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Roseapple Pi Board Powered by Actions Semi S500 Comes with 2GB RAM

[Update: I’ve finally received an answer: Lemon Pi and RoseapplePi makers are different companies, but they just happen to both use the same Actions Semi S500 reference design, and RoseapplePi is manufactured in Taiwan. The picture above is V1.0 board, but V1.1 will have some modifications]

Lemon Pi development board was launched this May via a Indiegogo campaign. The board, based Actions Semi S500 quad core Cortex A9 processor, got fully funded by over 200 backers, but at the time of launch, some people questioned the used of the word “Lemon” in a product name, as it has several pejorative meanings, including “something that is useless or crappy”. I was contacted about a new Roseapple Pi board yesterday, and upon checking out the details, it looks exactly like the Lemon Pi, except it got upgraded to 2GB RAM, just like in Indiegogo

Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

The board name on the PCB also reads Actions_S500_V1.0 on both boards, so although I have yet to receive a confirmation, that means Roseapple Pi is either the new name of the Lemon Pi, or Lemon Pi makers cooperated with Roseapple Pi, unless a company went copy & paste in a big way…

Roseapple Pi specifications:

  • SoC – Actions Semi S500 quad core Cortex A9 processor with 512KB L2 Cache and a PowerVR SGX544 GPU with OpenGL ES 1.1/2.0, OpenVG 1.0.1, and OpenCL support
  • Memory – 2GB DDR3
  • Storage – micro SD slot up to 64GB, 4MB SPI NOR flash. Option: 4 to 64GB eMMC 4.5 flash
  • Video Output & Display I/F – HDMI 1.4 with HDCP, 3.5mm jack for composite output (shared with audio), MIPI DSI
  • Audio – HDMI, 3.5mm jack for Line out & microphone
  • Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet, optional WiFi dongle with RTL8188ETV or RTL8188EUS
  • USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x USB 3.0 port, 1x micro USB for power only
  • Camera –  MIPI CSI-2 interface
  • Expansion Header
    • 40-pin Raspberry Pi compatible header with I2S, PCM, 16 GPIOs, UART, SPI, and I2C.
    • 4-pin header for microphone, L/R audio, and IR
  • Debugging – 4-pin UART header for serial console
  • Misc – On/off, sleep/wake/reset, and ADFU (Actions Device Firmware Update) keys
  • Power Supply – 5V/700mA via micro USB port- ACT260X PMIC and Audio codec chip
  • Dimensions – 85 x 56 mm

Roseapple_Pi_Header_PinoutSupported operating systems include Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora, and Android 5.0/5.1. I’ve been informed source code and hardware files will be uploaded to xapp-le guthub account (there’s nothing there right now), and developers can get support via linux-xapple open source community (aka XApple) dedicated to Linux on Actions Semi processors and boards with Forums and a Wiki. XApple is said to stand for “Actions (represented by X) APplication Processors with Linux Embedded”.

There’s no price for Roseapple Pi board, but for reference Lemon Pi was $35 + shipping on Indiegogo, and it should be shipping soon since I’ve been asked to provide my address for a sample. A few more details can be found on Roseapple Pi website (Still work in progress).

  1. October 6th, 2015 at 11:31 | #1

    Looking forward to your review!

  2. ade
    October 6th, 2015 at 20:59 | #2

    USB3.0 is great. Then why… really why 10/100 ethernet rather than GbE ? Too bad (I am still looking for a cost-effective board that would have GbE + USB3.0 as a frontend to USRP for software radio)

  3. LinAdmin
    October 6th, 2015 at 21:03 | #3

    Still wondering, how many cents can be saved by 100M Ethernet compared to GB??
    (Or is it sillyness to go that route?)

  4. Nobody of Import
    October 6th, 2015 at 21:45 | #4

    Looking at the official stated interfaces on the S500, the SoC supports 10/100 stock. In order to get GbE, you’d have to hub off the USB3.0 (which semi-defeats the purposes of offering both…) which adds to the BoM cost of the board with actual minimal gains, to be honest.

