All News | Boards | Chips | Devices | Software | LinuxDevices.com Archive | About | Contact | Subscribe
Follow LinuxGizmos:
Twitter Google+ Facebook RSS feed
> get email updates <

Catalog of 98 open-spec, hacker friendly SBCs

Jun 1, 2017 — by Eric Brown — 7,418 views
Tweet about this on TwitterGoogle+Share on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on RedditPin on Pinterest

[Updated: June 20] — Our 2017 hacker board survey is now live. To earn a chance to win a free SBC, participate in our 3-minute survey of these 98 sub-$200 hacker-friendly SBCs.

Over the last year, LinuxGizmos has reported on dozens of new community backed, open spec, hacker- and developer-friendly single board computers that run Linux and Android. We’ve added these to a curated list of earlier boards to publish a catalog of 98 SBCs. The boards included in our survey must be priced under $200 (not counting shipping), have a promised shipment availability by July, and meet our relatively flexible selection criteria for open source compliance (see farther below).

The 2017 Hacker SBC Survey has concluded, but its catalog of 98 hacker-friendly SBCs continues below…

 

2017 Hacker SBC Survey References

 
Catalog of 98 open-spec, hacker friendly SBCs

This SBC catalog is a companion to our 2017 hacker boards survey launch announcement, held in partnership with the Linux Foundation’s Linux.com community website. Click on over for a discussion of recent hacker board trends, as well as links to a brief survey. Fill it out, and you will earn a chance at winning one of 27 free SBCs from six different vendors (see prize details in our survey launch announcement). We’ll announce the winners in mid-June.

In addition to the 98 product summaries farther below, we have also generated a detailed spreadsheet that compares the major features of all 98 boards.



Spreadsheet comparing the survey’s 98 SBCs
(click image to view complete spreadsheet)

Our list of 98 boards has expanded since our early January catalog of 90 SBCs, which did not include a survey component. Our June 2016 catalog and survey had 81 boards, and the May 2015 catalog had 53.

 
Selection criteria

Determining the criteria for community backed, open-spec SBCs is always a challenge. No SBC is completely open source, especially given the state of opaque GPUs and sometimes sketchily documented CPUs, although the RISC-V architecture may change this in the coming years. Few of the boards on our list explicitly claim fully open source hardware licensing. At the very least, however, the projects must post extensive specs, as well as schematics for expansion I/O at a minimum, or for the carrier portion of sandwich-style boards. The projects must also offer at least some community and technical support for individual developers, such as forums, tutorials, and other resources for sharing tips and designs based on the SBCs.

More important to most customers is the need for open source Linux or Android distributions for download that can dependably exploit the boards’ resources. In the case of new SBCs, we allow a bit of a grace period to post the above resources in a timely manner.

The summaries below provide brief descriptions and specs of each board in our survey, along with links to related coverage here at LinuxGizmos.com and at supplier product pages.

The listed prices are the lowest we saw at publication, but the pricing on many of these boards is fairly fluid. Typically, the prices do not include free shipping, or if so, only to certain regions. Sometimes the shipping prices can be considerable, turning a $35 board, for example, into a $50 board. Since LinuxGizmos has an international audience, we did not attempt to include shipping costs in the listed board prices.

We welcome reader comments on all of the above, especially in regard to your experiences with software and support. Please participate in the discussion area at the conclusion of this post. And don’t forget to vote for your favorite hacker boards using the resources below.

 

Brief Descriptions and Key Specs of All 98 Boards

The following summaries are listed in alpha order, and are based on specs and lowest available pricing recorded in the last week of May 2017, with products either shipping or promised by July 2017. In addition to this catalog, a spreadsheet comparing key features of all 98 boards is here. Read our survey launch post here, and enter the survey here.

 

86Duino Zero

DM&P’s x86 based 86Duino boards are some of the smallest x86 SBCs around, with the One coming in at 102 x 53mm. The boards offer Arduino-compatible expansion, low power consumption, and a modular COM+baseboard design. Features include Fast Ethernet, USB 2.0, and microSD connections, plus 17x digital I/O pins and 6x analog inputs. A $69 One model adds HD audio and more expansion I/O. There’s also an EduCake mini-PC version and a SeeedStudio version of the One. This appears to be a fading project however, with very little activity in the forum.

