waiting another week when there aren’t  any big looming worries around. Because despite the merge window having been very large, there really hasn’t been anything scary going on in the release candidates. Yeah, we had some annoying noise with header file dependencies this week, but that’s not a new annoyance, and it’s also not the kind of subtle bug that keeps me up at night worrying about it. It did reinforce how nice it would be if we had some kind of tooling support to break nasty header file dependencies automatically, but if wishes were horses.. Maybe some day we’ll have some kind of SAT-solver for symbol dependencies that can handle all our different architectures and configurations, but right now it’s just a manual pain that occasionally bites us. Anyway.. Aside from silly header […]

Ignitial Tukhla High-End Open Source Hardware NXP i.MX 8QuadMax SBC in the Works

Olimex Tukhla

[Update: The European company that initiated the project is Ignitial based in the west of France. So while we refer to the board as Olimex Tukhla in the post, it will be offered as Ignitial Tukhla once it becomes available] Most open-source hardware Arm Linux SBCs are optimized for cost, and there are few higher-end boards with extensive connectivity designed for professionals. Beagleboard X15 would be one of the rare examples currently available on the market, but it was launched five years ago. One European company noticed the void in this market and asked Olimex to develop a high-end open-source Linux board with a well-documented processor. They ruled out RK3399, and instead went Olimex Tukhla SBC will be powered by NXP i.MX 8QuadMax, the top processor of i.MX 8 family with two Cortex-A72 cores, four Cortex-A53 cores, and two real-time Cortex-M4F cores. As you can see from the screenshot above, Olimex created the schematics in KiCad, and contrary to most […]

Olimex ESP32-S2-Devkit-LiPo WiFi Board Consumes as Little as 2uA in Sleep Mode

ESP32-S2 Devkit LiPo

When we covered ESP32 powered TTGO T-Watch-2000 smartwatch this week-end, people noted that with a 350 mAh battery, the watch would last about 3.65 days considering a 4mA drain with the screen always off, WiFI and Bluetooth off, and around 65mA when the screen is on good for about 5 hours of continuous use without Bluetooth nor WiFi. But it’s possible to make a much more-efficient ESP32-S2 Wifi board, as demonstrated by Olimex with their upcoming ESP32-32-Devkit-LiPo based on ESP32-S2-Saola-1 with circuitry to support LiPo batteries. They designed the board with an ultra-low-power power supply circuit which makes current consumption during sleep only 6uA, 4 of which are due to the battery measurement resistor divider, meaning the board should consume only 2uA in sleep mode or about 10 times less than other ESP32 Olimex boards. When reviewed Qoitech Otii power measurement & DAQ tool, we also noted power consumption could be further reduced by switching to deep sleep mode. I […]

Olimex Launches a Breakout Board with Quectel BC66 NB-IoT module

Quectel BC66 Breakout Board

Quectel BC66 NB-IoT module is found on a few development boards such as Olimex NB-IoT DevKit, works worldwide – at least where NB-IoT networks are deployed -, and can be programmed with Arduino or PlatformIO. Olimex has now designed a breakout board fitted with Quectel BC66 module for people wanting a smaller footprint (26x26mm) and/or integrate the module easily with their own hardware. Olimex BC66 breakout board’s features and specifications: NB-IoT Connectivity Quectel BC-66 with worldwide GSM bands coverage 25.5 kbps uplink and downlink nano SIM card slot u.FL antenna connector + optional antenna I/O Expansion – 3x 10-pin header either unpopulated or fitted with male headers; Level shifters for 5x GPIOs, I2C, SPI, UART Misc – Status LEDs Power Supply – Dimensions – 26×26 mm As with other LPWAN modules, this module/board would typically be found in remote electricity, water and gas meters, smart city (parking/lighting) management systems, healthcare patient monitoring, smart farming applications, industrial monitoring and control and […]

Some Interesting Talks from FOSDEM 2020 Schedule

FOSDEM 2020 Schedule

We wrote about IoT devroom call for proposals for FOSDEM 2020 a little while ago, and as the free open-source developer meetup is getting closer, FOSDEM 2020 organizers released the schedule. So I’ll look at some of the talks in the relevant devrooms such as the Internet of Things, hardware enablement, Embedded, Mobile and Automotive, as well as RISC-V and others to compose my own little virtual schedule for the 2-day event. Saturday, February 1 10:30 – 10:50 – How lowRISC made its Ibex RISC-V CPU core faster – Using open source tools to improve an open-source core – by Greg Chadwick Ibex implements RISC-V 32-bit I/E MC M-Mode, U-Mode, and PMP. It uses an in-order 2 stage pipe and is best suited for area and power-sensitive rather than high-performance applications. However, there is scope for meaningful performance gains without major impact to power or area. This talk describes work done at lowRISC to analyze and improve the performance of […]