Rockchip is releasing low power SOC with NPU targeting deep learning.

1808

We are hacking cheap Chinese soldering robot aiming to make it usable with camera fiducials and solder joint inspection. I shared some info on Hackaday 2018 Belgrade conference.

As we want to make the robot easy to use we are looking around for capable SOC with Deep Learning capability. It seems the only embedded available solution now is nVidia.

Allwinner has put in their V5 SOC info about AI and Trensorflow support, but looking at info for the only available board on the market it looks just statement and no actual implementation.

The AI they advertise looks more like OpenCV / Tensorflow lite libraries using the V5 GPUs, but not real NPU.

Rockchip seems to be this time a little bit ahead of Allwinner and has released RK1808 and RK3399pro SOCs.

Some info also start to appear in their rockchip-linux repositories.

We got RK1808 brief datasheet and here are the SOC internals:

screenshot from 2019-01-25 12-52-48

  • Dual core Cortex-A35
  • Internal 2MB SRAM
  • DDR 32-bit data width, 2 ranks max 2GB of DDR3/DDR3L/LPDDR3/LPDDR3L -1600
  • Neural Process Unit with 512KB internal buffer and Support for: max 1920 Int8, max 192 Int16 and max 64 FP16 MAC operations per cycle
  • eMMC 4.5 1-4-8 bit max 150MB/s
  • SD/MMC support
  • SPI Flash x1-4-8 data
  • video encoder/decoder up to 1080p
  • video input DPI 8-10-12-16 bit up to 150MB/s
  • camera input MIPI CSI up to 4 data lane, 2.0Gbps, MIPI-HS, MIPI-LP
  • LCD RGB 8/8/8 up to 1280×800@60fps
  • MIPI DSI 1920×1080 up to 4 data lane, 2.0GbpsA
  • Audio I2S
  • Gigabit Ethernet
  • USB2.0 HOST/OTG
  • USB3.0 5Gbps
  • PCIe 1/2 links with 2.5Gbps per link
  • SPI, I2C, UART
  • x4 10bit SAR ADC 1Msps
  • -40+125C operating temperature, targeting automotive and industrial vision apps

This chip is definitely not hobby friendly with FCCSP 420 0.3mm balls spaced at 0.5/0.35mm!

screenshot from 2019-01-25 13-41-56

Price info is not available yet. First evaluation boards will be ready end of March 2019. Rockchip will sell SDK with the NPU API also at unknown yet price.

Rockchip also upgraded their RK3399 including inside RK1808 and naming it RK3399Pro.
They keep the same RK3399 ball layout, so people who already made RK3399 boards can upgrade with RK3399Pro without changing lot on their PCB layout.

How they do it? They bond RK1808 in the same package and connect RK3399 with RK1808 via USB3.0 this is why RK3399Pro has NO externally available USB3.0:

screenshot from 2019-01-25 13-48-45

How they will manage power dissipation when they put together two quite power hungry chips is yet to be seen. RK3399 alone requires quite big heatsink as it dissipates up to 20W when the Cortex-A72 cores are running.

Embedded World 2018 is next week in Nürnberg

Embedded_World_2018

Embedded World is next week in Nürnberg. It’s good place to see many semiconductor vendors at once.

This year is interesting to see Chinese companies like Espressif Systems and Rockchip to  exhibit there. I look forward to meet there face to face people I have communicated only by e-mail!

