A13-OLinuXino-MICRO first prototypes are ready


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Here is the first look at A13-OLinuXino-MICRO assembled prototypes.

It took a lot of time as our assembly machines are overloaded and we run them on two shifts to meet the demand for our development boards, so the blank PCBs were made and sitting for two weeks waiting on tail for the assembly window.

What we have here is:

- A13 Cortex-A8 processor running at 1GHz
– 256MB of DDR3 RAM
– USB host
– USB-OTG
– VGA output 800×600 @ 60 Hz
– SD-card
– Audio Out for headphones
– LCD connector
– GPIO connector 1 and 2
– UEXT connector
– 100×85 mm

The goal is to release A13-OLinuXino-MICRO in production at EUR 35 retail down to EUR 28 for 50+ pcs OEM order.

For those who will say that 256MB is small amount of memory I would say that we run pretty amazing stuff now even on iMX233 with 454Mhz processor and 64MB RAM, so with x4-6 times faster processor and x4 times more memory lot of projects could be complete in Linux. Well, we will probably not run Andoriod 4.0 nor Open Office and Ubuntu with Chrome, but for this purpose it A13-OLinuXino-WIFi where you have double the RAM and 4GB NAND flash disk.

MICRO have no Ethernet by default but supports MOD-RTL8188CU WiFi adapter and the AX88772B USB to wired LAN adapters which will be for sale next month.

We try the SD card with the Debian image and as expected the bootloader starts then the kernel stops as there is no enough memory. So the goal now is to disable MALI400 and the GPU which alone take 200MB :) and to make kernel which fits in smaller footprint.

We assembled few of these and the first who report that disabled the Mali and GPU and managed to ran Linux-Sunxi in 256MB will get one of the first assembled MICROs :)

19 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Emre Emanet
    Sep 28, 2012 @ 20:21:55

    What will be the estimated price?

    Reply

  2. Brian
    Sep 28, 2012 @ 20:52:57

    The board looks good. Is it running OK without the power-management chip?

    Reply

    • OLIMEX Ltd
      Sep 28, 2012 @ 20:58:29

      so far the uboot is working fine, we need more time to do some more testing with the kernel
      the AXP209 power managment chip is necessary when you make tablet and run on battery, this way the Android can dynamically change the processor power supply and frequency, with MICRO this is not important case as we do not run on battery and power consumption is not so important, so we just run the processor on maximum frequency and and the upper limit of the power supply, so I do not expect any problems, it’s just matter of changing the kernel to remove the power management code from it and make it simplier

      Reply

  3. SencillamenteIvan
    Sep 28, 2012 @ 21:08:50

    Only one question, when we could buy one? ;-)

    Reply

  4. Ratibor
    Sep 29, 2012 @ 18:00:31

    can you provide kernel log? 256MB version must have changes in mali memory mapping (base&size)

    Reply

  5. octapod
    Sep 29, 2012 @ 21:01:09

    Can you guys add a “user contrib” page, which has a list of type of applications, project overview, in which some of these boards, including the i.MX 233 one, are used. Would be very interesting to see what people are able to pull of, for instance on 64MB of memory.

    Eventually, do you guys plan to keep selling all the Olinuxino variants ? For the moment, one question that is running on the back of my mind, would you guys be able to do justice to the software, having so many variants ? Leaving it in community’s hands, might not necessarily work out.

    Reply

    • OLIMEX Ltd
      Sep 29, 2012 @ 21:13:07

      we are working to enable the wiki on olimex.com soon, we will sell all olinuxino variants until there is demand for them, all demo codes which run on imx233 will run also on a13 or your desktop pc, as it’s linux after all :)

      Reply

      • octapod
        Sep 29, 2012 @ 22:23:42

        Well, I should have been clearer when referring to software. My concern was primarily about continued support for the evolutions of Linux operating-system and the toolchain.

        Between the A13 based boards, and the i.MX233 based ones, one key difference I’d hope to see addressed is the use of armhf versus armel, unless that is already the case.

  6. bitbake
    Sep 30, 2012 @ 05:52:17

    For me is impressive a nice company Olimex making things like that every month, I have micro, maxi, etc all the boards works fine and really make very nice things on these boards with small amount of memory but working like a charm !!

    Finally also get archlinuxARM a distro working on my old beagles… and now on the olimex boards…… the same distro on all the boards are great !!

    ArchlinuxARM on the A13 will be superb…..

    Keep the good job guys !!

    Reply

  7. ember
    Oct 06, 2012 @ 17:31:57

    Where can I buy these in India? Big name retailers want to extort $40.00 as shipment charges.

    Such is the case that it would be easier to contact Allwinner/Injenic itself and make a similar board myself for me & my compatriots. Too bad there is no kickstarter like eco-system in India.

    You guys have any plan to make a board for LPC1114FN28? Since it comes in DIP-28, and retails cheap for high volume, everyone will love to have a board for $5.0. Millions of hackers would want to upgrade to the 32-bit ARM which comes in DIP package. Any thoughts on this?

    Reply

  8. Michele
    Oct 22, 2012 @ 10:41:56

    Hi,
    I would like to develop a simple product based on Olinuxino-A13 (either Micro or normal).

    The product should be a precision navigation and attitude determination platform running Linux.
    I use Eagle CAD to design and I have to face the choice if designing a fully integrated PCB or stacking your board on top of a bigger motherboard and fit everything in a box.
    My problem is that only the cost of A13+RAM in small quantities is already equal to the price of A13-micro!

    So two questions:
    – how can you make such prices :) ?

    – do you have any plan to release a minimal CPU module (based on A1x) similar to the AcmeSystems AriaG25 for people that want to integrate a powerful CPU+RAM into their designs?

    All the best,
    Michele

    Reply

  9. uminded
    Oct 24, 2012 @ 17:37:57

    AcmeSystems AriaG25:

    I second this idea, I loaded the brd design in eagle and removed all of the peripherals and just kept the A13, NAND and DDR portions and with the memory on the back side of the board you can make it a 40x40mm module. Then make the power supply its own 15x40mm module as the power supply is almost as large as the A13 and DDR layout!

    This would be spectacular for those that need horsepower but in a custom design like I’m currently doing. If I get a layout I am happy with I will post it in the forums as a product idea.

    Reply

  10. sagt3k
    Oct 26, 2012 @ 08:34:19

    I own a ARIAG25 and I am planning on a board with a PIC18 which will handle the power of a PIC32 and to increase the logic and functions. The problem of ARIAG25 is the power in mhz!!. Obviously it would be great to have something like that when they have all PIN A13. In fact I’m waiting for this new project the Olimex with micro-A13 to advance my project.

    Reply

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