We first covered the Dragonbox Pyra in 2014 when it was described as an open-source handheld game console powered by Texas Instruments OMAP5432 SoC, or maybe AllWinner A80, Intel Bay Trail, or Qualcomm Snapdragon processors since the exact specifications were still in the works for the Pandora successor.
Michael Mrozek (EvilDragon) finally decided to keep going with the OMAP5 processor due to the good documentation and software support, and pre-orders started in 2016 with a 330 to 400 Euros downpayment and no clear timeline about shipping.
Since so many years have passed, you’d be forgiven if you completely forgot or did not know at all about the specifications:
- SoC – Texas Instruments OMAP 5432 SoC with 2x Arm Cortex-A15 @ 1.5 GHz with NEON SIMD, 2x ARM Cortex-M4, Imagination Technologies PowerVR SGX544-MP2 3D GPU, and Vivante GC320 2D GPU
- System Memory – 4GB RAM
- Storage – 32 GB eMMC flash, 2x SDXC card slot, 1x internal micro SDXC card slot
- Display – 720p 5-inch LCD with resistive touchscreen
- Video Output – Micro HDMI
- Audio I/O – High-quality speakers, digital volume control, headset port, built-in Mic
- User input
- Gaming controls – D-Pad, 4x shoulder buttons, 6x face buttons, 2x accurate digital controls with push-button
- Keyboard – Backlit QWERTY keyboard
- Dual-band Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.1.
- Optional LTE and GPS module
- USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports (one usable as SATA with adapter), 1x micro USB 3.0 OTG port, 1x micro USB 2.0 port for debugging and charging.
- Sensors – Accelerometer; gyroscope; pressure, and humidity sensor
- Misc – Fully configurable RGB-LEDs for notifications, vibration motor
- Battery – 6,000mAh
- Dimensions – 139 x 87 x 32 mm
Drasgonbox Pyra handheld Linux PC is quite versatile since it ships with Debian, but it was designed with gaming in mind, and supports games such as Diablo II, Call To Power II, Jedi Knight, or Return to Castle Wolfenstein. Since the device is open-source hardware, you’ll find hardware design files, software, and other resources on the Wiki.
Now that the mini portable PC is out, you may wonder whether you can order it, and indeed you can with pricing starting at 529.41 Euros ex. VAT for the standard version, and up to 626.05 euros ex. VAT for the 4G LTE mobile version. Michael says there’s no clear ETA for new pre-order, and it may take around half a year to buy those from stock. It’s clearly a niche product which explains why the price is quite high, and manufacturing delays are long a well as it is handled by a small team. You can follow the progress of the progress on Twitter and the forums.
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.