LIVA Q1L Review – pfSense, Ubuntu 20.04, Windows 10 tested on a dual Ethernet “Ultra Tiny PC”

pfsense LIVA Q1L review

Elitegroup Computer Systems (ECS) have a series of mini PCs called LIVA which includes the diminutive Q range from which the LIVA Q2 was previously reviewed. Now it is the turn of the LIVA Q1L which although announced over a year ago has just been received for review and the results from various testing are detailed below. Hardware Overview The Q1L physically consists of a 74 x 74 x 34.6 mm (2.91 x 2.91 x 1.36 inches) rectangular plastic case. It is an actively cooled mini PC that uses slightly older Apollo Lake processors and the review model came with an N4200 CPU which is a quad-core 4-thread 1.10 GHz processor boosting to 2.50 GHz with Intel’s HD Graphics 505. The front has a power button, two USB 3.2 Gen 1×1 ports, and one USB 2.0 port whilst the rear includes an HDMI port, two gigabit Ethernet ports, and the […]

Review of “4G LTE WiFi Modem” hotspot

4G LTE WiFi Modem review

I’ve purchased a USB dongle acting as a WiFI & 4G cellular router with a generic name “4G LTE WiFi Modem” and listed as “4G LTE WiFi Hotspot Wireless Router USB Dongle 150Mbps Modem Stick Sim Card” on the online store (Lazada) I bought it from. 4G LTE WiFi Modem unboxing It’s a 3-in-1 device that works as a 4G USB dongle connected to a PC or laptop, a 4G USB WiFi cellular router/hotspot, and a USB flash drive when adding a MicroSD card. 4G performance is limited to 150Mbps DL, 50Mbps UL, while WiFi only supports up to 72 Mbps using 802.11n 2.4GHz WiFi. That’s perfectly fine for my use case, as the plan is to use it as a standalone WiFi hotspot with an unlimited 10 Mbps SIM card, and in locations with low population densities so 5GHz WiFi is not a must. The USB dongle ships with […]

Cincoze GP-3000 review – An expandable Xeon-based GPU computer

cincoze gp-3000 review

Cincoze GP-3000 is an expandable high-performance GPU computer. It consists of either a 9th or 8th generation Intel processor-powered embedded computer which can be expanded with Cincoze’s proprietary GPU Expansion Box (GEB) capable of housing up to dual 250W full-length graphic cards. Additional I/O expansion is also possible through the use of various modules. With a total 720W power budget the GP-3000’s additional GPU performance massively accelerates complex industrial AI and machine vision tasks. As a rugged computer, the GP-3000 has passed a series of stringent quality assurance tests and industry standards including MIL-STD-810G military standard, E-mark for in-vehicle applications, and EN50155 (EN 50121-3-2 only) for rolling stock environments. It can withstand hot and cold temperature extremes, shock and vibration, and high electromagnetic radiation. In this review, I’ll cover some performance metrics from both Windows and Ubuntu and also discuss the thermals. Hardware Overview The GP-3000 (see PDF datasheet) loaned […]

Foscam SPC review – Part 2: Human detection, Android app, ONVIF support

Foscam SPC review

In the first part of Foscam SPC WiFi spotlight camera review, we checked out the specifications, the package content, and some of the main components of the camera with SigmaStar SSC337DE processor and a Realtek RTL8822CS dual-band WiFi 5 module. I’ve now had time to play with the camera and tested it with the Foscam Android app, including human detection, and enabled ONVIF support to use the camera with compatible third-party apps or programs. Foscam SPC installation and setup with Android app Foscam SPC camera is designed to be wall-mounted, but for this review, I simply attached it to the branch of a small tree. Note that contrary to the other cameras I’ve tested, the camera angle can only be adjusted up and down or rotated, but there’s no direct left or right adjustment. I’ve also connected the power adapter to power up the camera, but I did not install […]

Foscam SPC WiFi Spotlight Camera Review – Part1: Unboxing and Teardown

WiFi Spolight camera

I’ve been reviewing a few IP cameras with built-in AI features with Vacom Cam, Reolink RLC-810A, and Annke CZ400 AI security camera which had by far the most advanced features going beyond human detection with luggage monitoring, line crossing-detection, and many more. Today, I’ve received another model with basic human detection. But Foscam SPC security camera also happens to come with a motion-activated spotlight, and it is the first camera I’ve ever received with support for dual-band WiFi meaning 2.4GHz or 5 GHz WiFi can be used as needed. In the first part of the review, I’ll go through the specs, do an unboxing, and go through teardown photos to check the internals. Foscam SPC key features and specifications Some of the highlights listed in the user manual and package: Camera 4MP camera up to 2560×1440 resolution @ 25 fps, 156° view of view (diagonal) HDR support 2x white LED […]

Laser focusing on Laser Master 2 Pro and optimal line spacing

CNX Laser Engraving

Karl Here. I am going to break up the review process for the Ortur Laser Master 2 Pro (LM2Pro) into smaller bite-size bits instead of one long review. I can get into more details and share what I learned. You can check out the initial unboxing and initial impressions in Ortur Laser Master 2 Pro laser engraver – First impressions. Let’s start first with focusing the laser. Focusing the laser I have a problem, I don’t feel like I can reliably focus the same way every time so I created a little focusing contraption. I got inspiration from my CNC machine and Z probe. It is just a simple jig that completes a circuit when the lens touches the end of the M3 screw to illuminate the led. I feel like I can have better repeatability. I’ll step through my process of calibrating it. First, I focused the laser with […]

A customer’s review of NextPCB PCB manufacturing service (Sponsored)

NextPCB sample

This article is based on the feedback from “Fix Until Broken”, one of NextPCB customers who details his experience with their PCB manufacturing service, including the ordering process, pricing, customer service, available options, and quality of the boards ordered. Ordering with NextPCB Ordering is a very simple process. First, check your design rules just like you would with any board manufacturer. If you want to check it yourself or set it into your design rules with your EDA/CAD, you can find PCB capabilities on their website. Alternatively, NextPCB also offers a free program to check your Gerber files for free. NextDFM is great for checking Gerber files. This is especially true when using files from an open-source design that you got from Github. After checking your design rules you can start the ordering process. For the free trial just make sure you are using 1-2 layers, ordering no more than […]

RasPad 3 Review – Part 2: A Raspberry Pi 4 mini PC with integrated display

Raspad 3 review

I started RasPad 3 review last week with an unboxing of the tablet shell for Raspberry Pi 4, together with assembly instructions, and a first boot after flashing Raspad OS to the system. In the first part of the review, I mentioned that I’d probably focus the remainder of the review on Ezblock Studio visual programming IDE, as the rest of the software is almost the same as using a standard Raspberry Pi 4, the other difference being the touchscreen-friendly RasPad launcher. But Sunfounder explained to me it would be hard to check out Ezblock as it’s designed to control robots and other hardware platforms, and requires an extra HAT (see Kickstarter campaign) to allow the Ezblock APP to connect through Bluetooth (it cannot be directly linked to Raspberry Pi through the built-in Bluetooth).  Here’s an example of a robot that is compatible with Ezblock Studio: Picar-X. Finally, I was […]