A roadmap for SMARC 2.0, Qseven 2.1 & COM Express 3.0

2nd March 2016
Source: congatec
Posted By : Nat Bowers
A roadmap for SMARC 2.0, Qseven 2.1 & COM Express 3.0


congatec has announced that it fully supports the upcoming new SGET and PICMG CoM specifications SMARC 2.0, Qseven 2.1 and COM Express 3.0. Modules complying with these standards are already in development and will be announced in time with the launch of the next processor generations.

SMARC and Qseven roadmap

congatec will fully support the SMARC 2.0 specification. SMARC 2.0 modules will become available for the full range of relevant processor technologies – from the Intel Atom processor to various ARM designs. congatec continues to support all current low-power processors for Qseven 2.1 designs as well.

The essential difference between the two standards is the number of supported interfaces with Qseven providing up to 230 and SMARC 2.0 up to 314 pins. SMARC is intended to interface richer systems with the smallest footprints; while Qseven is suited for slimmer and less complex module and carrier board designs.

congatec has played a significant and active role in the development of all standards. For the Qseven and SMARC specifications congatec even assumed the role of editor and is consequently a key technology provider for highly compact SFF designs based on CoM - a market where congatec has established itself as the industry leader.

Christian Eder, Marketing Director, congatec, SGET board member and SMARC spec editor, commented: “By taking the big step from SMARC 1.1 to 2.0, we have succeeded in giving this standard a clear perspective for the future. This major leap has brought many new interfaces and eliminated a lot of outdated features. Although designs based on 1.1 may no longer be compatible with 2.0, users are compensated by numerous new features.”

The COM Express roadmap

COM Express 3.0 will primarily offer a new pinout type specifically for Server-on-Modules. The server-focused Intel Xeon and Intel Core processors as well as the AMD Embedded R-series processors are prime targets, with ARM based platforms another possible option.

“All new specifications provide developers with support for the latest interfaces and many detail improvements. Next to the all-new SMARC 2.0 for highly compact multifunction systems, the new COM Express pinout for Server-on-Modules is particularly innovative. It enables us to target the new markets for decentralised, real-time edge servers that are used in media streaming as well as IoT, M2M, medical and automation applications,” explains Martin Danzer, Product Director, congatec.

With congatec’s personal integration service, developers will find it easy to integrate the new revisions into future system designs. Since most features are backward compatible, it is in many cases possible to upgrade existing carrier boards with new modules. This gives OEMs investment protection for existing system designs.

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