3D printer board leverages Allwinner A64’s AR100 core for real-time control

Recore Allwinner A64 3D printer board

Elias Bakken has been working on Recore 3D printer control board based on Allwinner A64 processor since 2019 and with revision “A5” of the PCB,  Recore is now considered stable and will ship to customers. But wait? Isn’t Allwinner A64 just a quad-core Cortex-A53 processor meant to run Linux? But 3D printer control boards require real-time I/O and that’s why many are designed with STM32, Arduino compatible Microchip MCU or other microcontrollers. The trick here is that Elias did not use the Cortex-A53 cores for real-time control, but instead the 300 MHz AR100 32-bit OpenRISC 1000 core found in Allwinner A64 SoC. Recore specifications: SoC – Allwinner A64 quad-core Cortex-A53 processor running at 1 GHz, with AR100 32-bit core @ 300 MHz, Mali-400MP2 GPU System Memory – 1 GB DDR3 RAM Storage – 8 GB eMMC flash Video Output – HDMI output to connect a display Networking – Gigabit Ethernet […]

PineDio indoor LoRa gateway to combine Pine A64-LTS SBC with RAK2287 LoRaWAN concentrator module

Pine64 indoor LoRa gateway

RAKwireless has offered Raspberry Pi-based indoor LoRaWAN gateways for development/evaluation purposes for several years, including the more recent RAK7246 LoRaWAN developer gateway equipped with Raspberry Pi Zero W SBC. But there’s will soon be another option, also not directly from RAKwireless, as Pine64 PineDio indoor LoRa gateway will feature RAK2287 LoRaWAN concentrator module connected to Pine A64-LTS single board computer via a custom-designed adapter board. PineDio indoor LoRa gateway preliminary specifications: SoC – Allwinner A64 quad-core Arm Cortex A53 processor @ 1.0 GHz with Mali-400MP2 GPU System Memory – Up to 2GB LPDDR3 Storage – 128Mb SPI boot Flash, MicroSD card slot, optional eMMC flash module Video Output – HDMI 1.4 up to 4K resolution @ 30 Hz Connectivity Gigabit Ethernet Optional WiFi & Bluetooth module LoRaWAN via RAK2287 mini PCIe concentrator module based on Semtech SX1302 with support for RU864, IN865, EU868, AU915, US915, KR920, AS923; external antenna GNSS […]

Allwinner Processor 2021-2022 Roadmap – Allwinner T827, T723 and T1033 SoC’s

Allwinner 2021 2022 roadmap

Last year, we published the Allwinner A-series processor roadmap for 2020-2021 with notably Allwinner A33E, A100, and A200 SoCs. Allwinner A100 was supposed to be released in 2019, but a search on Aliexpress showed exactly zero matches. We did write about Allwinner A100 mainline Linux support a little while ago, and today, I eventually found one Allwinner A100 tablet with the $60 Hyundai HyTab 7WC1. I had no better luck in my search for Allwinner A33E and A200 platforms. But I also got lucky today with another Allwinner roadmap for 2021-2022 with some very interesting new processors, provided they happen. A look at 2020 processors But let’s look at the year 2020 first. We already have most details about Allwinner A133 quad-core Cortex-A53 processor, which is also called T509 apparently following the merging of the Allwinner A-Series business unit, focusing on tablets, into the Allwinner T-Series for industrial & automotive […]

PinePhone Keyboard to make for a cheaper, albeit slower Cosmo Communicator

Pinephone Keyboard

Pine64 PinePhone is a popular Linux smartphone among the developers and Linux enthusiasts’ communities and some of the most popular Linux operating systems support by the phone include KDE Plasma Mobile, PostMarket OS, Manjaro, and UBports for an Ubuntu Touch like interface. But soon, you’ll be able to use your PinePhone like a portable Linux computer, a 5.95-inch mini laptop of sorts, that’s similar to the 2-in-1 Cosmo Communicator device, but at a much lower price, albeit with lower performance, thanks to PinePhone Keyboard accessory. The PinePhone Keyboard is not quite ready yet, but Lukasz Erecinski  (aka Luke) has shared the progress of the latest version of the prototype, and almost looks like a finished product, albeit we’re told another revision will be made as the tolerances on the keycaps are not suitable. Here are some of the main features we can expect from the keyboard: QWERTY keyboard (by default). […]

