Linux Quick Start Guide for Roseapple Pi Board based on Actions Semi S500 Processor

Roseapple Pi is a development board powered by Actions Semi S500 processor with 2GB RAM, a USB 3.0 port and more, that is based on Actions Semi Bubblegum-S500 reference design also used by Lemon Pi board. The team behind the project sent me an early sample to try it out. I’ll take some pictures, before explaining how to install and setup Debian 8.1, and how to build and run your own minimal image from source. These instructions should also work for Lemon Pi and LeMaker Guitar boards. Roseapple Pi Photos I received the board in a bubble envelope with a thank you letter, and the board itself in an anti-static bag. No other accessories were provided. Ports, connectors, and headers from top left counter-clockwise: 4-pin UART console, two USB 2.0 ports, one USB 3.0 port, 10/100 Ethernet, a 40-pin Raspberry Pi comptabile header, a MIPI DSI connected, a micro USB […]

LeMedia is a Linux Distribution based on Debian and Kodi 15.2 for Actions Semi S500 Processor

LeMaker has recently released LeMedia, a Linux distribution based on Kodi 15.2 and Debian Jessie for their Guitar board powered by Actions Semi S500 quad core Cortex A9 processor, also found in Lemon Pi, ActDuino-S500 and Roseapple Pi boards. The good news is that H.264 and MPEG4 hardware video decoding is implemented, as well as PowerVR SGX544 GPU 3D acceleration. This is an early version and while IR receiver, WiFi, HDMI and LCD output, and audio are working, the company explained that HDMI support may be flaky, USB 3.0 speed is not optimal, and touchscreen support had to be disabled. They also included a “LeMedia Settings” in the image to have a similar experience as “RaspBMC Settings”. The images for booting from SD card or eMMC can be downloaded here. It’s quite likely they only work on LeMaker Guitar board, and I could not find the Linux 3.10.37 kernel, nor […]

Roseapple Pi Board Powered by Actions Semi S500 Comes with 2GB RAM

[Update: I’ve finally received an answer: Lemon Pi and RoseapplePi makers are different companies, but they just happen to both use the same Actions Semi S500 reference design, and RoseapplePi is manufactured in Taiwan. The picture above is V1.0 board, but V1.1 will have some modifications] Lemon Pi development board was launched this May via a Indiegogo campaign. The board, based Actions Semi S500 quad core Cortex A9 processor, got fully funded by over 200 backers, but at the time of launch, some people questioned the used of the word “Lemon” in a product name, as it has several pejorative meanings, including “something that is useless or crappy”. I was contacted about a new Roseapple Pi board yesterday, and upon checking out the details, it looks exactly like the Lemon Pi, except it got upgraded to 2GB RAM, just like in Indiegogo… The board name on the PCB also reads […]

Allo SPARKY Board Supports Raspberry Pi HATs for Multimedia, IoT and VoIP Applications

Allo is a company based in Bangalore, India specializing in VoIP hardware solutions, but they’ve recently developed a single board board powered by Actions Semi S500 quad core processor that supports various Raspberry Pi HATs and can be used for multimedia, IoT, and Telecom application such as Asterix or Freeswitch PBX. Allo SPARKY board specifications: SoC – Actions Semi S500 quad core Cortex A9r4 processor with PowerVR SGX544 GPU @ 500 MHz Memory – 1 or 2GB RAM Storage – Socket for 8, 16, 32 or 64GB pluggable eMMC modules,  micro SD slot up to 32GB, optional NAND flash Video Output – HDMI,  34-pin LCD connector Audio – HDMI, Headphone jack, built-in microphone Video Codec – H.265 (HEVC) and Ultra HD (4K*2K) video playback. Encoding up to [email protected] Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet USB – 2x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x USB 3.0 (OTG) port Camera –  24-pin camera interface (Up […]

