100 Allwinner A20 EOMA68 CPU cards manufactured for testing


Last week, and technically last year, we wrote Dragonbox Pyra open-source hardware handheld Linux PC was ready to ship after 6 years in the making, and 4 years after initial pre-orders, highlighting that such projects can take a long time. But it’s not the only project to have suffered from long delays, but still slowly getting things done. Rhombus Tech started working on earth-friendly EOMA68 (Embedded Open Modular Architecture Standard) computing cards based on the 68-pin PCMCIA form factor in 2012, before launching Allwinner A20 based EOMA68 cards on Crowd Supply in 2016 together with laptop and micro PC shells. The project had regular updates over the year, mostly to discuss the progress of the project, and unexpected challenges encountered. But there may light in the tunnel,  as in the latest December 30th update, Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton (LKCL) announced the company had managed to manufacture 100 OEMA68 cards based on Allwinner A20 dual-core Cortex-A7 processor with the help of […]

Rhombus Tech 15.6″ Libre Laptop is User-Upgradeable with EOMA68 CPU Cards

When the first Raspberry Pi model launched, there was just not enough boards to fill the demand, and as people kept waiting they were also investigating alternatives, and a growing community worked on Allwinner based platforms. At the time (2012), the main hardware project  was EOMA68 CPU card using a PCMCIA connector, with ended up inside Improv development board, and aimed at providing user replaceable and upgradeable CPU cards. Sadly the initiative got some issues, and things did not quite work out as expected, but the person who launched the whole project, Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton (LKCL), did not give up on the idea, and has kept on working on EOMA68 standard with CPU cards from Allwinner and other SoC vendors. Recently, he’s been working on a Libre Laptop based on an Allwinner A20 EOMA68 CPU module, and will showcase the prototype at FOSDEM 2016 in Brussels this coming week-end. Key (preliminary) hardware features of the laptop: User-upgradeable EOMA68 CPU […]

Rhombus Tech EOMA-68 CPU Card Prototype

Do you remember Rhombus Tech AllWinner A10 EOMA-PCMCIA CPU card that targets a BOM cost of $15 US, that was announced at the end of last year? Well, after much wait, the first prototype is now available. This CPU module is based on AllWinner A10 Cortex A8 processor, with 1GB RAM, a NAND Flash, one USB OTG port, microSD slot, HDMI, PMIC, an Ethernet PHY (at the back), an expansion header, and the EOMA-68 connector giving access to peripherals signals (SATA, Ethernet, RGB/TTL, I2C etc…). It can act as a Linux/Android stand-alone computer or be connected to a baseboard. One of the first project will be a laptop for the Chinese market. AllWinner A10 SoC may be a little underpowered to be used in laptop compared to the latest ARM processors, but since EOMA-PCMCIA is a standard, pin-to-pin compatible modules will eventually be designed and manufactured with different/faster (ARM) processors. New modules are expected to be designed much faster than […]

List of 39 Low Cost Linux Friendly Boards and Products

Dmitry (omgfire), one of my awesome readers, compiled a great tabular list of Linux friendly boards and products that sells for less than $300 US (usually less than $200). This list includes technical details such as the processor, GPU, memory, NAND flash, connectivity, ports, supported Linux distributions… as well as availability and pricing information. There are currently 39 Linux devices in total. The vast majority are ARM based boards, but he also included 2 x86 products by VIA, but those are relatively pricey ($265 and up). Here’s a summary list with SoCs used, links to blog posts and product pages (if available), as well as price information. Raspberry Pi Model B – Broadcom BCM2835 (ARM11) – Blog post (That’s my first post about the R-Pi last year, and the board is much different now) –  Product page – Price: $35 + shipping Rikomagic MK802 – Allwiner A10 (Cortex A8) –  Blog post –  Price: $70 to $80 inc. shipping Mele […]

15 USD ARM Cortex A8 Linux Computer by Rhombus Tech

Many of you already probably know the Raspberry Pi Foundation 25 USD ARM Linux Computer. Rhombus Tech, another non-profit organization, is planning to design a 15 USD ARM Linux computer (excluding casing, power supply, shipping, VAT and custom duties) that the company claims would be at least 3 times faster that the Raspberry Pi. This computer would be an EOMA-PCMCIA CPU card powered by an Allwinner A10 ARM Cortex A8 CPU clocked at 1.5ghz. Here are the (expected) specifications of this board: Approximately Credit-card size format (56mm x 90mm) An Allwinner A10, 1.5ghz ARM Cortex A8 1GB of RAM At least 1gb of NAND Flash (possibly up to 16gb) Operation as a stand-alone computer (USB-OTG powered) 2160p (double 1080p) Video playback MALI 400MP 3D Graphics, OpenGL ES 2.0 compliant. HDMI, Micro-SD, Headphones Socket, EOMA-PCMCIA-compliant interfaces (RGB/TTL, I2C, USB2, SATA-II, 10/100 Eth) Expansion Header (similar to Beagleboard, IMX53QSB, Origen etc.) With this kind of specifications, it’s hard to believe they’ll achieve their […]