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Rugged Broadwell Type 6 COM loads up on USB, PCIe

Jul 23, 2015 — by Eric Brown 567 views

Arbor is launching an Ubuntu-ready Type 6 Compact module with a dual-core 5th Gen Core CPU, -40 to 85°C operation, 12 USB ports, and eight PCIe slots.

Arbor Technology’s new “EmETXe-i88U0” COM Express Type 6 Compact module adopts Intel’s latest 5th Generation Core line using the 14nm “Broadwell” architecture. This first generation of Broadwell Core chips is primarily notable for faster, more capable graphics, rather than overall performance improvements. New Intel HD Graphics 5500 and 6000 technology supports up to 4K video. Power consumption is slightly lower than 4th Gen “Haswell” chips.

The 95 x 95mm COM Express Type 6 Compact module runs Ubuntu Linux or Windows on a 2.2GHz, dual-core Core i7-5650U CPU with a 15W TDP. There’s no mention of the chip’s 3.2GHz turbo mode speed, which is likely impossible when used across the module’s wide -40 to 85°C temperature range.

Arbor EmETXe-i88U0 (left) and block diagram
(click images to enlarge)

Whereas the other 5th Gen COM Express Type 6 Compact modules we’ve looked at, including the Congatec Conga-TC97, the Adlink cExpress-BL, and the Advantech SOM-6896, feature multiple Core options and up to 16GB of RAM, the EmETXe-i88U0 offers only the Core i7-5650U, and is limited to 8GB. On the other hand, it provides a more generous USB allotment of 12, including four 3.0 ports, and twice the number of PCIe expansion slots, with eight. It’s also the only COM of the group to offer standard industrial temperature support, which is optional on the otherwise ruggedized Adlink product.


Like the other modules, the EmETXe-i88U0 takes advantage of the 5th Gen Core capability for triple simultaneous displays. You also get three SATA ports, DIO, and a GbE controller.

Specifications listed for the EmETXe-i88U0 module include:

  • Processor – Intel Core i7-5650U (2x “Broadwell” cores @ 2.2GHz); 4MB Cache, 15W TDP, Intel HD Graphics 6000 @ 300MHz (GT3)
  • Memory — up to 8GB DDR3L SDRAM @ 1600MHz, via 1x SODIMM
  • Storage – 3x SATA 6Gbps ports
  • Networking — 10/100/1000 Ethernet controller (Intel I218-LM) with iAMT support
  • Display:
    • Dual-channel 24-bit LVDS up to 1920 x 1200
    • 2x DDI ports for Embedded DisplayPort 1.2, HDMI 1.4, at up to 4K
    • Triple independent simultaneous displays
  • Other I/O:
    • 4x USB 3.0
    • 8x USB 2.0
    • Intel HD Audio
    • 8-bit programmable DIO
  • Expansion — 8x PCIe 2.0 x1; LPC
  • Other features — TPM module (optional OEM request); watchdog; optional heat spreaders, heat sinks, fan, cable kits, and “PBC-900J” carrier
  • Operating temperature — -40 to 85°C
  • Power – DC 12V, 5 VSB
  • Dimensions — 95 x 95mm; Type 6 “compact”
  • Operating systems – Ubuntu Linux, Windows 7/8

PBC-900J carrier

The EmETXe-i88U0 module is available with Arbor’s stock Type 6 carrier board, called the PBC-900J. The 12V, 125 x 95mm board features the same industrial temperature support as the module, as well as a Super IO chipset (Fintek F81866).

PBC-900J carrier board (left) and block diagram
(click images to enlarge)

The PBC-900J carrier appears to lack traditional real-world ports in favor of vertical connectors, distributed mostly along the coastline. The board offers LCD/LVDS and VGA connectors, with the latter supporting analog RGB and DVI. There’s also a Realtek ALC662 audio codec with audio I/O.

The PBC-900J features SATA and mSATA connectors, as well as mini-PCIe and PCI/104 expansion slots. The carrier is further equipped with a GbE controller, dual USB 2.0 ports, dual USB 3.0 ports, 16-bit DIO, LPT, PS/2, and four serial ports including an RS-232/422/485 port.

Further information

The EmETXe-i88U0 will be released in August at an undisclosed price. More information may be found on the Arbor Technology EmETXe-i88U0 product page. More on the PBC-900J carrier board may be found at PBC-900J page.

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