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Mini Apollo Lake module takes the heat — and the cold

Dec 8, 2016 — by Eric Brown 725 views

Congatec’s “Conga-MA5” is a Linux-ready COM Express Compact Type 10 Mini module with Apollo Lake SoCs, up to 128GB eMMC 5.1, and -40 to 85°C support.

Congatec was one of the first embedded vendors to announce computer-on-modules based on Intel’s Atom E3900 and other Apollo Lake Pentium and Celeron SoCs. The offerings included a Qseven module, a SMARC 2.0 module, and a COM Express Compact Type 6 Conga-TCA5. The company has now followed up with a COM Express Compact Type 10 Mini Conga-MA5 module.

(click image to enlarge)

Like the 95 x 95mm Conga-TCA5, the 84 x 55mm Conga-MA5 supports -40 to 85°C temperatures as an option to 0 to 60°C. The earlier Intel Braswell based Conga-MA4 Type 10 Mini was limited to commercial temperatures. The only other Apollo Lake Type 10 Mini COM we’ve seen is Adlink’s nanoX-AL.

The module can run Linux, Android, and Windows 10 Enterprise and IoT Core. It also supports the Yocto Project based Wind River Intelligent Device Platform (IDP) XT for IoT deployments.


Like Congatec’s earlier Apollo Lake modules, the Conga-MA5 support all five Apollo Lake SoCs:

  • Intel Atom x7-E3950 — 4x cores @ 1.6GHz/2.0GHz, 2MB L2 cache, 12W TDP
  • Intel Atom x5-E3940 — 4x cores @ 1.6GHz/1.8GHz, 2MB L2 cache, 9W TDP
  • Intel Atom x5-E3930 — 2x cores @ 1.3GHz/1.8GHz, 1MB L2 cache, 6.5W TDP
  • Intel Celeron N3350 — 2x cores @ 1.1GHz/2.4GHz, 1MB L2 cache, 6W TDP
  • Intel Pentium N4200 — 4x cores @ 1.1GHz/2.5GHz, 2MB L2 cache, 6W TDP

The Conga-MA5 offers up to 8GB of DDR3L (1867MT/s). The announcement says you can load up to 128GB of onboard eMMC 5.1, although the datasheet lists a 64GB eMMC maximum, as well as standard SKUs that range from 16GB to 32GB, and the product page makes no mention of eMMC. The announcement also says the eMMC can be optionally replaced with dual SATA III interfaces. The product page and datasheet, however, suggest that the 6Gbps SATA interfaces are standard.

Conga-MA5 block diagram
(click image to enlarge)

The module provides an Intel I210 GbE controller, plus a DDI interface with DisplayPort 1.2 up to 4096×[email protected] or HDMI 1.4b at up to 1200×[email protected] An 18/24-bit single-channel LVDS Interface can be swapped out for eDP 1.3. There’s no mention of multiple simultaneous display capabilities.

The Conga-MA5 is further equipped with 2x USB 3.0, 6x USB 2.0, 4x GPIO, and 2x UART, as well as HD audio, I2C, LPC, SMBus, and SDIO. You also get 3x or 4x PCIe Gen2 interfaces, optional TPM, embedded BIOS features, and a Congatec Board Controller with a watchdog and other functions. ACPI 5.0 power management is also available.

Conga-MEVAL carrier

The Conga-MA5 is available with a Conga-MEVAL Type 10 Mini carrier board, which is supplied with schematics. The 294 x 244mm board has industrial temperature support and a 12V input with an ATX connector and optional 4.75 to 20V module voltage power connectors.

Conga-MEVAL from top (left) and detail view
(click images to enlarge)

The Conga-MEVAL carrier provides a GbE port, dual SATA slots, an SD slot, and connectors for all of the module’s video connections. You also get 2x USB 3.0, 6x USB 2.0, a micro-USB client, 18x GPIO, SPDIF, and an HD audio codec.

For expansion, there are dual PCIe slots (x1 and x4), as well as a mini-PCIe slot and an Express Card interface. A PCI POST code display and system speaker are available, plus a CMOS battery and power and reset buttons

Further information

The Conga-MA5 is said to be “released” and available for order, and the Conga-MEVAL carrier appears to be available, as well. More information may be found on Congatec’s Conga-MA5 and Conga-MEVAL product pages.

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