Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 Processors for Advanced Embedded Applications
Build the most advanced embedded systems using superior multicore performance, immersive graphics, and an energy efficient platform for exceptionally long battery life and miniaturized industrial designs.
As one of the most cutting-edge mobile processors ever created, the Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 820 processor supports the ultimate in connectivity, graphics, photography, power and battery efficiency. The Snapdragon 820 (APQ8096) has been designed from the ground up to be unlike anything else. By combining cutting-edge processing capabilities with power-efficient features, the Snapdragon 820 (APQ8096) processor not only works harder than its predecessors, it also works smarter. Additionally, with Snapdragon processors, Inforce Computing offers a clear product release path for embedded device OEMs and developers – starting with production-ready, customizable System On Modules (SoM), Single Board Computers (SBC) and Reference Designs and scaling up to larger solutions and custom design services. Here’re a few salient features and benefits of the Snapdragon 820 (APQ8096) processor:
1. Powerful Kryo CPU: The new Qualcomm® Kryo™ CPU has 2x performance and efficiency when compared to the CPU of Snapdragon 810. As the first custom-designed 64-bit quad-core CPU, the Kryo CPU uses Qualcomm® Symphony System Manager as an intelligent resource management tool for Snapdragon that extends control of task scheduling and power management across the entire processor.
2. Efficient Hexagon 680 DSP: Significant improvement to the Hexagon 680 DSP enables the CPU to offload many audio and imaging tasks for more efficient processing. The Hexagon 680 DSP also allows for ultra-low power “always-on” sensors and advanced low power-image processing.
3. Immersive visual graphics: The next-generation of visual processing technologies is finally here, thanks to the power of the new Adreno 530 GPU. As our highest performance GPU yet, the Adreno 530 in the Snapdragon 820 processor along with the Kryo CPU are capable of generating photorealistic graphics for console-quality gaming and next-generation virtual reality apps, while delivering up to 40% improvement to graphics performance and compute capabilities when compared to the Adreno 430.
4. Advanced Spectra Camera ISP: The Snapdragon 820 (APQ8096) harnesses the newest innovations in mobile photography to redefine today’s camera capabilities. Supported by the latest 14-bit image sensors, hybrid autofocus and multi-sensor fusion algorithms, the Spectra camera ISP captures a wider range of colors and supports computational photography. Plus, the Snapdragon 820 also has Hexagon 680 with HVX (Hexagon Vector eXtensions), which supports advanced imaging and computer vision.
5. Advanced WiFi: The Snapdragon 820 (APQ8096) processor fundamentally changes the way Wi-Fi works with your phone by supporting 802.11ac 2×2 MU-MIMO — which allows Wi-Fi to be up to 3x faster than 802.11ac without MU-MIMO.
Here’re more specifics on why Snapdragon 820 (APQ8096) processor can empower next-gen embedded systems:
- Quad core Kryo CPUs (ARM®v8 ISA compatible) running at 2.2GHz (Gold cluster) and 1.6GHz (Silver Cluster) for processor-intensive computing
- Adreno 530 GPU with 64-bit addressing and support for OpenGL ES 3.2, OpenCL 2.0, and Vulcan for breathtaking graphics
- Hexagon 680 DSP with dual-Hexagon Vector Processor (HVX-512) @825MHz for low power computer vision and audio processing
- Dual Spectra Image Signal Processors (ISPs) @1.2GP/s and support for zero shutter lag (ZSL)
- Complete 4K60 encode/decode system — 4K60 H.265/VP9 decode with uncompressed 4K display via HDMI 2.0 supported
- Dual MIPI-DSI (4-lane) and touchsceen capability
- Trio of MIPI-CSI (3×4-lane)
If the above features will meet your requirements, Snapdragon 820 (APQ8096) processor based Inforce Computing platforms will be a great fit for advanced embedded systems such as
- High-end industrial IoT systems that require high-performance and low-power compute at the edge of the network
- Advanced portable and connected medical systems that require state-of-the-art DSP for signal and image processing and improved battery life
- Next-gen augmented and virtual reality enhanced hands-free computing/head mounted displays that require rich graphics processing at low power consumption
- Video analytics that require compute intensive facial recognition algorithms to run and process on real-time
- Run computer vision algorithms on commercial robots and drones that process real-time video for collision avoidance and navigation
1. What is Inforce 6601 Micro SoM?
The Inforce 6601 Micro SoM is a high-performance tiny System on Module (SoM) solution for embedded systems designers.It is based on Qualcomm’s cutting-edge, custom quad-core 64-bit ARM®v8 ISA compatible Snapdragon 820 processor (APQ8096) for embedded applications. The plug-and-play Inforce 6601 Micro SoM comes in an ultra-small form factor of 28mm x 50mm and provides pin, electrical, and form-factor compatibility across a wide product line of Snapdragon processor-based SoMs and shares a common carrier board design for easy migration to new Qualcomm technologies. The compute dense Micro SoM is an ideal platform for a variety of SWaP constrained Android and Linux based embedded applications.The Inforce 6601 Micro SoM also comes with EMI shielding for certain BTO SKUs for better RF noise protection as well as doubling up as a medium for heat spreading and thermal dissipation.
