Station P1 & M1 fanless mini PCs run media or desktop-optimized Android OS

T-Chip has recently introduced two fanless “Geek” mini PCs under their Firefly brand with Station P1 & M1 respectively powered by Rockchip RK3399 hexa-core processor, and RK3328 quad-core processor. Both mini PCs can run Firefly’s Station OS in either desktop or media mode, as well as Android or Ubuntu. There are also some community efforts to port Armbian and LibreELEC to the devices. Station P1 specifications Specifications: SoC – Rockchip RK3399 hexa-core processor with two Cortex A72 cores @ up to 1.8 GHz and four Cortex-A53 cores, Mali-T860 MP4 GPU with support for OpenGL ES1.1/2.0/3.0/3.1, OpenVG1.1, OpenCL, DX11, VPU with support for  4K H.265 10-bit 60fps video decoding, multi-channel 1080p video decoding and encoding System Memory – 4GB LPDDR4 dual-channel 64-bit RAM Storage – 32GB eMMC flash (16GB/64GB/128GB Optional), onboard 16MB SPI flash, MicroSD card slot Video Output HDMI 2.0a up to 4Kp60, HDCP 1.4/2.2 DisplayPort 1.2 up to 4Kp60 via USB Type-C port Dual independent display support up to […]

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ODROID-HC4 low-cost dual NAS comes with 4GB RAM, supports 2.5-inch and 3.5-inch SATA drives

[Edit: Hardkernel has now updated their documentation to clarify the NAS uses ASM1061 PCIe to SATA controller instead of JMB582] It’s hard to find low-cost NAS platforms often because of the mechanism to insert drives and the enclosure add to the cost. An alternative is to use boards like Hardkernel ODROID-HC1 for 2.5-inch drives or ODROID-HC2 for 2.5- and 3.5-inch drives, but each board supports only one drive. The designs are stackable, but you’d need one Linux board per drive, so it’s not ideal. The Korean company has now launched a new model with ODROID-HC4 powered by an Amlogic S905X3 processor and shipping with a case supporting two 2.5-inch or 3.5-inch SATA drives that will start selling later this month for just $65 and up. ODROID-HC4 specifications: SoC – Amlogic S905X3 quad-core Cortex-A55 processor @ 1.8 GHz with Mali-G31 MP2 GPU System Memory – 4GB DDR4 Storage 128 Mbit SPI flash for bootloader like Petitboot UHS-1 compatible MicroSD card slot […]

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NanoPi R2S & NanoPi NEO3 tested with Armbian – Thermal test, Ethernet and USB performance

In the first part of the review of NanoPi NEO3 and Nano R2S I checked out the hardware, with both tiny gateways powered by a Rockchip RK3328 processor but a different features as NEO3 includes a Gigabit Ethernet port and a USB 3.0 port, while R2S comes with dual Gigabit Ethernet ports and a USB 2.0 port. I’ve now had time to test both gateways using Armbian 20.08.1 release based on Ubuntu 20.04 Focal. Note that while NanoPi R2S is officially supported by Armbian, NanoPi NEO3 images are currently tagged as “suitable for testing“. Having that said I did not come across any specific issues on NEO3, and it may mostly mean it’s easier to get support on the forums with R2S. I flashed two microSD cards using USBImager with: Armbian_20.08.1_Nanopi-r2s_focal_current_5.8.6_minimal.img.xz Armbian_20.08.1_Nanopineo3_focal_current_5.8.6_minimal.img.xz That means Ubuntu 20.04 with Linux 5.8.6, but since Armbian is always updated, I ended the review with Linux 5.8.15. I’ll focus the review on thermal testing, as […]

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Tiny Rock Pi S SBC gets PoE & audio HAT add-on board

Powered by a Rockchip RK3308 quad-core Cortex-A35 processor, Radxa Rock Pi S single board computer was launched with specifications listing PoE support via an add-on board. Just one little problem though: it was not available for sale. The good news is that Radxa has now launched a PoE HAT for the Linux SBC adding support for 802.3af PoE up to 10W input, making it one of the smallest single board computers with PoE support in the world, and adding audio features with a 3.5mm audio jack, and an FPC connector for a microphone array. It can be purchased on Seeed Studio for $13.00. Here are the specifications of the complete solution with Rock Pi S SBC and PoE HAT: SoC – Rockchip RK3308 quad-core Arm Cortex-A35 processor @ up to 1.3 GHz with built-in Voice Activity Detector (VAD) System Memory – 512MB RAM Storage – 1GB SD NAND flash, MicroSD card socket, EEPROM for HAT identity and driver probe Connectivity […]

