NanoPi R2S Dual GbE IoT Board and Gateway Launched for $22 and Up

NanoPi R2S Dual Gigabit Ethernet SBC

We first covered NanoPi R2S SBC back in mid-January 2020. Specifically designed for headless and IoT application the board features a Rockchip RK3328 processor combined with 1GB RAM, and contrary to most competing platforms on the market such as Orange Pi R1 or NanoPi R1S, R2S comes with two true Gigabit Ethernet ports. At the time, the board was not available for sale, but now FriendlyELEC has started to take orders for just $22.00, and adding a yellow case adds $3 to the total. This is around $5 extra compared to NanoPi R1S gateway which was expected with extra RAM (1GB) and true dual GbE connectivity. But in the age of COVID-19, nothing runs quite as smoothly as it used to and the company expects shipping delays: Because of the epidemic, postal services in a lot of countries get delayed. Customers who need orders urgently need to choose DHL. EU customers who need DHL service to deliver orders need to …

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ARM9 in 2020 – Meet Microchip SAM9X60 SoC & Evaluation Kit

SAM9X60-EK Evaluation Kit

In my first job, I wrote code for a MIPS processor for VoIP phones, then I switched to NEC/Renesas MCUs for CD and DVD players, before going back to Linux and my first experience with an Arm processor: Cirrus Logic EP9307 with a single ARM9  (ARM920T) core clocked at 200 MHz. That was in 2005, and according to Wikipedia various ARM9 cores were released between 1998 to 2006, and now such cores are not recommended for new IC designs with most companies now building their chips around Arm Cortex-A/M/R cores. At the end of last year, we wrote about Banana Pi BPI-F2S SBC based on Sunplus SP7021 “Plus1” quad-core Cortex-A7 processor with ARM9 and 8051 co-processor. Odd enough but at least the ARM9 core is not the main processor, however, while looking at the upcoming Linux 5.6 Linux kernel log I read an entry about a new SAM9X60 ARM926-based SoC from Microchip. Microchip SAM9X60 ARM9 Processor Quite surprising to have …

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Newport GW6903 is a Compact Marvell Octeon TX SBC with Gigabit Ethernet, Dual mPCIe, and USB 3.0

Newport GW6903 SBC

Gateworks introduced its Newport SBC family powered by Cavium Octeon TX processors and designed for networking applications in 2017. One of those boards was a compact SBC with one Gigabit Ethernet port, an mPCIe socket, and a USB 2.0 Type-C port. The company has now launched Newport GW6903 SBC with the same 100x35mm form factor but with one Gigabit Ethernet port, two mPCIe sockets, and a faster USB 3.0 Type-A port. Newport GW6903GW6903 specifications: SoC – Cavium Marvell Octeon TX CN8120 dual-core Armv8 processor @ 800 MHz or Octeon TX CN8130 quad-core ARMv8 processor @ 1.5 GHz System Memory – 1GB DDR4 SDRAM (Option up to 4GB) Storage – 8GB eMMC flash (Option up to 64GB), serial configuration EEPROM Networking – Gigabit Ethernet Port with Passive PoE Support GNSS – Optional Ublox ZOE-MQ8 GNSS GPS Receiver with PPS support USB – USB 3.0 Type-A host port Expansion 2x Half Card mini PCIe sockets both with PCIe support and one with …

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Xiaomi AIoT Router AX3600 WiFi 6 Router Sells for $135

Xiaomi AIoT Router AX3600

The first 802.11ax routers were unveiled a Computex 2018, before the WiFi Alliance decided to use a new consumer-friendly naming scheme and rename 802.11n to WiFi 4, 802.11ac to WiFi 5, and 802.11ax to WiFi 6, and then WiFi 6 routers launched later that year from companies such as ASUS and TP-Link with price starting at $350. Prices have now come down with for example TP-Link WiFi 6 AX3000 smart WiFi router going for $142.99 plus shipping on Amazon, and Xiaomi has now launched their own WiFi 6 router with Xiaomi AIoT Router AX3600 offered for $135 including shipping on Aliexpress. Price may soon come down further as the router is sold for just 599 CNY,  or about $86 US, in China excluding shipping. Note that with the Coronavirus outbreak, shipping may be delayed. Xiaomi AIoT Router AX3600 specifications: SoC – Qualcomm IPQ8071A quad-core Arm Cortex-A53 @ 1.0 GHz CPU with dual-core NPU (Network Processing Unit) @ 1.7 GHz System …

