Testing Cytron MAKERDISK M.2 NVMe SSDs on Raspberry Pi 5 with GEEKWORM X1001 and Waveshare M.2 PCIe HAT+

MAKERDISK M.2 NVMe SSD Raspberry Pi 5 review

Cytron has sent us a few of their MAKERDISK NVMe SSDs preloaded with Raspberry Pi OS so that we can test them on a Raspberry Pi 5 SBC, either with a GEEKWORM X1001 or Waveshare M.2 PCIe HAT+ add-on boards both of which were also provided by the company. Ever since the first M.2 PCIe HATs for the Raspberry Pi 5 were released, we knew Raspberry Pi Limited was working on its own model, and based on some Twitter/X “rumors” (with photos) the launch of the official M.2 HAT+ should be just around the corner. So it’s the perfect timing to test some SSDs on the Raspberry Pi 5 even though I’ve yet to get the official HAT+ Cytron “MAKERDISK” package unboxing The Malaysian company sent me a kit with everything I needed to get started, minus the Raspberry Pi 5 I already owned. This includes 128GB or 256GB NVMe […]

Rockchip RK3582 is a cost-down version of RK3588S with two Cortex-A76 cores, four Cortex-A55 cores, no GPU

Rockchip RK3582

Rockchip RK3582 hexa-core SoC is pin-to-pin compatible with the popular Rockchip RK3588S octa-core Cortex-A76/A55 SoC, but only features two Cortex-A76 cores, a 5 TOPS NPU (instead of 6 TOPS) and does not come with a 3D GPU. I was first made aware of the Rockchip RK3582 in October 2023 when I was sent a photo of a board allegedly for a TV box, but while the RK3582 still features a 4K video decoder, the lack of a 3D GPU could make it problematic with 3D accelerated user interface. We now have more details with Radxa having released the datasheet and a few more interesting details. Rockchip RK3582 specifications: Hexa-core CPU – 2x Cortex-A76 and 4x Cortex-A55 cores in dynamIQ configuration (frequencies are still shown as TBD in the datasheet) GPU No 3D GPU 2D graphics engine up to 8192×8192 source, 4096×4096 destination AI Accelerator – 5 TOPS NPU 3.0 (Neural […]

Radxa Penta SATA HAT adds up to five SATA drives to the Raspberry Pi 5 for NAS applications

Raspberry Pi 5 NAS HAT

The Radxa Penta SATA HAT leverages the PCIe interface on Raspberry Pi 5  SBC to add up to five 2.5-inch or 3.5-inch SATA drives through four SATA connectors and an eSATA connector and enables NAS designs with the latest SBC from Raspberry Pi Limited. The Radxa’s Penta SATA HAT was initially launched in 2019 as an accessory for the Rock Pi 4 SBC powered by a Rockchip RK3399 processor and an M.2 PCIe socket since Raspberry Pi competitors have been exposing PCIe interfaces for years. It turns out the exact same Penta SATA HAT design can be reused with the Raspberry Pi 5 by providing a new PCIe FPC cable and updating the configuration scripts. Radxa Penta SATA HAT for Raspberry Pi 5 specifications: 4x SATA interfaces + 1x eSATAp for up 100TB storage via 5x 2.5″ or 3.5″ HDD/SSD Host Connection – Flat cable with 2-lane PCIe 2.1 via […]

Xtherm II TS2+ review – A 256×192 thermal imager tested with an Android smartphone

Xinfrared Xtherm II TS2+ Review Android

Shortly after I wrote about the Mustool MT13S 2-in-1 thermal imager and multimeter, Xinfrared asked me if I wanted to review the Xtherm II TS2+ thermal imager for smartphones. They offer versions that work for Android or iOS smartphones, so the company sent me the Android version of the Xtherm II TS2+ for review. After listing the key features and specifications, I’ll go through an unboxing, and report my experience using the thermal imager with the OPPO A98 5G smartphone running Android 14. Xtherm II TS2+ specifications Minimum focus – 8mm Resolution – 256×192 Pixel Pitch – 12μm FOV – 44.9° x 33.4° Image Frame Rate – 25Hz NETD (Noise Equivalent Temperature Difference) – ≤40mK@25°C, F#1.0 MRTD (Minimum Resolvable Temperature Difference) – ≤500mK@25°C,F#1.0 Temperature Range Measurements- -20°C ~ +450°C with ±2°C or ±2% reading accuracy Operating – -20°C ~ +50°C Temperature Correction – Manual/automatic Power Consumption – <350mW Dimensions – […]

