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Posts Tagged ‘debian’

ASUS Tinker Board is a Raspberry Pi 3 Alternative based on Rockchip RK3288 Processor

January 5th, 2017 28 comments

Regular readers may remember MQMaker MiQi board, a $35 (and up) development board powered by Rockchip RK3388 quad core ARM Cortex A17 processor, based on Raspberry Pi 3 form factor, but much faster according to benchmarks. Sadly, the board’s crowdfunding campaign was not that successful, possibly because of the “its’ a 2-year old processor” syndrome. But now, Minimachines has found that ASUS has designed a very similar board, dubbed Tinker Board, with an extra WiFi and Bluetooth LE module, audio jack, MIPI DSI connector, and a few other modifications.

Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

Asus Tinker Board specifications (bold highlights and strike-through show differences with MiQi board):

  • SoC – Rockchip 3288 quad core ARM Cortex A17 up to 1.8 GHz with Mali-T764 GPU supporting OpenGL ES 1.1/2.0 /3.0, and OpenCL 1.1
  • System Memory – 2GB LPDDR3, dual channel
  • Storage – 8 or 32 GB eMMC flash + micro SD slot
  • Video output & Display I/F
    • 1x HDMI 2.0 up to [email protected]
    • 1x 15-pin MIPI DSI supporting HD resolution
  • Audio – 1x 3.5mm audio jack; Realtek HD codec with 192KHz/24-bit audio
  • Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11 b/g/n WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0 + EDR
  • USB – 4x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x micro USB port (for power)
  • Expansion Headers
    • 40-pin “somewhat Raspberry Pi compatible” header with up to 28x GPIOs, 2x SPI, 2x I2C, 4x UART, 2x PWM, 1x PCM/I2S, 5V, 3.3V, and GND
    • 2-pin contact point with 1x PWM signal, 1x S/PDIF signal
  • Misc – Button, unpopulated fan header
  • Power Supply – 5V/2A via micro USB port
  • Dimensions – 85.6 x 54 cm

The company targets education, maker, and IoT markets for the board, with applications ranging from mini PC to portable game console and RC products like drones. The board supports Debian with Kodi.

asus-tinker-board-vs-raspberry-pi-3ASUS also provided a quick comparison table with Raspberry Pi 3 model B, that mostly shows the advantages over the Tinker board. The table is mostly fine, and I got some Phoronix benchmarks showing RK3288 can be about three times as fast as BCM2837 processor for FLAC audio encoding. The last row with officially supported OS appears to show both boards on the same footings, but Raspberry Pi 3 model B will have a clear advantage here, although I’m not sure why Asus did not list Android OS support for their board. The table does not include any price information either.

The only information I could find was from the Slideshare presentation above, and there does not appear to be any official website or page on Asus website.

Thanks to Freire for the tip.

Lichee Pi One Allwinner A13 ARM Linux Board is Equipped with LCD Display and Camera Interfaces

December 26th, 2016 21 comments

Allwinner A13 – repackaged as Allwinner R8 – single core Cortex A8 processor is used in $9 C.H.I.P board with 512MB, 4GB storage, WiFi and Bluetooth, and I/Os. Now a Chinese company has created a new Allwinner A13 board called Lichee Pi that appears especially suited to drive LCD displays thanks to its 40-pin LCD RGB connector, but it also comes with WiFi & Bluetooth, a micro SD slot, and some I/Os.

Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

Lichee Pi One board (preliminary/tentative) specifications:

  • SoC – Allwinner A13 ARM Cortex A8 processor @ 1.0 GHz with Mali-400 GPU
  • System Memory – 512MB DDR3 RAM
  • Storage – 2x micro SD slot
  • Display Interface – 40-pin RGB LCD connector, with 8080 interface, VGA and LVDS supported via add-on board
  • Camera – 24-pin CSI interface
  • Audio – 3.5mm audio jack
  • Connectivity – Optional 802.11 b/g/n WiFi and Bluetooth via RTL8723BU module (Multiplexed with USB 2.0 host port)
  • USB – 1x USB 2.0 host port, 1x micro USB OTG port, 1x micro USB port for power only
  • Expansion – Two 20-pin headers with 9x GPIO, 3x I2C, 3x UART, 3x SPI, etc…
  • Misc – RGB LED
  • Power Supply – 5V via micro USB port or 2-pin header, LiPo battery via miniJST connector
  • Dimensions – Est. 75 x 55 mm

