Raspberry Pi 4 Benchmarks & Mini Review

Raspberry Pi 4 Review

Raspberry Pi 4 has just been released with many improvements over Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ including a faster processor, a proper Gigabit Ethernet port, USB 3.0 interfaces, and 4K video support. That’s the theory, but how does it work in practice? I can now let you know as I’ve received a Raspberry Pi 4 sample courtesy of Cytron, and ran some tests and benchmarks on the very latest boards from the Raspberry Pi foundation. System Info Before starting with the benchmarks, let’s go through some basic system info: For reference, you’ll find Raspberry Pi 4 Linux boot log here. Phoronix benchmarks Let’s go ahead and install the latest version of Phoronix benchmarks: Now let’s run the test to compare the performance of Raspberry Pi 4 model B to some other Arm Linux boards including Raspberry Pi 3 Model B. For reference, my office has an ambient temperature of around 28 to 30°C, and I’ve monitored the CPU temperature with …

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ODROID-H2 Rev B Review – Part 1: Kit Unboxing and Assembly

ODROID-H2 Case Type 3 Assembled

ODROID-H2 was announced in October 2018 as the first x86 SBC from Hardkernel. The board features an Intel Celeron J4105 Gemini Lake processor, two SO-DIMM slots for memory, two SATA ports and M.2 NVMe slot for storage, two Gigabit Ethernet ports, a mix of USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports, as well as HDMI and DisplayPort video outputs. The board went for sale the following month for $111, and the first batch of 2,000 boards was sold within 24 hours. In normal cases, this should not be a big problem, and in a few weeks, the company should have been able to produce more boards to fulfill the demand. But Intel decided to prioritize higher-end processors, and Gemini Lake SoCs’ manufacturing was put on the back foot. That means Hardkernel had to wait over 6 months to get supply of the Celeron J4150 processors. In the meantime, the company slightly redesign the board, now called ODROID-H2 Rev B, and the good …

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Review of SainSmart Genmitsu CNC Router 3018-MX3

Review Genmitsu CNC Router 3018-MX3

Hey Karl here. Back in September of 2018 I reviewed the Sainsmart Genmitsu 3018 Pro. Sainsmart has now further upgraded the 3018 and asked for a review of it. Let’s take a look at the changes and the evolution of the 3018 and see if the increase in price is worth it. You can find the original 3018 on sale for about $200. The pro version can be found for about $250, and the CNC Router 3018-MX3  for $350. I won’t go into too much detail like I did in the previous review. I suggest reading the pro version after reading this one. Most of the experiences and solutions apply to this version. Build Building the CNC Router 3018-MX3 was a breeze. The instructions are fantastic. I struggled a little bit to read the small booklet that came with the kit and afterwards I found a PDF on the Sainsmart wiki. The instructions go into a level of detail I …

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Reolink Argus Eco Review – A Sub-$100 Solar Powered Security Camera

Reolink Argus Eco IP Camera Wall Mounted

I’ve been thinking about installing one or more IP camera in my home for a while, and for ease of installation and considering I’m renting, my preference was to go with one of those battery IP cameras similar to Amazon (Immedia) Blink IP camera or Eufy EverCam security camera that last six months to one year on a single charge. But earlier this year I came across Reolink Argus 2 battery powered security camera that looks like good value at $100, and also came with an optional solar panel so you don’t have to ever charge the camera.  The company latter contacted me to know whether I’d be willing to try out their latest Reolink Argus Eco camera with similar features but an even lower $89.99 price tag. I got my sample a few weeks ago, and I had time to install it, and play around with the camera during that time, so  I’m now ready to report my experience …

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HT-102 is a $130 Thermal Camera for Android Phones