2. Does Inforce offer a reference carrier board for its SoMs or other form factors based on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 (APQ8096) processor?
Yes. Inforce offers a mini-ITX carrier board (170 X170mm) that fully expands the I/O and connectivity of the Inforce 6601 micro SoM. The Inforce 6601 reference design includes this full-fledged carrier board and the Inforce 6601 micro SoM. Inforce will also have an SBC based on the Snapdragon 820 (APQ8096) processor available in the near future. Please stay tuned to our website for more details.
3. Does Inforce provide any custom design solutions since some designs wouldn’t be able to use the standard SoM’s form factor and or features?
Yes, while we offer standard products off-the-shelf (OTS) on our website and through our distributor, Arrow Electronics, we also have a strong background in customized hardware and software solutions. We offer pre-validated build-to-order (BTO) configurations, as well as configure-to-order (CTO)voptions for existing products. For customers wanting to design their own unique form-factor carrier board to interface with the OTS Inforce 6601 Micro SoM, we offer design assistance support packages that include dedicated engineer, reference schematics and design reviews—contact Inforce for more details.In addition, Inforce also offers full custom hardware design and associated software/device driver development, for those projects where a unique hardware design is required to meet sophisticated technical challenges.
4. Where can I find more information about the Inforce 6601 Micro SoM? What do I get when I buy an Inforce 6601 Micro SoM? Is the device available internationally?
Inforce’s website has a lot of useful information about our SoMs at https://www.penguinsolutions.com/edge/products/system-on-modules-som. Please check on the exact product SKU for the pre-loaded software, available memory and accompanying starter kits, which include items such as acrylic base, power adapters, and cables. The Inforce 6601 Micro SoM requires a carrier board (like all SoMs do) to power up and connect to peripheral devices and gain access to the extensive set of I/Os that are available on the Micro SoM. If you are considering the Inforce 6601 Micro SoM for the first time, please purchase the comprehensive Inforce 6601 reference design, which includes the Micro SoM, the reference full-fledged carrier board, and a starter kit. Inforce’s Snapdragon processor-based Micro SoMs are all cross-compatible (pin, connector, and form factor) with the reference carrier board designs, ensuring a smooth path to migrate/upgrade to new Snapdragon processor-based Micro SoMs in the future.
Once you register the product with Penguin Solutions, you would get dedicated support.
The board ships to most places worldwide and relevant shipping and local tax/customs duty charges may apply. Please contact PenguinEdgeSales@penguinsolutions.com for pricing details or any additional questions that you may have before buying an Inforce 6601.
5. Does Inforce have a blog?
Yes! You can find our periodic blogs at https://www.penguinsolutions.com/edge/resources/blog/category/articles.Here you can keep up with all of the latest information about Inforce products, conference/trade show appearances, and innovative customer case-studies and applications.
6. Does Inforce offer warranty replacement/return materials authorization (RMA)?
Yes, please contact our sales team at PenguinEdgeSales@penguinsolutions.com for specific details for your product.
7. What are the accessories available?
Our website https://www.penguinsolutions.com/edge/products/accessories all the available accessories. Please note that User Guides and product datasheets are available for all accessories.
8. Does the board support a cellular or GSM connection?
The Inforce 6601 does not include support for a wireless modem. Third party cellular modem dongles can be connected to the Inforce 6601 system via USB ports and may require special drivers from the respective manufacturers. We can also help you design in a 3rd party cellular modem module in your custom carrier board that is mated with an Inforce Micro SoM.
9. What is the storage capacity of the Inforce 6601 Micro SoM? Is it expandable?
The on-board storage (UFS) capacity is 64GB. Storage can be expanded by connecting a Micro-SD card. Please check on the exact product SKU for details on pre-loaded software and available memory.
10. What are the performance details of the Inforce 6601? What is the speed of the RAM?
The Inforce 6601 Micro SoM is based on the Snapdragon 820 (APQ8096) processor, which includes ARM® Cortex®-A72 class computing through its custom Qualcomm® Kryo™Quad-core ARMv8 64-bit CPUs organized as two clusters viz., Gold@2.15GHz each with 32KB of L1 I-Cache, 24KB L1 D-Cache, L2 1MB, and Silver@1.593GHz each with 32KB of L1 I-Cache, 24KB L1 D-Cache, L2 512KB. The Qualcomm® Adreno™ 530 is capable of 500+ GFLOPS of general purpose compute and provides support for OpenGL ES 3.2 and OpenCL 2.0. Note that these libraries are provided as binaries only
The on-board 2GB LPDDR4 RAM operates at 1866MHz
All our Android releases are benchmarked with Antutu and validated with the Qualcomm Trepn™ Profiler to ensure that all cores are capable of operating at their maximum frequency.
