Posts Tagged ‘embest’

Lark Board Powered by Altera Cyclone V SX ARM Cortex A9 + FPGA SoC

October 16th, 2014 4 comments

Farnell/Element14 has quietly announced Lark Board from their subsidiary Embest Technology in September. The board is powered by an Altera Cyclone V ARM Cortex-A9 dual-core + FPGA processor with high speed transceivers, runs Debian 7.4, and targets medical instruments, video surveillance and industrial control applications.
Lark board specifications:

  • SoC – Altera Cyclone V SX (5CSXFC6D6F31I7N) with a dual core Cortex A9 processor (HPS – Hard Processor System) @ 800 MHz, FPGA fabric including up to 110K logic cells (LE), and high speed transceivers (2 PCIe hard IPs and 9 3Gbps transceivers)
  • System Memory – 1GB DDR3 SDRAM for HPS, 1GB DDR3 SDRAM for FPGA
  • Storage –  4GB eMMC Flash + micro SD card slot
  • Audio/Video Interfaces – HDMI, VGA, and 24-bit LCD interface supporting 4-wire touch screen
  • Data Transfer Interfaces:
    • High-resolution serial digital interface (SDI) that supports SMD standard interface and provides a SDI TX and a SDI RX
    • 12-bit digital camera input
    • 2x 12-bit high-speed ADC interfaces that support SMA input
    • PCIe x4 interface for PCIe x4, PCIe x2 and PCIe x1 adapter cards
    • RJ45 interface that supports RGMII gigabit Ethernet
    • 4x high-speed USB2.0 Host interfaces
    • 40-pin FPGA expansion interface for LVDS, RSDS, SLVS, mini-LVDS signals
    • 40-pin HPS expansion IO for I2C, SPI, QSPI, UART, GPIO signals
  • Debugging Interfaces
    • On-board USB Blaster II (Mini USB Type B)
    • 10-pin JTAG interface can be used to connect an external USB Blaster
  • Misc – Reset button and 5 user-defined buttons, RTC
  • Power – 12V~30V round DC power jack and ATX 4-pin standard power connector
  • Dimensions – 180 mm x 120 mm (10-layer PCB)
  • Temperature Range – 0~70°C (operating)

The company provides a binary image and source code based on Debian 7.4 with u-boot 2013.01.01, and Linux 3.10. The board can boot from either a micro SD card or the eMMC. Documentation includes a user’s manual, a quick start guide, schematics (PDF), sample applications, as well as datasheets for the SoC and other components.


Block Diagram

Lark board is available now for $799 on Embest website where you can also find documentation, the OS image and source code. It’s also listed on Newark/Element14 and Aliexpress for around $900.

Thanks to Nanik for the tip.

Coocox Embedded Pi is an STM32-Based MCU Board That Connects to Arduino Shields and Raspberry Pi

May 6th, 2013 2 comments

Embedded Pi is a platform capable of interfacing the Raspberry Pi with 3.3V and/or 5V Arduino shields, based on an 32-bit ARM Cortex M3 STMicro STM32 MCU. It can also be used in standalone mode as an Arduino compatible ARM MCU evaluation board.

Embedded Pi
Embedded Pi Hardware Specifications:
  • MCU – STMicro STM32F103RBT6 Cortex M3 @ 72MHz with 20KB SRAM and 128KB flash.
  • Raspberry Pi Connector with I2C, SPI, UART, PWM and GPIOs
  • Arduino Interfaces – 1x SPI, 1x I2C, 4x PWM, 1x UART, 6x Analog Input
  • Extended Interfaces – 1x SPI, 1x I2C, 1x UART with flow control, 2 pairs PWM, 6x Analog Input, and 1x CAN
  • 3 Power Sources – Micro USB port, external DC adapter, and 5V from the Raspberry Pi
Embedded Pi Block Diagram

Embedded Pi Block Diagram

Depending on the jumper placement on the Embedded Pi, you can select each of the three modes of operation:
  • STM32/Standalone Mode – The Embedded Pi works as an Arduino form factor compatible mother board where the STM32 controls the Arduino shields directly without the use of Raspberry Pi.
  • ST Adapter Mode – The STM32 controls the Arduino shields, and the Raspberry Pi works as the GUI or command line console to send commands/data to and receive data from the STM32.
  • Raspberry Pi Mode – The Embedded Pi works as a hardware connection bridge between Raspberry Pi and Arduino shields, allowing the Raspberry Pi to interface directly with existing Arduino shields.


Development can optionally be done using Coocox development tools such as CoIDE that works with Windows XP SP3/Windows Vista, and Windows 7 computers.

