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UP Xtreme SBC relaunches along with UPX Edge system based on it

Dec 17, 2019 — by Eric Brown 778 views

Aaeon has launched an enclosed “UPX Edge” version of the 8th Gen Whiskey Lake based UP Xtreme SBC with -20 to 70°C support and preloaded Ubuntu 18.04, starting at $499. The UP Xtreme now starts at $299.

Aaeon’s UP project has launched an “UP Xtreme Edge Compute Enabling Kit,” also called the UP Xtreme Edge, UPX Edge, and UPX-Edge, starting at $499 with a preloaded Ubuntu 18.04 image based on Linux kernel 5.0. The fanless system is built around the Intel 8th Gen Whiskey Lake-U based UP Xtreme board, which is now available on the UP Shop starting at $299. The community-backed UP Xtreme debuted on Kickstarter in June starting at $282, with fulfillments expected in September.

Aaeon UP Xtreme Edge Compute Enabling Kit with optional antennas (left) and rear view
(click images to enlarge)

The UPX Edge was also available on Kickstarter, but was then referred to as the UP Xtreme Pro or UP Xtreme AI Pro, depending on whether you added an UP AI Core XM2280 M.2 module. These sold for $150 or $300 more, respectively. There is now only a single UP Xtreme Edge with various processor options, although you can add the UP AI Core module as a $139 accessory on the Core i7-8665UE and i5-8365UE SKUs.

The 190 x 129 x 78.6mm UPX Edge system has more exposed ports than the prototypes shown in June, and now offers a wider -20 to 70°C operating range compared to the originally listed -20 to 60°C for the Pro/AI Pro. (The SBC still goes from 0 to 60°C.) Thanks to a standard thermal block for the M.2 slot, the UPX Edge range is maintained even if you’re adding the AI Core module, which is equipped with dual Intel Movidius Myriad X VPUs for AI applications. The module supports Intel’s OpenVINO toolkit.

UPX Edge without antennas (left) and UP Xtreme
(click images to enlarge)

Pricing for the UP Xtreme SBC and UPX Edge system are as follows, all with 64GB eMMC and 15W TDP, and 8th Gen Whiskey Lake CPUs with Intel Gen9 UHD Graphics 620:


  • SBC ($299), UPX Edge ($499) — Celeron 4305UE (2x core/2x thread @ 2.2GHz), 4GB RAM
  • SBC ($529), UPX Edge ($699) — Core i3-8145UE (2x core/4x thread @ 2.1GHz/3.9GHz), 8GB RAM
  • SBC ($739), UPX Edge ($899) — Core i5-8365U (4x core/8x thread @ 1.6GHz/4.1GHz), 8GB RAM
  • SBC ($999), UPX Edge ($1,199) — Core i7-8665UE (4x core/8x thread @ 1.8GHz/4.6GHz), 16GB RAM
  • SBC-only ($799) — Core i7-8665U (4x core/8x thread @ 1.8GHz/4.6GHz), 16GB RAM

Note that the last option, available only for the UP Xtreme SBC, uses a standard U-series i7 part rather than the 10-year plus lifecycle UE series. The $200 difference in price with the i7-8665UE suggests that the part may be in short supply. In June, Aaeon posted benchmarks showing the i7-8665U to be about twice as fast as the Pentium N4200 (Apollo Lake) model of the earlier UP Squared.

UP Xtreme recap

In addition to featuring a Whiskey Lake CPU, the 122 x 120mm UP Xtreme SBC has an Altera MAX 5 FPGA to power the 40-pin GPIO and an STM32 MCU to control a second GPIO header. The STM32 supports tools such as Arduino Create and PlatformIO.

UP Xtreme with (left) and without optional fan
(click images to enlarge)

The SBC is equipped with 64GB eMMC, as well as a powered SATA interface. There’s also an mSATA-ready mini-PCIe slot with SIM slot (for optional LTE module), and a storage-ready M.2 “B/M” key slot, which also supports the UP AI Core X module. For additional wireless and I/O expansion, you can turn to the M.2 2230 E-Key slot with an optional WiFi-ac/BT module.

The UP Xtreme’s 40-pin connector supports Raspberry Pi HATs, as well as add-on boards that run on the UP board and UP Squared. There are also dual PCIe-equipped 100-pin connectors that give you access to all the AI, I/O, and networking infused “UP AI Edge” add-ons available on the Apollo Lake based UP Core Plus.

The stacked HDMI 2.0 and DisplayPort and the eDP header support 4K video, and there’s an audio interface. The UP Xtreme is further equipped with 2x GbE ports that support PXE, WoL, and Time-Sensitive Networking (TSN) real-time networking technology. There are also 4x USB 3.0 ports, an RTC, and several USB, RS-232, RS232/422/485, and STM32-related headers.

UPX Edge details

On the UPX Edge, all the UP Xtreme’s real-world coastline ports are exposed, and all internal expansion interfaces are listed here except for the eDP port. It also appears that the dual 100-pin interfaces for UP AI Edge add-ons may not be available. On one of the two spec lists, the 2x 100-pin header is not listed, and on another Aaeon says it’s only compatible with the UP Xtreme SBC.

UPX Edge detail views
(click images to enlarge)

Unlike the SBC, the UPX Edge chassis version brings forth the UP Xtreme’s RS232/422/485 headers as 2x DB9 COM ports, and there’s also a jack-style RS232 serial port. While the SBC product page lists USB 3.0 ports, the UPX Edge calls them USB 3.2 Gen 1. Since the announcement does not promote this upgrade, this is likely a typo that was intended to say USB 3.1 Gen 1 — the new name for USB 3.0.

UPX Edge accessories
(click image to enlarge)

The UPX Edge extends the 40-pin and STM32-related GPIO as Phoenix connectors on either side of the system. There’s also an audio jack, 4x antenna connectors, and optional VESA and DIN-rail mounting.

There’s a 12-60V DC power supply with a lockable connector, power button, and LED, and consumption averages 26W. In addition to the Ubuntu 18.04 image, the system supports Yocto 2.7 (Linux kernel 4.19), Ubilinux, and Win 10.

Further information

The UP Xtreme Edge Compute Enabling Kit (UPX Edge) is available for pre-order starting at $499, with shipments due in January. The UP Xtreme SBC is available now starting at $299. (See detailed pricing for both farther above.) The announcement for the UPX Edge release and UP Xtreme re-release is here.

More on the UPX Edge may be found on the UPX Edge shopping page, promo page, and product page. More on the UP Xtreme SBC may be found on the UP Xtreme shopping page and product page.

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