The board can run Android or Linux distributions like Debian or Ubuntu, and you’ll find some information such as schematics and some documentation on Github.
cheap-linux-board-for-lcd
You’ll find soon info in English on Linux-Sunxi website, as well as elecfans.com with more info, but in Chinese only. The price of the board was  as low as 39 CNY ($5.6) in Elecfans crowdfunding (most components not soldered), and a complete kit with a 4.3″ display (800×480) a 3MP camera went for 168 CNY (~$24). Shipping costs were not included. It’s not available for sale right now. The company has also registered ilichee.cc, but the site is not accessible for now as it’s waiting for an ICP license.

$59 RetroEngine Sigma Retro Game Console is Based on Orange Pi Lite Board (Crowdfunding)

December 9th, 2016 14 comments

2016 has been the year of retrogaming comeback with products like PocketCHIP, Nintendo NES Classic, GPD Win and quite a few other projects. There will soon be a new option with RetroEngine Sigma, an inexpensive Linux based retro-gaming console based on Allwinner H3 processor.

retroengine-sigmaRetroEngine Sigma fanless game console hardware specifications:

  • SoC – Allwinner H3 quad core Cortex A7 @ 1.2 GHz with an ARM Mali-400MP2 GPU up to 600 MHz
  • System Memory – 512 MB DDR3
  • Storage – 16 or 32GB micro SD card
  • Video & Audio Output – HDMI port
  • Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n WiFi
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x micro USB OTG port
  • Misc – Programmable status LED, 2 user configurable buttons P1 & P2
  • Power Supply – 5V/2A via power barrel
  • Dimensions – 110 x 85 x 33.5 mm

The specifications look similar, so I went to my little list of Allwinner H3 boards, found the specs matches closely Orange Pi Lite board, and after checking the video and more picture, the ports also happen to be exactly in the same place… So it’s pretty sure the console is based on Shenzhen Xunlong’s Orange Pi Lite board, which is cool since there’s a good community support.

retrogame-sigma-armbianRetroGame developers leveraged that, and the console supports Atari 2600/7800, Sega Genesis, Nintendo NES / 64, Amstrad, Sega, and many more, and can be used as a mini computer and a media player with Kodi. It seems to have the same features as RetrOrangePi firmware based on Armbian plus Kodi and various game emulator.

The mini console’s Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign has been very successfully so far as they’ve raised closed to $250,000 from over 3,000 backers. All early bird rewards are gone, but you can still pledge $59 for the “Speedy Backer” reward including a mini console with a 16GB micro SD card pre-loaded with the firmware, a power adapter, a dual stick analog controller, a micro USB card reader, and a Xmas voucher. The 32GB micro SD Deluxe version goes for $89, and adds a Bluetooth adapter, a Bluetooth game controller, and a HDMI cable. Shipping adds $7 to the US, and $15 to the rest of the world. Delivery is scheduled for April to June 2017, but you’ll first receive a Christmas Gift voucher.

orange-pi-lite-retro-gaming-console-kit

Qualcomm Starts Sampling of Qualcomm Centriq 2400 ARM Server SoC with Up to 48 ARMv8 Cores

December 8th, 2016 3 comments

Qualcomm has announced commercial sampling of Qualcomm Centriq 2400 series server SoC built with 10nm FinFET process technology and featuring up to 48 Qualcomm Falkor custom ARMv8 CPU cores “highly optimized to both high performance and power efficiency, and designed to tackle the most common datacenter workloads”.

qualcomm-centriq-2400-series-soc

Qualcomm Datacenter Technologies demonstrated the new processor in a Live demo showing Apache, Spark, Java, and Hadoop on Linux running on a SBSA compliant server powered by Qualcomm Centriq 2400 processor, but the company did not provide any further technical details or preliminary benchmark results for the solution.

The Qualcomm Centriq 2400 processor series is now sampling to select customers and is expected to be commercially available in H2 2017. That’s about all we know from the press release. However, Linaro have been working on Qualcomm Technologies QDF2432 based board for several months with support for Debian 8.x ‘Jessie’ and CentOS 7 operating systems, as well as Hadoop and OpenStack. It’s not 100% clear if this is indeed related to Centriq 2400, albeit the name QDF2432 seems to indicate so, and it would probably have started on some FPGA board to simulate Centriq 2400 (32-core?) processor, unless they had engineering samples for nearly a year. There’s also a basically empty page on Centos.org for “Qualcomm QDF2432 Server Dev Platform”. It’s close to impossible to find much details since those things are developed under NDAs.