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MikroTik wAP LoRa8/LoRa9 LoRa Gateway Kits Launched for $169

MikroTik wAP LoRa8 Kit

Last year, MikroTik announced they had worked on several LoRa products including R11e-LoRa8EU mini PCIe LoRaWAN Gateway/concentrator card, wAP LoRa8 kit (LoRa & WiFi gateway) with the mini PCIe card, as well as a 6.5 dBi Omni antenna kit to extend the range provided by the 2 dBi internal antenna. All three products are now available with R11e-LoRa8EU mini PCIe selling for $89, wAP LoRa8 kit going for $169, and the optional antenna kit adding $49. The company also introduced wAP LoRa9 kit with R11e-LoRa9 mini PCIe card geared towards markets (like the USA) using the 902-928 MHz frequency band and selling for the same price. MikroTik wAP LoRa8 kit (RBwAPR-2nD&R11e-LoRa8) specifications: SoC – Qualcomm Atheros QCA9531 MIPSBE (Big Endian) processor @ 650 MHz System Memory – 64 MB RAN Storage – 16 MB flash Connectivity Wired – 10/100M Fast Ethernet WLAN – 2.4 GHz 802.11b/g/n WiFi 4 @ up to 300 Mbps LPWAN R11e-LoRa8 LoRa MiniPCIe card working in …

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LibreRouter is an Open-Source Hardware Router for Community Networks

Battlemesh (aka the Wireless Battle of the Mesh) is an event that aims at bringing together people from across the world to test the performance of different routing protocols for ad-hoc networks. While BattleMesh v12 took place in Paris in July 2019, I’ve just been informed that presentation videos were now out. There are talks about OpenWrt, mesh networks, and communities, but one talk brought a project I had not looked into details yet. Originated from Argentina, LibreRouter is described as an open-source hardware router designed for community networks that are organized by a group of people such as neighbors in order to share local and other content without a profit motive. LibreRouter LR1 specifications: SoC – Qualcomm Atheros QCA9558 MIPS processor @ 750 MHz System Memory – 128 MB DDR RAM Storage – 16 MB Flash MCU – Microchip ATTiny13 8-bitAVR MCU used as hardware watchdog to handle failed flashes or hardware failures Networking 2x Gigabit Ethernet ports connected …

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NanoPi R2S Dual Gigabit Ethernet SBC & Router is Powered by Rockchip RK3328 SoC

NanoPi R2S Dual Gigabit Ethernet SBC

FriendlyElec launched NanoPi R1S router with two Ethernet ports based on either Allwinner H3 or H5 processor coupled with 512MB RAM last November. Both ports are “Gigabit” Ethernet port, but one is implemented via a USB 2.0 to Ethernet controller with a maximum bandwidth of around 330 Mbps. If you’d like to get two Gigabit Ethernet reaching close to 1 Gbps each, and your target application would benefit from a bit more memory, the company is now working on NanoPi R2S based on Rockchip RK3328 processor with 1GB DDR4 memory, one Ethernet port using the GMAC from the chip, and one Ethernet port relying one a USB 3.0 to Ethernet controller. The rest of NanoPi R2S specifications are pretty similar to the earlier board except WiFi is also gone: SoC – Rockchip RK3328 quad-core Cortex-A53 @ 1.5 GHz with Arm Mali-450MP2 System Memory – 1GB DDR4 RAM Storage – MicroSD Slot, SPI flash footprint Connectivity 1x Gigabit Ethernet (WAN) up …

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OpenWrt 19.07 Released with WPA3 Security, a Faster LuCI web interface

OpenWrt 19.07

OpenWrt is a popular Linux operating system targeting embedded devices, usually routers (but not only), and serves as a complete replacement for the vendor-supplied firmware on supported devices. The developers released OpenWrt 19.07 on January 6, to succeed OpenWrt 18.06 the previous stable release. The new version brings various improvements including WPA3 support, client-side rendering of the LuCI web interface for faster rendering or a lower-load on the router, and introduces the ath79 target for MIPS routers with device tree support. While WPA3 WiFi security is part of OpenWrt 19.07, it is not enabled by default because the necessary packages hostapd-openssl (access point),  wpa-supplicant-openssl (station support only) and wpad-openssl (AP + station) take a fair amount of space, and won’t fit on devices with 8MB flash or less. Another reason for not enabling WPA3 is that many existing client devices will never support WPA3, and some client devices that support WPA2 will not connect to an access point configured with …

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