Debian 8 on Orange Pi mini 2 Board (Video)

Yesterday, I wrote a quick start guide for Orange Pi PC / 2 / Plus showing how to install Linux distributions on the board, and build your own image. With the launch of the $15 Orange Pi PC, Xunlong Software has taken over 1,500 orders for the board on their Aliexpress store, and probably sold a few hundreds or thousands in China via Taobao. So the board got relatively popular in a short time, considering it’s only selling via these two channels. I tested my tutorial with Orange Pi mini 2 ($23), a very similar board also based on Allwinner H3, but just a little larger and with an extra USB hosty port, but apart from that it’s similar to Orange Pi PC, and software compatible. I had already wrote about my test results in the previous article, where I did not recommend using the board in Linux as a desktop platform especially since video hardware acceleration provided by the […]

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Getting Started with Orange Pi PC, Pi 2 and Pi Plus Development Boards

I’ve recently received a kit based on Orange Pi mini 2 development board powered by Allwinner H3 quad core processor, but contrary to most other devices or boards I reviewed, this one what sent to me by one of my reader (thanks Jon!) as for various reasons he did not need to get it shipped to him. Today, I’ll start by showing off the kit I received, before writing a quick start guide showing how to install a Debian, and build your own Linux image. The instructions will work for all Orange Pi Allwinner H3 boards, including Orange Pi 2, Orange Pi Plus, and the recently launched Orange Pi PC, which has been rather popular thanks to its low $15 price tag. Orange Pi mini 2 Board Kit and CSI Camera This is what I got in the package… The board with a regulatory compliance and safety information sheet, as well as a 5V/2A power supply, that was bought as […]

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Orange Pi PC Allwinner H3 Board Is Now Available for $15

Orange Pi 2 is a board powered by Allwinner H3 quad core processor that sells for $25. Shenzhen Xunlong Software has now launched a lower cost version with Orange Pi PC, still based on Allwinner H3 SoC, but getting ridiculously cheap at $15 + shipping ($3.43 in my case). Orange Pi PC specifications: SoC – Allwinner H3 quad core Cortex A7 @ 1.6 GHz (likely 1.2 GHz instead) with an ARM Mali-400MP2 GPU up to 600 MHz System Memory – 1GB DDR3 Storage – micro SD card slot (up to 64GB) Video Output – HDMI with CEC and HDCP support, AV port Audio I/O – HDMI, AV port, on-board microphone Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet USB – 3x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x micro USB OTG port Camera – CSI Interface Expansions – 40-pin Raspberry Pi compatible header with 28 GPIOs, UART, I2C, SPI, PWM, CAN, I2S, SPDIF, LRADC, ADC, LINE-IN, FM-IN, and HP-IN Debugging – 3-pin UART header for serial […]

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How to Install and Run Linux on Zidoo X1 TV Box

Now that I’ve completed Zidoo X1 review, I’ve decided to try out Ubuntu on the mini PC following a tip from one reader that Orange Pi 2 images can run on the platform since it’s based on the same Allwinner H3 processor, but with some limitations such as WiFi not working. There are three Linux firmware images for Orange Pi 2 on the download page: Lubuntu, Raspbian, and Debian server. I decided to go with Lubuntu image. First you need to download Lubuntu_1404_For_OrangePi2-mini2_v0_8_0_.img.xz image from Google Drive or Baidu, uncompress it, and then flash the image to a Class 10 micro SD card in Windows or Linux. I ran the following command line in a computer running Ubuntu 14.04: Where X in sdX is the letter of your micro SD card, which you can find with lsblk. In some platforms, it might be /dev/mmcblkX instead of /dev/sdX. Once it’s done, insert the micro SD into Zidoo X1, connect a mouse […]

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Allwinner H3 Based Orange Pi 2 Board Price Drops to as Low As $25