Embedded Pi can be purchased for $34 on Newark/Element14 website. However, if you plan on using it with the Raspberry Pi and Arduino shields, this new board competes directly with the single board solution provided by UDOO boards, which costs only slightly more than an Raspberry Pi + Embedded Pi solution.

Further information is available on Coocox Embedded Pi page.

Via Micro4you Studio Facebook Page.

$99 MarS Board Features Freescale i.MX6 Dual, 4GB eMMC

April 2nd, 2013 18 comments

Embest, a subsidiary of Element14, has just announced the MarS Board, a development board powered by Freescale i.MX6 Dual (2x Cortex A9) with 1 GB RAM and 4GB eMMC flash. This is not related to the Marsboard based on AllWinner A10, and designed & manufactured by another company.


Here are the key features of the MarS Board:

  • SoC – Freescale i.MX6 Dual  2xCortex-A9 Processor @ 1GHz + Vivante GC2000 GPU.
  • System Memory – 1GB RAM (4*256MB DDR3 SDRAM)
  • Storage – 4GB eMMC + micro SD card slot (up to 32GByte)
  • Video Output – 1xHDMI interface, 1x LVDS interface and 1x LCD interface
  • USB – 4x USB Host ports (2x USB connector, 2x via headers), 1x mini USB OTG port, and 1x mini USB for debug
  • Connectivity – 10/100M/1Gbps RJ45 Ethernet interface
  • 2 Expansion Hearders – 2x CAN, 2x IIC, Audio & SPDIF, 8bit IPU1(Camera), SPI, USDHC1(SD card), 4x UART, 2x PWM, GPMI, 6x GPIO
  • Power Supply – 5V/4A
  • Dimension – 65mm x 102mm


The company will provide support for Linux 3.0.15, Android 4.0.4 & uCOS-II RTOS.

That means we now have low cost (<$100) platforms for most i.MX6 processors (expect Solo Lite) with GK802 (i.MX6 Quad), Wandboard Solo (i.MX6 Solo), Wanboard Dual (i.MX6 Dual Lite) and the MarS Board featuring i.MX6 Dual. The closest competitor to the MarS Board is the Wandboard Dual, and both sell for $99. Thanks to the Dual version, MarS supports 1080p60 video decoding (vs. 1080p30), and features Vivante GC2000 GPU (vs. Vivante GC880) compared to the Wandboard Dual. It also comes LVDS and LCD connectors, and an eMMC that should provide better performance than the micro SD used in the Wandboard. The Wandboard, however, has more audio I/O including S/PDIF, comes with built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, and its baseboard / SoM makes upgrading possible.

A big disappointment with the MarS Board is that although SATA-II support is integrated into i.MX6 Dual, the company apparently did not feel necessary to add a SATA connector *facepalm*, and I’ve been confirmed SATA signals are not available via the expansion headers either.

The board will be available in May 2013 for $99. You can find more information and register your interest on MarS Board page.

Ronetix SAMA5D3x-CM System-on-Modules Powered by Atmel SAMA5D3 eMPUs

February 28th, 2013 No comments

Earlier this month, Atmel launched SAMA5D3 Cortex A5 embedded processor family, and Ronetix recently unveiled CPU modules based on the platform. SAMA5D3x-CM are SODIMM SoM based on SAMA5D3 series processor with 512MB DDR2, 256MB NAND Flash, 4MB SPI Flash, and Gigabit Ethernet.

Ronetix SAMA5D3x-CM

The key features of the modules are as follows:

  • MCU – AT91SAMA5D3x series, 536 MHz ARM Cortex-A5 @ 1.2V (SAMA5D31, SAMA5D33, SAMA5D34 or SAMA5D35)
  • System Memory – 512 MB DDR2 SDRAM, 32-bit
  • Storage:
    • 256 MB NAND Flash
    • 16 MB NOR Flash (optional)
    • 4 MiB Atmel SPI Flash
    • One Wire 1024-bits EEPROM and 64-bits ROM
  • Connectivity – 10/100/1000 MBit/s Ethernet
  • Dimensions – 67.6x40mm (SO-DIMM 200 JEDEC MO-274 module)
  • Temperature range – 0° +70°C or -40° to +85° C

SAMA5D3-CM boards support Linux 3.6.9 and Android 4.0. Those are actually the modules used in Atmel SAMA5D3 evaluation kits, so Linux and Android support, starter kits, as well as documentation (except schematics and PCB docs), directly point to on Ronetix website. The company can also provide PEEDI, “a JTAG Emulator and Flash Programmer capable to program in standalone mode NOR Flash devices, NAND Flash devices with JFFS2 image or bootloader, DataFlash devices.” According to SAMA5D3 Series Evaluation Kits User-Guide, Ronetix is not the only company providing SAMA5D3 CPU modules for Atmel evaluation kits, as Embest modules are also available, but I could not find any info on those.

