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Tiny i.MX6 COM and dev kit offer triple camera inputs

Dec 1, 2014 — by Eric Brown 3,072 views

E-Con released a Linux-friendly i.MX6 based COM with optional eMMC, WiFi, BLE, Ethernet, and -40 to 85°C support, plus a dev kit with triple camera inputs.

The eSOMiMX6 follows a long line of E-Con Systems eSOM computer-on-modules featuring Linux support. Their latest COM uses the relatively new, 70 x 45mm “μQseven” form-factor to expand upon Freescale’s 1.2GHz, Cortex-A9-based i.MX6 system-on-chip in Quad, Dual, or Solo core versions. The eSOMiMX6 is available as a COM or as part of an “Ankaa” development kit where it piggybacks on a small carrier board. Each supports Linux, Android, or Windows Embedded Compact (WEC) 2013.

eSOMiMX6, front and back
(click images to enlarge)

With the help of its i.MX6 SoC with Vivante GC2000 3D GPU (Vivante GC880 on the Solo), the module can encode or decode 1080p video at 30fps. The eSOMiMX6 is capable of simultaneous streaming of three cameras, enabling 360º viewing applications, says E-Con, which is based in St. Louis, Missouri and Chennai, India. Other applications are said to include portable data terminals, navigation, auto infotainment, industrial control, and wireless streaming.

Ankaa kit with integrated eSOMiMX6 and 13-megapixel camera board (left) and 10.4-inch LCD (right)
(click image to enlarge)

The eSOMiMX6 module is customizable not only in regard to the number of i.MX6 cores, but also in clock rate, RAM, flash, temperature support, and wireless and Ethernet functionality. Clock rates range from 800MHz to 1.2GHz (Quad model only), while DDR3 RAM choices include 256MB or 512MB (Solo only), 1GB, or 2GB (Quad only). The 4GB to 64GB of eMMC flash is also said to be optional.

eSOMiMX6 block diagram
(click image to enlarge)

You can choose whether to add a gigabit Ethernet PHY, or to integrate a wireless module, which includes 802.11 b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy (BLE). The COM ships standard with 0 to 70°C support, but can also be bought in a -40 to 85°C version.

Qseven v2.0’s “μQseven” option
(click image to enlarge)

Interestingly, the module uses the rarely-seen, 70 x 40mm “μQseven” form-factor option introduced in the Qseven Rev. 2.0 specification. However, E-Con’s implementation appears to stretch the spec’s 40mm dimension to 45mm.

Standard features include LVDS, LCD/RGB, MIPI-DSI, and HDMI display interfaces. You also get a MIPI-CSI port and a pair of parallel interfaces for cameras. Other I/O available via the μQseven MXM connectors includes SATA, USB 2.0 host and OTG, dual CAN, SPDIF, PCIe, GPIOs, and a host of serial and industrial interfaces.


Specifications listed for the eSOMiMX6 module include:

  • Processor — Freescale i.MX6 with 1x, 2x, or 4x Cortex-A9 cores @ 800MHz or 1GHz (1.2GHz for Quad); Vivante GC2000 GPU (Vivante GC880 on Solo) with 2D/3D graphics and video acceleration
  • Memory:
    • 256MB or 512MB (Solo only) or 1GB, or 2GB (Quad only) 64- or 32-bit DDR3 RAM
    • Optional 4GB to 64GB eMMC flash
    • 2MB SPI NOR flash
  • Display:
    • 2x 24-bit LVDS
    • 24-bit LCD RGB
    • MIPI-DSI
    • HDMI (1920 x 1080)
  • Camera:
    • MIPI-CSI 4-lan (2-lane for Solo)
    • Parallel 1-10 bit
    • Parallel 2-20 bit (Quad only)
  • Wireless (optional module)– 802.11 b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.0 BLE
  • Networking — Optional gigabit Ethernet controller
  • Other I/O (via Qseven MXM connectors):
    • SD/MMC (4-bit)
    • SATA II (Dual or Quad only)
    • USB 2.0 host
    • USB 2.0 OTG
    • SPDIF audio in and out
    • 2x CAN (FlexCAN)
    • 5x serial UART
    • 3x I2C
    • 3x PWM
    • SPI
    • Up to 50x GPIOs
    • PCIe x1 Gen2
  • Operating temperature — 0 to 70°C; optional -40 to 85°C
  • Power — 3.3V @ 3A
  • Dimensions — 70 x 45mm; “μQseven” form-factor
  • Operating system — BSPs for Linux (with bootloader); Android; Windows Embedded Compact (WEC) 2013

Ankaa block diagram
(click image to enlarge)

Ankaa kit

E-Con is offering an Ankaa development kit with a 135 x 90mm carrier board that integrates the eSOMiMX6 module. The kit is also available with 5-, 8-, and 13-megapixel camera add-on boards, as well as a 10.4-inch LCD daughter-board.

The Ankaa kit can be purchased with pre-installed Linux or Android images, and a WEC 2013 BSP is under development. You’ll need to furnish your own LCD display on the Linux version, but the pricier Android version includes an LCD as part of the package.

Ankaa front port detail
(click image to enlarge)

The Ankaa board runs on a 9V @ 2.5A power supply at temperatures ranging from 0 to 70°C. The board features a microSD card slot and real-world coastline ports including gigabit Ethernet, RS232, USB host, micro-USB OTG, HDMI, and 3.5mm audio.

Ankaa rear port detail
(click image to enlarge)

Onboard interfaces include SATA, debug, I2C, SPI, CAN, the MIPI camera port, and a pair of LVDS interfaces. You also get a GPIO connector and an antenna for the eSOMiMX6’s optional wireless module. On the back of the board you’ll find a mini-PCIe slot, a battery, and the 10- and 20-bit parallel camera headers.

Ankaa board running Linux

Further information

The eSOMiMX6 is available starting at $47 at volumes of 1,000 or more, or $149 at 1-99 piece volumes, with other pricing in between. The Ankaa kit starts at special pricing available through the end of 2014 of $349 with Linux and $449 with Android. The Android version includes the LCD display as standard.

More information on the products may be found at the eSOMiMX6 and Ankaa product pages, respectively.

(advertise here)

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One response to “Tiny i.MX6 COM and dev kit offer triple camera inputs”

  1. Chris Sparks says:

    Very nice!

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