I-SYST inc.
Microcontroller Boards
Nordic Semiconductor


A fingertip-size ARM M4F module with Bluetooth 5.2, Thread, Zigbee and 46 I/O

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BLYST840 follows in the footsteps of BLYST Nano as the next generation ARM Cortex-M4F module. It’s designed as a feature-rich but tiny and ultra-low-power SoM to make it easy to integrate into your own projects and IoT hardware. BLYST840 has 46 I/O, 1 MB flash, 256 kB RAM, is ready for Bluetooth® 5.2, is Thread and ZigBee capable, is NFC-enabled, has built-in security measures, and supports MicroPython.

Features & Specifications

BLYST840 modules are designed so that no extra PCB space or any external components are required on user’s application board for all the functionality of the nRF52840.

Read the nRF52840 spec sheet for full features list: https://www.mouser.com/datasheet/2/297/nRF52840_PS_v1.1-1623672.pdf

Wireless Connectivity

Bluetooth 5 – Bluetooth Low Energy, Further and Faster

The nRF52840 is ready to take advantage of the considerable performance improvements for Bluetooth LE with the arrival of the Bluetooth 5 specification. Of greatest importance is the support for longer range (up to four times compared to Bluetooth 4.x) and doubling of on-air data rate, up to 2 Mbs from 1 Mbs in Bluetooth 4.x

Bluetooth 5 Data Rates

2 MbpsShortX
1 MbpsMediumXX
500 kbpsLongX
125 kbpsVery LongX

Thread and Zigbee 802.15.4 Support

The nRF52840 is a Thread-certified component and as such is ideal for home networking products using the Thread mesh stack. The radio supports 802.15.4 PHY and MAC layers and makes it suitable for additional stacks using 802.15.4 such as Zigbee.

On-chip NFC Tag

NFC-A tag support is included on chip. Out-of-Band (OOB) pairing using NFC simplifies the process of authenticated pairing between two Bluetooth devices by exchanging authentication information over an NFC link.

Wireless Security

Inherent industry-grade security is essential in today’s applications. The nRF52840 adds security for CortexTM-M Series with on-chip ARM® CryptoCell cryptographic accelerator. The nRF52840 employs the same hardware and software architecture as existing nRF52 Series SoCs. At its core is an ARM Cortex-M4F processor allowing quicker and more efficient computation of complex functions for DSP and those requiring floating point math. There is extensive memory availability in both flash and RAM, 1 MB/256 kB respectively.

ARM Cryptocell 310

The nRF52840 features an on-chip ARM® TrustZone® Cryptocell 310 cryptographic hardware accelerator. Cryptocell offers a wide range of ciphers and security features for building solid security into applications from the ground up. Use of Cryptocell also makes associated security operations run faster and uses less processing time and power than equivalent operation carried out in software by the CPU.

Power Efficiency

The nRF52840 SoC is an extremely power efficient device that can run from a supply that provides 1.7 V to 5.5 V - which includes battery and USB power. All individual peripherals and clocks can flexibly power down when not required for task operation, thus minimizing power consumption. The IC has a comprehensive system of automated and adaptive power management features. These features range across the entire IC’s operation, from power supply switching to peripheral bus/EasyDMA memory management, to automated shut down of all but the absolute essential peripherals required to perform a task.

Additional Pledge Levels

USB Dongles (UDG-NRF52840 & UDG-NRF52840C)

This USB Type-A or Type-C dongle is to be used with Nordic nRFConnect Desktop software to serve as sniffer testing tool for Bluetooth firmware development. It is 100% compatible with Nordic USB dongle in a more compact form factor. nRFConnect download https://www.nordicsemi.com/Software-and-tools/Development-Tools/nRF-Connect-for-desktop. It is also great board to use Mesh nodes.

Breakout Board (IBK-NRF52840)

This is for developers who want to start Bluetooth 5 & Bluetooth Mesh development on a breadboard.

Note: source code debugging requires the IDAP-Link

Exploration Kit

This kit is perferct for starter to learn about micro-controllers in conjunection with Bluetooth 5 & Bluetooth Mesh development. It contains:

The IDAP-LinkTM is a low cost CMSIS-DAP JTAG debug probe with enhanced features. It does a lot more than just debugging. The unit appears as a USB disk drive on the host computer. This allows firmware flashing easily by copying the firmware file over without requiring any special flashing software and will work instantly with Windows, Linux & OSX operating systems. It provides a UART to USB bridge for communication between the target device and the PC. It also provides regulated 3.3 V power to directly power the target device over USB without an additional power source.


