Sneak preview of A13-OLinuXino-MICRO


A13-OLinuXino-MICRO specifications:

– A13 Cortex-A8 processor 1Ghz (we found we can overclock up to 1.2-1.5Ghz)
– power managment AXP209 removed – fixed core voltages
– 256MB of DDR3 RAM
– GPIO extensions same as normal A13-OLinuXino
– LCD extension same as normal A13-OLinuXino
– micro SD-card
– VGA output, Audio output
– USB host
– UEXT connector
– JTAG connector
– console UART connector
– power supply +5V DC only
– reset button
– bootloader button
– status LED
– operating temperature -25+85C

With this board we decided to challenge how down we can cut the features to reach rock bottom pricing.
This board is still on design stage (actually we already completely routed it) and we are going to prototype it next week, so please do not ask when you can buy it. In matter of fact we are still not sure if it will work at all, as we removed the AXP209 power managment IC and decided to try if A13 will work just with DCDC fixed power supplies.
If we succeed the price of this A13-OLinuXino-MICRO will be around EUR 35 retail – and this for board with 1GHz Cortex-A8 processor and 256MB RAM.

When we discussed this with A10 developers they warned us that current Linux distribution for A10 is memory hungry and only Mali400 and VGPU when enabled need 100MB of RAM.
Well I’m pretty sure there are many applications where fancy 3D graphics are not necessary, or the Mali400/VGPU apetite may be lowered with some tweaking?
Considering what amount of software we already managed to run on iMX233 ARM9 with 64MB, I think A13-MICRO have his niches where will perform just fine!
Well Andorid 4.0 on 256MB may not work nice, but Linux should be OK.

So crossing fingers to see what will happend with the prototypes 🙂

For these who miss Ethernet we did some experimenting with USB-Ethernet adapters (starting from $3 on ebay) and A13 Linux Kernel supports them both USB 1.1 (based on QF9700) and USB 2.0 (based on AX88772) versions the later is with several times faster transfer, so we probably offer these as USB accessories to A13-OLinuXino. And of course we will offer the WIFI alternative USB-RTL8188CU 150MBit as well.  The LCD7″module, Bluetooth USB dongles, 3G modem dongles and all accessoaries we preparing for A13-OLinuXino-WIFI will also work on A13-OLinuXino-MICRO.

14 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Brian
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 18:53:44

    This looks like an interesting design, thanks for the update.


  2. leblebitozu
    Aug 31, 2012 @ 00:18:41

    It looks fine, except 256 MB RAM, maybe you can add footprint for second RAM for 512 MB option. VGA connection takes big place you can leave that option to the user, this way we can use this board as industrial panel with touch panel + lcd, but 512 MB is really necessary. Of course this is just my opinion. Thank you for your all efforts to OlinuxIno series….


    • OLIMEX Ltd
      Aug 31, 2012 @ 00:31:00

      sorry but 512MB and rock bottom price is mutually exclusive 🙂

      we already have the big A13-OLinuXino with 512MB RAM, so if you want more memory you have this option and use it for industrial panel +LCD

      MICRO would cover applications which are no so memory hungry

      the VGA do not take so much space, if you look at the bord you will see that GPIO/LCD connectors set the board size, even if we remove the VGA there is no so much space saving


  3. Bosstiger
    Aug 31, 2012 @ 13:49:41

    Reblogged this on Gigable – Tech Blog.


  4. 2_kamikaze_2
    Aug 31, 2012 @ 14:45:01

    you could made a version whith hdmi please….


  5. sagt3k
    Aug 31, 2012 @ 21:08:40

    Hello I have two questions. The board is equipped battery for RTC?. Can you send me the link of the site that you have tried ETHERNET USB converters for these cards?


  6. octapod
    Sep 01, 2012 @ 21:08:02

    Love this thing. I just hope that this design becomes a success, and you guys are able to keep selling this for a long time. It can really turn the tide against RaspberryPi and etc., and prove to be much better value, a greater flexibility.

    Wondering if you guys plan on port something like Debian ‘Wheezy’ hard-float to this ? Just as the Beagleboard guys have the Openembedded Debian-minimal, would be great to have minimalistic OS option as well.


  7. Diego
    Sep 06, 2012 @ 21:05:36

    I’m watching this page every day to be the first in get this one!! I want to use that processor in “bare metal” mode (no OS). Do I need the “ARM-USB-TINY-H” interface to program this uC? Thanks!


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