NanoPi R2S Dual GbE IoT Board and Gateway Launched for $22 and Up

We first covered NanoPi R2S SBC back in mid-January 2020. Specifically designed for headless and IoT application the board features a Rockchip RK3328 processor combined with 1GB RAM, and contrary to most competing platforms on the market such as Orange Pi R1 or NanoPi R1S, R2S comes with two true Gigabit Ethernet ports.

At the time, the board was not available for sale, but now FriendlyELEC has started to take orders for just $22.00, and adding a yellow case adds $3 to the total. This is around $5 extra compared to NanoPi R1S gateway which was expected with extra RAM (1GB) and true dual GbE connectivity.

But in the age of COVID-19, nothing runs quite as smoothly as it used to and the company expects shipping delays:

Because of the epidemic, postal services in a lot of countries get delayed. Customers who need orders urgently need to choose DHL. EU customers who need DHL service to deliver orders need to email us before place orders.

Here’s a quite reminder of the board’s specifications:

  • SoC – Rockchip RK3328 quad-core Cortex-A53 @ 1.5 GHz with Arm Mali-450MP2
  • System Memory – 1GB DDR4 RAM
  • Storage – MicroSD Slot, SPI flash footprint
  • Connectivity
    • 1x Gigabit Ethernet (WAN) up to 941 Mbps (measured)
    • 1x Gigabit Ethernet (LAN) up to 941 Mbps (measured) via Realtek RTL8153 USB 3.0 to Ethernet controller
    • 802.11b/g/n WiFi 4 with IPX-I antenna connector
  • USB – 1x USB Type-A host port, 1x micro USB port (power + slave)
  • Debugging – 3-pin 2.54mm pitch header for serial console
  • Expansion – 10-pin GPIO header with GPIOs, I2C, UART, IR_Rx, 5V, 3.3V and GND
  • Misc – 3x LEDs (WAN, LAN, SYS), K1 reset button, fan header
  • Power Supply – 5VDC/3A via micro USB port
  • Dimensions – 55.6 x 52mm
  • Temperature Range – -20℃ to 70℃

As noted in our previous if you need WiFi with your board, you’ll need to connect a USB WiFi dongle, but besides dual Gigabit Ethernet connectivity, you’ll also get access to a 10-pin GPIO header which was not present in NanoPi R1S. Supported operating systems include FriendlyWrt (OpenWrt) and FriendlyCore (Ubuntu 18.04 Core) with all details available in the Wiki in English or Chinese.

Thanks to theguyuk for the tip.

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Igor Pecovnik
6 months ago

There is a ready to use Armbian, which should work better than anything else.
https://www.armbian.com/nanopi-r2s/

maurer
maurer
6 months ago

another awesome geeky thing is that it comes with kernel 5.4
and about shipping it seems DHL (expedite) is 25$ 🙁 and regular post 8-10$ to Europe 🙁

mrshark
mrshark
6 months ago

their usb dongle support in the friendlywrt build is quite “pesky”… only few drivers included, and not even the most popular ones… check Pete Scargill’s article on his blog for details… https://tech.scargill.net/nanopi-r2s-openwrt-minirouter/

Peter Scargill
6 months ago

Hi Jean-Luc – and all – OpenWrt and the R2S – welll, as you know I’m a long tiw aupporter of FriendlyArm, but I’m failing to see the point of OpenWrt and this device – iwthout WIFI it seems that the mANGO router is a better bet. FA DO apparenrtly supporrt one WIFI USB dongle- but NOT the one most commonly available, certainly in the UK. So much as I would liek to support FA in this, unless they release a binary supporting the adaptor, I’m finding it difficult. – right now the software definitely does not yet support the… Read more »

tkaiser
tkaiser
6 months ago

> right now the software definitely does not yet support the popular rtl718188eus and I think asking people to recompile OpenWrt for that is asking a lot.

I guess you’re talking about 8188EU, right? Driver is provided so maybe it’s just missing firmware:
opkg install rtl8188eu-firmware.

Though no idea why anyone would want to use those crappy USB dongles in an access point scenario…

Peter Scargill
6 months ago

Oh, hello Tkaiser. Ok, I’ll give it a shot? Why would anyone eant to ue a cheap WiFi dongle in a cheap router? Fairly obviously as it is cheap and widely available. I tried purchasing one of the more expensive WiFi dongles – the one supported, just to properly test the R2S – but certainly in the UK not only is the price much higher but my package has (not entirely unsurprisingly) not arrived. I have several other routers ranging from the Mango, through Draytek and others. My job here was just to see if the R2S was worth purchasing.

tkaiser
tkaiser
6 months ago

> Why would anyone eant to ue a cheap WiFi dongle in a cheap router? Fairly obviously as it is cheap and widely available Those things are not suitable for the access point use case due to crippled firmware (breaking if more than n clients connect), no real antenna(s), no MIMO, no beamforming. But sure, if it’s just about a really horrible wireless experience even an antenna-less 8188EU will do the job with one or two clients connected to it. BTW: No idea whether installing the rtl8188eu-firmware package will do the trick. Maybe your cheap dongle is based on another… Read more »

Peter Scargill
6 months ago

Cant install either lsusb or dmesg at root command line – this is going downhill fast. Got dmesg in web interface though. “installing…” “Configuring…” then nothing 5 minutes later – still saying configuring. Life is too short… Back to my Mango.

