Introducing NXP’s MCX A: The All-purpose MCU and Enhanced FRDM Development Platform

NXP Semiconductors recently announced the launch of its MCX A series microcontrollers, including the A14x and A15x families, aimed at redefining the standards for versatile microcontroller solutions. Embedded with the powerful Arm® Cortex®-M33 core, these MCUs are designed to cater to a broad spectrum of applications across multiple industries, from industrial communications and smart metering to automation, control, and low-power devices.

The A14x series operates at 48 MHz, while the A15x series doubles that performance at 96 MHz. Both series come in various package options, ensuring adaptability across different hardware requirements. A notable feature of the MCX A series is its exceptional power efficiency, achieved through a capless LDO power subsystem, allowing operation across a range of 1.7V to 3.6V. This efficiency is highlighted by the MCU’s ability to maintain low power consumption across active and deep sleep modes, ensuring sustainability in battery-powered applications.

MCX A Family block diagram

Figure 1. MCX A14/A15 Family Block Diagram

Peripheral innovation is at the heart of the MCX A series. With the inclusion of MIPI I3C®, a modern upgrade to I2C for faster two-wire communication, and a full-speed USB device controller with ISP capabilities, these microcontrollers are set apart for their advanced connectivity options. This makes them suitable for a wide array of applications, including protocol bridging and smart device interfacing.

Figure 2. NXP I3C Support

The MCX A series also boasts a rugged memory subsystem, featuring a Low-Power Cache Controller (LPCAC) for improved processing and peripheral performance, and ECC-capable RAM for applications demanding higher reliability. Furthermore, the series is equipped with a high-speed ADC and comparators, alongside a motor control subsystem, underscoring its utility in precision control systems.

Furthermore, MCX A boasts advanced analog subsystems and motor control capabilities, making it the ideal choice for a spectrum of applications, from precision servo systems to distributed battery management systems.

Facilitating ease of use is the MCUXpresso Developer Experience, offering a comprehensive suite of software and tools tailored for seamless development. From low-level peripheral drivers to middleware support, MCUXpresso empowers developers to realize their visions with unparalleled flexibility.

With support for modern CI/CD workflows, MCX A seamlessly integrates into professional development environments, offering command-line builds and extensive framework support.

Complementing the MCX A series is the FRDM-MCXA153 Development Board, providing developers with a robust platform for rapid prototyping. With Arduino® compatible pin headers and support for additional expansion boards, the FRDM platform offers unparalleled versatility.

Figure 3. FRDM-MCXA153 Development Board.

With the MCX A series, NXP reinforces its commitment to innovation, scalability, and efficiency in the microcontroller domain, setting a new benchmark for intelligent edge devices.