Hardkernel Unveils $30 Raspberry Pi Compatible Module with RTC, ADC, and LiPo Battery Support

Hardkernel is better know for its ODROID boards powered by Samsung Exynos SoC. So I was surprised to discover ODROID-W, “a miniature computing module which is fully compatible with all software available for the Raspberry-Pi”.  Software compatible, really? Yes, because they used the same Broadcom BCM2835 SoC found in the Raspberry Pi, packaged it in a smaller form factor, while keeping HDMI, USB, and CSI interface, and expansion headers, and all that for $30, plus just $9 for shipping. Let’s go through ODROID-W specifications first: SoC – Broadcom BCM2835 ARM1176JZ-F processor @ 700 Mhz with VideoCore IV GPU System Memory – 512MB LPDDR2 (Samsung K4P4G324EB PoP) Storage – microSD slot + eMMC socket (bottom of the board) Video Output – micro HDMI (with NXP IP4791CZ12 protection IC) USB – micro USB connector, and USB host (not soldered) Expansion Headers: R-Pi compatible 26-pin expansion header (through holes) R-Pi compatible 15-pin CSI connector 20+6 -pin header for extra GPIO/ADC/Power and USB connection […]

Raspberry Pi Compute Module Development Kit Is Now Available for $200

The Raspberry Pi foundation announced a computer-on-module which they called the (Raspberry Pi) Compute Module that will be mostly software compatible with the Raspberry Pi board, and sell for $30 in quantities. They have now announced the availability of the development kit that includes a baseboard (called Compute IO board), display & camera adapter boards, as well as a 5V power adapter, jumper wires, and a USB cable. As a reminder the Compute Module has the following hardware specifications: SoC – Broadcom BCM2835 ARM 11 processor @ 700 MHz with Videocore IV GPU System Memory – 512MB RAM Storage – 4GB eMMC Flash SoM Connector – DDR2 200-pins SODIMM Dimensions – 67.6x30mm board which fits into a standard DDR2 SODIMM connector The Compute IO Board come with two micro USB connectors (one reserved for power), a USB 2.0 host port, two DSI ports for display, two CSI ports for a camera, a full size HDMI port, headers for various IOs, […]

Cheap Accessories for Raspberry Pi – Camera, microSD adapter, Debug Board, Heatsink and Enclosure

The Raspberry Pi just a great low cost ARM Linux board that costs $25 (Model A) to $35 (Model B), but once you start to add accessories the total cost of ownership may creep up quickly, and in some cases accessories may be more expensive than the board itself. I’ll list some alternative accessories that can be purchased online for a fraction of the cost of the more famous one. $18 Raspberry Pi Camera The official Raspberry Pi camera costs $25 + shipping and tax, but you can get a similar 5MP CSI camera for just $18.13 including shipping on Banggood.com. This camera clone should be software compatible with the original one according to the listed features: Plugs directly into the CSI connector on the Raspberry Pi 5MP resolution image (2592 x 1944), or 1080p HD video recording at 30fps 5MP (2592 x 1944 pixels) Omnivision 5647 sensor in a fixed focus module 15 pin Ribbon cable to the dedicated […]

libavg on Raspberry Pi

libavg development team has recently announced a beta port of their multimedia library to the Raspberry Pi. libavg is a high-level development platform for media-centric applications using Python as scripting language and written in C++. I came to know this platform as I tried Xibo Digital Signage, and I tested it on ARM platforms. Up to know this would only work using software rendering/decoding, and everything was painfully slow on ARM, but libavg developers are now making use of OpenGL ES to boost graphics speed. More work is needed, and they intend to eventually support features such as hardware video decoding (OpenMAX possibly via gstreamer) and compressed textures. Installing libavg on Raspberry Pi. Pre-built packages are available for Raspberry, so installation is pretty straight forward:

Running Samples Apps 32 samples are located in /usr/local/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/libavg/samples/ directory, and they rely on X11, so first start LXDE:

Open a serial console (LXTerminal) and run one of the sample:

This will show […]

Le Labo Citoyen Gasser – Raspberry Pi Based High Precision Pollution Monitoring System

“Le Labo Citoyen” is a recently founded French non-profit organization aimed at “promoting and experimenting with innovating and free technologies for the citizens and the environment”.  Their first project is to gather pollution data (NO2, O3, and SO2 levels) in Paris using 2 (soon to be) open source components: Gasser – Self-contained mobile sensor currently powered by the Raspberry Pi ThingStream – Open source IoT datastore which should be similar to iDigi Cloud, except you can just store data in your own server or on “Le Labo Citoyen” servers. Gasser has four main parts: Sensor(s) – Alphasense B4-series sensors (black and red component in the top left of the  main box) with accuracy of up to <10 ppb (parts-per-billion). Cost: ~110 Euros. They currently only use the NO2 (nitrogen dioxide) sensor. ADC & Computer – Raspberry Pi (Cost: ~30 Euros) & Delta-Sigma ADC (Cost: ~30 Euros). Communication Medium – Huawei E220 GRPS USB dongle (White dongle on the left side). […]

84 MB Minimal Raspbian ARMHF Image for Raspberry Pi

Many embedded systems applications do not require a desktop environment or graphical interface on the screen (e.g. server), and you may want to only install the files you really need on the SD card either to reserve as much space as possible for data and/or your program or to reduce costs. After searching for a minimal image based on Raspbian ARMHF distribution for the Raspberry, I could only find Linux Systems minimal image based on the Alpha version of the Raspbian Wheezy. Their compressed image is 109 MB in size, has a custom kernel,  sshd and ntpd are enabled, but the wireless tools were deleted, and at the time the swap was located in another partition instead of a file inside the rootfs. The uncompress rootfs is about 414 MB (as reported by df -h when mounted as a loop device). I decided to prepare a minimal image myself based on the first Raspbian Wheezy release, that supports about the […]

Raspberry Pi Releases Raspbian SD Card Image Based on Debian Wheezy ARMHF

The Raspberry Pi foundation announced the very first stable release of the Raspbian distribution, which is based on Debian 7.0 “Wheezy” armhf rootfs in order to take advantage of the FPU in Broadcom BCM2835. This distribution offers up to 40% performance improvement on several tasks, and for some specific tasks such as MP3 encoding is can boost the speed by nearly 6 times thanks to hard-float support. It is now the recommended distribution for the Raspberry Pi, runs LXDE environment, and comes with Midori browser, development tools and example source as per the previous Debian distros. omxplayer by gimli (XBMC developer) is also pre-installed in the image, and will allow you to play videos using hardware acceleration. You can download Raspbian via: Bittorrent – 2012-07-15-wheezy-raspbian.zip.torrent HTTP –  2012-07-15-wheezy-raspbian.zip The default credentials are pi / raspberry. Adam Armstrong has run some benchmarks to compare Raspbian (armhf) with the previous Raspberry Pi Squeeze (armel) distribution. Some tasks see little improvements since they […]