Adafruit's Metro M7 iMX RT1011 Brings NXP's 500MHz Crossover Processor to the Uno Form Factor

With a 500MHz crossover CPU, the Metro M7 iMX RT1011 could be a great choice for high-speed work in the Arduino Uno form factor.

The board has been demonstrated running CircuitPython, meaning its release is likely imminent. (📷: Adafruit)

Adafruit's upcoming Metro ESP32-S2 isn't the only Arduino Uno-form factor board in development at the company: The Metro M7 iMX RT1011 takes the same core board shape and places a 500MHz NXP crossover processor at its heart.

"We stayed in and worked on the Metro M7 featuring the i.MX RT1011 (the lil' sister chip to the RT1062 that stars in the Teensy 4)," Adafruit wrote when first unveiling the proposed design earlier this year. "This chip is really fast, clocking at 500 MHz, and has 128k of RAM. For flash, it uses an external QSPI chip which we’ll share for filesystem use as well."

"On the left we put an ESP32 footprint, we use the ESP32 as a Wi-Fi co-processor. You can power it over USB C or a 9V DC power jack, we’ll probably change out the 3V LDO regulator for a buck, since the current requirements are going to be high on this board. This is only 2 layers, but we think it might be OK."

Since then the company has been working on refining the design and testing its compatibility with CircuitPython, its in-house port of MicroPython aimed at hobbyist development and education. "Even though it doesn’t have a ton of RAM," the company writes, "it's got a nice speediness to it which we really dig.

"Here we are testing out CircuitPython 6 with the AirLift Wi-Fi coprocessor to get data from the interwebs and display it on an OLED. The OLED plugs right into the STEMMA QT connector so its really easy to get sensors and displays attached!"

Adafruit has not yet offered a launch date, nor pricing, for the board. More information is available on the company's blog.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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