 

A20-OlinuXino-Lime2

  • Company/project — Olimex, OlinuXino, Mouser
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A20 (2x Cortex-A7 @ 1GHz); Mali-400 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM; optional 4GB eMMC version
  • Price — $50 (45 Euros); $61 (55 Euros) for 4GB version

Bulgaria-based Olimex’s OlinuXino project is one of the older hacker board projects around, but lately it seems more focused on the open source, but not Linux compatible ESP32 platform. There’s plenty of activity on the oLinuXino forums concerning its Linux boards, however, and earlier this year the project released an open source, Linux-driven Teres-A64 laptop kit based on the Allwinner A64 for 225 Euros. Meanwhile, there’s still interest in the older A20-OlinuXino-Lime2, which offers a Gigabit Ethernet (GbE, or 10/100/1000Mbps) port, microSD slot, HDMI port, LCD interface, 3x USB ports, battery support, and 160x GPIOs. The 84 x 60mm SBC is available with Android 4.2.2 or Debian Jessie with Linux 3.4.1 images. Last year, the Lime2 switched to the same PCB Revision G used by the Lime2-4GB/eMMC, bringing an up-to-date RTL8211E Ethernet PHY, grounded mount holes, and a streamlined shape without the cutouts found on the 4GB model.

 

A20-OlinuXino-Micro

  • Company/project — Olimex, OlinuXino, Mouser
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A20 (2x Cortex-A7 @ 1GHz); Mali-400 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM; optional 4GB NAND
  • Price — $61 (55 Euros); $72 (65 Euros) for 4GB version

The A20-OlinuXino-Micro has all the I/O of the first-gen Lime models, and adds VGA, LCD with touch support, and audio I/O. This larger, 142 x 83mm board offers expansion connectors with optional I/O modules. The 4GB NAND version is otherwise identical.

 

A33-OlinuXino

  • Company/project — Olimex, OlinuXino, Mouser
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A33 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.2GHz); Mali-400 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM; 4GB NAND version available
  • Price — $40 (36 Euros) or $49 (44 Euros) for 4GB version

The A33-OlinuXino has a faster quad-core Allwinner A33 SoC compared to earlier OlinuXino boards, but it offers a reduced feature set. The only real-world ports are a mini-USB OTG port, audio jacks with 100dB codec, and a 5V jack. Two unassembled 40-pin connectors support GPIO, as well as up to 1280 x 800 LCD and dual MIPI-CSI (5- and 8-megapixel) interfaces. Other features include a debug connector, a LiPo charger, and a step-up converter. The 71 x 66mm SBC is smaller than the A20-based Lime and Lime2 boards. You can download images for Android 4.4 and Debian Jesse with Linux 3.4.39.

 

Arduino Industrial 101

  • Company/project — Arduino
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Qualcomm Atheros AR9331 (1x MIPS24k @ up to 400MHz)
  • Memory — 64MB DDR2 RAM; 16MB SPI flash
  • Price — $38.50

The Arduino wars are now over, but we haven’t seen many new official Arduino boards since the reunification except for the non-Linux, Sigfox-ready MKRFOX1200. The two websites have yet to merge, with each offering a slightly different set of features. The Linux-ready, sandwich-style Arduino Industrial 101 is still available on Arduino.org in addition to the Arduino.cc page linked to above. The board injects the Linux/WiFi capability of the Arduino Yun into a COM that is integrated with an Arduino-enabled baseboard. The module incorporates a soldered down Linino Chiwawa LGA module that runs Linino (a version of OpenWrt) on an AR9331 WiFi SoC, accompanied by 64MB DDR2 RAM and 16MB SPI flash. The carrier adds a 16MHz ATmega32u4 MPU along with 2.5KB SRAM and 32KB flash. There’s also a USB OTG port and 20x DIO pins that include UARTs, 7x PWMs, Ethernet, and 12x analog inputs.

 

Arduino Yun / Yun PoE

  • Company/project — Arduino
  • Product page
  • Processor — Qualcomm Atheros AR9331 (1x MIPS24k @ up to 400MHz)
  • Memory — 64MB DDR2 RAM
  • Price — $68.20 (Yun) or (Yun PoE) $78.10

This original Arduino Yun is still available at Arduino.org, and the new Arduino Yun PoE version is sold by Arduino.cc (see link above), but not vice versa. The smaller Arduino Yun Mini is listed on both sites, but is out of stock, with no promises of a refresh. For $10 more than the Yun, the Arduino Yun PoE adds Power-over-Ethernet to the original Yun design, letting you power the board over the 10/100 Ethernet port with the help of an included add-on module. Both versions run the OpenWrt-based Linino on Qualcomm’s 400MHz AR9331 WiFi SoC while also processing Arduino code on an Atmel Atmega32U4. Linux-driven components include the 2.4GHz WiFi-n radio, USB 2.0 host port, and microSD slot. Arduino-controlled interfaces on the 5V board include 20x DIO pins, 7x PWM outputs, and 12x analog I/O pins. Alternatively, buyers with existing Arduinos can still purchase the $49, OpenWrt-driven Arduino Yun Shield, which brings a Yun experience to any Arduino board.