HT-102 Thermal Camera for Android Phone

Thermal cameras are useful to accurately monitor the temperature of electronics components, people,  fires, houses, and so on. Thermal imaging cameras can be relatively expensive and one way to lower the cost and make sharing of results easier is to get a model that connects to your smartphone. The ones listed on Amazon cost $200 and up, but you’ll find HT-102 thermal camera for Android phones on Chinese websites such as GearBest or Banggood for around $130. HT-102 specifications: Material: metal Capture Temperature Range – -20 to 300°C Accuracy – ±3℃ or ±5% of reading Resolution – 0.1℃ or 0.1℉ Working band – 8-14μm Horizontal viewing angle / vertical viewing angle – 43°±1°/ 43°±1° Infrared image resolution – 32 x 32 Visible image resolution – 640 x 480 Phone I/F – USB type-C port for data and power Dimensions – 60  x 30 mm Weight – 19 grams Temperature Range – Operating: 0 to 35°C; storage: -20 to 60°C The …

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Review of Zonestar Z6 Low-cost 3D Printer

Zonestar Z6 Build

Ugh…I don’t like calling these reviews. I like to say that I am sharing my experiences with the products. I have a fair bit of experience under my belt using 3D printers now but still don’t consider myself an “expert”. I think that I have had about a dozen come through here.  Anyway on with the show. Today we are going to look at a very economical 3D printer: the Zonestar Z6. I have to say I wasn’t expecting much. I read/ watch a lot of reviews about 3D printers and sub $100 printers aren’t typically very good. Gearbest recently had the Zonestar Z6 on sale for $99 that Jean-Luc recently posted here on CNX Software but is currently $120. Let’s see how it prints. Some assembly required I designed a spool holder but not very good. The whole printer rocks when the full spool is on it. The tiny screen makes it look higher resolution and crisper. At this …

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Getting Started with balenaFin Developer Kit, balenaOS and balenaCloud

balenaFIN USB programming

balena Fin is a carrier board for Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3/3+ designed specifically for industrial applications leveraging fleet management services provided by Balena. I received balenaFin developer kit last month, and in the first part of the reviewed shows how to assemble the kit. I’m now had time to spend more time with the kit, as well as BalenaOS Linux based operating system optimized for running Docker containers on embedded devices, and balenaCloud services to manage a fleet of devices from a web dashboard. I’ve mostly followed the instructions in the getting started guides here and there, and will document what I had to do to prepare the image, flash it to the board, and load a sample docker application locally, and through balenaCloud. Downloading and Configuring BalenaOS for balena Fin You’ll find BalenaOS in the download page. While we are using hardware based on a Raspberry Pi Compute Module, make sure to select “Fin” instead of “Raspberry Pi”. …

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SainSmart DS213 Review – A Portable Mini Digital Storage Oscilloscope

DS213 Square Wave

Hey Karl here with another oscilloscope review. We are going to look at the DSO213 (aka DS213 mini DSO). It is a new handheld oscilloscope in the DSO line. I recently reviewed an oscilloscope that was a tethered USB oscilloscope and will use it as a comparison. The DSO213 is a compact, battery powered, oscilloscope that increases some specs over previous version the DSO203. DS213 Oscilloscope Unboxing and Teardown Pictures . I thought this was an interesting design choice. Pogo type pins connect this board. This series of scopes has been reviewed quite a bit and they have been well received and for a hobbyist they seem to be adequate. Model DSO213 DSO203 MCU STM32F103VE STM32F103VE ADC HWD9288 AD9288 Channels 2 analog, 2 digital 2 analog, 2 digital Analog Bandwidth 15MHz 8MHz Max Sample Rate 100MSa/s 72MSa/s Maximum Memory Depth 4K 4K Horizontal Sensitivity 100nS/Div~1S/Div(1-2-5sequence step) 0.1uS/Div~1S/Div(1-2-5sequence step) Vertical Sensitivity 10mv/Div~10V/Div(1-2-5sequence step) 50mv/Div~10V/Div(1-2-5sequence step) Input Resistance 1MΩ 1MΩ Coupling DC …

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