Energy Micro's EFM32 Gecko microcontrollers deliver high performance with low energy consumption

Date
09/02/2012

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EFMTG840F32 delivers 15.4 CoreMark/mA

Click image to enlarge: The EFM32 Tiny Gecko Starter Kit provides energy monitoring; real-time energy and power profiling; light, LC, and touch sensors; an 8 x 20 LCD, SEGGER J-link debugger, free evaluation compiler, and gains Simplicity Studio support.

Benchmark tests using IAR Embedded Workbench for ARM version 6.40 confirms the low-energy performance of Energy Micro's EFM32 Gecko microcontroller—even beating Cortex-M0+ Core rivals. The EFMTG840F32 achieved a score of 15.4 CoreMark/mA using IAR Embedded Workbench for ARM version 6.40, over 20% more efficient in active mode than even the recently launched Cortex-M0+ devices—a less powerful processor. The EEMBC (Embedded Microprocessor Benchmark Consortium), a non-profit organisation founded in 1997, developed CoreMark processor benchmarking to enable real-world performance comparisons between different microcontrollers and processors. The EFM32 Gecko's performance benefited from compiler improvements in version 6.40 of IAR Embedded Workbench for ARM. This supports Energy Micro's assertion that it's a combination of code optimization matched to energy-friendly sleep modes deliver the lowest possible system energy consumption, rather than slower processing. Additionally, Gecko technology enables EFM32 MCU peripherals to communicate without using the CPU, enabling the processor to remain in deep sleep longer. The EFM32 wake up time is just 2 μs, making it fast and efficient to switch into active mode, process data then go back to sleep. IAR Systems' Strategic Account Manager, Mike Skrtic, said, "IAR Systems is glad to see that customers can benefit from our significant work on code optimization. In performance terms, the EFM32 Gecko family scores 2.93 CoreMark/MHz, giving designers unprecedented speed from a very energy-efficient MCU platform." Energy Micro has always recognized the importance of code optimization in reducing energy consumption. The company's Øyvind Grotmol, VP of Simplicity commented, "Our energyAware Profiler, part of the Simplicity Studio suite of tools, is an energy debugging tool that uses advanced energy monitoring data for real-time profiling and debugging of object code to minimize consumption. It's great to be working with a partner like IAR Systems that has the expertise to help us keep EFM32 Gecko customers in the forefront of low-energy, high-performance processing for their systems." Energy Micro IAR Systems EEMBC

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