Flashing Software for Nordic nRF5x Series

Download IDAP-Link software & documentation

Development Resources

A high performance open source multi-architecture multi-platform object-oriented design library, IOsonata, with lots of peripheral and sensor drivers that are easily integrated with BLE in a few lines of code. The IOsonata library allows writing custom firmware as quickly and easily as Arduino for quick prototyping to production code without compromise.

There are lots of software development resources that are freely available for the nRF52840 as well as MicroPython ports.

Nordic provides a full range of SDKs with source for Bluetooth, Bluetooth Mesh, ANT, Thread, Zigbee, and other proprietary protocol.

A 100% Free software development environment using Eclipse IDE and GCC compiler with source debugging capabilities via OpenOCD and the IDAP-Link CMSIS-DAP Debug JTAG.

How BLYST840 Compares:

BLYST840Lair BL654Raytec MDBT50uBlox NINA-B3InsightSIP ISP1807Fanstel BT840
Dimensions (mm)14 x 9 x 1.6 15 x 10 x 2.215.5 x 10.5 x 2.215 x 10 x 2.238 x 8 x 1.014 x 16 x 1.9
Requires extra PCB space for supporting componentsNo For crystal For crystal & DC/DC No 18 mm min antenna keep out For crystal
Builtin low power DC/DCYes Yes No Yes Yes partial
Builtin low power crystalYes No No Yes Yes No
I/O46 464638 4646
Hand-assembly prototypingEasy pads - edge, underpad anchors Difficult bottom pads Very difficult LGA pads Very difficult LGA pads Very difficult LGA pads Very difficult LGA pads
Open source softwareYes No No No No No
Price(USD)$22 (domestic shipping included) $9.55* $10.14* $14.30* $14.81* $11.35*

*shipping not included, varies.

Manufacturing Plan

All products (other than the USB Type-C dongle) have already gone through prototyping stages and are currently in production with a trusted manufacturer.

Shipping & Fulfillment

As the products are already in production, shipping should happen relatively quickly, though some extra time has been added to the estimated ship dates in order to hopefully offset any odd issues that may arise due to COVID-19. All orders will be filled using Crowd Supplys fulfillment service. You can learn more on their guide page, Ordering, Paying, Shipping: The Details.

Risks & Challenges

Module design and prototyping started two years ago, and the units are already in production - so the risks of hardware issues are minimal. The module itself has gone through rigorous testing and certification. The USB Type-C dongle is the only product that has not undergone a prototyping run, but the design is very similar to the Type-A dongle, and prototypes are currently in-process.

Of course, unknown issues may arise due to COVID-19 which may affect timelines.

Any problems that occur will be communicated directly with backers through project updates.

In the Press

Hackster News

"This fingertip-sized powerhouse features a Nordic nRF52840 chipset based on an Arm Cortex-M4F...we are not using the phrase "system on a module" lightly. Dimensions of 14 x 9 x 1.6 mm make it smaller than a US quarter coin. "

Geeky Gadgets

"The BLYST840 modules are designed so that no extra PCB space or any external components are required on your application board, to benefit from all the functionality of the nRF52840."

CNX Software

"BLYST840 module fully leverages the capability of Nordic Semi’s wireless microcontroller with Bluetooth 5.2, Thread, and Zigbee connectivity, and exposes 46 I/Os."


"The new BLYST840 from I-SYST can be described as an advanced and highly flexible chip solution to the rising demand in ULP wireless applications for IoT devices."


"El nuevo módulo ARM con Bluetooth 5, Thread y Zigbee BLYST840, que cabe en la yema de un dedo, posee un controlador nRF52840 y cuarenta y seis E/S para adecuarse a las necesidades de proyectos IoT."


"It's a pretty robust device that should ease your maker journey. "

Ask a Question

Produced by I-SYST inc. in Brossard, Canada.

Sold and shipped by Crowd Supply.


One BLYST840 module (NRF52840 CKAA module)

$22 $8 US Shipping / $18 Worldwide

BLYST840 USB Dongle

One BLYST840 module assembled on a USB Type-A or Type-C breakout board.

$35 $8 US Shipping / $18 Worldwide

BLYST840 Breakout Board

One BLYST840 module assembled on a breadboard-ready DIP48 breakout board with a USB micro port.

$40 $8 US Shipping / $18 Worldwide

BLYST840 Exploration Kit

This kit is perfect for starter to learn about micro-controller with Bluetooth 5 & Bluetooth Mesh development. Two BLYST840 modules, one DIP48 Breakout Board, one BLYST840 USB Type-A Dongle, and an IDAP-Link CMSIS-DAP Debug JTAG.

$145 $8 US Shipping / $18 Worldwide

About the Team

I-SYST inc.

Brossard, Canada  ·   i-syst.com

Provider of Wireless connectivity, Smart Sensor & IoT Solutions

Nguyen Hoan Hoang

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