Linux 3D GPU Acceleration Demo on Rockchip RK3288 based Firefly Board

Several devices and development boards based on Rockchip RK3288 processor already support Linux, usually with images based on Ubuntu, including Ugoos UM3 / UT3, Open Hour Chameleon, and Firefly-RK3288 among others. What these images lack however, is support for 2D and 3D graphics acceleration with the GPU, and hardware video decoding/encoding with the VPU. But Jas-hacks has made some progress with 3D graphics support. He has managed to add GPU acceleration via EGL/OpenGL ES bringing 3D acceleration to the platform, but 2D support is not there yet, meaning X11 still heavily relies on software rendering. But the implementation is still good enough to run the usual es2gears and glmark2-es2 benchmarks. as well as some WebGL demos in Chromium. Performance is currently underwhelming, with 50 points in glmark-es2, even a bit lower than the score (54 points) I got with ODROID-X board powered by Exynos 4412 SoC with a Mali-400MP4 GPU, and running Unity desktop in Ubuntu Linaro 12.11. The desktop […]

Broadcom Unveils BCM725x SoCs for STBs and TV Sticks

Broadcom has recently announced two new SoCs, namely BCM7250 and BCM72502, respectively targeted at OTT streaming media player form factor and  HDMI stick or dongle applications.  Both feature Broadcom’s Brahma-B15 ARMv7-A cores, support 10-bit H.265, HDMI 2.0, MHL 2.0, and up to to 4×4 5G WiFi via BCM4366 WiSoC. Key features listed by Broadcom for both SoCs: High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC)/H.265 compression 6000 DMIPS B15 ARMv7-A CPU 1.0 Gpix/s OpenGL ES 3.0 3D GPU Supports HDMI 2.0 with HDCP 2.2 or MHL 2.0 digital video output PCIe connectivity to Broadcom BCM4366 4×4 carrier-grade 5G WiFi 480/576p30 transcode 1080p60 10-Bit HD HEVC decode and 4Kp60 upscale High Performance DDR3/DDR4 system memory interface Supports Android, Chromium, DIAL, DLNA CVP2, Miracast protocols Supports Broadcom Trellis Multi-Application Framework and DTVKit software stack The company can also provide reference platforms with 2×2 and 4×4 5G WiFi connectivity options via a high-speed PCIe interface, and announced that BCM7250, BCM72502 and BCM4366 are currently sampling. Smart Labs […]

CubieTruck Metal Case Kit Getting Started Guide and Review

I’ve received CubieTruck Metal Case kit just over a month ago, but just like for Ubuntu on ODROID-XU3 Lite, the board could not get HDMI EDID info from my Panasonic TV, which led to a crash at boot time. CubieTech has now fixed the issue, so I’ve finally been able to complete the review with Cubieez (Cubie Easy) distribution, pre-installed on the board, and based on Debian 7.6. You can get the full hardware specs on my previous post, but the kits is comprised of four parts: CubieTruck development based on Allwinner A20 dual core processor, a rugged metallic enclosure, a 128GB SSD, and a 5,300 mAh battery acting as a UPS. I’ll start by showing how to setup the board, test SATA and Gigabit Ethernet performance,  check if the battery acts as expected, try to use the board as a desktop replacement with LibreOffice, Chromium, and so on, and run Phoronix Benchmark. I’ll also explain how to mvoe the […]

Android 4.4 and Ubuntu 14.10 Tested on Ugoos UM3 mini PC (Rockchip RK3288)

A few days ago I posted pictures of Ugoos UM3, a cute mini PC powered by Rockchip RK3288 quad core Cortex A17 processor, with 2GB RAM, 8GB internal storage, a few USB ports, and Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n/ac connectivity. There are so many Rockchip RK3288 based TV boxes and sticks on the market, that it has become difficult to differentiate, so Ugoos has decided to support not only Android 4.4 like all their competitors, but also Ubuntu 14.10, and they’ve provided an alpha release of dual boot Android / Ubuntu images for Ugoos UT3 and UM3 models. Yesterday, I flashed the latest Android/Ubuntu firmware for UM3, and tested the image, so today I can report my findings. First of all, I’d like to point out that I received an earlier sample with various flaws that I reported to Ugoos, and they’ve already committed to fixes: 5V/2A power adapter is not powerful enough to drive the box and an external hard drive, […]