200 EZCast LAN & Music Free Samples Up for Grab

EZCast is a technology that allows screen mirroring and expansion over WiFi or Ethernet, and based on Action Micro SoCs. The products also usually include Miracast, AirPlay, and DLNA support, and work with Android and iOS devices, as well as Windows and Mac OS computers. The company behind the products has now launched a giveaway campaign where it plans to giveaway 100 EZCast LAN (aka Tronsmart T3000) and 100 EZCast music devices until August 20th. You’ll need a Facebook or Google+ account to participate: Facebook entry: Like EZCast page Share the giveaway announcement from EZCast page on your Facebook timeline (publicly) Google+ entry: Join EZCast Google+ Community Share the giveaway announced from the EZCast Google+ community (currently pinned at the top of the community) Winners will be selected randomly each day, with their name posted on G+ or Facebook. Good luck. Thanks to VMG for the tip. Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)Jean-Luc […]

LeMaker Guitar is a $25 Single Board Computer Powered by Actions Semi S500 Processor

LeMaker, better known for the Banana Pi, has recently unveiled three boards at an event in China: LeMaker Bass – a 96Boards compliant board powered by Actions Semi S900 quad core processor LeMaker Piano – An industrial grade single board computer based on Freescale i.MX6 Solo, Dual or Quad LeMaker Guitar – A low cost board powered by Actions Semi S500 processor There are plenty of Freescale i.MX6 industrial boards on the market, and LeMaker Bass appears to be the previously announced Bubblegum-96 board now supported by Lemaker, so I’m going to focus on LeMaker Guitar in this post. It’s good to see at least one company dropped the “fruit + pi” theme for their new boards… The Guitar board is comprised of a system on module (SoM), and a baseboard. The SoM comes with the following technical specifications: SoC – Actions Semi S500 quad core Cortex A9r4 processor @ […]

Lemon Pi Board is a $35 Raspberry Pi 2 Alternative Powered by Actions Semi S500 SoC (Crowdfunding)

I wrote about ActDuino S500 last month. It’s a development board powered by Actions Semi S500 quad core Cortex A9 processor, but very few details were available, and release date and pricing had not been disclosed. EmbedStudio, a Shenzhen startup, has now launched an Indiegogo campaign (flexible funding) for their Lemon Pi board based on S500 processor. Lemon Pi specifications: SoC – Actions Semi S500 quad core Cortex A9r4 processor with 512KB L2 Cache and a PowerVR SGX544 GPU with OpenGL ES 1.1/2.0, OpenVG 1.0.1, and OpenCL support Memory – 1GB DDR3 RAM (Option: 2GB, not part of crowdfunding rewards) Storage – micro SD slot. Option: Up to 64GB eMMC 4.5 flash, not part of crowdfunding rewards. Video Output – HDMI 1.4 with HDCP, 3.5mm jack for CVBS (AV), MIPI DSI Audio – HDMI, AV (Line out / microphone) Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet (RJ45; RTL8201F) USB – 2x USB 2.0 […]

Tronsmart Introduces EZCast / Miracast Adapters with 802.11ac, Ethernet

EZcast adapters are HDMI sticks supporting Miracast, DLNA, and EZcast protocol that were launched in 2013. I tested a few with Tronsmart T1000 and Widicast EC-E2, and they did the job mostly as advertised, but suffered from lag in Android, mostly affecting games, as well as poor performance with Windows, at least with the firmware I used. Tronsmart has now launched new models including Tronsmart T1000 Plus with 802.11ac WiFi, and Tronsmart T3000 with Ethernet that should fix most of these issues. Tronsmart T1000 Plus T1000 Plus adapter specifications: SoC- Action Semi AM8251 @ 600MHz (MIPS) System memory – 128 MB DDR3 RAM Storage – 128 MB NAND Flash Video output – HDMI up to 1080p Wi-Fi – 802.11 b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi with WEP, WPA and WPA2 support Standards – Miracast, Airplay, DLNA, and EZCast USB – USB port for power and connect the external USB cable with Wi-Fi module Misc […]