$4 Orange Pi 4/4B PCIe Expansion Board Includes an mPCIe socket, and a SIM card Slot

Rockchip RK3399 based Orange Pi 4 & 4B boards launched last year with a PCIe connector. But the PCIe interface is available via a 24-pin FPC connector, not quite a standard like a PCIe slot or mPCIe socket, and hard to use for most projects as you’d need to make your own PCIe adapter board.

But it’s now become much easier to use the PCIe interface as Shenzhen Xunlong Software has now launched a $3.90 expansion board connecting to the 24-pin FPC connector, and allowing users to connect mPCIe cards, especially the ones for 3G/4G connectivity as a SIM card slot is also included.PCIe expansion board specifications:

  • 24-pin FPC PCIe connector to Orange Pi 4/4B with PCIe, USB, power “key”, and GPIO1_A0 (See schematics below)
  • mPCIe card socket
  • SIM card socket
  • Misc – Reset key
  • Dimensions – 58 x 32 mm
Orange Pi 4/4B PCIe Connector – Click to Enlarge

The company confirmed the PCIe interface should work in both Android and Linux. It might be good if they made an M.2 expansion card for M.2 SSD’s, but it’s not available yet.

The mPCIe expansion card is sold on Aliexpress with a 24-pin flat cable, but shipping nearly doubles the price to $7.76 in total to my location. So if you haven’t purchased an Orange Pi 4 yet, you may want to wait a bit as the company will provide kits with both boards in the next few days. Just monitor the new arrivals section on Orange Pi Aliexpress store.

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9 Comments
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Miklos Marton
6 months ago

I am wondering about the signal integrity over that FPC cable…

hitech95
6 months ago

I was thinking the same.

If it works i might continue my idea/project. That now its stopped due to the same problem/idea/solution.

Lalith
Lalith
6 months ago

Works perfectly well in Rockpi4 fpc / pci interface https://wiki.radxa.com/Rockpi4/hardware/M2_extend

Willy
Willy
6 months ago

PCIe uses differential pairs and is quite robust. Some people even send it over tens of centimeters using USB3 cables.

hitech95
6 months ago

Yea, but USB is 90 Ohm impedance matched like PCI-E. So USB3 cables are quite good for PCI-E.

tkaiser
tkaiser
6 months ago

Then you should notice that the vendor himself does not trust into this cable that much. They reduced PCIe link speed from 5 GT/s to 2.5GT/s (PCIe Gen1 speeds): https://github.com/orangepi-xunlong/OrangePiRK3399_kernel/commit/a583bc70b1d8890442dd16174c3965b2a3d226b4

Miklos Marton
6 months ago

Haha. Well now I would definitely love to see an eye diagram at the output. It would be nice to know if the Rockchip PCIe implementation supports the BERT.

Linux_tr_
Linux_tr_
6 months ago

Hi there.! I am not expert on Soc’s but I am wondering if following installation will be possible? Desktop Android Phone (with Sim Card call feature) Components: 1- Orange Pi 4 B soc 2- PCIe expansion board that is mentioned on the blog entry 3- Android 10 (Desktop Mode is a big plus) 4- GSM Sim Card for calls 5- Headsets (Bluetotth or cable + speakers etc.) I can’t explain how it will be a great prodıctivity helper for office workers. Imagine that you can place and receive calls to/from somebody on your big computer screen. Actually there are much… Read more »

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