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Helix PC/104 SBC with DMP Vortex86DX3 SoC Targets Rugged, Low Price, Low Power Applications

February 24, 2016
Helix PC/104 SBC with DMP Vortex86DX3 SoC Targets Rugged, Low Price, Low Power Applications

Nuremberg, Germany — February 24, 2016 — Today at Embedded World 2016, Diamond Systems Corporation, a leading global supplier of compact, rugged, I/O-rich embedded computing solutions for real-world applications in a broad range of markets, unveiled its compact, rugged Helix PC/104 single board computer based on the DMP Vortex86DX3 system-on-chip (SoC) processor.

The Helix SBC is targeted for low price, low performance applications. It offers low to mid-range CPU performance, more than double that of the AMD LX800. Helix is a low cost SBC offering high feature density in a compact size and providing optional integrated high-quality data acquisition circuitry, PCIe MiniCard I/O expansion, and rugged construction. With a long processor lifetime of 10 years or more, Helix is ideal for applications needing a stable, Iow cost SBC platform with many years of availability.

Two standard Helix models are available off-the-shelf; one aimed low-cost basic applications and the other targeting data acquisition applications. The data acquisition model expands on the features of the basic model by adding a complete data acquisition circuit as well as other I/O. A variety of customization options are also available allowing customers to match the specific needs of their application with on-board features of the Helix SBC.

Using an expanded PC/104 form factor measuring 102×102 mm (4.0×4.0 in), Helix’s full rectangular shape provides more coastline for I/O connectors, enabling an unmatched level of feature integration onto a single board its size. In this compact form factor, Helix includes a wide range of system I/O plus optional on-board data acquisition, meeting the majority of today’s connectivity requirements in a single board.

Helix PC104 SBCs combine the 1GHz DMP Vortex86DX3 dual core SoC with a wealth of PC I/O and on-board data acquisition circuitry at a competitive price. VGA and LVDS displays are supported and the available PC I/O includes 6 USB 2.0 ports, 2 RS-232/422/485 and 2 RS-232 ports, 1 10/100Mbps Ethernet port with an option for an additional Gigabit Ethernet port, and a SATA port that supports both on-board SATA DOM and off-board SATA devices.

The optional integrated data acquisition includes 16 16-bit A/D channels with 100KHz sample rate, 4 16-bit D/A channels with voltage outputs, and 27 programmable digital I/O lines, all supported by Diamond’s free, industry leading Universal Driver data acquisition programming library. An interactive, easy to use graphical control panel for Windows and Linux is provided to control all data acquisition features.

Helix SBCs are highly customizable to better fit specific application needs. The rugged SBCs customization options include:

  • 2GB on-board RAM instead of 1GB
  • Additional Gigabit Ethernet port on D models
  • 1 CANbus 2.0 port
  • mSATA interface shared with the PCIe MiniCard socket
  • Latching connectors instead of pin headers for increased ruggedness
  • Replace configuration jumpers with 0 Ohm resistors
  • Conformal coating
  • Custom BIOS & custom FPGA code

Helix supports stackable I/O expansion with PC/104 (ISA) I/O modules and also provides a PCIe MiniCard socket for additional I/O expansion. PCIe MiniCard I/O modules featuring WiFi, Ethernet, analog I/O, digital I/O, and CAN are available from Diamond Systems and other vendors, enabling compact expandability without increasing the total height of the system.

The Helix SBC was designed with rugged applications in mind. With an operating temperature of −40°C to +85°C and memory soldered on board, Helix is an excellent choice for rugged applications including industrial, medical, on-vehicle and military. Helix is also available in Diamond’s off-the-shelf and highly configurable Octavio systems.

About Diamond Systems
Diamond Systems is more than an embedded computer board vendor. We provide support for your embedded systems project from design to manufacturing to system integration to logistics to lifecycle support. Learn more about our extended services. Our in-house technology base is one of the widest in the embedded computing industry.

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