11. What is the stacked height of the SoM mounted on the carrier board?
The height of the Inforce 6601 Micro SoM is 8.1mm and the full height when mounted on mating connectors on the carrier board is 9.7mm.
12. What types of displays are supported and at what resolutions?
Primary, dual-link MIPI-DSI up to WQXGA (2560 × 1600) 24bpp @60 Hz refresh + Micro HDMI(2.0 spec.) output of 4K@60 Hz refresh are the displays supported.
The Inforce 6601 reference design has a 51-pin FI-R DSI connector with support for dual MIPI-DSI ports and a Type-A HDMI port. Note that the displays are not provided as peripherals with the Inforce 6601 reference design. They can be purchased from https://www.penguinsolutions.com/edge/products/accessories
13. What are the capabilities of the video Decoder/Encoder on the Inforce 6601 Micro SoM?
Please refer to https://developer.android.com/guide/appendix/media-formats.html for supported codecs from Android. Hardware accelerated capabilities of the APQ8096 SoC are:
||Main profile up to level 5.1
||1080P/40mbps/30fps 1080P/60mbps/60fps 3840×2160/100mbps/60fps 4096×2160/100Mbps/60fps
||Baseline, main, high profiles; up to level 5.1
||1080P/40mbps/30fps 1080P/60mbps/60fps 3840×2160/100Mbps/60fps 4096×2160/100Mbps/60fps
||Profile 0; up to Level 70
||Simple, Advanced simple profiles; up to levels 8 and 5, respectively
||Adv Main, Simple and High profile
||DivX 3.11 – 720×480/2mbps/30 fps DivX 4.x/5.x/6.x – 1080P/10mbps/30fps
||Mainprofile up to level 5.1
||1080P/40mbps/30fps 3840×2160/100mbps/60fps 4096×2160/100Mbps/24fps
||Baseline, main, high profiles; up to level 5.1
||1080P/40mbps/30fps 3840×2160/100Mbps/30fps 4096×2160/100Mbps/24fps
||Profile 0; up to Level 70
||Simple, Advanced simple profiles; up to levels 8 and 5 respectively
14. What are the camera capabilities of the Inforce 6601 Micro SoM?
The Inforce 6601 Micro SoM has 2 camera connectors that support 4 lanes from CSI0 and CSI2.CSI0 has support for CMOS and CCD sensors and is capable up to 28MP sensor and CSI1 has webcam support and is capable up to 13MP sensor.Dual camera capability is possible.
Inforce platforms have been validated with a Sony IMX230 sensor (21MP) based camera module for 4K@60fps capture and record. Note that the camera is not provided as part of the Inforce 6601 reference design. It can be purchased as an accessory from https://www.penguinsolutions.com/edge/products/accessories/.
15. How much power does the board draw? Is it possible to measure the power?
The Inforce 6601 reference design is powered by a 12V/3A wall adaptor. Our products typically offer support for 7V-16V power input range. The total power consumed by the Inforce 6601 reference design ranges between 6W to 17W when different use cases are executed. There are no test points made available to measure run-time power on the board. But the input current through the DC jack can be measured during different use-cases. Please note that we run the Qualcomm Trepn™ profiler as part of our validation process on all of our stock Android releases.
16. What are the audio capabilities?
Audio is available through HDMI, USB, and speaker out. The Inforce 6601 reference design also comes with a microphone for recording and a combo jack for microphone and speaker out.The HDMI interface has an 8 channel audio with 7.1 channel surround sound, with support to Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby True HD and DTS-HD Master.
17. What documents are provided? Are board design files also provided?
We provide datasheets, user guide and a Hardware Reference Manual. Schematics are not provided for the Inforce 6601 Micro SoM. Board design files are proprietary and are the intellectual property of Inforce, and hence not provided. All software releases are accompanied with release notes, user guides and application notes that describe the installation procedure.
18. What is the support model from Inforce after products are purchased?
Inforce offers a range of standard products off-the-shelf (OTS) on its website and through our distributor, Arrow Electronics. Apart from these, it offers pre-validated build-to-order (BTO) configurations, as well as configure-to-order (CTO) options for existing products. In addition, we also offer full custom hardware design and associated software/device driver development, for those projects where a unique design is required to meet sophisticated technical challenges.All purchases of Inforce products get unlimited access to the online TechWeb support portal, which provides a host of technical documentation and software downloads. Purchasers are also provided free technical support for two support tickets. For a sustained technical support, Inforce offersDesign Assistance Support Contracts for shorter periods of time and Annual Support Contracts for its customers who would like unlimited prioritized technical support. Please contact PenguinEdgeSales@penguinsolutions.com to obtain more details of the support contracts.
