NanoPC-T4 Review with Android 7.1 Firmware

NanoPC T4 Connected

NanoPC-T4 is one of the many Rockchip RK3399 SBCs now available, and as we’ve seen in the “unboxing review” the company sent me two samples. So far, I’ve been reviewing RK3399 boards with Linux distributions in posts such as “Checking Out Debian and Linux SDK for VideoStrong VS-RD-RK3399 Board” and more recently “AIO-3399J Development Board Review with Ubuntu 16.04“. But in this NanoPC-T4 review, I’ll switch to Android, specifically Android 7.1, as I’ll soon try Android 8.1 on Firefly-RK3399 which might make for an interesting comparison between the two versions of the OS, before switching to Linux with Pine64 RockPro64 board which I received yesterday. First Boot with NanoPC-T4 Development Board I had already assembled  the board in the first part of the review, so I just added the two WiFi antennas, the optional USB to serial debug board, and connected various accessories and cables from left to right: USB keyboard and mouse, HDMI cable to 4K TV,  USB 3.0 …

WiFiBoy32 is an ESP32 Portable Game Console and IoT Devkit

WiFiBoy32

I’ve noticed that ever since Hardkernel launched their ODROID-GO “10th anniversary” portable game console based on ESP32 processor, most of the talk on IRC and social media is about this new toy, and people almost seem to have forgotten about the company’s Arm Linux boards 🙂 But recently, I’ve come across a somewhat similar ESP32 device called WiFiBoy32 that acts as both a portable game console and an IoT development kit. WiFIBoy32 specifications: Wireless module – ESP32-WROOM-32 wireless module with 802.11 b/g/n WiFi and Bluetooth 4.2 LE connectivity Display – 2.4″ 240×320 color SPI TFT LCD display Expansion – 2x 8-pin through holes with GPIOs, SPI, DAC, I2S,ADC, VP/VN, and power signals (3.3V, Vin, GND) Misc Top – 6x large gaming buttons, select and start push buttons, buzzer Bottom – PROG and RESET buttons, user LED USB – 1x micro USB port for power and programming (CP2102) Dimensions – 120 x 73 mm The board can be programmed with the …

Raspberry Pi 3 based Retro Arcade Game Console Sells for under $250

Raspberry Pi 3 Arcade Game Console

When it comes to retro-gaming for the Raspberry Pi 3 board, there’s no lack of option with firmware like RetroPie or Lakka,  a few off-the-self accessories like USB or Bluetooth gamepad, a an HDMI monitor, you can get started in no time. However, if you want to make a retro arcade game console, it may take some more efforts, as you’d normally have have to design the case yourself, source the buttons and controls, the display, extra electronics and so on. But the “DIY classic retro arcade game console” based on Raspberry Pi 3 board currently sold on Banggood for $247.99 should make things much easier, as it’s supposed to be plug and play, while still offering the option to add or remove games, and mess around with the hardware if you wish to. Banggood did not provide the full technical details, but here’s what we know about the specifications: Based on Raspberry Pi 3 board (included) Display – HD …

ODROID-GO is an Arduino Compatible, ESP32 based Portable Gaming Console Kit

ODROID-GO

When I first saw Hardkernel made ODROID-GO portable gaming console, I immediately thought they did a Linux device ala PocketCHIP, since so far the company has only designed Android & Linux development board. But ODROID-GO game console is actually based on Espressif ESP32 WiSoC,  programmable with the Arduino IDE, and launched to celebrate Hardkernel’s 10-year anniversary. ODROID-GO specifications: SoC – Custom ESP32-WROVER module with ESP32 SoC @ up to 240 MHz, 16 MB Flash, and 4MP PSRAM Storage – micro SD card slot connected via SPI Display –  2.4″ 320×240 TFT LCD (SPI) Connectivity – WiFi 802.11 b/g/n 2.4GHz – 2.5GHz, Bluetooth 4.2 BR/EDR, BLE Speaker – 0.5Watt 8Ω Mono USB – 1x micro USB port for charging (500mA) and USB-UART communication Expansion Port – 10-pin header with  I2C, GPIO, IRQ at 3.3Volt Misc – Buttons: Menu, Volume, Select, Start, A, B, Direction Pad Battery –  3.7V/1,200mAh Li-Polymer good for up to 10 hours of continuous game playing timeThe game …