As Raspberry Pi Model B+ price got reduced to $25, some competitors also decided to bring their price down. Shenzhen Xunlong Software, the maker of Orange Pi board, decided to decrease their Orange Pi 2 and Orange Pi 2 Mini boards by $5 to respectively $30 and $25 plus around $2 shipping. Both boards are based on the same PCB, but the mini version lacks WiFi. Let’s refresh our memory with the specs: SoC – Allwinner H3 quad core Cortex A7 @ 1.6 GHz with 256KB L1 cache, 1MB L2 cache, and an ARM Mali-400MP2 GPU up to 600 MHz System Memory – 1GB DDR3 Storage – micro SD card slot (up to 64GB) Video Output – HDMI (CEC and HDCP support), AV port Audio I/O – HDMI, AV port, on-board microphone Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet, 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi (Realtek module, not found on mini version) USB – 4x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x micro USB OTG port Camera – […]

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Orange Pi Plus (Allwinner H3) Firmware Images and Linux SDK Released

Orange Pi Plus is a development board based on the new Allwinner H3 quad core Cortex A7 processor that supports 4K video output and decoding. The boards comes with 1GB RAM, 8GB eMMC, HDMI output, Gigabit Ethernet, Wi-Fi, SATA and more, and sells for $49 on Aliexpress. When I first covered the board in February, it was already listed on Aliexpress, but I could not find any firmware image, or source code, but this has now changed. There are now four firmware files: Lubuntu_1404_For_OrangePiplus_v0_8_0_.img.xz – Lubuntu 14.04 image Raspbian_For_OrangePiplus_v0_8_0.img.xz – Raspbian for Allwinner H3 orangepi-plus-debian-server-card-v0.9.img.xz – A Debian server image sun8iw7p1_android_orangepi-plus_uart0.rar – Android 4.4.2 image that needs to be flash with PhoenixCard in Windows (Linux tools are not working yet) Beside the firmware images, the company also releases a Linux SDK (h3-lichee-1.0.tar.gz) with Linux 3.4 kernel source code, u-boot, and relevant tools. I assume these should also work on Orange Pi 2, the low cost version of the board without […]

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Orange Pi 2 Allwinner H3 Quad Core Development Board Sells for $35

After Orange Pi Plus development board powered by Allwinner H3 quad core cortex A7 processor, the company has decided to launch a lower cost version of their Allwinner H3 board with Orange Pi 2, that has started selling for a compelling $35 + about $4 shipping worldwide, and provides another sub-$50 alternative to Raspberry Pi 2, ODROID-C1, and Radxa Rock Lite boards. Orange Pi 2 board specifications: SoC – Allwinner H3 quad core Cortex A7 @ 1.6 GHz with 256KB L1 cache, 1MB L2 cache, and an ARM Mali-400MP2 GPU up to 600 MHz System Memory – 1GB DDR3 Storage – micro SD card slot (up to 64GB) Video Output – HDMI, AV port Audio I/O – HDMI, AV port, on-board microphone Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet, 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi (Realtek module) USB – 4x USB 2.0 host ports, 1x micro USB OTG port Camera – CSI Interface Expansions – 40-pin Raspberry Pi Model A+/B+ (mostly) compatible header with 28 GPIOs, […]

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Orange Pi Plus Development Board Gets Upgraded to Allwinner H3 Processor

Orange Pi boards were recently launched with a form factor similar to the Raspberry Pi Model B+, and featuring Allwinner A20 and A31s processors. Orange Pi Plus was initially fitted with Allwinner A31s processor, but Shenzhen Xunlong Software has now decided to use the latest Allwinner H3 quad core processor instead for this model, adding better CPU performance, and H.265 video decoding up to 4K @ 30 fps, likely at the cost of a slower Mali- 400MP2 GPU against the PowerVR SGX544MP used in Allwinner A31s. New Orange Pi Plus specifications: SoC – Allwinner H3 quad core Cortex A7 @ 1.6 GHz with ARM Mali-400MP2 GPU up to 600 MHz System Memory – 1GB DDR3 Storage – micro SD card slot, SATA interface (via a USB to SATA chip), unpopulated  8GB eMMC on the back of the board (despite picture, see comments section) Video Output – HDMI, AV port Audio I/O – HDMI, AV port, on-board microphone Connectivity – 10/100/1000M […]

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