LiLyGo T-SIMCAM ESP32-S3 camera development board supports optional 4G LTE connectivity

ESP32-S3 camera board mPCIe socket

ESP32-S3 has been in the news recently and we just wrote about the Bee S3 and BPI-PicoW-S3 boards yesterday, but there’s more, and LilyGo T-SIMCAM ESP32-S3 is another interesting ESP32-S3 board with a 2MP camera as well as support for an optional 4G LTE module. The board can make use of the AI capabilities from the ESP32-S3 microcontroller through the built-in camera and microphone and offers two options for power with 5V through a USB Type-C port, as well as a 2-pin JST connector for connecting a battery. T-SIMCAM ESP32-S3 CAM board specifications: Wireless MCU – ESP32-S3R8 dual-core Xtensa LX7 microcontroller with WiFi 4 and Bluetooth 5.0 LE and Mesh connectivity with 8MB PSRAM Storage – 16MB QSPI flash, MicroSD card socket Camera – 2MP OV2640 camera with 1622×1200 resolution Audio – I2S digital microphone Connectivity – Optional NB-IoT, 2G GSM, or 3G/4G LTE module via mPCIe socket and SIM […]

Banana Pi BPI-M2 Ultra SBC is now offered with Allwinner A40i industrial-grade processor

Banana BPI-M2 Ultra Allwinner A40i SBC

The Allwinner A40i and A60i industrial-grade quad-core and hexa-core Cortex-A7 processors were first introduced in 2018 with support for the wide -40°C to +85°C industrial temperature range, but so far I had not noticed any hardware making use of either processor. But Banana Pi is now offering the Banana Pi BPI-M2 Ultra SBC, which they launched in 2016 with the Allwinner R40 quad-core Cortex-A7 SoC, with the pin-to-pin and software-compatible Allwinner A40i industrial-grade processor. Banana Pi BPI-M2 Ultra specifications: SoC – Allwinner A40i quad-core Arm Cortex-A7 processor with Arm Mali-400MP2 GPU @ 500 MHz, 1080p60 H.264, MPEG-4, MPEG-1/2 video decoder, H.264 1080p45 video encoder System Memory – 2GB DDR3 SDRAM Storage – 8GB eMMC flash, SATA interface, microSD card slot Video Output HDMI 1.4 port up to 1080p60 4-lane MIPI DSI display connector, or RGB, or LVDS Audio I/O – 3.5mm headphone jack, digital audio output via HDMI, built-in microphone […]

Arylic A50+ review – An entry-level wireless stereo amplifier

Arylic A50+ wireless amplifier review

The Arylic A50+ is a stereo audio streamer with a built-in power amplifier and support for wireless networks such as WiFi and Bluetooth as well as wired connections such as Ethernet, Analog RCA Line In, optical S/PDIF input, Subwoofer Out, and USB host port. All you need to do is connect the Arylic A50+ amplifier to passive speakers, and you can then easily stream music from streaming services such as Spotify, Tidal, or Qobuz in high-definition audio with the company’s 4STREAM app or another compatible app. Multiple A50+ wireless amplifiers can also be connected through your house to enable multiple rooms and/or zones support.   Arylic A50+ unboxing Arylic A50+ wireless amplifier teardown We can open the device after loosening four screws and have a look at the various electronic components used in the design. The main board, named Up2Stream A50Pro, consists of 5 important integrated ICs: Those include:   […]

$5.5 Banana Pi BPI-PicoW-S3 ESP32-S3 board follows Raspberry Pi Pico W form factor

Banana Pi BPI-PicoW-S3 Raspberry Pi Pico W alternative

Banana Pi’s BPI-PicoW-S3 is a development board following the Raspberry Pi Pico W form factor, but based on Espressif System ESP32-S3 dual-core microcontroller offering both WiFi 4 and Bluetooth LE connectivity. The Raspberry Pi SBCs have inspired many designs, but the Raspberry Pi Pico MCU boards less so. So far, I had only seen the WeAct RP2040 board with the same layout except for a USB Type-C port and a 16MB flash. But the Banana Pi BPI-PicoW-S3 provides a direct alternative to the Raspberry Pi Pico W with a more powerful microcontroller, vector instructions for AI acceleration, BLE, and about the same price at $5.5 plus shipping. Let’s see how the BPI-PicoW-S3 specifications compare to the ones of the Raspberry Pi Pico W in the table below. While the power signal (5V, 3.3V, GND) and GPIO numbers are the same on both boards, there are a few variations here and […]