Rikomagic MK902 II Android TV Box with Rockchip RK3288 Coming Soon

Rikomagic MK902 is an Android mini PC powered by Rockchip RK3188 quad core processor, and there’s even a Linux version. The company has announced it has been working on an upgrade of the device named MK902 II, and powered by Rockchip RK3288. It will initially sell with Android, but I would not be surprised with a PicUntu version is also sold later, and even an MK 902 II Chromebox could hit the market, since Rockchip released Chromium OS overlay files for RK3288. They’ve also provide MK902 II specifications: SoC – Rockchip 3288 quad core ARM Cortex A17 up to 1.8 GHz with Mali-T764 GPU System Memory – 2G DDR3 Storage – 8 or 16 GB flash + micro SD slot (up to 32GB) Video Output – HDMI, AV Audio Output / Input – HDMI, stereo audio (via AV port), optical S/PDIF, microphone Video Codecs – MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, H.263, H.264, H.265, AVS, VC-1, RV, VP6/VP8, MVC (1080p) Sorenson Spark, MVC […]

Linux Kernel Source Code and Chromium OS Overlay for Rockchip RK3288

A few days ago, we’ve seen Chromium OS running on Rockchip RK3288 development platform. I’ve been informed the source code could have already been released via the newly registered rkchrome github account with Linux kernel 3.10.30 and the overlay files to build Chromium OS for RK3288. There’s also a u-boot repository but it is currently empty.  This Linux kernel can also boot Rockchip RK3188 based Radxa Rock development board, but more tests are needed to see if it’s really usable. I’ll have a look at the Linux kernel, and try to build it, and leave the Chromium OS part for later or other people. Let’s retrieve the source code:

We’ve got two kernel config files related to Rockchip in arch/arm/config:

But since this is a recent 3.10 kernel with support for Flattened Device Tree support, and multi-platform support, there’s not much to be seen in these files, and we have to go to arch/arm/boot/dts/ where we can find […]

Rockchip RK3288 based Android and Chromium OS Tablets and TV Boxes (Video)

After the first RK3288 Android TV boxes started to be promoted on Alibaba, and the first RK3288 board was shown, Rockchip is currently showing their quad core Cortex A17 processor in reference designs, tablets, and TV boxes running Android or Chromium OS at the Hong Kong Electronics Fair. Charbax interviewed the company, and the first demo was a development board connected to an LCD display running Chromium OS, which is said to handle 30 tabs without issues. Rockchip RK3288 is now advertised as being a quad core Cortex A17 with a Mali-T764 GPU, but when Rockchip representative was asked, he strangely denied to comment on whether it was a Cortex A12 or A17, as both are very similar. He also said the GPU was a Mali-T760MP4… If this seems all confusing that’s because it is… Some interesting things are H.265/HEVC support for 4K2K videos, and HDMI 2.0 for 4K @ 60 fps video output. Moving on, some TV boxes and […]

Google Announces Blink, a Fork of WebKit Rendering Engine for Chromium

WebKit rendering engine has been used by Chromium since the start of the project, but Chromium uses a different multi-process architecture than other WebKit-based browsers, and this has made maintenance increasingly complex, and Google intends to investigate other performance improvement strategies. Those 2 reasons explain why the company has announced it would fork WebKit and start working on its own open source rendering engine called Blink. Google tells web developers that in the short term, Blink will bring little change to them, as most of the work will focus on architectural improvements as well as code cleanup with about 7,000 files, corresponding to 4.5 millions line of code, to be deleted. One of the main changes will be “out-of-process iframes“, where the rendering engine will start a sandbox process for each individual parts of the page in order to render it faster. This has been planned for a while, but since implementing it in WebKit would have broken other people […]