[Arm-netbook] Laptop idea

Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton lkcl at lkcl.net
Mon Aug 11 12:35:35 BST 2014

On Mon, Aug 11, 2014 at 11:34 AM, Wookey <wookey at wookware.org> wrote:
> +++ Vincent B. [2014-08-10 21:50 +0200]:
>> Hi,
>> What about start from a Lenovo Thinkpad laptop,
>> I would be very interested because I like Thinkpads, but I'd like a system that
>> consume much less power, and this just doesn't exist on the market yet.
> You are by no means the first person to think of this. Hardware people
> in Cambridge are looking at actually doing this (with an arm64 chip
> such as AMD's). The usual problem is finding enough time and money,
> but there are a good number of developers out there who want a
> half-decent arm laptop.

 *jumps up and down excitedly* that's why this list was started!! :)

> Obviously arm64+32G RAM+offchip video would be
> aiming quite a lot higher (and more expensive) than the EOMA concept
> (32bit arm, 2G RAM, one nice low-power SOC).

 ahh remember that EOMA68 isn't just about one SoC, or even about SoCs
per se [remember the pass-through card, and the FPGA card?].  the only
reason i didn't yet do an Intel CPU Card yet is because their current
tablet SoC in 22nm is juuust outside of the comfortable power budget,

 so... wookey, if you happen to know of someone who is sampling arm64
SoCs, i'd be veeery interested to speak with them.

>  Both have their place -
> the former may not turn out to be particularly low-power...

 yeahhh there are ways around that, such as only using one 32-bit DDR3
rail instead of two, and monitoring temperature carefully.  one 32-bit
DDR3 interface @ 800mhz uses i think it's around 350mA, it's when you
get 2x 1666mhz 32-bit interfaces that you go over the comfortable
EOMA68 power budget... just for the _memory_!!!

 offchip video is where it gets... challenging (read: out of the
question).  there simply aren't any low-power GPUs out there - even if
you use the 2D Volari Z11 (the one that's used in the OpenRD Ultimate)
it's around 2 watts which is madness.


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