ModBerry 500 R1 industrial computer replaces Raspberry Pi CM4 with Radxa CM3 module

The ModBerry 500 R1 industrial computer features a Radxa CM3 system-on-module that follows the Raspberry Pi CM4 form factor, but is powered by a Rockchip RK3566 quad-core Cortex-A55 processor instead.

The ModBerry 500 CM4 DIN-rail industrial computer with a Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 was launched in 2020, but the Raspberry Pi shortage got in the way, even for commercial customers, and Poland-based TECHBASE had to find an alternative to Raspberry Pi CM4 to offer shorter lead times to its customers, and so the ModBerry 500 R1 based on Radxa CM3 system-on-module was born.

ModBerry M500 R1ModBerry 500 R1 specifications:

  • SoM – Radxa CM3 module with Rockchip RK3566 quad-core Cortex-A55 processor @ up to 2.0 GHz, with 1 to 8GB LPDDR4 RAM, up to 4 to 128GB eMMC flash (up to 250 MB/s), optional Wi-Fi 5 & Bluetooth 5.0 module
  • Storage – Optional NVMe SSD via PCIe 2.0 (mini PCIe (default) or M.2 slot), optional EEPROM
  • Video Output – Optional HDMI port
  • Connectivity
    • 1x Gigabit Ethernet port (swappable with 2.5GbE), 1x 10/100M Ethernet port
    • Optional Wi-Fi 5 (IEEE 802.11 b/g/n/ac) & Bluetooth 5.0 on module or external
    • Optional 5G, 4G/LTE, 3G, or NB-IoT modem plus on-board SIM card socket
    • Optional LoRa or WM-Bus
    • Optional GPS module
    • Optional ZigBee, Z-Wave Ready
    • Other ExCard modules for additional DIO, analog inputs, analog outputs, serial ports, relays, etc…
  • USB – 1x USB 2.0 host port, optional USB 3.0 port
  • Serial – 2x RS-232 (3 pins) / 2x RS-485 (2 pins)
  • I/O expansion ports via 32-pin screw terminal
    • 4x Digital inputs (DI) (0..30V DC)
    • 4x Digital outputs (DO) (0..30V), max. power efficiency: 500 mA
    • 4x configurable DI/DO (0..30V DC), max. power efficiency: 500 mA
    • 4x Analog inputs – range: 0..10V DC,  18-bit resolution
    • 1x CAN (optional)
    • 1x 1-Wire
  • Misc – RTC, Watchdog timer,  2x monostable switch button, optional TPM 2.0
  • Power Supply – 9 ~ 30 V DC via 2-pin power header
  • Dimensions – 106 x 91 x 61 mm (Casing ABS, DIN rail mounting)
  • Weight – 350 to 400g depending on options
  • Cooling – Basic passive cooler, customized standard passive cooling, or advanced external cooling
  • Temperature Range
    • Standard – 0 ~ 55°C, humidity 5 ~ 95% RH (no condensation)
    • Extended – -25 ~ 65°C, humidity 5 ~ 95% RH (no condensation)
ModBerry 500 R1 block diagram aluminum enclosure
Block diagram with options (left), alternative aluminum enclosure (right)

It’s also possible to add a Coral M.2 AI accelerator with Google Edge TPU if your application requires AI acceleration. TECHBASE says the new ModBerry 500 R1 is fully compatible with the ModBerry 500 CM4 with the same capabilities, hardware and protocol modularity, and range of wired and wireless interfaces. There appear to be new options such as dual Ethernet, optional 2.5GbE and USB 3.0, and the eMMC flash can be up to 2.5x faster than the storage used on Raspberry Pi CM4, plus the company claims up to 33% faster peak CPU performance, but it looks like they may just compare frequencies here (2.0 GHz vs 1.5 GHz).

Linux is preinstalled by default. but the company also offers options for gateway functionality (Modbus, M-Bus, MQTT..), notification controller (e-mail, SMS, SNMP), datalogger, Node-Red, and/or PLC Codesys. Delivery times are about two weeks for standard configurations, and you can build your own system to find pricing on the IIoT shop, but you’ll need to register and “wait for authorization” to get your quote. TECHBASE also told CNX Software they may eventually upgrade to Radxa CM3 Industrial (CM3I) with Rockchip RK3568 processors offering even more interfaces through four 100-pin high-density board-to-board connectors while keeping Raspberry Pi CM4 compatibility.

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1 year ago

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, they say.

Design a de-facto standard module connector and the likes of Radxa, Banana Pi and Pine64 will offer form factor compatible cards.

1 year ago

Based on the optional features it seems this 500 R1 thing is not directly relying on the CM4 ‘standard’ but uses Radxa’s extension making use of all three 100 pin connectors to use all the additional I/O.

In fact the CM4 SoM pinout is a rather silly choice for all those SoCs rich in I/O compared to that little of BCM2711.

1 year ago

On Radxa’s 3rd 100-pin connector is USB3 and 2 x USB2 amongst some more protocols. Since they’re talking about USB3 as an option I would believe they’re using all three 100-pin connectors.

Oh and I just learned CM3 is based on I/O limited RK3566 so NVMe SSD and 2.5GbE are mutually exclusive.

1 year ago

So as you said, lack of supply from RPI turns customers to other hardware solutions. Best thing that RPI ever did for hardware from other Companies.

Nd D
Nd D
1 year ago

About time. Hope others can also capitalize on the RP supply issue. More alternative is good for consumer. Hope their Linux support is at least as good as RP.

Upgrade pi-top [3]
Upgrade pi-top [3]
1 year ago

I wouldn’t get your hopes up too high; they certainly try to provide support but I get the impression it’s nowhere near what you get from the RPi Foundation/Community.

Maybe this opportunity will help them find ways to improve

Upgrade pi-top [3]
Upgrade pi-top [3]
1 year ago

They could call it “Mods ‘n’ Rockers”…

…I’ll show myself out

Khadas VIM4 SBC