While there are plenty of Amlogic S905 TV boxes, the vast majority is running Android, and albeit there’s been people successfully installing Linux or OpenELEC on such device, if you’d just like a TV box running Linux with 4K video playback without hassle, there’s almost no option. ARNU Box (previously ARMADA) has delivered such Linux TV boxes in the past, with products such as ARNU Box Mach 10 Pure Linux based on Amlogic S812 and running Linux based EmbER OS with Kodi 15, and I’ve now received the updated version simply called ARNU Box Mach 10 64-bit Pure Linux with Amlogic S905 processor instead.
- SoC – Amlogic S905 quad core Cortex A53 @ 2 GHz with ARM Mali-450MP GPU
- System Memory – 2GB DDR3
- Storage – 16GB eMMC flash + SD card slot
- Video Output – HDMI 2.0 (Up to 4k@60fps)
- Audio Output – HDMI 2.0, Optical SPDIF
- Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet, Dual band 802.11 b/g/n WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0
- USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports
The package looks exactly the same as the one used for ARNU Box Mach 10, except it has a red 64-bit sticker. The back of the box still have the specs for a quad core Cortex A9 processor, but it’s quite possible I received an early sample, before the updated package was ready.
The box has exactly the same form factor, feeatures and connector positions as Mach 10 Pure Linux with a display and IR windows on the front panel, an SD card slot on the side, and two USB ports, HDMI output, Ethernet, AV output, optical S/PDIF and the power jack on the rear panel.
The method to open it is pretty simply, as you just have to loosen the 4 screws under the rubber pads, and use a sharp object to lift up the bottom cover through one of the many ventilation openings.
There’s a tiny yet tall heatsink covering Amlogic S905 processor. Two SKhynix H5TQ4G63CFR DDR3 chips provide 1 GB RAM on the top of the board, with a 16GB Samsung KLMAG2GEND-B031 eMMC 5.0 flash being used for storage. Gigabit Ethernet is implemented with Realtek RTL8211F transceiver and GST5009 magnetics, while WiFi and Bluetooth are taken care of by an Ampak AP6330 wireless module. Everest ES7134LV stereo D/A converter can also be found on the board. The serial console can be accessed via the 4-pin on the left side of the board, which itself is named M10S_V0.95 or M10S_0.95.
The other side of the board reveals two more RAM chips bringing the total amount of RAM to 2GB. The Ethernet MAC address is also shown on a sticker, and starts with the familiar C4:4E:AC looking up to Shenzhen Shiningworth Technology, which should be the manufacturer of the board.
That’s all for today. The the user experience should be very similar to what I got in ARNU Box Mach 10 review, but with support for 4K 8-bit and 10-bit H.265 videos up to 60 fps, HDMI 2.0, and hopefully HD audio pass-through already working.
Theaterinabox sent me the device, but for now they are only selling ARNU Box Mach 10 64-bit with Android 5.1.1 for $99.99, and I assume the Pure Linux version will soon be listed on their products page.
Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011.