Orange Pi PC Not Booting? You Are Not Alone…

Orange Pi PC development board launched at the end of August, and quickly went viral thanks to low $15 price tag. The company, Shenzhen Xunlong Software,  is fairly small, with just over 10 employees, so when they started getting several thousands customers in a short time, they may have been overwhelmed, and this likely resulted in delays with regards to shipping, and acceptance into Orange Pi forums. Several people have now received their boards, and while many found it to work fine, I’ve been informed several people apparently got a non booting device. People on Youtube and Orange Pi Forums also complained about a booting issue until Ethernet lights up, or Ethernet not working, while other reports Linux is working, but not Android. Unless there was a bad batch during manufacturing, it’s hopefully mostly a firmware issue. The person who reports Ethernet not working, first used the images from Orange […]

Status of Orange Pi Boards GPIO Support

Yesterday, one person asked me to make a video showing GPIO control on Orange Pi 2 mini on YouTube, and since I have just completed a post about Orange Pi camera, I thought it might be fun to check GPIO support too. This post focuses on Allwinner H3 boards, but the instructions and status should be very similar for Allwinner A20 and A31s versions. One of the first things you want before starting playing with GPIOs is the expansion header’s pinout chart, and I could not find any until I had the idea to check for schematics, which are available on Orange Pi resources page. I downloaded the schematics for Orange Pi 2, which should be the same as for Orange Pi 2 mini as the only difference is the lack of WiFi module. Orange Pi PC is a little different, and the schematics are nowhere to be found, but […]

How to Use Orange Pi Camera in Linux (with Motion)

Earlier this month, I wrote a Quick Start Guide for Orange Pi Allwinner H3 boards such as Orange Pi PC, and showed how to install and configure Debian on the boards. I’ve also received the $5.90 Orange Pi camera, which when combined an Orange Pi PC, costs around $27 including shipping. So today, I’ve attached the CSI camera to my Orange Pi 2 mini board, and used it with motion to transform for the board into an IP camera. First, you’ll need to insert the camera into CON1 connector with the camera facing the ceiling, and close the black clip to keep it in place. Now connect all cable and power on your board. First, I studied the steps described on that forum thread, and modified Allwinner configuration files, but after one or two hours, I found out some work at been done since May, and it was now much […]

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 […]

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 […]

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, […]

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 […]

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 […]