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Power stingy i.MX7 SMARC 2.0 module has Yocto and Android BSPs

Mar 1, 2017 — by Eric Brown 864 views

Embedian’s Linux-driven SMARC-FiMX7 is a SMARC 2.0 COM with a single- or dual-core i.MX7, up to 1GB RAM, 4GB eMMC, LVDS, GbE, and an optional starter kit.

The SMARC-FiMX7 is Embedian’s first SMARC 2.0 computer-on-module, and the first SMARC COM we’ve seen that taps NXP’s i.MX7 SoC. The company is no stranger to the 82 x 50mm SMARC (Smart Mobility ARChitecture) form factor, having released several SMARC 1.x COMs including the i.MX6 based SMARC-FiMX6 and TI AM437x driven SMARC-T4378.

(click image to enlarge)

Embedian touts the new SMARC 2.0 standard as offering improved performance. It also offers “pre-integrated functionality making carrier board design easier and more efficient,” says the company.

At 82 x 50mm, however, the form factor can’t compete in the size battle underway in the i.MX7 COM market. The leader still appears to be the 37 x 27mm iMX7 Dual uCOM from Embedded Artists.


The SMARC-FiMX7 ships with Yocto Project and Android 6.0.1 BSPs, and is also designed to run on Ubuntu 14.04/16.04. It incorporates 800MHz single- or 1GHz dual-core Cortex-A7 i.MX7 cores, which are delivered with 512MB or 1GB DDR3 RAM, respectively. In either case, you get 4GB eMMC and 4MB SPI NOR flash.

The highly efficient i.MX7, which is also equipped with a tightly integrated 200MHz Cortex-M4 MCU, enables the SMARC-FiMX7 to run at a low 0.9W or 1.2W, depending on the core count, says Embedian. The i.MX7 lacks 3D graphics, but the 2D ePxP engine supports up to 1080p resolution. This is delivered via a single- or dual-channel 24-bit LVDS interface, with the latter now defined on SMARC 2.0. There are also dual MIPI-CSI camera inputs.

SMARC-FiMX7 block diagram
(click image to enlarge)

There’s no onboard wireless, but there’s a GbE controller with AVB, and thanks to SMARC 2.0, it supports dual ports when using the dual-core i.MX7. Additional I/O expressed via the edge connectors include one or two USB 2.0 OTG ports, depending again on your core count, and dual CANBus interfaces.

The SMARC-FiMX7 is further equipped with 4x UARTs, 4x I2C, 2x SPI, and 12x GPIOs. You also get SDIO, I2S, and on the dual-core model, PCIe, There’s a real-time clock and a watchdog, as well as flexible boot select functions, and various system and power management features. The 3V to 5.25V power input can run on a single-level Lithium Ion cell, and the module supports -20 to 80°C temperatures.

(click images to enlarge)

The SMARC-FiMX7 is being offered with a starter kit built around a version of the EVK-STD-CARRIER board that Embedian is updating for SMARC 2.0. For more details, see our previous SMARC-T4378 coverage, as well as the product page listed below.

Further information

The SMARC-FiMX7 is available now, and the starter kit will be ready on Mar. 15. More information may be found on Embedian’s SMARC-FiMX7 and EVK-STD-CARRIER product pages. Both products will be shown at the 2017 Embedded World conference in Nuremberg, Germany, at Embedian’s booth Hall3 3-643 from Mar. 14-16.

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