PINEBOOK ARM Linux Laptop Powered by Allwinner A64 Processor to Sell for $89 and Up

November 24th, 2016 33 comments

Following up on Pine A64 board powered by Allwinner A64 quad core Cortex A53 processor, Pine64 has decided to work on a software compatible laptop based on the processor. PINEBOOK comes with 2GB RAM, 16 GB flash storage, a 11.6″ or 14″ display, and the usual ports you’d expect on such device.

pinebookPINEBOOK specifications:

  • SoC – Allwinner A64 quad core ARM Cortex A53 processor @ 1.2 GHz with Mali-400MP2 GPU
  • System Memory – 2GB LPDDR3
  • Storage – 16GB eMMC 5.0 flash and micro SD slot up to 256 GB
  • Display – 11.6″ or 14″ IPS LCD display with 1280 x 720 resolution (no touchscreen)
  • Video Output – mini HDMI port for external display
  • Audio – HDMI, 3.5 mm headphone jack, built-in microphone and stereo speakers
  • Connectivity – WiFi 802.11 b/g/n + Bluetooth 4.0
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports
  • Camera – 1.2 MP camera
  • User Input Devices – Full size QWERTY keyboard, 5″ touchpad
  • Power Supply – 5V/3A
  • Battery – 10,000 mAh LiPo battery
  • Dimensions – 352 x 233 x 18 mm
  • Weight – 1.2 kg

The laptop is not based on Pine A64+ board, nor the upcoming SOPINE A64 module, and instead they had to design a custom board to meet the thickness requirements.

pinebook-connectorsPINEBOOK should support most of the operating systems supported by PINE A64(+) boards including Android 5.1/7.0, Remix OS, Debian, Ubuntu, and others, but the firmware requires some (minor) modifications since the laptop is using LPDDR3 RAM.

The laptop is not available for sale right now, but we know the 11.6″ version will cost $89, the 14″ version $99, and you can register to get notified of the launch. You may also find a few more details on PINEBOOK product page.

Banana Pi M2 Ultra Allwinner R40 Development Board with SATA & GbE Sells for $46

November 16th, 2016 38 comments

Allwinner A10 and A20 processors have been quite popular in the past, since they could handle Fast or Gigabit Ethernet and SATA natively, included decent multimedia capabilities, and were found in low cost hardware such as Cubieboard 2 or MeLE A1000. Since then we’ve had a few boards with SATA using newer and faster processors without SATA IP, meaning it was usually implemented using a USB 2.0 to SATA bridge leading to mediocre to average performance depending on the implementation and selected bridge. Allwinner R40 is the successor of Allwinner R20 with a faster quad core Cortex A7 processor, but keeping Gigabit Ethernet, SATA, and most features of its predecessor. The good news is that Banana Pi has now launched the promised M2 Ultra development board based on the new processor for $45.80 + shipping on Aliexpress (Total for me: $48.35).

allwinner-r40-development-boardBanana Pi M2 Ultra specifications:

  • SoC – Allwinner R40 quad Core ARM Cortex A7 processor with ARM Mali-400MP2 GPU
  • System Memory – 2G DDR3 SDRAM
  • Storage – 8GB eMMC flash (16, 32 or 64GB as options), SATA interface, micro SD slot up to 256 GB
  • Connectivity – 1x Gigabit Ethernet port, 802.11 b/g/n WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0 (AP6212 module)
  • Video Output – HDMI 1.4 port up to 1080p60, 4-lane MIPI DSI display connector
  • Audio I/O – HDMI, 3.5mm headphone jack, built0in microphone
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x micro USB OTG port
  • Camera – CSI camera connector
  • Expansion – 40-pin Raspberry Pi compatible header with GPIOs, I2C, SPI, UART, ID EEPROM, 5V, 3.3V, GND signals.
  • Debugging – 3-pin UART for serial console
  • Misc – Reset, power, and u-boot buttons; IR receiver
  • Power Supply – 5V via barrel connector, or 3.7V Lithium battery via battery connector on the back of the board. AXP221s PMIC
  • Dimensions – 92 x 60 mm

