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SODIMM-sized module is just $49

Jan 12, 2012 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 13 views

Strategic Test announced a SODIMM-sized computer-on-module (COM) based on Freescale's ARM 9-based i.MX283 system-on-chip. Clocked at 454MHz, the 2.66 x 1.0-inch TX-28S offers extensive I/O, including Ethernet and dual USB 2.0 ports, plus an available “Strategic Development Kit 5” baseboard, says the company.

Many previous SODIMM-sized modules from Woburn, Mass.-based Strategic Test have actually been manufactured by Germany's Ka-Ro Electronics, including the Freescale-powered TX25, TX27, TX28, TX37, and TX51. The same is true of the newly announced TX-28S — also being sold by the U.K.'s Direct Insight as the Triton-TX28S.

According to Strategic Test, the TX-28S (pictured) is pin-compatible with all the modules mentioned above, and works with the same carrier board they do (see later). However, the company adds, it sells for as little as $49, thanks to adoption of a relatively humble i.MX283 processor. (This ARM9-based CPU is clocked at 454MHz.)

According to Strategic Test (and Direct Insight), the TX-28S module pairs the i.MX283 with 64MB of RAM and 128MB of flash. Interfaces — all, of course, routed via the 200-pin DIMM connector — are said to include 10/100 Ethernet, two USB 2.0 ports, and two RS232 ports.

The module has an LCD controller that supports touchscreens up to 800 x 480 pixels, Strategic Insight says. Other interfaces include SDIO, I2C, serial audio, and SPI, the company adds.

Specifications listed by Strategic Test and Direct Insight for the TX-28S/Triton-TX28S include:

  • Processor — Freescale i.MX283 clocked at 454MHz
  • Memory — 64MB of RAM
  • Storage — 128MB NAND flash
  • Display:
    • LCD controller supports up to 800 x 480 pixels
    • 4/5-wire touchscreen support
  • Networking — 10/100 Ethernet
  • Other I/O:
    • 2 x USB 2.0 (host and On-the-Go)
    • 2 x RS232
    • 1 x SD/SDIO
    • I2C
    • SSP
    • SPI
    • JTAG
    • serial audio
  • Operating temperature — 32 to 158 deg. F (0 to 70 deg. C)
  • Dimensions — 2.66 x 1 inches
  • Operating system — Linux, Windows CE 6.0

The Strategic Development Kit 5 baseboard

For a development baseboard, Strategic Test recommends its Strategic Development Kit-5 (below), which is a rebranded version of a product sold by Ka-Ro as its StarterKit-5. Physical connectors are provided for the module's interfaces, and the board also supplies additional peripherals, including an audio codec, a touchscreen controller, and video DAC, the company says.

The Strategic Development Kit-5 (a.k.a. StarterKit-5) baseboard
(Click to enlarge)

As shown above and below, the Development Kit-5 provides standard connectors for a 10/100 Ethernet connector, VGA, USB 2.0 host and device, an RS232 serial port, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. The board also has a 10-pin header for a second serial port, plus a 40-pin connector that can be used to connect an optional touchscreen display, Ka-Ro says.

Connectors on the Strategic Development Kit-5
(Click to enlarge)

Features added by the Development Kit-5 are said to include:

  • 2 x SD card slots
  • USB 2.0 host and device connectors
  • VGA port with D-SUB connector
  • 10/100 Ethernet port
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • 2 x RS232 ports (one with 9-pin connector, one with 10-pin header)
  • Camera interface
  • JTAG interface
  • Dimensions — 6.3 x 3.9 inches (160 x 100mm)

Further information

According to Strategic Test, the TX-28S is priced at $49 for 10K quantities, while the Development Kit-5 is priced at $999. The company does not yet appear to have a product page for the module, nor does Ka-Ro, but further details may be found on Direct Insight's Triton-TX28S product page.

Jonathan Angel can be reached at [email protected] and followed at

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