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Tiny NanoPi NEO3 SBC Targets Networked Storage with GbE and USB 3.0

Once upon a time, FriendlyELEC launched a Raspberry Pi Zero competitor for headless applications with Allwinner H3 powered NanoPi NEO, which was then followed with NanoPi NEO2 equipped with a more powerful Allwinner H5 processor and Gigabit Ethernet, and less than two years ago, NanoPi NEO4 was launched with Rockchip RK3399 hexa-core processor, 1GB RAM, and HDMI output. “Wait! What happened to NanoPi NEO3?!” you may ask. It probably got lost in the woods, but FriendlyELEC found it under a rock, and are about to launch NanoPi NEO3 SBC based on Rockchip RK3328 and offering a USB 3.0 port and Gigabit Ethernet network connectivity. NanoPi NEO3 specifications: SoC – Rockchip RK3328 quad-core Arm Cortex A53 processor with Mali-450MP2 GPU System Memory – 1GB or 2GB DDR4 Storage – MicroSD Slot for system boot and storage Video Output – N/A Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet with unique MAC via RTL8211E PHY USB – 1x USB3.0 Type-A port, 2x USB2.0 on 2.54mm 8-pin […]

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DEVICE.FARM Generates Raspbian/Armbian Docker Images for about 100 Arm Linux SBCs

Last year, I reviewed BalenaOS and BalenaCloud on Raspberry Pi CM3L based BalenaFin hardware. The solution generates OS images with docker support in order to easily manage and update a fleet of devices remotely over a web interface or client program. Balena.io supports over 60 boards either officially, or thanks to the work of the community, but Pavel Burgr is developing an alternative with DEVICE.FARM supporting close to 100 Arm SBC’s including Raspberry Pi boards, and most Armbian supported Arm SBC’s. DEVICE.FARM is still beta, but the MVP (Minimum Viable Product) version of the website provides: Customized images for supported boards (currently 94 boards) Preinstalled docker Secure remote access to the device’s docker end-point Secure remote access to the device’s services exposed by containers This is functional, but bugs are likely, and documentation still needs to be finalized. I don’t have a board with me, but I tried to generate an image for Orange Pi Zero SBC. Once you click […]

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[email protected] Now Supports 64-bit Arm SBC’s and Servers in the Fight against COVID-19

[email protected] and [email protected] projects aim to perform biomedical research using the computing power of volunteers. Basically, you just need to install a program on your computer, and it will use idle computing power to perform complex calculations without slowing down your computer as long as you are not short in RAM. The projects are now working on COVID-19 to understand how SARS-CoV-2 protein is structured which could help find a cure. The programs have been available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS on 32-bit and 64-bit x86 targets for years, but very recently [email protected] has been made available for 64-bit ARM targets so people can also run BOINC program on Arm Linux SBCs such as Raspberry Pi 4, NVIDIA Jetson Nano, or Rock64, or even powerful Arm servers to help with [email protected] project’s COVID-19 research. As explained in an article on miniNodes, you’ll need a board with at least 2GB RAM and running a 64-bit operating system. That means Raspbian […]

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Kobol Helios64 RK3399K SBC & 5-Bay NAS Pre-Orders to Start Next Week

We covered Rockchip RK3399K processor a few months ago, as a version of RK3399 processor qualified to run at 2.0 GHz, or supporting a wider-temperature range (-20 to +85°C) at 1.8 GHz. We found out about the new processor, as Kobol was working on a Helios64 SBC designed for NAS that featured RK3399K SoC. At the time, we just had a drawing of the board and some specifications, but now the company has announced pre-orders for the board and a complete 5-bay NAS kit will start next week and the actual shipping start in March. Kobol Helios64 SBC Specifications: SoC – Rockchip RK3399K hexa-core processor with 2x Arm Cortex-A72 cores @ 2.0 GHz, 4x Cortex-A53 cores @ 1.6 GHz System Memory – 4GB LPDDR4 Storage – 16GB eMMC 5.1 flash, 5x SATA 3.0, 1x M.2 SATA slot shared with one SATA 3.0 port, MicroSD port Connectivity – 1x 2.5GbE port, 1x Gigabit Ethernet port USB – 3x USB 3.0 ports, […]

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