Banana Pi claims BPI-M2 Ultra board run Android, Debian, Ubuntu, Raspbian, and other operating systems. You’ll find some images on the Wiki, and while the Android section link does not work, and you can download a Linux 3.10 + busybox image, Ubuntu 16.04 Xenial minimal, Debian 8 Jessie Mate, Debian 8 Jessie Lite, and Ubuntu MATE 16.04 from either baidu or Google drive links. There’s also a Tina-IOT os section that’s empty right now, as is the “source code on github” section, and a few others. So documentation is work in progress.

banana-pi-m2-ultraI’m expecting Allwinner R40 boards to become popular at least for some communities such as armbian, where some members require  fast storage and networking performance for their project(s). We’ll have to hope Allwinner has improved SATA write performance compared to Allwinner A20, as in my review of Cubietruck (Metal Case), I found that while read speed was very good at up to 180 MB/s, write speed was limited to around 36 MB/s using a SATA SSD.

You may also find some more details on Banana Pi BPI-M2 Ultra product page.

Inforce Computing Introduces 6301 SoM and Devkit Powered by Snapdragon 410E SoC with Long Term Availability

November 4th, 2016 3 comments

Qualcomm launched Snapdragon 410E and 600E processors for the embedded market at the end of September, meaning the processors were easy to source by any company, not matter how small they are, and the company would now offer long term availability often required for embedded systems. Inforce Computing is now leveraging the new Snapdragon 410E processor with their Inforce 6301 micro SoM, and corresponding development kit.

snapdragon-400e-system-on-module-somInforce 6301 micro SoM specifications:

  • SoC – Qualcomm Snapdragon 410E (APQ8016 SoC) quad core ARM Cortex A53 processor @ 1.2GHz, Adreno 306 GPU, and Hexagon DSP @ 700MHz
  • Memory – 1GB LPDDR3 @ 533MHz  (Option: 2GB)
  • Storage – 8GB eMMC v4.5 flash (Option up to 64GB) NAND, 1x micro SD card interface with support up to HS200
  • Connectivity – Bluetooth 4.1 LE, Wi-Fi dual stream 802.11 b/g/n @ 2.4GHz (WC3620), on-board GPS/GNSS/BeiDou/Galileo (WGR7640)
  • Video – H.264/263 playback and capture @1080p; H.265 playback @720p;
  • Interfaces via 2x 100-pin board-to-board connectors
    • HDMI v1.3a up to 1080p30 and 720p60
    • 4-lane MIPI-DSI up to 1080p30 and 720p60
    • Audio – 1x stereo headphone, 4x line out, 3x microphone inputs; Hi-Fi Audio with 24bit/192Khz playback support HD 5.1 Audio
    • Camera – 2x MIPI CSI: up to 13MP Camera on CSI0 and up to 8MP camera on CSI1
    • I2C, GPIO, UART
    • SDIO 3.0
    • USB 2.0
    • JTAG
  • Power Supply – +3.3V/5A Input
  • Dimensions – 50 x 28 mm
  • Temperature Range –  -30 to 85 Degrees C (Operating)
  • Humidity – 5 to 95% RH non-condensing
  • Certifications – RoHS and WEEE compliant
Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

The module can be either pre-loaded with Android Lollipop or Ubuntu/Debian Linux, with board support packages (BSP) provided for development. In order to get started as fast as possible, the company also offers a 60×55 mm carrier board for the module with a micro SD slot, HDMI output, USB 2.0 host ports, and headers with I2C, SPI, UART, GPIOs,…

Inforce 6301™ Development Kit

Inforce 6301 Development Kit with ACC-1C10 carrier board and Inforce 6301 micro SoM

Inforce 6301 can be purchased for $85 in single quantity with a 10-year availability commitment, while the development kit goes for $185 with 7-year availability. You’ll find more details including software and hardware documentation in the previous links to the store, as well as an overview on Inforce Computing 6301 SoM page.