Linux 5.12 – Main Changes, Arm, MIPS and RISC-V Architectures

Linux 5.12

Linux 5.12 release was expected last Sunday, but Linus Torvalds decided to release one more release candidate, namely Linux 5.12-RC8, to “make sure things are all settled down“, so the latest Linux kernel is now expected this weekend.  Tihs should not yield any significant changes, so we can check what’s new in Linux 5.12, notably with regards to Arm, MIPS, and RISC-V architectures often used in SoC’s found in embedded systems. Around two months ago, the release of Linux 5.11 added support for Intel’s software guard extensions (SGX) and Platform Monitoring Technology (PMT), AMD “Van Gogh” and “Dimgrey cavefish” graphics processors, MIPI I3C host controller interfaces, and much more. Some interesting changes in Linux 5.12 include: Added support for ACRN hypervisor designed for IoT & embedded devices Added support for Playstation DualSense & Nintendo 64 game controllers, as well as Nintendo 64 data cartridges Dynamic thermal power management via a […]

Linux 5.11 Release – Main Changes, Arm, MIPS & RISC-V Architectures

Linux 5.11 release

Linus Torvalds has released Linux 5.11 just in time for… “Valentine’s Day”: Nothing unexpected or particularly scary happened this week, so here we are – with 5.11 tagged and pushed out. In fact, it’s a smaller-than-average set of commits from rc7 to final, which makes me happy. And I already have several pull requests lined up for tomorrow, so we’re all set for the merge window to start. But in the meantime – and yes, I know it’s Valentine’s Day here in the US – maybe give this release a good testing before you go back and play with development kernels. All right? Because I’m sure your SO will understand. Linus Last time around, Linux 5.10 was an LTS release that added EXT-4 performance enhancements, improved post-Spectre performance, as well as the enablement of BCM2711 (Raspberry Pi 4) display pipeline, among other many changes. Some of the notable changes in […]

Pine64 mailbag – PinePhone postmarketOS Edition, PineCone BL602 board, and Pinecil soldering iron

Pine64 PinePhone, PineCone, Pincecil

Pine64 community was pretty busy last year with the launch of several products. Recently I’ve received a couple of packages with some of those products, namely PinePhone Community Edition: PostmarketOS, PineCone WiFi & BLE IoT board based on BL602 RISC-V SoC, and Pinecil soldering iron also based on a RISC-V chip for control, but this time GD32V generic-purpose MCU. I’ll most show what I have received without going into too many details, except for PinePhone which I have already set up and used for one hour or so. PineCone BL602 board I received PineCone at the end of last year in a separate envelope with the board only. There’s not much to it with the BL602 processor offering WiFI and Bluetooth, a USB-C port for programming and power, and a few I/Os. The board is interesting as it is the first RISC-V IoT board with wireless connectivity built into the […]

100 Allwinner A20 EOMA68 CPU cards manufactured for testing

EOMA68 CPU Card

Last week, and technically last year, we wrote Dragonbox Pyra open-source hardware handheld Linux PC was ready to ship after 6 years in the making, and 4 years after initial pre-orders, highlighting that such projects can take a long time. But it’s not the only project to have suffered from long delays, but still slowly getting things done. Rhombus Tech started working on earth-friendly EOMA68 (Embedded Open Modular Architecture Standard) computing cards based on the 68-pin PCMCIA form factor in 2012, before launching Allwinner A20 based EOMA68 cards on Crowd Supply in 2016 together with laptop and micro PC shells. The project had regular updates over the year, mostly to discuss the progress of the project, and unexpected challenges encountered. But there may light in the tunnel,  as in the latest December 30th update, Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton (LKCL) announced the company had managed to manufacture 100 OEMA68 cards based […]