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Friday, 02 May 2014 08:35

Nvidia Jetson TK1 starts shipping May 15th

Written by Fuad Abazovic

$192 for 192 cores

German e-tailers were indicating that their Jetson boards might start shipping April 29th and as of yesterday Nvidia has confirmed that it is ready to start shipping Jetson TK1 embedded products.

This is basically a microcontroller on steroids with speeds of more than a 1GHz and still, Nvidia doesn’t want to reveal the real clock of the TK1 development platform.

Nothing consumerish about it

The board is priced at $192, which is symbolic as it has 192 compute cores, or $1 per core. Many might find difficult to understand what Jetson is bringing to table, but we remember talking to a GE representative that showed us a Jetson board running a camera demo that was able to recognize and follow multiple targets. The representative said that before Jetson they needed much bigger box and much more power and space in order to make such a device.

“Tegra K1 can change what’s possible in the rugged and industrial embedded market. We expect to be able to offer solutions in the sub-10 watt space that previously consumed 100 watts or more,” said Simon Collins, Product Manager, GE Intelligent Platforms.

The possible applications are endless, self-driving cars as well as airplanes and drones will vastly benefit from an efficient Jetson kit that can do a lot of computation.

Specs, peripherals, options

Jetson TK1 is a 5? wide by 5? long PC board with a Tegra K1 processor comes with 2 GB of RAM, 16 GB 4.51 eMMC memory. In the kit you’ll get a Jetson TK1 development board, an AC adapter with power cord, a USB cable for flashing, and a quick start guide to help get you running.


It has a lot of peripherals and ports options including:

1 Half mini-PCIE slot
1 Full size SD/MMC connector
1 Full-size HDMI port
1 USB 2.0 port, micro AB
1 USB 3.0 port, A
1 RS232 serial port
1 ALC5639 Realtek Audio codec with Mic in and Line out
1 RTL8111GS Realtek GigE LAN
1 SATA data port
SPI 4MByte boot flash

If this is not enough you can also get DP/LVDS, Touch SPI, 1×4 + 1×1 CSI-2, GPIOs, UART, HSIC, and i2c. Chaps who are familiar with microcontroller world usually play with GPIO (General Purpose Input Output) or UART (Universal asynchronous receiver/transmitter) and it’s kind of shame that these are not already included.

A verity of cameras are supported via USB 3.0 or GigE Ethernet as you need to be able to feed a lot of data to Tegra TK1 in order to e.g. lock and follow targets and keep these 300 Gigaflops of computing power feed. 

Jetson TK1 runs Linux For Tegra (L4T) that is a modified Ubuntu 13.04 Linux distribution provided by NVIDIA and it will already come preinstalled on the microcontroller board. NVIDIA provides the board support package and software stack which includes the CUDA Toolkit 6.0 , OpenGL 4.4 drivers, and the NVIDIA VisionWorks Toolkit.

Nvidia claims that it is shipping Jetson now but both Microcenter and Newegg are taking the orders today and will ship on May 15, May 16th respectably. You can pre-order one here and they will also ship internationally at least for some countries.

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