New Starterkit for Multicore ARM-based Qseven Modules

6th November 2013
Mick Elliott

The new MSC Q7-SK-IMX6 from MSC is an out-of-the-box Starterkit for the company’s Qseven modules based on the Freescale i.MX6 which contains a Cortex-A9 RISC CPU with one, two or four cores. The kit includes all components for the operation of the Qseven module: a compact Qseven baseboard with power supply, a Qseven Heatspreader, an SD Card with bootable Operating System and a Resource CD with drivers and documentation.

The Starterkit also includes all parts required for the development of applications with the Q7-IMX6 module. An optional TFT kit can be provided including a suitable cable set to directly connect the LCD with the Qseven Baseboard of the Starterkit.

The module is a family of fully compatible modules with one, two or four CPU cores. Clocked at up to 1.2GHz, they consume less than 5W but provide high computing performance and powerful graphics. All models except the single-core feature the Freescale Triple Play graphics architecture which consists of decoder hardware for 3D videos (dual-stream) up to Full-HD resolution (1080p), up to four 3D graphics shaders with a combined power of up to 200MT/s, and a separate 2D BLT engine to take care of the acceleration of user interfaces along with an additional 2D OpenVG engine for vector-based graphics. Up to three independent graphics screens can be driven by one single Q7-IMX6 module.

The module is available in versions for Linux and Windows Embedded Compact 7, with an Android version currently in discussion. The kit consists of a compact application baseboard (MSC Q7-MB-EP4) providing the most relevant interfaces such as DVI/HDMI and LCD graphics, LAN, USB, UART, CAN and SDIO. The suitable Heatspreader for the Q7-IMX6 module provides for basic cooling or adaptation of a dedicated cooling solution. A standard 12V power supply is enclosed connecting to the baseboard. The 8GB Flash SD Card contains the appropriate boot loader and bootable Operating System: either Linux based on the Yocto Project or Windows Embedded Compact 7. In all cases, the accompanying Resource CD includes all documentation and drivers required to immediately start working with the Q7-IMX6 module, plus sample schematics and a collection of technical notes.

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