mrshark
mrshark
6 months ago

this is what we got on Pete’s device, once connected the friendlyarm suggested dongle rtl8821CU it’s in lsusb, but i see errors in some sort of db and iw commands do not report anything usable… [ 13.506919] kmodloader: loading kernel modules from /etc/modules.d/* [ 13.558425] usbcore: registered new interface driver r8152 [ 13.647465] cfg80211: Loading compiled-in X.509 certificates for regulatory database [ 13.750355] usb 5-1: reset SuperSpeed Gen 1 USB device number 2 using xhci-hcd [ 13.786094] r8152 5-1:1.0 (unnamed net_device) (uninitialized): DT mac addr 66:ac:f2:4f:48:e2 [ 13.821105] r8152 5-1:1.0 eth1: v1.10.11 [ 14.083169] cfg80211: Loaded X.509 cert ‘sforshee: 00b28ddf47aef9cea7’… Read more »

Peter Scargill
6 months ago

“opkg install rtl8188eu-firmware”
returned
“Package rtl8188eu-formware installed is up to date” – so no further forward I’m afraid. So that’s not it…

tkaiser
tkaiser
6 months ago

Well, I would do an dmesg -w then (re)insert the dongle to see what’s going on. Usually that gives some hints which device this is and what’s happening (e.g. the kernel built by FriendlyElec containing hard-coded but wrong paths for firmware files so even if the firmware is present it won’t load). If dmesg is not available it should be just an opkg install dmesg away. 🙂

Peter Scargill
6 months ago

Do dmesg is in there – I ran it – HORRENDOUS amounts of unrelated output – so much so that comparing before and after dongle insertion isnt doing me any good… some windows style colour0coding would help immensely.. AFTER…. last few lines..

[14127.831149] usb 2-1: new high-speed USB device number 3 using ehci-platform
[14127.860460] usb 2-1: New USB device found, idVendor=0bda, idProduct=8179, bcdDevice= 0.00
[14127.861254] usb 2-1: New USB device strings: Mfr=1, Product=2, SerialNumber=3
[14127.861918] usb 2-1: Product: 802.11n NIC
[14127.862296] usb 2-1: Manufacturer: Realtek
[14127.862687] usb 2-1: SerialNumber: 0092CC018599

@lex
@lex
6 months ago

*Edited

The driver is missing in the FriendlyWrt Image.
Once you or someone else build the image with this kernel config
CONFIG_RTL8188EE=m
then it will work.
This **SHOULD** be the correct driver to make your wifi dongle work properly.

Igor Pecovnik
6 months ago

Get not so popular 8811AU or 8822BU and enjoy good performance. With Armbian … no idea what they bake into the OpenWrt … which you might rather run as a docker container on top of the Armbian.

Benjamin Hojnik
6 months ago

2020 and STILL no cheaply available usb3/gigabit combo boards. But at least this is a step in the right direction, dual gigabit ports can be quite useful.

David Jashi
6 months ago

Yes, would gladly trade one GigE port for USB3 or SATA/mSATA port…

tkaiser
tkaiser
6 months ago

> trade one GigE port for USB3

This is called Rock64 since years.

Benjamin Hojnik
6 months ago

yeah, but including shipping and import costs and comes even more expensive than rpi4 with lesser specs.

Willy
Willy
6 months ago

Then it’s not “no cheaply available usb3/gigabit combo boards”, it’s just that none matches your needs and/or budget. Because between NanoPi-Neo4, RPi4, various RockPis, EspressoBin, the choices are quite large at very low prices, so you need to be more specific about what you’re looking for.

Benjamin Hojnik
6 months ago

something that has gigabit lan and usb3, but comes lower than 22€ pricing wise, so no import duties, taxes and processing fees. Because thats what kills a 30-40$ board over here in europe. Just ends up too expensive to something, that can be sourced locally (like raspberry pi).

Willy
Willy
3 months ago

So FriendlyARM now listened to the requests above and created the NEO3 with GbE and USB3: https://www.cnx-software.com/2020/06/29/tiny-nanopi-neo3-sbc-targets-networked-storage-with-gbe-and-usb-3-0/

J tremblant
J tremblant
2 months ago

In What European country are you located?

Jerry
Jerry
6 months ago

What’s wrong with RPi4?

Riaqn
Riaqn
6 months ago

Definitely buy IF comes with USB 3.0 ports. What a shame.

Peter Scargill
6 months ago

But if you only need one Ethernet port, a Raspberry Pi or countless others would do the job. In my test scenario, I use the WAN port connected to my network and the LAN port connected to a PC which needs to be on it’s own private network provided by the R2S – but to be genuinely useful it also needs support for WiFi – hence my issue with only one kind of WiFi USB dongle (apparently) being supported – and NOT the most widely avalable one. I generally would use a MANGO for this but of course the R2S… Read more »

Benjamin Hojnik
6 months ago

Nope, usb3 is shared with the second Ethernet connection, as that chipset only has a single gigabit mac.

theguyuk
theguyuk
6 months ago

I see Moose09876 has posted their review on product page.

theguyuk
theguyuk
6 months ago

After being out of stock for awhile, the NanoPi R2S is back in stock

unmesh
unmesh
4 months ago

Looks like OpenWRT has been ported to this as a community build and may even make it to mainline. Great AES performance reported.
 
https://forum.openwrt.org/t/nanopi-r2s-is-a-great-openwrt-device/65374/58

theguyuk
theguyuk
3 months ago

Friendlyelec now offer their own cnc metal case $6 option when bought with board. Sales page also now has heat cooling graph for cooling options.

theguyuk
theguyuk
3 months ago

They also have a list of usb wifi etc on sales page.

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