Vodafone, a key global operator, is backing LimeNET and supporting us to take our software defined radio technology mainstream with operator deployments. Read the full update here.
Our mission is to democratise wireless innovation. Last year, we launched the LimeSDR campaign as the first step towards this goal. Now, we are launching LimeNET, a new campaign that offers the community a line of pre-qualified hardware with integrated LimeSDR technology. There are three main LimeNET hardware stacks: Mini, Enterprise, and Base Station - all of them are pre-qualified to work with the recently announced Ubuntu App Stores, so you can easily find, share, and publish apps specifically written with LimeSDR technology in mind.
If you’ve been following the LimeSDR project, here’s a summary of what’s new in LimeNET:
Read on for details!
LimeNET extends LimeSDR’s open source software-defined radio ecosystem by offering an array of standard LimeSDR-based hardware configurations on which you can run Ubuntu Core to find, share, publish, and deploy pre-packaged applications ("snaps"). The idea is to replace specialized, closed equipment, software, and knowledge with open source software and commodity hardware. LimeNET is an open alternative to the incumbent, closed wireless model.
|LimeNET Open Model||Incumbent Closed Model|
|Chipset||Readily available and open source software||Closed and proprietary with vendor lock-in|
|Radio Hardware||Readily available and open source||Closed and highly specialised|
|Baseband & Digital||General-purpose motherboards||Proprietary ASICs|
|Software||App-based with worldwide developer network||Closed and expensive with vendor lock-in|
|Deployment & Maintenance||Uses general IT skillset and commodity hardware||Highly specialised and requires OEM support|
LimeNET is the next step in the evolution of software defined radio. What you actually use it for is completely up to your imagination (and the imagination of thousands of other developers). Broadly speaking, LimeNET is a great option for any application that is a convergence of wireless technologies, such as:
For example, at Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2017, there was a demonstration of a complete 4G network running on a commodity laptop connected to a software-defined radio dongle (a LimeSDR!) streaming HD video to standard, off-the-shelf smart phones. Several aspects of this demo were unique:
This is just one example. There are plenty of others involving HAM, radio astronomy, AM/FM, GNSS, and more.
In this campaign, we’re offering the LimeNET Mini, LimeNET Enterprise, LimeNET Base Station, and many of their constituent components.
Complete with an integrated LimeSDR USB micro Type-B with added shielding, this mini PC will get you up and running with the LimeNET app store in no time.
The LimeNET Mini available both with and without the LimeSDR USB micro Type-B board and associated cabling and antennas pre-installed - complete and bare versions, respectively. You can use an external LimeSDR USB board with a bare version simply be using one of the LimeNET Mini’s external USB ports. However, internally integrating your own LimeSDR within the LimeNET Mini is not supported, as it requires careful soldering to add the RF shielding necessary to protect the integrity of the RF signals from noise from the mini PC. In fact, the bare version’s enclosure doesn’t even include room for an integrated LimeSDR.
As a token of appreciation to our early LimeSDR backers, we’re making available for a limited time the bare (i.e., without integrated LimeSDR) version of the LimeNET Mini computer at a $400 discount off its standard campaign price. This offer is only available to backers of the LimeSDR USB boards (Type-A, micro Type-B, Aluminum Kit, and respective early birds) who ordered before the launch of the LimeNET campaign (before May 23, 2017). You can take advantage of this discount by entering your original LimeSDR order number in the comments field of your order for a LimeNET Mini. This discount is available until July 13, 2017. Thank you for your early support!
LimeNET Mini ports layout
|1. USB 3.0||1. Risecard connector|
|2. LAN||2. USB 3.1 Type-C|
|3. Mini DisplayPort|
|4. HDMI 2.0|
|5. DC input|
|6. SATA cable connector|
|8. USB 3.1 Type-A|
|9. 30-pin debug connector|
|10. Power connector|
This high-performance PC comes with an external LimeSDR with Aluminum Kit.
* The reduced-price version of LimeNET Enterprise without the LimeSDR with Aluminum Kit is available only to backers of the LimeSDR with Aluminum Kit who placed their order during the original LimeSDR campaign and pre-order period (April 28, 2016 - May 18, 2017). This special pricing is our way for thanking them for their early support and it is one small way we can try to make up for the late delivery of their units.
