Build Your Own Linux Powered Pda
Build Your Own Linux Powered Pda
Jun 5 2006, 08:00 PM
Joined: 22-December 04
Member No.: 6,002
I've had the idea about rolling my own Linux powered PDA for some time, but I've been busy with another project of mine. So, I haven't posted about this idea, but recently Da_Blitz posted:
the iMX3 is a custom PDA idea as the 2700G chip is VERY hard to get. dont want to hijack this thread anymore so if you want more info then contact me direct or make another post
Definately looking for some more info on that!
Here's some interesting ideas to get the thread started:
GumStix ( www.gumstix.com www.gumstix.org ): Very small, proprietary, stackable modules. Very hobbyist friendly, but current models are still based around the Intel PXA255.
Colibri Module : PXA270 with most of the needed chips built in, and connections for most of the rest, in a formfactor of a DDR SODIMM. Moderately hobbyist friendly, with boards only 119Euros for the 520MHz version, but with a fixed handling fee for Hardware of 100 EUR and shipping of 45 EUR. You'll want to order more than one to be price effective with this supplier.
CM-X270 Computer-On-Module: I stubbled on to this site last night. No idea about this supplier's ablity to handle hobbyists, or even the cost of the module. However, you can configure a pretty impressive COM on that page. Up to PXA270 520Mhz, 128MB of RAM, Intel 2700G with 8MB of its own RAM, audio codec, and 512 MB of NAND flash!
Take a look at the Google Ads when you do a search for 'Arm development board', as quite a few Ads hit the mark for what we would want, if they could be had cheap, and single unit quanties (which most aren't ).
Jun 17 2006, 05:44 AM
Joined: 8-June 05
Member No.: 7,295
Never used IRC. I think sticking to Forum is better, just for us reets that wouldn't have a clue.
I've been sketching out a generic case design based on the clamshells, just a weeny bit bigger. (I know you're not looking at a case, but to we have everything in the same thread would make sense until some bright spark builds a website. - NOT ME! My server won't boot.)
In my design (Pointy corners, all the hallmarks of an Alpha) I worked around a base design of 126x14x65 (NOT including Screen or hinge - I didn't want to estimate a depth on that) which managed to squeeze 2xSD 2xUSB IRDA, HDMI, Dual 3.5 audio and an Aerial socket for a wifi antennaon the backplate, with the PCMCIA socket running alon the bottom of the case and opening up on the right hand side (In landscape mode) so it would poke out the top in portrait.
I did a basic design for the top of a screen panel, with stereo speakers, (The kind that look like (##) as seen on the Uni)
as well as a rotating camera, on the right hand side. based on a Samsung camera on my Mum's mobile, which seemed to work.
My design left the front panel of the Base unit (Landscape) free for say. . a scroll wheel, and maybe a power or docking connector - Someone mentioned a Powered notebook HDD "Backpack"? which could have it's connector behind a panel on the front.
Only thing I did find, was that with the PCMCIA card there wasn't much room for a battery. . . Since the motherboard will take up the better part of the case, It might be better to lose the PCMCIA in place of a CFIO? A PCMCIA card, socket, and a 750mAh nokia battery took up the whole of the bottom of the case, up to a third of it's depth. . . I don't think we could fit it all in a reasonably sized PDA, and the space on the motherboard for the socket would be better used for onboard Wifi and Bluetooth chips, and all internal storage being onboard flash - A microdrive is quite big after all in a device this size. besides, after 1xCFIO and 2xSDIO. . How much more storage could you want? Even if you're using the CF for something strange, like a 3g card, a 56k modem, or a 10/100 - There's still two SD sockets. for up to 4/8 gb storage.
My refined specs (IMHO) that I looked at after running a design up are:
4.5" TFT fitted nicely, 5" is getting a bit too large, although if it's all we can get, it can be done.
Separate 3.5mm Line in/Lineout (Or mic, depending)
1xCamera - We'll have space in the screen panel for a rotating camera, and it'd be a waste of a good chip function not to include one. ROTATING, to use as Camera and VOIP.
1xEXT wifi Aerial socket. - If people prefer internal that's fine, but several people have added external sockets to their PDA's or cards, maybe a simple folding aerial like on most Routers and Desktops would be worth it? Or maybe just put an internal and a socket?
NAND Flash - As much as we can fit in there really, I can't see how we can get a CF or MD on a PDa size mobo with Phone, Ext-CF, SDIO
Quad-band GSM/GPRS phone, so we can all use it. ^^
STD mini-Sim socket, as used on every mobile for 12 years
Camcorder-battery Larger than 1500mAh, or if vertical space gets to be a premium, maybe two smaller Phone-types?
APM: Alot of this stuff is going to be big on power drain, so it has to be possible to Software-Power down at least the Wifi, Camera and Bluetooth, and Possibly the phone, too.
We've got a generic geek who can make what are only just unreasonable demands (Me.)
A motherboard Guy (All hail Blitz!)
A name (Of unknown popularity)
What we need, is someone who can seriously look at a case design, and maybe somewhere to manufacture them? When I was making my rough sketch design, I was thinking a ?pressed? Stainless steel or Aluminium shell, about the thickness of the average credit/debit card? (2/3mm)
Just so you know, I based my motherboard size expectation on an ipaq 3950 motherboard that's lying on my desk, (PXA250) and a DragonballVZ-33 from a clie (Which is TINY! o.O)
Since I'm guessing your average Moto-based board will be slightly smaller than say the iPaq board, because of the greater number of integrated components. - My Stacked SDIO idea came from a multilayer board with one conn. on each side.
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