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Allwinner H3 is a Quad Core SoC for Sub $50 4K H.265 Media Players

Allwinner launched their H-series processors (Homlet) for home entertainment with Allwinner H8 octa-core processor, supporting HEVC up to 1080p, which will find its way into media players selling between $50 and $80. The company has now added Allwinner H3 quad core processor, selling for just $6, which will be available in $35 to $50 OTT TV box later this month, and include support for 4K UHD H.265/HEVC video playback.


Allwinner H3 Block Digram

Key features of Allwinner H3:

  • CPU –  Quad core Cortex A7
  • GPU – Mali-400MP2 up to 600 MHz
  • Memory I/F
    • 8-bit SLC, MLC, TLC, EF NAND with 64-bit ECC
    • SD, eMMC, tSD, fSD, and efSD
  • Video
    • Decoding – H.265/HEVC and H.264 up to [email protected] fps, H.264 BP/MP/HP, VP8, MPEG1/2, MPEG4 SP/ASP GMC, H.263 including Sorenson Spark, WM9/VC1, JPEG/MJEPG up to 1080p60
    • Encoding – H.264 up to 1080p30
  • Video Output – HDMI with HDCP, CEC, 3D function, CVBS, and dual independent display support.
  • Camera – 8-bit YUV222 CMOS interface, CCIR656 protocol for PAL and NTSC, 5M pixel camera sensor
  • Security – Trustzone, mainstream DRM solutions support, secure boot, secure storage, and firmware signature
  • Integrated Peripherals:
    • Audio codec
    • 3x USB EHCI/OHCI, USB 2.0 DRD
    • 100M Ethernet PHY

The company mentions that while the CSI camera supports up to 1080p30 video recording, USB camera are limited to  720p30. This processor will be found in OTT TV boxes that compete with Realtek RTD1195 media players, as both platforms feature low power ARM Cortex A7 cores, albeit dual core vs quad core, a slow Mali-400MP GPU, and support for 4K UHD video playback with the latest H.265 video codec. However, Allwinner H3 loses out to its competitor by lacking SATA, Gigabit, and USB 3.0 interfaces, so H3 based products might become cheaper media players, but they won’t have the NAS compatibilities of the Realtek processor.

The first TV boxes powered by Allwinner H3 processor are expected later this month.

  1. Armer
    December 8th, 2014 at 15:44 | #1

    Can you clarify the difference between H3 and H6?
    It is very confusing…

  2. Marius
    December 8th, 2014 at 15:51 | #2


    I think he meant H3 but a typo occurred.

  3. December 8th, 2014 at 16:03 | #3

    Sorry, @Marius is right, It’s only H3, there’s no H6.
    I must have been thinking about H3 price ($6), and it somehow became H6. 🙂

  4. December 8th, 2014 at 16:12 | #4

    So it is urgent to wait before investing in a 4K player ! 🙂

  5. Armer
    December 8th, 2014 at 16:57 | #5

    Thank you for the correction. 🙂

  6. onebir
    December 8th, 2014 at 17:25 | #6

    “will be available in $35 to $*50* OTT TV boxes”?

  7. Gabe
  8. onebir
    June 20th, 2015 at 20:24 | #8
  9. Alex
    July 5th, 2015 at 18:30 | #9

    Do you kow if 3d video are full supported? And iso image?


  10. October 3rd, 2015 at 15:33 | #10

    No gigabit ethernet.. not worth it. I will stick to the Banana Pi.

  11. onebir
    October 26th, 2015 at 01:44 | #11
  12. JotaMG
    October 29th, 2015 at 22:01 | #12

    @ cnxsoft
    Have you heard anything recently, any update, about Allwinner developing a quad-core SoC pin-compatible with the A20?
    Or are the news about it only speculation?

  13. October 30th, 2015 at 09:45 | #13

    I’ve only heard it via Olimex a little while ago.
    Nothing from Allwinner. Usually they will contact me once they announce a new chip.

  1. January 13th, 2015 at 17:55 | #1
  2. April 24th, 2015 at 20:05 | #2
  3. August 4th, 2015 at 18:05 | #3
  4. October 26th, 2015 at 10:45 | #4