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COM runs Linux on 2GHz quad-core AMD SoC

Dec 2, 2013  |  Eric Brown
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MSC Embedded announced a Linux-ready COM Express Type 6 computer-on-module built around AMD’s Embedded G-Series system-on-chip, ranging from a quad-core 2GHz SoC to a dual-core 1GHz processor that runs on only 9 Watts. MSC’s C6C-GX COM measures 95 x 95 mm, and features I/O including dual display interfaces at up to 4096 x 2160 pixels, dual SATA, eight USB ports, and PCI Express expansion.

AMD’s Embedded G-Series SoC combines an x86 Jaguar CPU along with Radeon HD 8000 graphics and an I/O controller on a single system-on-chip. It’s also found on computer-on-modules (COMs) including Hectronic’s Qseven-based H6069 and Congatec’s COM Express Type 6 based Conga-TCG.



MSC C6C-GX COM Express Type 6 computer-on-module
(click image to enlarge)

 

MSC’s C6C-GX module is available with four different quad-core and dual-core flavors of the G-Series SoC ranging from the 2.0GHz, 25W TDP GX-420CA to the 1.0GHz, 9W TDP GX-210HA (see spec list below). The processors are said to support AMD64 64-bit ISA technology.

The C6C-GX COM is designed primarily for controlling large displays in medical, infotainment, digital signage, POS/POI, and gaming applications. The AMD SoC’s Radeon HD 8000 Series GPU includes a hardware video decoder for H.264, MPEG4, VC-1, WMV, as well as the VCE 2.0 video compression engine (H.264 and SVC). The GPU also supports DirectX 11.1, OpenGL 4.2, and OpenCL 1.2 standards.

The module supports dual independent displays, with a choice of LVDS, VGA, and a Digital Display Interface (DDI) that provides DisplayPort 1.2, DVI, and HDMI 1.4a at resolutions of up to 2560 x 1600 at 60Hz or 4096 x 2160 at 30Hz. There’s also an Embedded DisplayPort 1.3 that shares a connection with the LVDS interface.

Like all the I/O on the board, the display interfaces are expressed via COM Express Type 6 connectors on the bottom of the module. Also onboard are dual SODIMM slots for up to 16GB of DDR3 RAM, as well as a microSD slot.

The C6C-GX module offers a gigabit Ethernet interface, and supports dual SATA 3Gbps ports, dual USB 3.0 ports, and six USB 2.0 ports. HD audio and LPC connections are also available, along with three PCI Express (PCIe) x1 channels and PCIe graphics (PEG) x8.

Board Support Packages (BSPs) are available for Linux and Windows Embedded Standard 7. A starter kit called the C6-SK-GX-T6T2-KIT001 appears to be similar to the C6-SK-A7-T6T2 kit. The kit provides a choice of MSC’s C6-AD-T6T2 or C6-MB-EVA ATX carrier boards, as well as an active heatsink and fan and dual SODIMM RAM modules. Other cooling options are also available.



COM Express Type 6 baseboards: C6-AD-T6T2 (left) and C6-MB-EVA
(click image to enlarge)

 

The AD-T6T2 carrier board measures 184 x 140mm and offers a single PCI Express socket, as well as multiple USB 3.0 and SATA ports, and DisplayPort, HDMI, VGA, and HD audio ports. The MB-EVA board is substantially larger, at 305 x 244mm, and offers more interfaces. These include more PCIe interfaces, more USB ports, and mSATA in addition to SATA. The board also adds an Embedded DisplayPort in addition to the other display interfaces, and provides POST code display.

Specifications listed by MSC for its C6C-GX module include:

  • Processor — AMD Embedded G-Series SoC with Radeon HD 8000 graphics
    • GX-420CA — quad-core 2GHz, 2MB L2 cache, 25W TDP, Radeon HD 8400E
    • GX-415GA — quad-core 1.5GHz, 2MB L2 cache, 15W TDP, Radeon HD 8330E
    • GX-217GA — dual-core 1.65GHz, 1MB L2 cache, 15W TDP, Radeon HD 8280E
    • GX-210HA — dual-core 1GHz, 1MB L2 cache, 9W TDP, Radeon HD 8310E
  • Memory — up to 16GB DDR3 SDRAM (1333/1600MHz) via 2x 204-pin SODIMMs; microSD slot (bootable)
  • Display interfaces:
    • 24-bit, dual-channel LVDS (shared with Emb. DP) up to 1920 x 1200
    • VGA, up to 2048 x 1536
    • Digital Display Interface (DisplayPort 1.2, HDMI 1.4, DVI) up to 2560 x 1650 (4096 x 2160@30Hz)
    • Embedded DisplayPort 1.3 (shared with LVDS), up to 2560 x 1600
    • Dual independent display support
  • Networking — gigabit Ethernet controller (Intel i210)
  • Other I/O:
    • USB — 6x USB 2.0; 2x USB 3.0
    • 2x SATA (up to 3Gbps)
    • LPC
    • HD audio
  • Expansion –– 3x PCIe Gen. 2; PCIe Graphics (PEG)x4
  • Other features — Infineon TPM; watchdog; RTC; system monitoring
  • Power:
    • +12V +/-10%; 5V standby (optional)
    • 12W to 30W typical power consumption, depending on SoC model
    • 4-pin header (12V) for CPU fan (PWM speed controls)
  • Operating temperature — 0 to 60°C
  • Dimensions — 95 x 95 x 13mm; COM Express Type 6
  • Operating system — BSPs for Linux; Windows Embedded Standard 7

MSC did not provide C6C-GX pricing or availability details. More information may be found at MSC’s C6C-GX product page.
 

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