XU4Q Retro Gaming System Runs ODROID GameStation Turbo, Sells for $150 and Up

One of the use case for little Arm Linux boards is retro gaming thanks to open source projects like RetroPie, RetrOrangePi, Lakka, and others. To get a complete & usable system, it’s possible to purchase console kits, enclosures, or even complete game consoles running one of such emulators. This morning I’ve come accross another option, as Ameridroid is now taking pre-order for XU4Q Retro Gaming System for $149.95 and up. As it name implies, the console is based on ODROID-XU4Q, the fanless version of ODROID-XU4 board, which with its Exynos 5422 octa-core processor and 2GB RAM will be much more powerful than Raspberry Pi 3 boards, and most other boards on the market. The kit also includes OGST Gaming Console, GameSir G3w analog joystick controller, a power supply, and a 16GB microSD boot media flashed with ODROID Game Station Turbo based on Debian. If you already own an ODROID-XU4(Q) board, power supply, and one or more game controllers, you could …

GameSir X1 BattleDock is a Bluetooth Smartphone Dock with USB Ports for Keyboard and Mouse

Gaming-Dock-USB-Keyboard-Mouse-Smartphone

If you’ve ever wanted to easily connect a USB keyboard and/or mouse to your smartphone, GameSir X1 BattleDock may be for you. The dock holds your phone at an angle, and offers two USB ports for USB input  devices,  with the phone and dock communicating over Bluetooth. As the name implies, the system is apparently designed for gamers, but others might find it useful too.Some basic specifications for the dock: USB – 2x USB host ports Connectivity – Bluetooth 4.0 Misc – Mode switch button, status LEDs, foldable phone holder Battery – 3,000 mAh battery good for about 5 hours Power Supply – 5V via micro USB port Dimensions – approximately 13.5 x 10.2 x 3.1 cm when folded Weight – 272 grams The manufacturer claims the dock supports the most common FPS and battle royale games such as PUBG mobile, Rules of Survival, Knives Out, Dead trigger2, Modern Combat 5 and more. You can also customize keyboard buttons / …

Android based Station OS Firmware Focuses on Multimedia and Retro Gaming for ROC-RK3328-CC and Firefly-RK3399 Boards

If you’re interesting in gaming and multimedia, one choice is to run Linux based RetrOrangePi or RetroPie on your favorite development board/SBC, and soon, with the upcoming release of Kodi 18, multimedia and retro gaming will just be an app installation away in Android, and other supported operating systems, since RetroPlayer retro-gaming emulator is part of the latest – and yet-to-be-released – version of Kodi. In the meantime, if you own a ROC-RK3328-CC and/or Firefly-RK3399 board(s), you may want to try Station OS, a firmware based on Android with a focus on 4K video playback and retro gaming. The description claims that Stations OS includes “more than 20 kinds of optimization for video and games, achieve multimedia center, Kodi 4K hardware decoding, game simulator hardware acceleration, real-time cast screen display, network acceleration, perfect Root.” The firmware does not use Kodi directly, but RKMC fork instead with some improvements, and they call the game emulator “Game Station”. The company has release …

Qualcomm Centriq 2400 Servers to Deliver Cloud based Mobile Gaming

Qualcomm Centriq 2400 Arm SoC launched at the end of last year, and with its 48 custom 64-bit Arm “Falkor” cores is optimized for datacenter workloads. But what everybody wants to know is whether it will run Crysis Angry Birds. And the answer is a resounding yes!, as Rovio’s subsidiary HATCH collaborated with Qualcomm to implement cloud gaming for mobile using Centriq 2400 based servers. The solution has the advantage of not requiring any additional downloads or installations after installing HATCH since everything is stored in the cloud, which also mean you’ll always get the latest version of the games. The game logic runs on the server, while the mobile phone takes user input in real-time, and the server can deliver 60 fps gaming for half the bandwidth required by HD video streaming. The company is now showcasing their solution at Mobile World Congress 2018 with an an early preview of the Hatch multiplayer edition of the original Angry Birds …