You can find more information on Ronetix SAMA5D3x-CM page.

Via Embedded Star.

Embest SBC8118 Single Board Computer Based on TI AM1808 Processor

October 30th, 2012 No comments

Embest recently unveiled the SBC8118 Single Board Computer, an industrial grade SBC powered by Texas Instruments AM1808 ARM9 processor with 128MB Mobile DDR2 RAM and 128MB NAND Flash. The SBC8118 Single Board Computer is aimed at medical, industrial automation, control, communication, and other cost sensitive applications.

As you can see from the picture above, it is comprised of a CPU board and an expansion board.

Here are the specifications of the CPU board (Mini8118):

  • Processor – 375MHz TI AM1808 ARM926EJ-S Microcontroller (also supports 456MHz operation)
  • Memory – 128 MByte Mobile DDR2
  • Storage – 128 MByte NAND Flash (on the rear of the board) & 8 Mbit SPI Flash
  • Connectors – Two 2.0mm space 3*27-pin dip connectors

and the expansion board:

  • Audio/Video Interfaces:
    • TFT LCD interface (50-pin FPC connector, RGB565)
    • 4 line resistive Touch Screen interface
    • Camera interface (30-pin FPC connector, supports CCD and CMOS cameras)
  • Data Transfer Interfaces:
    • Serial port:
      • 1 x 5 line Debug serial port, RS232 voltage
      • 2 x 3 line serial ports (PRU serial port), RS232 voltage
      • 1 x 3 line serial port, TTL voltage (2.0mm pitch 5-pin connector)
    • USB Host ports:
      • 2 x USB2.0 (USB-A Type)
      • 2 x USB2.0 (2.0mm pitch 5-pin connector)
    • SD card slot
    • Ethernet: 10/100Mbps, RJ45 connector
    • RS485 interface
    • 1 x Serial ATA connector, supports both SATA I (1.5 Gbps) and SATA II (3.0 Gbps)
    • 14-pin JTAG interface
  • Input Interfaces and Other Facilities:
    • 1x 4-pin SATA power interface (supports 2.5-inch hard disk)
    • 1x  4-bit DIP switch (supports boot mode selection)
    • RESET button
    • User button
    • Power indicator
    • User LED
    • Buzzer

The board measures 58.0 mm x 45.0 mm (6 layer PCB), it can operate between -45~80 Celsius with a humidity Range of 20% to 90%. The power consumption is 125mA @ 12V.

SBC8118 Function Block Diagram

WiFi, Camera and 3G (CDMA2000 & WCDMA) modules  are also available, as well as 4.3” and 7” LCD display modules. The company provides BSP for Linux 2.6.33 and WinCE 6.0.

The board costs $189 and comes with a 12V power adapter, a cross serial cable and a product CD including user manual, schematic in PDF format, datasheet, Linux 2.6.33 and WinCE 6.0 BSP. You can also purchase the board with a 4.3″ LCD ($299) and 7″ LCD ($319). Further information is available on Embest SBC8118 page.

Via: Embedded Star

List of 39 Low Cost Linux Friendly Boards and Products

June 26th, 2012 20 comments

Dmitry (omgfire), one of my awesome readers, compiled a great tabular list of Linux friendly boards and products that sells for less than $300 US (usually less than $200). This list includes technical details such as the processor, GPU, memory, NAND flash, connectivity, ports, supported Linux distributions… as well as availability and pricing information.

There are currently 39 Linux devices in total. The vast majority are ARM based boards, but he also included 2 x86 products by VIA, but those are relatively pricey ($265 and up).

Here’s a summary list with SoCs used, links to blog posts and product pages (if available), as well as price information.

