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Qseven duo showcases i.MX8M and i.MX8Quad

Jun 22, 2018 — by Eric Brown 731 views

Seco unveiled a pair Qseven modules that run Linux or Android and offer optional industrial temp support. The Q7-C25 uses NXP’s quad -A53 i.MX8M while the Q7-C26 features the i.MX8Quad, which adds up to 2x -A72 cores. Starter kits are also available.

At Computex earlier this month, Seco showed off two 70 x 70mm Qseven 1.2 modules that are still listed as being “under development.” The i.MX8M based Q7-C25 and i.MX8Quad based Q7-C26 run Linux and Android, and are available in 0 to 60°C and -40 to 85°C models. The 5V modules have many similar features, but the Q7-C26 based on the more powerful, up to hexa-core i.MX8Quad adds some extras such as SATA III support.

Q7-C25 (left) and Q7-C26
(click images to enlarge)

The Q7-C25 adopts NXP’s dual- or quad-core, 1.5GHz Cortex-A53 i.MX8M, which also provides a 266MHz Cortex-M4 MCU and a Vivante GC7000Lite GPU. Unlike the Quad and Dual models, the quad-core i.MX8M QuadLite model lacks a VPU.

The Q7-C26 features the more powerful i.MX8Quad, which is available in quad -A53 configurations, but clocked to a lower 1.26GHz. All three i.MX8Quad Quad models also provide dual Cortex-M4 MCUs and dual GC7000Lite GPUs. The mid-range i.MX8QuadPlus model adds 1x Cortex-A72 core and the high-end QuadMax adds 2x -A72 cores. The base-level Quad model does not offer an -A72 core.


Although we’ve seen many more i.MX8M computer-on-modules than i.MX8Quad modules, the Q7-C25 is the first Qseven form-factor i.MX8M we’ve encountered. Other non-Qseven i.MX8M based modules include Innocomm’s 50 x 50mm WB10, Variscite’s SODIMM-style, 55 x 30mm DART-MX8M, Emcraft’s 80 x 60mm i.MX 8M SOM, and Compulab’s 68 x 42mm CL-SOM-iMX8.

The only other i.MX8Quad based Qseven module we’ve seen is Advantech’s ROM-7720. Non-Qseven entries include Toradex’s SODIMM-style Apalis iMX8 and iWave’s iW-RainboW-G27M SMARC module.

Block diagrams for the Q7-C25 (left) and Q7-C26
(click images to enlarge)

Both the Q7-C25 and Q7-C26 ship with soldered LPDDR4-3200 RAM, but only the Q7-C25 lists a quantity, which is “up to 4GB.” They both offer presumably optional eMMC and QSPI flash soldered onboard, but no quantities are listed.

As noted, only the Q7-C26 supports SATA III, but it’s a factory option swap-out for one of the 2x PCIe x1 interfaces provided by both modules. Both COMs also integrate a GbE controller.

Both the Q7-C25 and Q7-C26 support up to 4096 x 2160p60 video with HDR via an HDMI 2.0A port. On the Q7-C26, you can swap that out for DisplayPort 1.3, and the Q7-C26 also supports HDCP 2.2 instead of HDCP 1.4 on the Q7-C25. Both modules also provide an HD-ready LVDS interface, I2S audio, and a MIPI-CSI camera interface.

The Q7-C25 supports 5x USB ports compared to 6x on the Q7-C26. Yet on the Q7-C25, two of those are USB 3.0 compared to one on the Q7-C26, which is the only one to support a USB OTG port.

Common features on both modules include 2x I2C, 8x GPIO, and single UART, CAN, SPI, and SD connections. They both supply a watchdog and power management signals, and the Q7-C26 also features a boot select signal.

CQ7-A42 carrier and Q7 Starter Kit

Both modules are supported with the same 3.5-inch form-factor, cross-platform (Arm and x86) CQ7-A42 carrier board. The 146 x 102mm CQ7-A42 is also available as part of a Q7 Starter Kit 2.0 package that adds HD audio and I2S audio modules, a 12V adapter, and a cable kit. Another option is a Q7 Dev Kit 2.0 that offers a different and much larger CQ7-A30 board with more legacy connections (see farther below). All these boards and kits support Qseven 2.0 modules in addition to the Qseven 1.2 modules used by the Q7-C25 and Q7-C26. Schematics are available for both carrier boards.

CQ7-A42 (left) and block diagram
(click images to enlarge)

The CQ7-A42 board available with the Starter Kit supports -40 to 85°C temperatures. It offers up to 2x GbE ports, an mSATA slot, and a SATA interface with power connector. You get a microSD slot combo module with a SIM card slot, as well as a full-size mini-PCIe slot with its own SIM card slot

The Q7 Starter Kit’s CQ7-A42 board provides a USB 3.0 port, 2x USB 2.0 host ports, 2x USB 2.0 headers, and a micro-USB 2.0 OTG port. The carrier is further equipped with a choice of 2x eDP (DP++) connectors, dual-channel, 24-bit LVDS, or an HDMI port. An audio header is also available.

Other CQ7-A42 features include a DB9 port with RS-232/RS-422/RS-485 signals plus 2x RS-232 headers and a CAN interface on PCB terminal block. There’s also an SMBus/I2C based GPIO expander with 16x GPIO and a 28-pin connector for I2C, ACPI, SMBus, watchdog, and thermal management.

Other interfaces include SPI, LPC, front panel, and fan interfaces. Options include a mini-USB debug port, an MFT connector for JTAG, various USB serial connector, and several power supply kits. The 12V board offers a coin cell battery for CMOS and RTC.

CQ7-A30 and Q7 Dev Kit 2.0

The Q7 Dev Kit 2.0 is built around a huge, 345 x 170mm CQ7-A30 carrier board that does not appear to be available separately. The Dev Kit adds a 12V adapter, an optional LVDS display, add on modules for LVDS/eDP and HDMI/DP connections, and a cable kit.

The CQ7-A30 board that ships with the Q7 Dev Kit 2.0 has a single GbE port, male and female SATA connectors with power, and optional mSATA. There’s also an SD slot and SPI flash an I2C EEPROM sockets. You can choose between a USB 3.0 host port or 2x USB 2.0 host interfaces. There’s also a USB 3.0 OTG port and up to 4x USB 2.0 host ports.

CQ7-A30 (left) and block diagram
(click images to enlarge)

For displays, you can choose between HDMI or DP, both available from a PCIe x16 slot. You also get a choice between LVDS and eDP via a PCI-e x8 slot.

For general purpose PCIe, there’s a PCIe x4 interface on a dedicated PCIe x 6 slot, which is shared with 3x PCIe x1 slots and a mini-PCIe slot. Audio features include 2x triple HD audio jacks, 2x S/PDIF connectors, and an audio expansion slot.

The CQ7-A30 board is further equipped with 3x RS-232 ports, 2x RS-232/RS/422/RS-485 ports, a CAN-Bus, and a feature connector that appears to be the same as the CQ7-A42 28-pin header. Additional I/O includes 4x 7-segment LCD displays for POST codes, 2x fan connectors, as well as PS/2, LPC, SPI, and SIM card interfaces. You also get a mini-USB debug port, various buttons, and a coin cell holder.

Further information

No pricing or availability information was provided for the “under development” Q7-C25 and Q7-C26 modules or related carrier boards and kits. More information may be found in the following Seco product pages:

(advertise here)

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