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Compact embedded PCs run Linux on the Jetson Nano, NX, and Xavier

Apr 21, 2020 — by Eric Brown 2,277 views

[Updated: April 22] — Aaeon is prepping a compact, Jetson Xavier NX-based “Boxer-8251AI” embedded PC based on a recent Jetson Nano-based “Boxer-8221AI.” Also in the works is a larger “Boxer-8240AI” system based on the AGX Xavier with 4x PoE ports.

Aaeon has posted preliminary product pages for Boxer-8251AI and Boxer-8240AI embedded computers, which run Linux on Nvidia’s new Jetson Xavier NX and high-end Jetson AGX Xavier modules, respectively. The Boxer-8251AI is almost identical to a recently launched, Jetson Nano based Boxer-8221AI system, which we will also cover below. All three systems run ACLinux 4.9 or above, based on Ubuntu 18.04.

Boxer-8251AI (left) and Boxer-8221AI
(click images to enlarge)

[Update: Shortly after we posted this report, Aaeon formally announced the Boxer-8251AI and Boxer-8240AI. Aaeon also mentioned there’s also a new Boxer-8222AI mini-PC based on the Jetson Nano, but without posting a link or product details. In addition, the company pointed to a new version of the Jetson TX2-based Boxer-8120AI, which we covered back in 2018. There was no mention of any feature changes on this quad-GbE system, and the major ports and appearance look to be the similar except for the addition of a heatsink on top of the unit.]

The Jetson Xavier NX brings a mix of features from the Jetson AGX Xavier on the high end and the Jetson Nano on the low. The Jetson Xavier NX module has a more powerful CPU and GPU than the earlier, 87 x 50mm Jetson TX2 while shrinking to the 70 x 45mm size of the Jetson Nano.


The Xavier NX has 6x ARMv8.2 Carmel CPU cores, compared to 8x on the AGX Xavier, and provides graphics and AI processing on its 384-core Volta GPU, compared to the 512-core Volta GPU on the AGX Xavier. By comparison, the Nano has 4x 1.43GHz Cortex-A57 cores and a 128-core Maxwell GPU.

Xavier NX

The Xavier NX can run at a low of 10W — twice the minimum power consumption of the Nano. At that level, it can deliver 14 TOPS neural processing power, rising to 21 TOPS at 15W. By comparison, the AGX Xavier runs at up to 30 TOPS. The Xavier NX has twice the RAM of the Nano with 8GB LPDDR4 and similarly supplies 16GB eMMC.

Other Xavier NX-based embedded systems include Diamond’s JetBox-Floyd, which is built around its new Floyd Carrier board for the Xavier NX.

Boxer-8251AI and Boxer-8221AI

The 88 x 75 x 39mm Jetson Xavier NX-based Boxer-8251AI and Jetson Nano-driven Boxer-8221AI are smaller than the similarly fanless, Nano-based Boxer-8220AI, which we covered last November. While that close cousin to the earlier, Jetson TX2 based Boxer-8170AI has 5x GbE ports for IP cameras, the Boxer-8251AI and Boxer-8221AI are limited to one GbE port.

Boxer-8221AI, front and back
(click images to enlarge)

The Boxer-8251AI and Boxer-8221AI provide 8GB (NX) or 4GB (Nano) LPDDR4 on the Jetson modules. You can order the modules either with 16GB eMMC or with the eMMC replaced with a microSD slot outside the modules.

The systems are further equipped with GbE, HDMI, micro-USB (for flashing) and 4x USB 3.2 Gen1 (USB 3.0) ports. The only I/O difference is that the Nano-based Boxer-8221AI has 2x RS-232 ports compared to one for the Boxer-8251AI. Both systems provide an M.2 E-key 2230 slot for a WiFi module.

The Xavier NX-based Boxer-8251AI has a 10-24VDC input while the Boxer-8221AI has a 12VDC input, both via terminal blocks. Power and recovery buttons are also available.

The wall-mountable, 0.4 kg systems have 95% @ 40°C, non-condensing humidity resistance. The Boxer-8251AI can operate at -20 to 60°C temperatures and survive 5Grms/5~500Hz vibration while the Boxer-8221AI has a narrower -20 to 50°C range and 3Grms vibration resistance.


The Boxer-8240AI is Aaeon’s first Jetson AGX Xavier based product. Other AGX Xavier based systems include Aitech’s EV178 Development System for A178 Thunder.

(click image to enlarge)

No dimensions were listed for the Boxer-8240AI, but it looks to be considerably larger than the Boxer-8251AI and Boxer-8221AI. The wall-mountable computer has a -25 to 55°C range, 5 ~ 95% @ 40C, non-condensing humidity tolerance, and 1Grms/5~500Hz vibration resistance.

The Boxer-8240AI adds to the AGX Xavier module’s 16GB LPDDR4 and 32GB eMMC 5.1 with a UFS microSD slot and a storage-friendly M.2 M-key 2280 slot with PCIe x4. There is also an M.2 E-key 2230 for WiFi and Bluetooth.

The Boxer-8240AI is equipped with 4x PoE (802.11af) LAN ports with total power output of 60W. Other ports include 2x USB 3.2 Gen1 Type-C ports and standard USB 3.2 Gen1 and USB 2.0 host ports.

You also get 2x RS-232/422/485 and single HDMI 2.0 and DisplayPort 1.4 ports, as well as audio line-in and -out jacks. A 40-pin expansion header provides UART, SPI, CAN, I2C, I2S, DMIC, and GPIOs. The system is powered by a 12-24V terminal block input with a power switch.

Further information

No pricing or availability information was provided for the “preliminary” Boxer-8251AI and Boxer-8240AI and the “new” Boxer-8221AI. More information may be found on Aaeon’s Boxer-8251AI, Boxer-8221AI, and Boxer-8240AI product pages.

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One response to “Compact embedded PCs run Linux on the Jetson Nano, NX, and Xavier”

  1. ProDigit says:

    They really should create a 12V micro motherboard with 1 or 2 pcie out slots, and let GPUs do the job of data crunching!

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