Re: Freescale iMX53 Quick Start board
Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton <lkcl <at> lkcl.net> writes:
> question (for everyone): if there existed a board which used a
> single-core 800mhz Cortex A9, maximum hard limit of 512mb RAM, but
> also had SATA-II and 10/100 Ethernet, would it be of interest, and how
> much would you pay for it? similar spec / design / size / interfaces
> as the pandaboard, origen etc. just with a single-core Cortex A9
> rather than dual-core.
> the CPU i have in mind is the AML-8726-M (which is fantastic but is
> hardware-limited to 512mb RAM) and i am in contact with an ODM/OEM
> whom i believe i could persuade to create such a board if there is
> sufficient interest in purchasing it.
This sort of question should always be considered in the context of the lead
time, i.e. "in 9 months time when TI and NVidia and Freescale (etc.) have
announced their next generation chips and boards, would you still be interested
in a board with an 800 MHz Coretex A9, 512 MB RAM etc.?".
Looking at the various things I have done over the last few years:
- I have had a couple of "NFS server"-like projects, where respectable network
and disk I/O speeds have been most important. (I can't agree with Gordan
Bobic's claim that SD cards are good enough for most applications.) Your
proposed board doesn't quite suit that because it doesn't have gigabit ethernet.
- I have done a couple of "display" applications, where video output in various
formats and respectable software support for that has been most important.
Today, almost everyone (including this AML chip with Mali graphics) is in the
same boat: there is good hardware and good drivers, but the drivers are all
non-free. If someone wants to stand out in that market they know what they have
to do. (These projects have also benefited from lots of RAM.)
- I have done a couple of commercial projects where a fast interface to some
custom (e.g. FPGA) logic was most important. I think PCIe is probably the only
realistic choice for that today. The AML chip doesn't help for this.
So to be honest, I would not expect a board based on that chip to be much use to
me. But I know I'm far from typical of anything...