Today as part of NVIDIA’s fall GTC event, the company has announced that the Jetson embedded system kits will be getting a refresh with NVIDIA’s forthcoming Orin SoC. Due early next year, Orin is slated to become NVIDIA’s flagship SoC for automotive and edge computing applications. And, has become customary for NVIDIA, they are also going to be making Orin available to non-automotive customers through their Jetson embedded computing program, which makes the SoC available on a self-contained modular package.
Always a bit of a side project for NVIDIA, the Jetson single-board computers have none the less become an important tool for NVIDIA, serving as both an entry-point for helping bootstrap developers into the NVIDIA ecosystem, and as a embedded computing product in and of itself. Jetson boards are sold as complete single-board systems with an SoC, memory, storage, and the necessary I/O in pin form, allowing them to serve as commercial off the shelf (COTS) systems for use in finished products. Jetson modules are also used as the basis of NVIDIA’s Jetson developer kits, which throw in a breakout board, power supply, and other bits needed to fully interact with Jetson modules.
NVIDIA Jetson Module Specifications
Volta, 512 Cores
Maxwell, 128 Cores
32GB LPDDR5, 256-bit bus
16GB LPDDR4X, 256-bit bus
4GB LPDDR4, 64-bit bus
AI Perf. (INT8)
100mm x 87mm
100mm x 87mm
45mm x 70mm
With NVIDIA’s Orin SoC set to arrive early in 2022, NVIDIA is using this opportunity to announce the next generation of Jetson AGX products. Joining the Jetson AGX Xavier will be the aptly named Jetson AGX Orin, which integrates the Orin SoC.
Featuring 12 Arm Cortex-A78AE “Hercules” CPU cores and an integrated Ampere architecture GPU, and comprised of 17 billion transistors, Orin is slated to be a very powerful SoC once it begins shipping. The SoC also contains the latest generation of NVIDIA’s dedicated Deep Learning Accelerator (DLA), as well as a vision accelerator to further speed up and efficiently process those tasks.
Surprisingly, at this point NVIDIA is still holding back some of the specifications such as clockspeeds and the GPU configuration, so it’s not clear what the final performance figures will be like. But NVIDIA is promising 200 TOPS of performance in INT8 machine learning workloads, which would be a 6x improvement over AGX Xavier. Presumably those performance figures are for the module’s full 50W TDP, while performance is proportionally lower as you move towards the module’s minimum TDP of 15W.
For the AGX Jetson, Orin is being paired with 32GB of LPDDR5 RAM, which is attached to a 256-bit memory bus, allowing for 204GB/second of memory bandwidth. Unfortunately, NVIDIA is not listing how much storage the modules come with, though for reference, AGX Xavier came with 32GB of eMMC storage.
Meanwhile, for this generation NVIDIA will be maintaining pin and form-factor compatibility with Jetson AGX Xavier. So Jetson AGX Orin modules will be the same 100mm x 87mm in size, and use the same edge connector, making Orin modules drop-in compatible with Xavier.
Jetson AGX Oron modules and dev kits are slated to become available in Q1 of 2022. NVIDIA has not announced any pricing information at this time.