LimeNET Enterprise mainboard
|1. 2 x USB 2.0||13. M.2 2242/2260 M key slot|
|2. 2 x USB 3.0||14. battery connector|
|3. SD card reader slot||15. clear CMOS & power button|
|4. power button||16. 4 x USB 2.0|
|5. HDD LED||17. Ethernet port|
|6. power LED||18. DisplayPort|
|7. headphone||19. HDMI port|
|8. microphone input||20. DC power input|
|9. SATA cable connector||21. Intel H1 10 chipset|
|10. DDR4 SO-DIMM slots||22. LGA1151 package CPU socket|
|11. M.2 2230 A,E key slot||23. fan connector|
|12. debug connector||24. AC back auto power|
The LimeNET Base Station is a limited-edition, highly discounted combination of the LimeNET Core and LimeNET Amplifier Chassis detailed below. This is everything you need to set up your own cellular network, all in one compact package and with a savings of over $7,000.
A top-of-the-line gaming PC outfitted with a newly developed LimeSDR QPCIe board, the LimeNET Core is a software defined radio powerhouse.
The following image shows the current internal components of the LimeNET Core. The exact make and model of the RAM and SSD components may change based on availability at the time of manufacture.
| |- | 1. Intel Core i7 - 6950X Processor Extreme Edition | 2. Crucial CT16G4DFD8213 64GB (4x 16GB) DDR4 2133 MHz | 3. Pre-amp bracket: MIMO 15 db LNA, MIMO TX SAW filter, MIMO 20 db PA | 4. GIGABYTE GV-N210SL-1GI graphics card with NVIDIA GeForce 210 | 5. Crucial MX300 SATA 3 internal 1 TB SSD w/ M.2 interface | 6. Corsair CX750MW Power Supply Unit | 7. LimeSDR QPCIe board | 8. ASUS X99-M WS micro-ATX mainboard
Designed to mate perfectly with LimeNET Core, the LimeNET Amplifier Chassis provides the necessary hardware to turn your SDR setup into a long range wireless network.
Whereas the LimeNET Mini and LimeNET Enterprise are based on the original LimeSDR USB boards (micro Type-B and Type-A, respectively), the LimeNET Core, and therefore the LimeNET Base Station, are based on the entirely new LimeSDR QPCIe board. This new board is a much more sophisticated version of the original LimeSDR PCIe board. In particular, it has two LMS7002 transceiver chips instead of one, which allows for a 4x4 MIMO configuration instead of a 2x2 MIMO configration.
LimeNET QPCIe board (front side)
|1. RF RX connectors||15. IC43 - EEPROM|
|2. J43, J42 - reference clock in and out||16. IC43 - FX3 flash boot jumper|
|3. LVDS interface||17. J28 - FPGA JTAG (0.1”)|
|4. IC40, J41 - GNSS receiver and antenna connector||18. SW2 - 4-bit switch|
|5. IC38 - FLASH memory||19. IC21, IC23 - FPGA configuration flash memory|
|6. J39, J38 - 2 x PMOD connectors||20. BATT1-RTC backup battery|
|7. LEDs||21. IC39 - temperature sensor|
|8. SW3 - power control switch||22. IC39 - temperature sensor|
|9. J44 - external 12 V power supply connector||23. RF RX connectors|
|10. J45 - 6-pin PCIe power connector||24. RF TX connectors|
|11. J31 - FX3 JTAG (0.05”)||25. RF PAs, switches, and connectors|
|12. IC34 - USB 3.0 controller (FX3)||26. IC1, IC4 - 2 x FPRF LMS7002M transceivers|
|13. J29 - USB 3.0 connector (micro Type-B)||27. RF TX connectors|
|14. IC35 - FX3 flash memory|
LimeNET QPCIe board (back side)
| |- | 1. IC49 - clock synthesizer | 2. IC46 - phase detector | 3. XO1-3 VCTXO | 4. IC2, IC3, IC5, IC6-RF transceivers EEPROMs | 5. IC42, real time clock
Note: While you can use the LimeSDR QPCIe board with other computers, LimeNET Core and, by extension, LimeNET Base Station are the only complete systems we’ve tested and pre-qualified as part of the LimeNET ecosystem. Of course, we encourage developers to integrate LimeSDRs of all flavors into new hardware configurations, but our ability to support and maintain hardware configurations is currently limited to those in the LimeNET family.
