MatchX MatchBox LoRa Gateway Setup (for AS923) and Installation

Waterproof LoRa Gateway

At the end of last year, I received MatchX Matchbox LoRaWAN gateway, but only quickly checked out the hardware, as I was still unclear about regulations in South East Asia, and did not have any nodes to play with. Understanding Regulations and LoRaWAN Frequency Plans Since then, the government published some notifications about the 920-925 MHz band we are supposed to follow here. It’s in Thai language, and I can’t still read/understand it, but I got some translation help, and some key points include: paragraph 5 : for 920-925MHz non-RFID radio equipment (1) max EIRP not more than 4 watts (2) if EIRP < 50mW, no need for any license (3) if EIRP < 500mW, a license is required for importing, selling, and making your own equipment (4), and you must be in accordance with NBTC technical standard. (5) must not interfere with any licensed application. Interfering equipment must be prevented for any usage. I’ve also learned that LoRaWAN defines frequency …

ROC-RK3328-CC Board Review, or the Case for Fast Storage and Adequate Power Supply

ROC-RK3328-CC Board Connection

Firefly team from T-chip company has send me some of their Rockchip development boards, and we’ve already checked the provided boards and accessories, so today I’ll report my experience with one of the board: ROC-RK3328-CC also known as Renegade. I won’t test it with Android, since I have already reviewed RK3328 Android TV boxes such as Zidoo X7, and I’ve been told the team is hard at work with Android 8.1 SDK, so an Oreo image should be released in a few weeks/months. So I had initially planned to report my experience with one of the Linux images,  then show how to install mainline Linux (currently 4.17) to the board, and reports what works. However, I encountered many issues, although likely not directly related to the board or its software support, so instead I’ll write about my experience getting started with the board, and list all the issues I had so that people can avoid those – or at least …

Firefly Team Mailbag – Rockchip Development Boards and Accessories

ROC-RK3328-CC

T-Chip Intelligent Technology Co. is a hardware and software technology services company, and a few years ago they setup the “Firefly Team” to provide development boards running Android and/or Linux distributions to the maker community. If I remember correctly the company started with Firefly-RK3288 development board powered, as its name implies, by Rockchip RK3288 processor. Since then they’ve launched several other Rockchip development boards and modules, which I’ve covered on this blog. The company decided to send me some of their recent boards and accessories, so let’s have a look at what I received in my “mailbag”. I’ve also taken a few photos for those who did not watch the video or prefer close up photos. ROC-RK3328-CC “Renegade” Development Board The first board is ROC-RK3328-CC “Renegade” board which was first launched via a crowdfunding campaign by Libre Computer.  Both companies have been collaborating on some boards, and Libre Computer makes every efforts to ensure their boards can run Linux distributions …

ESP8266 RGB LED Strip Control with ANAVI Light Controller, Arduino, MQTT, and HTML5

Anavi-Light-Controller-Starter-Kit-Assembly

A few months ago I reviewed ANAVI Light pHat for Raspberry Pi which allows you to control an LED RGB strip from the popular development board. However, if all you need is to switch the RGB LED light on and off, or change the color, the hardware is clearly overpowered for the tasks. So Leon ANAVI designed another board based on ESP8266 – ANAVI Light Controller – which does the same thing with lower cost and more power efficient hardware. Leon sent me a sample for review, so let’s see what we’ve got. ANAVI Light Controller Start Kit Unboxing I received a package for the Starter kit that’s offered for $39 on CrowdSupply. We’ve got the main board, a USB debugging, an acrylic enclosure with screws and spacers, a one meter RGB LED strip, and some stickers inside the package. If we have a close look at the board we have from right to left: a 12V power jack, SW1 …

Sonoff S26 Smart Socket Mini Review & Teardown

Sonoff S26 Fan Control

ITEAD Studio very recently launched their Sonoff S26 WiFi Smart plug as a more compact and cost effective upgrade to their Sonoff S20 smart sockets, and which comes in 6 different versions for China, Australia, the United Kingdom, the United States, Europe type F for Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Portugal, Spain and Eastern Europe, and  Europe type E for France, Belgium, Poland, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Tunisia and Morocco. You can find the one that suits you most on World Standard website. I was interested in getting the device, mostly to check the hardware design, so the company sent me one sample to try out. Sonoff S26 Unboxing Sonoff S26 comes is a white package with Sonoff branding. I received the US type plug (S26B model) which includes a ground pin on both side, so it’s not suitable for most sockets here in Thailand that do not come with ground, but no problem, I’ll use a power …

My Attempt at Getting Started with Zephyr Project OS on ESP32

Zephyr Project is a real-time operating systems for the Internet of Things (IoT) that was introduced in early 2016, and supported/hosted by the Linux Foundation. It runs on a fairly large number of MCU boards from different architecture (x86, Arm, RISC-V, etc..), and Linaro even launched 96boards IoT compliant hardware like BLE Carbon board that are designed to run Zephyr Project. More recently, Linaro CEO revealed several commercial products are shipping with Zephyr Project OS, so I thought it might be a good time to give it a try. Target Board – Wemos Lolin32 I only had STM32 Bluepill, and some ESP32 boards, so I went with the latter since it comes with WiFi. But instead of re-using some of my existing boards, I asked Banggood whether they could send Wemos Lolin32, which they did. They sell it for $7.99 shipped, but any other ESP32 board should do. The board comes with two headers that you can solder if you …

Intel NUC Kit NUC7PJYH Review – An Intel Gemini Lake Pentium Silver J5005 Barebone Mini PC

When Intel released their latest NUC Gemini Lake mini PCs they prioritized cost over performance. As a result the processor they chose for the ‘Intel NUC 7 Essential’ mini PC is somewhat underwhelming. Fortunately they released another model in the series, the rather misleadingly named ‘Intel NUC Kit NUC7PJYH’ which is is actually a ‘barebones’ mini PC just needing a stick or two of RAM and an SSD for storage. It contains an Intel Pentium Silver Processor J5005 SOC which is a quad core processor bursting up to 2.80 GHz together with a slightly more powerful Intel UHD Graphics 605 processor that is capable of 4K support at 60Hz. Visually it is no different to the Celeron NUC reviewed earlier in that it is physically small consisting of an approximately 4.5″ square case about 2″ tall with a distinctive front panel that includes the power button and a couple of USB ports with the rest of the ports including two …

How to Get Started with OpenCL on ODROID-XU4 Board (with Arm Mali-T628MP6 GPU)

ODROID-XU4-OpenCL-Convolution

Last week, I reviewed Ubuntu 18.04 on ODROID-XU4 board testing most of the advertised features. However I skipped on the features listed in the Changelog: GPU hardware acceleration via OpenGL ES 3.1 and OpenCL 1.2 drivers for Mali T628MP6 GPU While I tested OpenGL ES with tools like glmark2-es2 and es2gears, as well as WebGL demos in Chromium, I did not test OpenCL, since I’m not that familiar with it, except it’s used for GPGPU (General Purpose GPU) to accelerate tasks like image/audio processing. That was a good excuse to learn a bit more, try it out on the board, and write a short guide to get started with OpenGL on hardware with Arm Mali GPU. The purpose of this tutorial is to show how to run an OpenCL sample, and OpenCL utility, and I won’t go into the nitty gritty of OpenCL code. If you want to learn more about OpenCL coding on Arm, one way would be to …