Networking, IO and Wireless
19. Does the device support networking and wireless communication?
Supported connectivity includes Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11ac 2X2 MU-MIMO 2.4GHz/5GHz + Bluetooth 4.1LE (available via Qualcomm Atheros QCA6174) and GPS (supported via Qualcomm WGR7640).
20. How can I change the MAC address for WiFi/BT/Ethernet on my board?
MAC addresses are fixed at the factory. Changing them should not be necessary since the correct addresses are programmed before the board is shipped. If it is still required, please refer to the Release Notes and App notes available on Inforce’s TechWeb support portal.
21. What are the IO interfaces available?
Standard I/O interfaces including GbE, I2C, SPI, UART, UIM, GPIOs, and on-board Serial Console are available. The Snapdragon 820 (APQ8096) processor supports 1x USB 3.0(OTG) and 1 x USB 2.0.The 6601 reference design has two Type-A USB connectors and a µUSB 3.0 connector which is the OTG connection. We also provide a 40 pin expansion header with accessible GPIOs available for users. Please refer to the product specifications in the Hardware Reference Manual or the datasheet for more information.
22. My serial console shows garbage characters. What could be wrong?
The serial port could be incorrectly configured. Please note that the correct settings are – 115200, 8, N, 1, No HW flow control. Please also check your connections as described below. To connect the serial console on theInforce 6601 reference design, one would need to have a three pin connector and the wiring as described below: Take wires from the DB9 port and connect it to the RS232 header on board DB9 TX ———- 6501 R1IN DB9 RX ———- 6501 T1OUT DB9 GND ———-6501 GND
23. What operating systems are supported and what is the OS roadmap for the Inforce 6601 Micro SoM?
Board Support Packages (BSPs) for Android Oreo and Ubuntu/Debian Linux versions are available today as officially supported packages on the Inforce TechWeb. Periodic releases shall be provided with feature improvements on both these packages. Inforce also upgrades the BSPs to newer Android releases and upstream Linux kernel to support feature improvements on its platforms. Please stay tuned for announcements on our website for update releases.
24. Is root access possible on Inforce boards? Could you please explain how to get root privileges in Android?
Yes. As Android derives from the Linux kernel, rooting an Android device gives similar access administrative permissions as on Linux. Please give below commands in adb shell to get root privileges #adb root #adb remount
25. Is fastboot supported? How to enter fastboot?
Yes. To go to fastboot mode, keep the Vol- button (for exact location, check the Quick Start Guide [QSG] document for the Inforce 6601 Micro SoM) pressed before powering on the board and release it after the board has powered on.
26. I’ve modified the boot partitions on my board and the board is no longer booting. What should I do?
If the UFS (flash memory) partitions have been erased or the partition table has been corrupted, you may have to obtain a Return Merchandize Authorization (RMA) for the board to be shipped back to Inforce Computing to fix the issue. There are no other alternatives when a board is bricked in this manner. In particular, please avoid erasing the SBL partition.
27. Is the Hexagon DSP available on the Inforce 6601 platform?
Yes. Qualcomm’s Hexagon DSP architecture is designed to deliver performance with low power over a variety of heterogeneous computing applications. It has features such as hardware assisted multithreading, privilege levels, VLIW, SIMD and instructions geared toward efficient signal processing. The Inforce 6601 reference design comes with the Hexagon™ 680 DSP with dual-Hexagon vector processor (HVX-512) designed for 825 MHz for ultra-low-power audio and computer vision processing. Qualcomm also opens up a comprehensive Hexagon SDK for all its processors that provides for a complete environment to generate dynamic HexagonDSP code modules. This SDK would soon be available for the Snapdragon 820. Please check https://developer.qualcomm.com/forums/qdevnet-forums/multimedia-optimization-hexagon-sdk for updates on the SDK availability.
28. How can I get kernel debug messages?
Connect the device’s serial port to the host PC. Refer to Question 22 for connection configuration. Boot into fastboot mode and issue the following command – fastboot -c “console=ttyHSL0,115200n8r androidboot.hardware=qcom” boot boot.img Debug messages should start to show up.
29. Why isn’t Google Play (previously Android Market) available on my board?
Google Play is part of Google Mobile Services (GMS) and is licensed separately by Google. This is usually available on commercial Android devices. Though our hardware is capable of meeting requirements of the Google Test Suite that would lead to GMS certification, we have not added this to our product.
Nevertheless, it is possible to side-load any Android application using the following commands:
#adb devices #adb mount #adb remount #adb install apk
Should you have further questions not answered by the above FAQ and would like to have them included here, please contact PenguinEdgeSales@penguinsolutions.com.