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Tiniest i.MX8M Mini module yet ships with Linux BSP

Jan 29, 2020 — by Eric Brown — 1035 views

Kontron’s “SoM SL i.MX8M Mini” module combines NXP’s Mini SoC with up to 4GB LPDDR4 and 128GB eMMC. The -25 to 85°C tolerant module ships with a Linux BSP and measures only 30 x 30mm.

Kontron has announced a solderable compute module that appears to be the smallest yet based on NXP’s i.MX8M Mini. The 30 x 30mm SoM SL i.MX8M Mini joins other tiny Mini modules including Forlinx’s 56 x 36mm SoM FETMX8MM-C, InnoComm’s 50 x 45mm WB15, Varicite’s 55 x 30mm
DART-MX8M-Mini, and SolidRun’s i.MX 8M Mini SOM, as well as several larger modules.



SoM SL i.MX8M Mini
(click image to enlarge)

The module ships with NXP’s 14nm-fabricated, i.MX8M Mini Quad with 4x Cortex-A53 cores that are here clocked to 1.6GHz rather than the 1.8GHz maximum. This is perhaps due to the module’s -25 to 85°C range. The SoC integrates a 400MHz Cortex-M4 core and GCNanoUltra (3D) and GC320 (2D) graphics cores. Video output tops out at 1080p60.

The Mini SoC is not only small, but also very power efficient. When running Linux, the SoM SL i.MX8M Mini module typically runs at under 1W, with maximum consumption running at less than 3.5W, says Kontron.

The module ships with a “ready2use” Linux Board Support Package (BSP) based on Yocto Project code. This “full development environment” includes all drivers for communications and LCD touchscreens, says Kontron. (Windows 10 IoT Core is also supported.) The module ships with encryption technologies, secure boot, and other security features.

The SoM SL i.MX8M Mini ships standard with 1GB LPDDR4, 2MB NOR flash, and 8GB eMMC, but is available with up to 4GB RAM and 128GB eMMC. If you’re wondering how all that could fit on a tiny module like this, today’s eMMC packages often have the same dimensions for both 8GB and 128GB.

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The module is equipped with a GbE controller and supports I/O including 2x USB 2.0 OTG 4x UART, 4x I2C, 2x SPI, 3x PWM, and 27x GPIO. You also get PCIe and QSPI interfaces plus 4- and 8-bit SDIO links. The module also provides 4-lane MIPI-CSI2 and DSI connections.

The 267-pin module is machine solderable, thereby saving on the cost of connectors and manual labor, says Kontron. An unnamed, 4.3-inch diagonal baseboard is optional.

 
Further information

No pricing or availability information was provided for the SoM SL i.MX8M Mini. More information may be found in Kontron’s announcement and product page.
 

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