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Skylake taken to EPIC proportions

Aug 1, 2016 — by Eric Brown — 860 views

IEI’s “Nano-ULT3” is an EPIC SBC with 6th Gen Core “Skylake” U-Series CPUs, up to 32GB DDR4 RAM, and coastline ports for 2x GbE, 2x HDMI, and 4x USB 3.0.

One of the nice things about backward compatibility is that you can take a legacy form-factor like EPIC and match it with one of the latest, fastest embedded-ready processors around, thereby injecting new life into aging equipment. We’ve seen some EPIC single board computers with Intel 5th Gen Core “Broadwell” CPUs, like Perfectron’s OXY5638A or Aaeon’s EPIC-BDU7, but IEI’s Nano-ULT3 is the first 6th Gen “Skylake” EPIC board we’ve encountered.


Like most of the 14nm Skylake boards we’ve covered, the Nano-ULT3 uses power-efficient, 15W TDP U-Series (ULT) dual-core processors: the 2.6GHz Core i7-6600U, 2.4GHz Core i5-6300U, and 2.3GHz Core i3-6100U, all of which supports higher Turbo clock rates. The board also supports a related, 15W, dual-core, 2.0GHz Celeron 3955U without Turbo. No OS support was listed, but Linux and Windows are almost certainly supported.

The 165 x 115mm Nano-ULT3 SBC can handle up to 32GB of dual-channel DDR4 (2133/1866MHz), as well as an option for 8GB eMMC 5.0. The SBC offers coastline ports including dual Gigabit Ethernet ports (one with Intel AMT 11.0), as well as four USB 3.0 ports.

Nano-ULT3 detail view
(click image to enlarge)

There’s also a pair of coastline HDMI ports, each of which can drive up to 4096 x 2160-pixel displays at 24Hz, says IEI. Triple display support is available when you activate the dual-channel 18/24-bit LVDS interface. You can also disable one of the HDMI ports in order to activate an onboard “iDP” (probably eDP) interface that also supports LVDS, VGA, DVI, or DP.

Nano-ULT3 coastline ports
(click image to enlarge)

The Nano-ULT3 is further equipped with internal interfaces including dual SATA 3.0 ports with 5V power connectors, as well as three USB 2.0, two RS-232, and an RS-232/422/485 interface. You also get KB/MS, SMBus, audio I/O, 8-bit DIO, fan connectors, a watchdog and several LEDs. There are both half- and full-size mini-PCIe slots, with the latter offering a SIM holder and mSATA support.

The 350-gram board runs on 12V DC power, with power consumption using the Core i3-6100U with 16GB RAM listed as [email protected] A heatspreader is included, as well as extended -20 to 60°C temperature range. Like IEI’s recent tKINO-BW Mini-ITX board, the Nano-ULT3 supports the IEI One Key Recovery solution.

Further information

No pricing or availability information was provided for the Nano-ULT3. The data sheet is still labeled “preliminary,” but there’s a link to request a sales quote. More information may be found on IEI’s Nano-ULT3 product page.

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