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SBC runs on a Vortex86EX2 SoC with a split personality

Nov 4, 2020 — by Eric Brown — 3243 views

ICOP’s Linux-ready, 2.4W “VEX2-6415” SBC features DM&P’s x86-based dual-core Vortex86EX2, which enables two OSes to run at once. The SBC offers dual LAN ports, dual mini-PCIe interfaces with SIM, and -40 to 85°C support.

Taiwan-based ICOP, which primarily manufactures embedded boards and systems based on x86 CPUs from its sister company DM&P Group, has announced an SBC that showcases DM&P’s Vortex86EX2. Designed for IoT, automation, and other space-limited embedded applications, the 100 x 66mm VEX2-6415 follows ICOP’s 3.5-inch VEX2-6427 and PC/104 form-factor VEX2-6454 SBCs, which the company announced in conjunction with DM&P’s Vortex86EX (VEX2) announcement back in Feb. 2019. DM&P also offers an official VEX2‐6890 evaluation board for the SoC.



VEX2-6415, front and back
(click image to enlarge)

The industrial-focused Vortex86EX2 is unusual in that each of its CPU cores can run its own OS and BIOS instance independently, without requiring a hypervisor and “without affecting each other.” The x86-architecture SoC has a 600MHz Master core “for UI” and a 400MHz Slave core “for real-time I/O,” according to DM&P’s terminology.

The Vortex86EX2 cores each have their own FPUs and DDR3 blocks and can be configured in fail-safe mode. The headless processor supports 10/100 Ethernet, CAN, and PCIe and ISA buses, among other I/O, and supports -40 to 85°C temperatures.



Vortex86EX2 block diagram (left) and VEX2-6415 detail view
(click images to enlarge)

DM&P has long offered embedded focused, low-power x86 processors dating back to the 300MHz Vortex86SX. The Vortex86EX2 replaces the single-core, 300MHz Vortex86EX, which has appeared on products including DM&P’s 86Duino SBCs and SOM-128-EX module, as well as its Ebox-3100 mini-PC.

DM&P also offers a single-core, 800MHz Vortex86DX2, found on numerous ICOP products, including some Qseven and SMARC modules and 3.5-inch VDX2-6526 SBC. It also appeared on Adlink’s CoreModule1-86DX2 PC/104 board. DMP’s high-end platform is the 1GHz, dual-core Vortex86DX3, which has appeared on PC/104 boards including Diamond’s Helix and WinSystems’ PC/104-Plus form factor PPM-C412.

The VEX2-6415 supports Linux, DOS, QNX, FreeBSD, and Windows Embedded 7 and CE 6.0. The board is equipped with 512MB or 1GB DDR3 with either dual microSD slots or a microSD slot plus 4GB eMMC.



3.5-inch VEX2-6427 (left) and PC/104 VEX2-6454
(click images to enlarge)

Unlike the 3.5-inch VEX2-6427, there is only one real-world coastline port on the VEX2-6415: One of the two 10/100 Ethernet interfaces has an RJ45 port. Like the VEX2-6427 there are dual mini-PCIe slots and a 4G-ready SIM card slot, and they are standard here rather than optional.

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I/O expressed via headers includes 3x USB 2.0, 2x RS-232, 2x RS-485, 16-bit GPIO, console, PS/2, and Parallel printer (LPT). The 74-gram board has a 5VDC @ 480mA input and a reset button and consumes 2.4 watts under typical operation. Both -20 to 70°C and -40 to 85°C models are available.

 
Further information

No pricing or availability information was provided for the VEX2-6415. More information may be found in ICOP’s announcement and product page.

 

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