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First 96Boards CE Extended SBC taps Snapdragon 600

Jun 7, 2016 — by Eric Brown — 1,089 views

eInfochips and Arrow are prepping an open-spec 96Boards CE Extended form-factor SBC with a Snapdragon 600, plus WiFi-ac, BT, GbE, GPS, SATA, and MIPI-CSI.

An “SD 600eval” single board computer, which appears to be a follow-on to the similarly 96Boards compatible DragonBoard 410c from Qualcomm and Arrow, appears to be nearing launch. eInfochips has posted a product page and a $279 price for the Snapdragon 600-based hacker board, which will be sold by Arrow Electronics. eInfochips refers to the board as the SD 600eval, but product images include “db600c” in their names, suggesting it could be announced as the rumored DragonBoard 600c. Considering the high price, it’s also possible a cheaper, somewhat more limited SBC based on the design could eventually appear under the DragonBoard brand.

SD 600eval
(click images to enlarge)

Like the DragonBoard 410c, the board uses the open source 96Boards form-factor and expansion specification. This is the first board, however, to adopt the 100 x 85mm Extended version of the 96Boards CE (Consumer Electronics) spec rather than the standard 85 x 54mm spec.

The SD 600eval is also the first 96Boards device we’ve seen with a 32-bit, rather than 64-bit ARM SoC. Last summer Freescale and Arrow teased a 96Boards CE board based on the Cortex-A7 i.MX7, but not much has been heard about it since NXP merged with Freescale.

Shipping with Ubuntu Linux and Android 5.1, the SD 600eval SBC differs from earlier 96Boards entries in other ways, as well. It’s the first with an Ethernet port — a GbE interface provided here via PCIe — and the first to provide a SATA interface. Another anomaly is the board’s separate 16- and 40-pin audio expansion connectors, which are provided in addition to the standard 96Boards 40-pin low-speed and 60-pin high-speed connectors.

Other Linux- and Android-ready SBCs built around the Snapdragon 600 include the Inforce 6410Plus and the Intrinsyc Open-Q 600. Both boards offer Gigabit Ethernet ports, and the Inforce 6410Plus provides SATA.

SD 600eval block diagram
(click image to enlarge)

The Snapdragon 600 SoC’s four, 28nm-fabricated 1.7GHz “Krait” cores are roughly equivalent to Cortex-A15 cores. The SoC provides Adreno 320 graphics and a 500MHz “Hexagon” QDSP6V4 DSP, enabling 24-bit QXGA (2048 x 1536 pixels) graphics resolution, along with 1080p/60fps video running simultaneously on a second display.

Like the Inforce 6410Plus and Open-Q 600, the SD 600eval ships with 2GB of RAM, but once again eInfochips goes its own way by providing LPDDR2 RAM, rather than DDR3. Other than that, and the other major departures noted above, the SD 600eval is fairly similar to both the Inforce and Intrinsyc boards, as well as other 96Boards SBCs.

The SD 600eval ships with 16GB eMMC flash, and it offers a microSD slot in addition to the SATA connector. You get an HDMI port and two MIPI-CSI ports, enabling both front and back cameras, for example, on a mobile device.

Wireless radios are upgraded compared to its Snapdragon 600 competition and other 96Boards devices. You get the latest 802.11b/g/n/ac, as well as Bluetooth 4.1 with BLE support. GPS is onboard as well, and is similarly enabled with an external antenna.

The board features the usual 96Boards complement of two USB 2.0 host ports and a micro-USB OTG, as well as the aforementioned GbE port and multiple expansion connectors. A wide-range 6.5V to 18V power supply is also available. Like other 96Boards entries, this appears to be a fully open-spec product.

Specifications listed for the SD 600eval (DragonBoard 600c?) include:

  • Processor — Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 APQ8064 (4x Krait 300 cores clocked at 1.7GHz); 2MB L2 cache; Adreno 320 GPU; QDSP6V4 DSP
  • Memory/storage:
    • 2GB LPDDR2 RAM (up to 533MHz) in PoP format
    • 16GB eMMC flash
    • MicroSD slot
    • SATA connector
  • Display/camera interfaces:
    • HDMI port for up to 1080p @ 60Hz
    • MIPI-CSI (4-lane)
    • MIPI-DSI (2-lane)
  • Wireless:
    • 802.11b/g/n/ac 2×2 dual-band WiFi with onboard and ext. antenna
    • Bluetooth 4.0/LE with onboard and ext. antenna
    • GPS/GLONASS with ext. GPS antenna
  • Networking — Gigabit Ethernet port via PCIe (AR8151)
  • Other I/O:
    • 2x USB 2.0 host ports
    • Micro-USB 2.0 OTG port
    • 40-pin low-speed expansion connector (2x UART, SPI, PCM, 2x I2C, 12x GPIO, DC power
    • 60-pin high-speed expansion connector (4-lane MIPI-DSI, USB, HSIC, SDIO, 2x I2C, 2-lane and 4-lane MIPI-CSI
    • 16-pin and 40-pin audio expansion connectors (stereo headset/line-out, speaker, analog/digital mics); PCM/AAC+/MP3/WMA, ECNS, and optional Audio+ post processing
  • Other features — power/reset; user switch; 6x LEDs (4x user)
  • Power — 6.5V to 18V input; PMIC (Qualcomm PMM8920)
  • Dimensions — 100 x 85mm (96Boards CE Extended)
  • Operating temperature — 0 to 50°C
  • Operating system — Android 5.1; Ubuntu/Debian Linux

Further information

No availability information was provided for the SD 600eval, which may or may not come out as the DragonBoard 600c. eInfochips provides a SD 600eval product page, and Arrow Electronics, which has previously distributed eInfochips boards such as the Snapdragon 600-based Eragon 600 COM, offers an unpopulated SD 600Eval shopping page with a $279 price and a “No Stock” sticker.

(advertise here)


One response to “First 96Boards CE Extended SBC taps Snapdragon 600”

  1. Steven Fera says:

    In response to the IMX7 96-boards comment, “The SD 600eval is also the first 96Boards device we’ve seen with a 32-bit, rather than 64-bit ARM SoC. Last summer Freescale and Arrow teased a 96Boards CE board based on the Cortex-A7 i.MX7, but not much has been heard about it since NXP merged with Freescale.”

    The project is in the final stages and will be available shortly which is in line with the mass market launch of imx7. We have been working to make sure we have the best possible silicon and software on the board.

    We have seen great demand for the product and can’t wait to release it to the market.

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