Atmel SAMA5D3 Xplained Board Unboxing and Quick Start Guide

Atmel SAMA5D3 Xplained is an evaluation board running Linux powered by SAMA5D36 ARM Cortex A5 micro-processor with 256 MB DDR2, 256 MB flash, two Ethernet ports, 3 USB connectors, and more. This embedded board targets industrial automation, networks, robotics, control panels and wearable applications. The only video output is an LCD connector so it is reserved for headless or flat panel based applications. You can check full specs on my Atmel SAMA5D3 Xplained announcement post. The company kindly sent me a sample, so that I can share my experience with the board. I’ll first post some unboxing pictures, show how to get started with the pre-installed image, and build my own Linux image. The board can be purchased for $79 from Atmel e-Store, as well as several distributors (P/N: ATSAMA5D3-XPLD). Atmel SAMA5D3 Xplained Unboxing I’ve been sent the board via DHL in the following package, which gives  a short desscription of the board, and what it is used for. There’s …

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$14 Digispark Pro is a Tiny Arduino Ready Board Supporting over 25 Shields (Crowdfunding)

Digispark Pro is yet another small Arduino compatible board, but it costs only $14, and over 25 small form factor shields for Wi-Fi, BLE, mesh networking, etc.. are available for the platform. Let’s get straight into the hardware specs: MCU – AVR MCU @ 16 Mhz  with 16KB Flash Memory (14.5K+ after bootloader) I/Os 14 I/O pins (2 shared with USB) I2C, true SPI, UART, LIN, and USI ADC on 10 pins 3 PWM Channels (which can be assigned to a selection of pins) USB – Micro USB for debugging, communication and power Misc – One button usable as reset, program, or user button, Power and Test/Status LEDs,  user accessible solder jumpers to disable LEDs, and other features for lower power consumption Power – 5V via micro USB, or External Source – 5v or 6-16v (automatic selection). On-board 500ma 5V regulator Dimensions – 26.7mm x 18.3mm The board is compatible with Arduino IDE 1.5  for MaC OSX, Windows, and Linux, …

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Ingenic Newton Platform for Wearables is Powered by MIPS Based JZ4775 SoC

Imagination Technologies has published a blog post about Newton, a tiny reference design for wearables based on Ingenic JZ4775 MIPS SoC found in some recent smartwatches such as SmartQ Z1 (The CPU not the module). This module targets wearables, IoT, healthcare, home appliances, security, industrial control, consumer electronics and more. Newton Specifications: SoC – Ingenic JZ4775 MIPS Xburst processor @ 1 GHz with 2D GPU, and VPU supporting [email protected] for MPEG-2, MPEG-4, VC-1, H.264, VP8, and RV9 codecs. System Memory –  Up to 3GB mobile DDR3/DDR2/LPDDR1 Storage – Up to 32 GB eMCP eMMC flash Display Support – LCD or EPD, with touch panel and  backlight Audio – Digital MIC and Speaker Connectivity – 4-in-1 combo with Wi-Fi (802.11 a/b/g/n at 2.4/5 GHz), Bluetooth 4.0 + EDR (including Bluetooth LE support), NFC, and FM Sensors – 3-axis gyroscope, accelerometer magnetometer, pressure, humidity and temperature, bio-signal detection and processing USB – USB OTG signals Expansion ports – UART, I2C, USB, GPIO, and …

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Texas Instruments Tiva C Series Connected LaunchPad Unboxing and Quick Start Guide

Texas Instruments Tiva C Series TM4C1294 Connected LaunchPad is an evaluation kit for the Internet of things with a Cortex-M4 MCU (Tiva TM4C1294), an Ethernet port, and USB interfaces for power and debugging. At $19.99 including shipping via Fedex, it’s one of the cheapest ways to get devices online. I’ve purchased one via TI e-Store, and already received it. I’ll post some pictures of the kit, go through the Quick Start Guide, and provides links to resources to go further. EK-TM4C1294XL Connected LaunchPad Unboxing I’ve received the kit in the package below with feature a QR Code linking to http://www.ti.com/launchpad, as well basic specifications (refer to my previous post for specs), list of tools (Code composer studio, Tivaware, Keil, IAR…) and package content. In the box we’ve got the board itself, a retractable Ethernet cable, a USB to micro USB cable for power and debugging, and Connect LaunchPad Quick Start Guide. The Quick Start Guide describes the boards, the different …