35 USD Raspberry Pi Broadcom BCM2835

Raspberry Pi Board Model B

    • Raspberry Pi Model B – Broadcom BCM2835 (ARM11) – Blog post (That’s my first post about the R-Pi last year, and the board is much different now) –  Product page – Price: $35 + shipping
    • Rikomagic MK802 – Allwiner A10 (Cortex A8) –  Blog post –  Price: $70 to $80 inc. shipping
    • Mele A1000 – AllWinner A10 (Cortex A8) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: $70 + shipping to $100 (inc. shipping)
    • Rhombus-Tech A10 EOMA-68 – AllWinner A10 (Cortex A8) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: $15 (Estimated BOM Cost only)
    • Gooseberry board – AllWinner A10 (Cortex A8) – Product page – Price: 40 GBP + shipping
    • A13-OLinuXino – AllWinner A13 (Cortex A8) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: 40 Euros (without Wi-Fi) or 50 Euros (Wi-Fi version)
    • VIA APC – Wondermedia WM8650 (ARM11) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: $49 + shipping
    • VIA ARTiGO A1200 – VIA Eden X2 (x86) –  Product page – Price: $310 + shipping
    • VIA ARTiGO A1150 – VIA Eden X2 (x86) – Product page – Price: $265 + shipping
    • BeagleBoard Rev. C4 – TI OMAP3530 (Cortex A8) – Blog posts (articles related to Beagleboard) –  Product page – Price: $125 + shipping
    • BeagleBoard-xM – TI DM3730 (Cortex A8) – Product page – Price: $149 + shipping


    • BeagleBone – TI Sitara AM3359 (Cortex A8) – Blog post –  Product page– Price: $89 + shipping
    • PandaBoard – TI OMAP4430 (Cortex A9) – Blog posts (articles related to Pandaboard) –  Product page – Price: $174 + shipping
    • PandaBoard ES – TI OMAP4460 (Cortex A9) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: $189 + shipping
    • Cotton Candy – Samsung Exynos 4210 (Cortex A9) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: $199 + shipping
    • CuBox – Marvell Armada 510 (ARMv7 architecture like Cortex-A) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: $135 + shipping
    • Hawkboard – TI OMAP-L138 (ARM9) – Product page – Price: $161 + shipping
    • ISEE IGEP v2 – TI DM3730 (Cortex A8) –  Product page – Price: 188 Euros + shipping
    • ISEE IGEP COM Proton – TI DM3730 (Cortex A8) – Product page – Price: 160 Euros
    • ISEE IGEP COM Module – TI DM3730 (Cortex A8) – Product page – Price: 164 Euros
    • Gumstix Overo series – TI Sitara and OMAP processors (Cortex A8) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: $115 to $229 + shipping
    • Origen Board – Samsung Exynos 4210 (Cortex A9) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: $199 + shipping .By the way, it seems the Quad core version is coming in Q3 2012.
    • Ionics Plug Nimbus – Marvel Kirkwood 6281 (ARM9) – Product page – Price: $99 + shipping
    • Ionics Plug Stratus – Marvel Kirkwood 6281 (ARM9) – Product page – Price: $139 to $145 + shipping
    • SheevaPlug dev kit (Basic) – Marvel Kirkwood 6281 (ARM9) –  Product page – Price: $101.99 + Shipping
    • GuruPlug Standard – Marvel Kirkwood 6281 (ARM9) – Product page – Price: $103 + Shipping
    • GuruPlug Display – Marvell ARMADA 168 (ARMv7 architecture) – Product page – Price: $199 + Shipping
    • DreamPlug – Marvel Kirkwood 6281 (ARM9) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: $163 + Shipping
    • D2Plug – Marvell PXA510 –Product page – Price: $253 + shipping
    • Trim-Slice series – NVIDIA Tegra 2 (Cortex A9) –Product page – Price: $213 – $338 + Shipping
ST Ericsson Nova A9500 Development Board

Snowball PDK Lite

  • Snowball – ST-Ericsson Nova A9500 (Cortex A9) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: 144.84 € – 322.57 € + shipping
  • i.MX53 Quick Start Board – Freescale i.MX53 (Cortex a8) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: $149 + shipping
  • Pineriver H24/MiniX – AllWinner A10 (Cortex A8) – Blog post –  Product page – Price: $77 inc. shipping
  • Smallart UHOST – AllWinner A10 (Cortex A8) – Blog post (Oval Elephant HDMI stick based on UHOST) –  Product page – Price: $89 (512MB), $95 (1GB)with shipping
  • Genesi Efika MX Smarttop – Freescale i.MX515 (Cortex A8) – Product page – Price: $129 + shipping
  • Embest DevKit8600 – TI Sitara AM3359 (Cortex A8) – Product page – Price: $189 + shipping
  • Embest SBC8018 – TI Sitara AM1808 (ARM9) – Product page – Price: $99 + shipping
  • Embest SBC8530 – TI DM3730 (Cortex A8) – Product page – Price: $199 + shipping
  • Embest DevKit8500D – TI DM3730 (Cortex A8) – Product page – Price: $199 + shipping

The list is obviously not exhaustive (this would include hundreds of boards), but this still pretty good. Bear in mind, that is also included some recently phased out boards (e.g. Hawkboard) and devices (e.g. Genesi Efika MX Smarttop), but you might get one of those second hand on eBay or similar sites.

You can download Dmitry’s PDF file that shows side-by-side comparison of 5 devices at a time.