OLinuXino-Micro ARM9 Linux board hits the streets

Olimex released their OLinuXino-Micro, an ARM9 development platform that supports Linux. It runs at 454 MHz, has 64 MB of RAM, an SD-card reader, TV PAL/NTSC video output, one USB High-Speed host port, and an a Pi-tossing 60 GPIO pins broken out. It’s priced around 24 Euros (30 bucks).

Via the forum.

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  1. I like the fact that this board does video. Does anyone know of any app notes to make video from a microcontroller?

    1. it does run linux from SD card. so you dont need to know anything about microcontroller. just use linux development resources like Qt or something what this tiny-linux supports, to produce your video output

  2. What, no VGA?? What is it with these tiny Linux boards coming out these days? It’s like they avoid VGA like the plague!

    1. I have not looked, but have the impression from trolling comments,etc, that the chipsets they use don’t offer VGA or the support hardware takes too much real estate.

  3. Should we wait for the DangerousPrototypes Linux board? ;)

    Actually the Raspberry Pi and other upcoming boards focus all on some video out stuff (because most of them use a SoC intend for multimedia applications.

    I would like to see a very low power board (possibly running on battery) capable to run Linux. Just bare bone with many I/Os and several (4+) host USB ports (both, plugs and just solder pads).
    This should make the basic board rather cheap and giving a high flexibility.

    Nowadays you get hundreds of different USB devices (wifi, ethernet, bluetooth, TV, sound, VGA, serial, GPS, GSM, UMTS, LCDs, mouse, keyboards, etc.) they come most of the time cheaper then any module you could possibly design. More and more of them run just fine and instantly under Linux.

    So why not having a small basic bare bone board focusing on good power saving features (e.g. full Linux suspend by external trigger and a tiny uC to take over.) and let people just plugin USB dongles according to there needs?

    1. Hi,

      Yes such board could be great but anyway it will be not really low power because USB 2.0 devices consume lot of power especially Wifi, TV, GPS stuff …
      And so the board with such 4 USB 2.0 port should provide up to 2A @ 5V (500mA*4) so at end it will be not low power at all.

      1. Well, carefully designed you could enter ultra low power states.
        Individual switchable power lines for the USB clients. Hence, simply entirely switch off power hungry devices like GPS.
        Stable suspend to RAM and disk for the Linux System. This can get you down to no power at all.
        I would like to see a little ultra low power uC as a companion to the Linux running SoC. Communicate to and maybe even programmable by the Linux System. It could take over power saving functions and even entire tasks during which the main system sleeps in standby. Finally it could wakeup the main system due to external events.

      2. Well, “Low-Power” is like “Real-Time”: it does not mean anything until you specify your expectations!

        For me, “Ultra Low-Power” means nA, “Low-Power” means µA, “High-Power” means A, and everything in-between is “Normal-Power” in mA…

        I don’t expect a CPU with an operating system to consume less than a few 100s mA when running, and a few 10s µA when sleeping, which is OK for battery operated devices, and now, most CPUs can handle this without a companion uC.

        OTOH, if you are looking for energy-harvesting devices, forget about using any OS with SDRAM et al… Just suspend to RAM will require more than what is available.

    1. Yes, and you can get cheap portable DVD player screens that take composite in as well. But even those screens are too small and fuzzy for serious development work. I’ve tried a couple of USB/VGA dongles with the likes of a Soekris board (headless AMD Geode). I could get neither of them working due to driver nightmares. No real native VGA is a deal killer for me.

      1. Fuzziness comes from the poor color composite video signal quality.

        If there is a 10-bit video DAC on board with corresponding output pins, all you need is a resistor ladder to output VGA to a DB15 connector I am just doing that with Altera Cyclone III FPGAs…

        However, it looks like it is only VGA (640×480) resolution, which is a little bit short by today’s standards, where a 1024×768 resolution is considered as the bare minimum.

  4. Is this “hitting the streets” only in Europe, or has anyone in the US tried to order one of these iMX233-OLinuXino-Micro boards? The Olimex.com website has “add to cart” buttons, but they do nothing I can see. Even if that worked, the shipping from Bulgaria is about as much again as the board costs. The US distributors (Mouser, SparkFun) do not currently list this item.

  5. I got mine from Mouser a couple of weeks ago. It works great with a IIc monitor, and is much smaller than the picture leads one to believe. Probably similar PCB surface area to an Arduino. (Don’t feel like doing math right now…)

  6. Mouser raised the price. It used to be $25 back in July when I got one. Unfortunately, I have not had much time to play with it.

  7. I’m working on something similar because the micro is still too big with too many features haha ;) Pretty much exactly the same, but squashing it onto a DIP40: micro sd + 64mb ram + imx233 + usb host + 40 or so IO’s… I’ll open source it when it’s done! ;) the idea is to put a tiny wifi in the USB and have a linux-of-things ;) price wise I’m aiming for around $25 as well, if I can get 100 people to buy one! lol

  8. Hey I want a board with USB connection. The board should run Linux. I want only 3G/4G connectivity. Is it possible for this board to provide 3G/4G connectivity. How much power USB provides if I intend to use 3G/4G with USB interface

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