UP Squared Apollo Lake Development Board Comes with Up to 8GB RAM, 128 GB Storage for 89 Euros and Up (Crowdfunding)

November 1st, 2016 4 comments

AAEON Introduced a Intel Atom X5 based Raspberry Pi-like development board named “UP Board” last year that sold for as low as 89 Euros via a Kickstarter campaign. The company is now back with the first Apollo Lake development board for makers I’ve seen so far, powered by either a dual core Celeron N3350 or a quad core Pentium N4200 processor, featuring an Altera MAX 10 FPGA, and called UP2 (“UP Squared”).

apollo-lake-development-board

There are six variants of UP Squared board sharing most of the same technical specifications:

  • SoC
    • Intel Celeron N3350 dual core “Apollo Lake” processor @ 1.1 GHz / 2.4 GHz with 12 EU Intel HD graphics 500 @ 200 MHz / 650 MHz (6W TDP)
    • Intel Pentium N4200 quad core “Apollo Lake” processor @ 1.1 GHz / 2.5 GHz with 18 EU Intel HD graphics 505 @ 200 MHz / 750 MHz (6W TDP)
  • FPGA – Altera Max 10 FPGA
  • System Memory –  2, 4 or 8 GB LPDDR4 SDRAM
  • Storage – 16, 32, 64 or 128 GB eMMC flash, 1x SATA 3 port + SATA power
  • Video Output – 2x HDMI 1.4b; eDP connector; 3 independent displays support
  • Audio I/O – HDMI
  • Connectivity – Dual Gigabit Ethernet ports,
  • USB – 3x USB 3.0 ports, 1x USB 3.0 OTG port, header with 2x USB 2.0 ports
  • Camera – 1x 4-lane MIPI CSI connector
  • Expansion
    • 40-pin GP (general purpose) Raspberry Pi compatible header with GPIOs, I2C, SPI, ADC … signals controlled by the Apollo Lake processor (according to the block diagram below)
    • 60-pin EXHAT connector with GPIO, I2C, UART, USB 3.0… signals controlled by Altera FPGA and the Intel processor based on the block diagram.
    • M.2 2230/E-key slot
    • mini PCIe x1 slot
    • Header with 2x HSUART
  • Debugging – JTAG header for FPGA
  • Misc – Power button, 4x LEDs, RTC header, fan power header, reset and power pin headers
  • Power Supply – 5V DC via power barrel
  • Dimensions – 85.6 x 90 mm
  • Temperature Range – Operating: 0 to 60 C
  • Certifications – FCC, CE, RoHS

up-squared-boardThe six available boards have only differences in terms of processor, RAM, and storage:

  • UP2 Celeron (89 Euros) – 2 GB LPDDR4, 16 GB eMMC flash
  • UP2 Celeron Plus (105 Euros) – 2 GB LPDDR4, 32 GB eMMC flash
  • UP2 Celeron Ultra (125 Euros) – 4 GB LPDDR4, 32 GB eMMC flash
  • UP2 Pentium (169 Euros) – 4 GB LPDDR4, 32 GB eMMC flash
  • UP2 Pentium Plus (199 Euros) – 8 GB LPDDR4, 64 GB eMMC flash
  • UP2 Pentium Ultra (229 Euros) – 8 GB LPDDR4, 128 GB eMMC flash

up2-block-diagramThe board will support Windows 10, Windows IoT Core, Linux (Ubuntu, Ubilinux Debian, Yocto Project), and Android. UP2 board should also leverage UP board eco-system with support for Intel RealSense for robotics project, LoRa connectivity for IoT gateways, EnOceon solutions for home automation, and TPLink for WiFi, and many more.

UP and UP2 Boards Comparison

UP and UP2 Boards Comparison

UP Squared is larger than UP board, but as seen from the table above offers many more features, and more performance for about the same price.

The project has now launched on Kickstarter, where the company has also surpassed their 10,000 Euros funding target, with pledges currently totaling a little over 22,000 Euros. Most rewards starting with UP Squared Celeron at 89 Euros come with the board only, but you may consider pledge for kits that include the power supply, HDMI cable, SATA cable, USB 2.0 pin header cable, and WiFi 802.11ac and BT 4.2 M.2 module (Starter/Innovator Package). Most rewards are expected to ship on April 2017, excepted Innovator packages with Beta boards reaching backers in February 2017. Shipping is not included, but is only 13 to 16 Euros for Europeans, and between 28 and 46 Euros (Brazil) for the rest of the world. More details include the 40-pin header pinout can be found in UP Squared product page.

Via HackerBoards