Some interesting booths I put in my “to visit” agenda:

  • Analog Devices GmbH 4A-629
  • Arm Limited 4-140
  • ASIX Electronics Corporation 3-310
  • ATMEL – Microchip Technology 1-500/510
  • Broadcom Limited 3A-135
  • Espressif Systems 3A-623
  • Intel Corporation 1-338
  • NXP 4A-220
  • ON Semiconductor 4A-260
  • Qualcomm 4A-330
  • Realtek 3-341
  • RISC-V FOUNDATION 3A-419
  • Samsung 3A-438
  • Silergy 2-458
  • Silicon Labs 4A-128
  • SIMCom 3-531
  • STMicroelectronics 4A-138
  • Xilinx 3-311

Olimex used to exhibit at Embedded World three years 2014-2016, but in 2017 and this year we are just visitors. The reason for this decision is that Messe Nürnberg obviously has so much work and can’t offer good service for the smallish exhibitors. They make agreements then break them whenever they want and bear no responsibility. In our case February 2016 we made booking for exhibiting in 2017, Messe Nürnberg offered us booth plan and we choose booth with good location. We made agreement and then in July 2016 someone offered them to pay more for the same location and they assign this booth to them and notified us to go whistle. They offered us to choose from what’s left not booked or we can break the deal and we will not PAY COMPENSATION to them! This really pissed me off enough to decide to not exhibit there anymore. For the three years while we were exhibiting it was always one and same story: we order booth and arrangement and when we go to the show we see that they did something different, we complain then they do last minutes updates to fix the problems… For me it was shock to see things like this in Germany, which everyone praise for punctuality and precision. First year I said to myself oh well things like this happen, second year I though ok we just have bad luck, but when the third year the situation didn’t improve I though something is not right.

Otherwise Electronica, Productronica, Embedded World are among the very small amount of still very active exhibitions in EU. All local electronics exhibitions in our Balkan area like the Fair in Plovdiv, Thessaloniki, Belgrade, Istanbul are with declining functionality. They used to be very important events where people learn about new products and can make contacts, now internet made them less useful.

A13-SOM-512 Android image for 4.3″ LCD with touchscreen released

A13-4.3-android

We got request from customer for Android image which supports 4.3″ LCD with touchscreen. He did his development with Beagle Bone, but wanted to optimize the cost for production so A13-SOM512 price was very attractive, but default Allwinner Android image although allow you to define smaller LCD resolutions has no working touchscreen calibration for small LCDs, also default Android screen was not set well and status bar was taking big portion of the screen.

Here is the newly released SD-card image for A13-SOM512 Android with 4.3″ LCD with touchscreen display.

A13-som-android

Now you can develop your embedded Andoid application on low cost board with small LCD.

Embedded World 2016

20160223_143046

Today is last day of Embedded World, really spectacular exhibition.

Lot of peoples from 9.00 to 18.00 on our booth and leg pain at the end of the day.

We are exhibiting our IoT platform and The DIY Laptop.

20160223_160050

ST has interesting display on their booth showing how many STM32 devices they have sold and this display is interractive as the numbers go up every second, if this is real or just show it not so interesting, the number of 1.5 billion devices sold is impressive! And this is just one ARM vendor, I wonder what is the total number of all ARM devices sales.

NXP had interesting truck on their booth:

20160223_160201

Lot of companies were exhibiting metal formed boxes, we already stolen few ideas to experiment with when we come back 😉 Time to learn LibreCAD for 2D drawing!

First PIC32-EMZ64 boards for Embedded World are now testing

PIC32-EMZ64

This board was made from the design idea to mass production in just few weeks 🙂

The PIC32 microcontroller model was choosen January 21st, so we had 1 week to design and PCB layout the board, 1 week to produce the blank PCB, make stencils, prepare software demo code and one week to setup the assembly line and run the PCBs for asssembly.

Today we got first batch of the assembled boards.

PIC32-EMZ64-2

For these who do not remember this board is using the new PIC32MZ2048EFH064 with 2MB of Flash, 512KB RAM, Ethernet, CAN and fast 18Msps 12bit ADC!

On the board you can see:

  • USB-OTG
  • USB Host
  • Ethernet 100Mb
  • Audio input
  • Audio output
  • OLED LCD 128×64 pixels
  • microSD card
  • CAN driver
  • 3x buttons
  • Reset
  • LEDs

all this in compact credit card size format.