LimeNET Gateway is a complete, certified, high-bandwidth cellular gateway that provides Wi-FI and Ethernet Internet connectivity backed by a connection to a 2G, 3G, or 4G macrocell. It provides users with downlink and uplink throughput of 150 and 50 Mbps, respectively, and can connect to any operator network with a SIM card (not included). Save $100 off the retail price.
LimeNET is built on a robust, community-driven software stack, including:
Check out our Ubuntu app stores for more information:
As with the original LimeSDR campaign, which has already delivered thousands of software-defined radios to developers worldwide, we will continue to use our established network of trusted manufacturing and assembly partners in Taiwan and the UK.
All LimeNET products have free worldwide shipping. Orders being shipped to the EU will ship from the UK. Orders being shipped outside of the EU will ship from Crowd Supply’s US-based fulfillment facility. The recipient is responsible for all import fees and duties. You can find out more about fulfillment in the Crowd Supply Guide.
A lot of time went into developing and testing everything offered in this campaign, so we are confident there is minimal risk involved. We of course face the usual risks associated with manufacturing (e.g., parts shortages).
Produced by Lime Microsystems in Guildford, England.
Sold and shipped by Crowd Supply.
A high-performance mini PC with an integrated and shielded internal LimeSDR USB micro Type-B, U.FL cables, and antennas. This hardware is fully qualified for compatibility with the LimeNET Ubuntu app store.
A complete, certified, high-bandwidth cellular gateway that provides Wi-FI and Ethernet Internet connectivity backed by a connection to a 2G, 3G, or 4G macrocell. It provides users with downlink and uplink throughput of 150 and 50 Mbps, respectively, and can connect to any operator network with a SIM card (not included).
A high-performance mini PC without an internal LimeSDR, U.FL cables, or antennas. This hardware is fully qualified for compatibility with the LimeNET Ubuntu app store provided you have your own LimeSDR for external use. (NOTE: Those who purchased a LimeSDR before the launch of the LimeNET campaign get a $400 discount on the version of the LimeNET Mini without the integrated LimeSDR. To claim the $1,199 price, place your order by July 13, 2017 and include your LimeSDR order number in the order comments. Your price will be adjusted shortly after placing your LimeNET Mini order.)
A high-performance PC with an external LimeSDR with Aluminum Kit from the original LimeSDR campaign, as well as a LimeNET Gateway for backhaul connectivity. This hardware is fully qualified for compatibility with the LimeNET Ubuntu app store. Save $300 off the post-campaign retail price of $2,999. (NOTE: There is an $800 discount for a version without the LimeSDR with Aluminum Kit, but it is available only to those who purchased a LimeSDR with Aluminum Kit from the original LimeSDR campaign before the launch of the LimeNET campaign. To qualify, please place your order by July 13, 2017 and include your original order number in the order comments. The $800 discount will be applied shortly after your order is placed).
A high-performance PC that is fully qualified for compatibility with the LimeNET Ubuntu app store provided you have your own LimeSDR for external use.
This is a steeply discounted combination of the LimeNET Core + LimeNET Amplifier Chassis. This is all you need to set up your own cellular network!
This is a steeply discounted combination of the LimeNET Core + LimeNET Amplifier Chassis. This is all you need to set up your own cellular network! These are made to order and fulfillment timelines vary.
A top-of-the-line gaming PC with an integrated LimeSDR QPCIe board. As the name suggests, it is the core of the LimeNET Base Station, but you can also get it separately for desktop development or integration into your own system. These are made to order and fulfillment timelines vary.
Amplifier Module for long range connectivity features: Set of two (MIMO): 10 W RF Output Power Amplifier + Duplexer + Antenna Your choice of frequency band (700 MHz, 1.8 GHz, 2.6 GHz, 3.5 GHz) Thick monolithic aluminum body These are made to order and fulfillment timelines vary.
The latest addition to the LimeSDR family! Double the capacity (4x4 MIMO) of the original LimeSDR PCIe, this board is at the heart of the LimeNET Core and, by extension, the LimeNET Base Station.
A high-performance mini PC with an integrated and shielded internal LimeSDR USB micro Type-B, U.FL cables, and antennas. This hardware is fully qualified for compatibility with the LimeNET Ubuntu app store. Other than reduced pricing (save $300) and limited quantity (only five available), this early bird batch is the same as the regular LimeNET Mini with integrated LimeSDR.