Bee S3 ultra-low-power ESP32-S3 board can last several years on a LiPo battery

Bee S3 ESP32-S3 ultra-low-power board

Smart Bee Designs’ Bee S3 is an ultra-low-power development board based on Espressif ESP32-S3 WiFi & Bluetooth microcontroller that consumes less than 20 uA in deep sleep mode allowing the board to theoretically last over 5 years under specific conditions. The board provides WiFi 4 and Bluetooth 5 LE connectivity, features a battery voltage monitoring circuitry to check the battery charge level, a USB Type-C port for power and programming, plus 20 through holes for extensions such as connecting sensors, and so on. Bee S3 specifications: Wireless module – Espressif Systems ESP32-S3-MINI-1 module (PDF datasheet) with ESP32-S3 dual-core Xtensa LX7 processor with WiFi 4 and Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity, 4MB or 8MB QSPI flash, PCB antenna USB – 1x USB Type-C port for power and programming Expansion – 2x 10-pin headers with up to 15x GPIO, 8x ADC, touch support, I2C, SPI, UART, 5V In/out, 3.3V out, and GND Misc – […]

M5Stack Thermal Camera 2 Unit combines ESP32 WiSoC with MLX90640 thermal camera

M5Stack Thermal Camera 2 Unit

We’ve already seen the ESP32 used with a thermal camera (Flir Lepton 3.5) in the tCam-Mini IR board, but M5Stack Thermal Camera 2 Unit offers a more affordable ESP32 thermal camera solution thanks to the MLX90640 IR array thermal camera with a 32×24 resolution. Based on the ESP32-PICO-D4 system-in-package (SiP) with a dual-core microcontroller offering WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity, the camera module offers a field of view of 110°x75°, and a temperature measurement range of -40°C to 300°C. M5Stack Thermal Camera 2 Unit specifications: SiP – ESP32-PICO-D4 system-in-package with ESP32 dual-core Tensilica LX6 cores, 448 KB ROM, 520 KB SRAM, 4MB SPI flash, 2.4 GHz WiFi 4 and Bluetooth 4.2 IR camera – Melexis MLX90640 Infrared (IR) sensor with 32×24 pixels IR array, range: -40°C to 300°C with +/-1.5°C resolution, FoV: 110°x75° (See datasheet) Expansion – Grove I2C HY2.0-4P interface (“Port A”) Misc – Reset button, passive buzzer, user RGB […]

Orange Pi 800 Keyboard PC – A Raspberry Pi 400 alternative powered by Rockchip RK3399

Raspberry Pi 400 Keyboard PC alternative

There’s now a Raspberry Pi 400 alternative with the Orange Pi 800 Keyboard PC that offers a very similar design, but it is powered by a Rockchip RK3399 hexa-core Cortex-A72/A53 processor. Like the Raspberry Pi model, the Orange Pi 800 comes with 4GB RAM, Gigabit Ethernet, dual-band WiFi 5 and Bluetooth 5.0, two USB 3.0 ports, and one USB 2.0 port, but it also adds 64GB on-board flash storage and features one full-size HDMI port capable of 4Kp60 resolution plus a VGA port, instead of two micro HDMI ports. Orange Pi 800 specifications: SoC – Rockchip RK3399 hexa-core big.LITTLE processor with 2x Arm Cortex-A72 cores up to 1.8GHz, 4x Arm Cortex-A53 cores up to 1.4GHz, and an Arm Mali-T860MP4 GPU System Memory – 4GB LPDDR4 Storage – 64GB eMMC flash, microSD card slot Video Output HDMI 2.0 port up to 4Kp60 VGA port up to Full HD resolution Audio 3.5mm […]

UP 4000 x86 SBC review – Part 1: Unboxing and first boot

UP 4000 SBC review

AAEON UP 4000 is a compact Apollo Lake single board computer that’s about the size of a business card or a Raspberry Pi designed for automation, robotics, digital signage, and other space-constrained applications that may benefit from an x86 processor. The company already published some Phoronix benchmarks comparing the UP 4000 SBC against Raspberry Pi 4, NVIDIA Jetson Nano, and the original UP board, but since nothing beats third-party evaluation, AAEON sent a review sample to CNX Software for additional testing. UP 4000 SBC unboxing There are several variants of the board, and I received the UP-APL03X7F-A10-0464 SKU with 4GB RAM, 64Gb eMMC flash, and an Intel Atom x7-E3950 quad-core processor. The package includes the board together with a multilingual safety manual that explains you should not immerse the board underwater and should avoid walking on it :). A 12V/5A power supply was also included separately. The power cord was […]