At Embedded World in Nurenberg 23-25 of February we will give away these boards but only to registered/approved developers. If you want to take your board at the show please send us e-mail and write what projects you have done, so we can confirm that your board is reserved. Important: we will not give away boards to Embedded world visitors who have no reservation/approval from us in advance.

You can’t visit Embedded World? Do not worry you still have chance to receive free board – just send us e-mail and tell us what projects you have done with PIC or Olimex boards before. We can decide to send you by post one of these free of charge.

Embedded World giveaway board update! Processor will have 2MB Flash, 512KB RAM and 2x CAN

pic32

After our blogging about the Embedded World giveaway board, there was short discussion / comments after the post that it would be great the PIC32 on the board to have more RAM and CAN and do you know what?

Microchip is reading this blog too 🙂 as today we got message that they decided to upgrade the processor for this board to PIC32MZ2048EFH064-I/PT which is with 2MB of Flash, 512KB of RAM and dual CAN!

Now you should have got idea why this company is expanding and grow so fast – they are flexible and their managers obviously have freedom to take prompt decision!

It took them less than 24 hours to react and change the processor on board so you guys will benefit from PIC32 which beside Ethernet also have dual CAN and x4 times more RAM and FLASH than what originally was planned!

We give away 1000 boards worth EUR 25000 on Embedded World 2016 – 23-25 of February in Nuremberg Germany – the biggest event in Europe for development boards and tools

embedded

Embedded World 2016 is as usually held in Nuremberg, Germany in February.

We are there exhibiting in hall 2, booth 2-651.

What we will show you there?

Our super duper new Internet of Things WiFi-PLUG, WiFi-SWITCH and WiFi-Dimmer, all of them based on ESP8266 and allowing easy to setup Home Automation. They work with mains power supply 85-240VAC 50/60Hz and are with small 40 x 35 x 12 mm so can fit inside existing power supply sockets.

Also we will show you our new BLE development boards and Bluetooth audio.

And of course there will be our Open Source DIY Laptop powered by A64-OLinuXino.

For these who remember several times we give away free boards on Embedded World.

This year will be no exeption. We are planning promotion together with Microchip and work on new board with their PIC32MZ0512EFE064-I/PT which will have these features:

– PIC32MZ running at 200 MHz/330 DMIPS, MIPS Warrior M-class core
– Flash 512KB
– RAM 128 KB
– 4x SPI 50Mbps, 4x I2C up to 1Mbps, I2S, 6x UARTS 25 Mbps
– temp sensor +-2C
– USB-OTG
– USB host HIGH Speed
– ADC 12bit, 24 channels, 18 Msps
– 9x PWM
– 10/100 Mb Ethernet
– OLED 128×64 pixels
– Analog input for microphone
– Analog output for headphones
– micro SD card
– industrial grade -25C+85C

This board will be add to our web shop after the show and will be priced at EUR 25.00 but note! On Embedded world we will give away free of charge 1000 of these worth EUR 25 000!

How you can get one?

Past experience show that people like to get freebies even if they have no use of them, small kids, 70 years old developers, all they came to our booth and ask for free boards, but we doubt they use the boards afterward which is pitty.

This board is quite good with industrial temperature specs, 18Msps ADCs, and fast UARTs, SPIs, I2Ss, so we really do not want these boards to go to someone who will have no use of them and just will let the board collect dust in the table corner, so if you want to get one of these boards send us to info@olimex.com email with link to web page with project you already have done with other Olimex boards.

Interesting projects and open source projects will have advantage, so please think twice before submitting your blink LED done with something :))).

We will confirm with email back that we have booked board for you which you can take on Embedded World.

If you have no ticket let us know we will generate free ticket for you as exhibitor we can do this, these tickets otherwise are expensive, so prepare yourself well 🙂

For these who do not have chance to come to Embedded World, but still have interesting project, if the project is interesting enough we can decide to cover shipping by post. The boards which will be shipped by post will be shipped after Embedded World i.e. about end of February.

The last date to send us link with your project is February 22nd.

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