    IF you want both, you honestly need to find an SoC that has both on the device. This one, the Broadcom ones, and a few others don’t- because they’re slated to industrial, media kiosk, and the like applications. All of which GbE is “nice” but definitely NOT needed.

    I strongly suspect the cheapest boards you’re going to find the two legitimately offered in a usable manner for this will be in the $100-200 range. (I think the Jetson’s the only one readily purchasable with that sort of config offered.)

  5. Fossxplorer
    October 6th, 2015 at 23:37 | #5

    @ade
    Why not use a USB hub and USB-to-Gigabit adapter?

  6. ade
    October 7th, 2015 at 01:41 | #6

    > “Why not use a USB hub and USB-to-Gigabit adapter?”

    @Fossxplorer: the more you add equipments, the more you add cost + uncertainties about performance. Maybe the best alternative is still the 74$ ODroid-XU4.

    Anyway, all USB3.0 are not equal, e.g. look at http://www.ettus.com/kb/detail/usrp-b200-and-b210-usb-30-streaming-rate-benchmarks

  7. October 7th, 2015 at 14:10 | #7

    Finally I got an answer to my email. Lemon Pi and RoseapplePi are made by two different companies, but they used the same Actions Semi reference design. The board picture on RoseapplePi website is an older version, and a new version has been produced (engineering samples for now). They have just not updated the website, that is still WIP.

  8. Roel
    October 7th, 2015 at 17:47 | #8

    Hopefully if they change the layout, it will fit a rpi case as the odroid c1+. Hopefully the opensource driver for the powervr will also become reality (no news about that?).

  9. fritz
    October 9th, 2015 at 23:15 | #9

    Seems sources are there now:
    https://github.com/xapp-le

  10. stephen
    October 12th, 2015 at 04:53 | #10

    Any guess on what the CPU clock speed is?

  11. stephen
    October 12th, 2015 at 14:47 | #12

    Thanks for the info. I looked on the Actions Semi S500 product page and there was no information about CPU clock speed.

  12. December 1st, 2015 at 03:09 | #13

    @miniNodes
    Roseapple Pi complete review!
    https://youtu.be/puFryu2lsQg

  13. Luís
    January 6th, 2016 at 06:29 | #14

    Hi…
    Where can i by this board ?

    Tks.

  14. January 6th, 2016 at 09:12 | #15

    @Luís
    Check the list of dealers @ http://roseapplepi.org/index.php/purchase/
    There are all in Asia so far.

  15. Dale
    January 13th, 2016 at 23:12 | #16

    @ade
    Gb Ethernet would be nice but at least with USB3 you can just get a USB3 to Gb Ethernet adapter.

  16. February 22nd, 2016 at 18:52 | #17

    Ah, I’ve just twigged – good job I looked in here – my Lemon Pi might just be a Roseapple Pi!! Really would have been good if they’d put a name on the thing.

  17. onebir
    February 27th, 2016 at 14:19 | #18

    @cnxsoft
    But the HK one *might* offer cheap international shipping (a lot chinese ebay/aliexpress sellers send viiaa HK recently…)

  18. Pere
    February 28th, 2017 at 20:57 | #19

    Hi Jean-Luc what do you think about http://www.cubietech.com/product-detail/cubieboard6/, I think that is a new product from cubietech and same components, Have you one for make a review?

    thanks.

  19. February 28th, 2017 at 21:01 | #20

    @Pere
    Somebody mentioned it to me, but I’m waiting for the launch. Actions Semi S500 is not exactly a new processor so I’m not sure it will be popular. SATA port is nice, but it would be implemented via USB, at least it should be USB 3.0.

  1. October 6th, 2015 at 15:25 | #1
  2. October 13th, 2015 at 15:10 | #2
  3. October 14th, 2015 at 12:00 | #3
  4. October 14th, 2015 at 20:29 | #4
  5. October 14th, 2015 at 21:35 | #5