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Texas Instruments Tiva C Series TM4C1294 Connected Launchpad Sells for $20

There are now many ultra low cost MCU development kit selling for $15 to $25 such as STMicro Discovery Board, but for this price, they’ll usually just feature the MCU, a micro USB, pin header, maybe and maybe some sensors, and they usually lack any form of connectivity, at least without extra hardware. With Tiva C Series TM4C129 Connect Launchpad, Texas Instruments brings a board that can be used for IoT application out of the box thanks to the addition of an Ethernet port. The board sells for just $19.99, which means you could easily make something like a connected 4-relay control system for about $25. Connected LaunchPad evaluation kit specifications: MCU – Texas Instruents TM4C1294NCPDT ARM Cortex-M4 @ 120MHz with floating point, 1MB Flash, 256KB SRAM, 6KB EEPROM, Integrated 10/100 Ethernet MAC+PHY, data protection hardware, 8x 32-bit timers, dual 12-bit 2MSPS ADCs, motion control PWMs, USB H/D/O, and many additional serial communication interfaces Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet Expansions Dual …

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$79 Atmel ATSAMA5D3 Xplained Arduino Compatible, Open Source Hardware Board Powered by SAMA5D3 ARM Cortex-A5 Processor

A few days ago, at Embedded World 2014, Atmel has unveiled ATSAMA5D3 Xplained evaluation board based on SAMA5D36 ARM Cortex A5 micro-processor with 256 MB DDR2, 256 MB flash and numerous ports and expansion connectors, that targets industrial automation, networks, robotics, control panels and wearable applications. Atmel is one of the rare companies that provides support for the latest long term kernel (3.10) and mainline for their embedded solutions, and their latest board is fully open source hardware. Let’s have a look at the board specifications: MPU – Atmel SAMA5D36 Cortex-A5 Microprocessor @ 536 MHz System Memory – 2GBit DDR2 (Micron) Storage – 2GBit Flash (Micron), SD/MMCPlus 8-bit Card slot, 1x Micro SD Card 4-bit slot footprint (meaning not soldered) Connectivity – 1x Ethernet 10/100/1000M, 1x Ethernet 10/100M USB –  1x micro USB Device connector, 2x USB Host connectors Debugging – 1x 6-lead 3V3-level serial port, 10-pin J-TAG connector Expansion – Arduino R3-compatible headers (6) and LCD connector Misc – …

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BroadLink SP2 Wi-Fi Smart Socket for iOS and Android Adds Support for Energy Monitoring, Motion Sensing

Broadlink SP1, a low cost Wi-Fi smart socket released last year,  allows you to control your electric appliance with your mobile device running iOS or Android. You could turn it on or off, set timers, and so on. An updated model is now available, Broadlink SP2, that adds energy monitoring to the features found in the previous model, to track your historic and live power consumption on your smartphone or tablet, as well as a motion sensor to automatically turn off the lights, for instance, if you are away (Auto Home / Auto Away feature). The hardware specifications are very similar to SP1 except it’s using a case made of polycarbonate plastic instead of ABS, and the device is a bit bigger: Material – PC Wi-Fi – 802.11 b/g/n Power Plug – Three flat-pin plug (Australia type) Voltage – 100~265V @ 50-60 Hz Output Current – 10A Output Power – 2300W max. Dimensions – 12.3 cm x 7 cm x …

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Alps Electric Magnetic Field Sensor Measures 1.15 x 1.15 mm, Software Algo Adds Gyroscope Function

I’m really impressed with the recent miniaturization of boards and components. Back in the days (in 2012), many people were amazed at the credit card size of the Raspberry Pi ARM Linux computer. Since then, we’ve seen many other ARM Linux board with similar or even smaller sizes, and on a broader scope, many smaller and smaller hardware and components: Olimex launched OLIMEXINO-85S Arduino compatible board about the size of a micro SD Card, eConais unveiled WiSmart EC19D Wi-Fi module measuring 8×8 mm, Freescale recently announced Kinetis KL03 Cortex M0+ MCU measuring 1.6 x 2.0 mm in its smallest package, etc… Today, I’ve come across another tiny chip, the world smallest magnetic field sensor by Alps Electric that measures only 1.15 x 1.15 x 0.56 mm. Height does matter too. It’s about 60% smaller than previous product by the company, but only slightly smaller than Asahi Kasei Microdevices’ AK09911C which measures 1.2 x 1.2 x 0.5mm (0.57mm including solder balls). The measurement range …

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