Radxa X2L Intel Celeron J4125 SBC goes for as low as $39

Radxa X2L

Radxa X2L is an inexpensive Intel Celeron J4125 Gemini Lake Refresh single board computer (SBC) that ships with 2GB to 8GB RAM, an M.2 socket for SSD storage, another M.2 socket for a wireless module, and offers a range of ports such as dual HDMI, gigabit Ethernet, four USB port, and a 40-pin GPIO header. The price starts at $39, a price point that reminds me of the Atomic Pi SBC introduced a few years ago with an Atom X5 Cherry Trail processor, but the Radxa X2L is easier to use, offers better performance and modern features, as well as a low-profile form factor that’s about the size of a smartphone, just a bit thicker. Radxa X2L specifications: SoC – Intel Celeron J4125 quad-core Gemini Lake Refresh processor @ 2.0 / 2.7 GHz (Turbo) with Intel UHD Graphics 600 @ 250/750 MHz; 10W TDP MCU – Raspberry Pi RP2040 microcontroller […]

2023 Year in review – Top 10 posts, statistics, and what to expect in 2024

CNX Software Happy New Year 2024

It’s the last day and last article of the year, so we will look at some highlights of 2023, some traffic statistics on the CNX Software website, and speculate what interesting developments may happen in 2024. Looking back at 2023 The semiconductor shortage that had happened since 2020 started to fade away in early 2023, and supplies for most electronics components and devices seem to be adequate at this time, so that was a bright spot this year, and hopefully, it will stay that way in 2024 despite geopolitical tensions. We did not have any super exciting new Arm application processors from Rockchip, Amlogic, or Allwinner announced this year, although the Amlogic S928X penta-core Cortex-A76/A55 CPU started to show up in some 8K TV boxes. The launch of the Raspberry Pi 5 SBC with a Broadcom BCM2712 quad-core Cortex-A76 processor was probably the main highlight for Arm on this side […]

Radxa CM3S Rockchip RK3566 SODIMM system-on-module supports up to 8GB RAM, 128GB flash, wireless module

Radxa CM3S Compute Module 3 SODIMM

Radxa CM3S (Compute Module 3 SODIMM), also called the ROCK3 Compute Module SODIMM, is a system-on-module with a 200-pin SO-DIMM edge connector powered by a Rockchip RK3566 processor with up to 8GB RAM, 128GB eMMC flash, and an optional wireless module with WiFi 4 and Bluetooth 4.2. It follows the company’s CM3 module with Raspberry Pi CM4 form factor based on the same Rockchip RK3566 SoC, but in a more compact SO-DIMM form factor with a 200-pin edge connector that’s compatible with the Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3/3+, but not compatible with NVIDIA’s Jetson Nano, Xavier NX, and Orin NX 260-pin SO-DIMM modules, and you’d need to wait for the upcoming Radxa NX5 instead… Radxa CM3S specifications can be found below along with the ones for the Radxa CM3 and Rockchip RK3568-based Radxa CM3I system-on-modules. Note that some of the specifications differ depending on where you look on the Radxa […]

Radxa Zero 3W SBC – Rockchip RK3566 SoC, 8GB RAM, WiFi 6 in Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W form factor


More Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W lookalikes are coming to market, as after the Allwinner H618-based Orange Pi Zero 2W, the Radxa Zero 3W has now been introduced with a 1.6 GHz Rockchip RK3566 processor and up to 8GB RAM, plus WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5.4 connectivity, which makes it one of the most powerful Arm Linux SBCs in the compact Raspberry Pi Zero form factor. The board also comes with an optional eMMC flash with up to 64GB capacity, a microSD card, a micro HDMI port, two USB Type-C ports, a MIPI CSI camera connector, and of course, the usual 40-pin Raspberry Pi GPIO header. Radxa Zero 3W specifications: SoC – Rockchip RK3566 CPU – Quad-core Arm Cortex-A55 processor @ 1.6 GHz (Note the RK3566 is usually clocked at up to 1.8 GHz but may have been underclocked here due to heat issues at the higher frequency as the […]

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