Olimex Launches 22 Euros ESP32-GATEWAY Board with Ethernet, WiFi and Bluetooth LE

Orange Pi Development Boards

Olimex has just launched ESP32-GATEWAY board, as cost-down version of their ESP32-EVB board, still with Ethernet, WiFi, and Bleutooth LE, but without any relays, CAN bus, nor IR control, less I/Os, and a smaller footprint.

Olimex ESP32-GATEWAY specifications:

  • Wireless Module – ESP32-WROOM32 module with 802.11 b/g/n WiFi and Bluetooth LE
  • Wired Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet with RJ45 jack (via LAN8710A)
  • External Storage – micro SD slot
  • Expansion – 20-pin GPIO connector
  • USB – 1x micro USB port for debugging (CH340T) and power
  • Misc – Reset and user buttons
  • Power Supply – 5V via micro USB port
  • Dimensions – 62 x 50 mm

Another change is the lack of a LiPo charger to run the board from batteries. Just like most Olimex boards, ESP32-GATEWAY is open source hardware with KiCAD design files available on Github. The software directory is still empty, but Ethernet demo code using ESP32-IDF has been pushed for for ESP32-EVB board, and is likely to run with minor or even no modifications on ESP32-GATEWAY board.

You’ll save 4 Euros over ESP32-EVB board, as Olimex is selling ESP32-GATEWAY board for 22 Euros.

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animtakhnet
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animtakhnet

ESP32-EVB also has an uext connector

Nobody of Import
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Nobody of Import

If they’ve not deviated from the recommended pin-sets for the ESP32 in this configuration, it should pretty much work.

The IDF’s shaping up nicely, and there’s quite a few other OSes to run with and IDE choices to work with (I’ve been part of the community since January of this year…), which includes NuttX, Zephyr (In progress- would be very interesting/useful since they’ve got a fully functioning minimal Dual Mode BT stack, where there’s still a few gaps in the IDF’s ability set since they’re porting BlueDroid instead of using Zephyr’s stack…), Arduino, etc.

It’s got loads of potential down at the bottom end of the spectrum.

tkaiser
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tkaiser

Unfortunately Olimex is not able to answer such simple questions:

– Do you have consumption numbers with active Wi-Fi and Ethernet negotiating 100TX?
– Is it possible to combine this with something like RT9400-5V to get PoE?

Frank
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Frank

I’ve hooked up a lan8720 and a DOIT esp32 from aliexpress, I was surprised to see it kinda worked. Except for the booting in download mode (this guy describes the problem accurately https://sautter.com/blog/ethernet-on-esp32-using-lan8720/). I’ve not seen any ethernetwifi bridges yet though. For esp-idf ethernet was a work in progress up until a few weeks ago, but I bet its possible.

@tkaiser
I dont think PoE is possible here, all pins are hooked up, and my understanding of PoE is that 1 or 2 twisted pairs are used for power. You would have to redesign the board.
If you browse the esp32.com forum there are some throughput tests for ethernet or wifi but not both.

tkaiser
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tkaiser

@Frank
Thank you. But I was not looking for performance numbers but consumption only (both Fast Ethernet and WiFi in active mode) since if the whole board consumes too much I think I would then better stay with an Orange Pi Zero for such use cases. With my ‘IoT settings’ I get an OPi Zero to consume as less as 550mW though in Armbian forum multiple users complain most recent Zero PCB rev 1.4 shows way higher temperatures (so I would assume rev 1.4 also has a higher consumption — for reasons unknown to me not a single user measured this so far)

Frank
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Frank

@tkaiser ohh, this will consume WAY less energy than a pi zero. This thing does not have a OS like armbian/linux or smthn. it has a 240mhz clock speed, 520kb ram(of which 50% can be used, the rest is reserved for ble/wifi/tcpip stacks). a Pi is a whole other class of device =)

tkaiser
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tkaiser

@Frank
I really want to believe this so please show me numbers. Not of an ESP32 doing nothing but of a board having a Wi-Fi connection active and also negotiating a Fast Ethernet connection. It’s not about clock speeds, the ESP32 itself and stuff, it’s about real world consumption numbers of a whole board since there are components active that might add significantly to overall consumption.

Paul
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Paul

@tkaiser
I realise your interest on this SBC is consumption (which I don’t know), but as you ask about configuration of both WiFi and Ethernet in active mode, are you able to point me to information, be it for ESP32 based, or ‘Pi’ type SBCs, on overall WiFi data rate in ‘Client mode’, and if passing the data from the WiFi to the Ethernet will reduce that data rate. I want to use a low-consumption SBC as a WiFi Client for a miniPC.

The 550mW of OPi Zero you mention is ok, but I guess a ESP32 SBC will consume less – but at what bandwidth cost? I rather the SBC connection to my miniPC by Ethernet, as it has a RJ45 whereas I am short of spare USB ports. However, there is not yet much choice of ESP32 SBCs with WiFi-to-Ethernet, the Olimex won’t make the best of WiFi range as no ext. Ant and if 10/100LAN limits throughput, could use USB.

@cnx
– any thoughts on good choice of low-consumption SBC as a WiFi Client for a miniPC ? Have you measured WiFi data rate on any of the ESP based SBCs you tested ? eg. Wemos Di mini ?

theguyuk
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theguyuk

People mention POE ( power over Ethernet? ), I know in security cameras you can use these

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/free-shipping-IEEE-802-3af-Standard-5V-2A-Output-10-100M-PoE-Splitter-Power-over-Ethernet/32648963285.html

But no idea if they help with what you are trying to do.

tkaiser
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tkaiser

Paul :
The 550mW of OPi Zero you mention is ok

This was measured with an OPi Zero 1.0 and Wi-Fi powermanagent on which is only ok if you want to use the OPi Zero as an IoT node sending few bits of data from time to time. You would’ve to deactivate powermanagement for your use case and then consumption increases (no idea how much since never tested IIRC). But you don’t get OPi Zero 1.0 any more, current revision is 1.4, every few days another user opens up a new thread in Armbian forum complaining about overheating, according to the vendor they improved Wi-Fi powering so maybe now Wi-Fi performance issues are gone but consumption also increased a lot. I really don’t know and also really don’t understand why people find the time to write complaining forum posts but no one measures consumption and Wi-Fi situation with OPi Zero 1.4.

Paul
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Paul

@tkaiser
I just want a SBC to be a WiFi Client for a miniPC with good range, which will mean ext. ant. Prefer low consumption, but providing its in the general ‘Pi’ class consumption and reliable (not dropping connection in middle of a long download), data rate comparable with low-end Wireless-N Router, and ideally with Ethernet connection for the PC, has anyone got any recommendations ?

tkaiser
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tkaiser

@Paul
We’re getting highly off-topic here. But what you want you won’t get with any SBC since onboard Wi-Fi there is all the time just 1T1R which simply sucks if you look for performance/coverage. Grab the cheapest MIMO/5GHz capable ‘low-end Wireless-N Router’ you get that runs with alternative firmwares like OpenWRT/LEDE, configure client mode bridged with Ethernet and you’re done.