 

Arduino Tian

  • Company/project — Arduino
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Qualcomm Atheros AR9432 (1x MIPS24k @ up to 560MHz); Atmel SAMD21G18 Cortex M0+ MCU (48MHz)
  • Memory — 64MB DDR2 RAM; 4GB eMMC; 256KB flash and 32KB RAM for SAMD21G18
  • Price — $95.70

Compared to the Arduino Yun and Yun Mini PoE, the 68.5 x 53mm Arduino Tian runs Linino on a faster Atheros AR9432, and uses a more powerful, 32-bit Atmel SAMD21G18 MCU. In addition to providing WiFi, the Tian adds a Qualcomm CSR8510 chip for Bluetooth EDR/BLE 4.0a support. You also get a USB 2.0 host port, a GbE port, and 4GB eMMC. On the Arduino side, there are 6x analog pins and 12x PWM outputs.

 

Banana Pi BPI-M2

  • Company/project — SinoVoip

  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A31 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.0GHz); PowerVR SGX544MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $40

SinoVoip’s Banana Pi M2, which sells for a low of $40 on Amazon, closely resembles the RPi Model B+, complete with a 40-pin connector. The M2 features GbE, WiFi, five USB ports, and a range of display and camera interfaces. We removed the smaller, Allwinner H3 based, SATA-enabled Banana Pi M2+ from our list because it appears to be out of stock. We could only find it at AliExpress in a stripped-down, $22 EDU version without wireless or onboard flash, or as a $27 to $35 offering that appears to be aimed at OEM customers.

 

Banana Pi BPI-M2 Ultra

  • Company/project — SinoVoip
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner R40 (4x Cortex-A7); Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3 RAM; 8GB to 64GB eMMC
  • Price — $40

The Banana Pi M2 Ultra can be found for a low of $40 on Amazon with free shipping, but it ranges up to $60 elsewhere. It essentially replaces the similarly 92 x 60mm M2, but offers a faster Allwinner R40, which also enables a SATA connector. In the process, one of the four USB host ports was sacrificed. There’s also a generous 2GB of RAM, which is unusual for a Cortex-A7 SoC. The M2 Ultra is further equipped with GbE, WiFi, Bluetooth, micro-USB OTG, a 40-pin connector that supports Raspberry Pi add-ons, and several display and camera interfaces.

 

Banana Pi BPI-M3

  • Company/project — SinoVoip
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A83T (8x Cortex-A7 @ 1.8GHz); PowerVR SGX544MP1 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB LPDDR3 RAM; 8GB to 64GB eMMC
  • Price — $74

fy

SinoVoip’s Banana Pi M3 (BPI-M3), which features the octa-core Allwinner A83T SoC, sells for $74 at AliExpress and a dollar more at Amazon, both with 2GB RAM and 8GB eMMC. The M3 has about the same size (92 x 60mm), layout, and features of the M2 Ultra, and similarly integrates a RPi-ready 40-pin link. Like the M2 Ultra, the M3 supplies GbE, WiFi, SATA, 3x USB, and multiple display and camera options. Software support is more extensive than some other Banana Pi boards, although all have improved (see the download locator here). Options include Android 5.1, Debian 8, Ubuntu 16.04 Mate, Raspbian Jesse Mate, Kano, Kali, CentOS, Gentoo, OpenSUSE, Arch, CRUX, and Fedora.

 

Banana Pi BPI-M64

  • Company/project — SinoVoip
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A64 (4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.2GHz); Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3 RAM; 8GB to 64GB eMMC
  • Price — $74

SinoVoip’s first 64-bit Banana Pi has a high price ($74 at AliExpress) compared to the similarly Allwinner A64-equipped Pine A64, but it’s loaded with 2GB RAM and numerous peripherals. You get 4K-ready HDMI, MIPI-DSI, and MIPI-CSI, as well as onboard wireless and GbE connections. The 92 x 60mm board is further equipped with 3x USB host ports, a micro-USB OTG, and an RPi 40-pin connector.

 

Banana Pro

  • Company/project — LeMaker
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A20 (2x Cortex-A7 @ 1GHz); Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $48

Compared to the rival Banana Pi M2 boards from former partner SinoVoip, LeMaker’s own Banana Pi update sticks closer to the original, retaining the dual-core A20 SoC. The Banana Pro features a SATA connector and an RPi-like 40-pin connector. Other features include microSD, WiFi, 2x USB host ports, and a micro-USB OTG. LeMaker also offers a LeMaker Guitar SBC, as well as a 96Boards-compatible HiKey board (see farther below).

 

BeagleBone Black, Rev C

  • Company/project — BeagleBoard.org
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — TI Sitara AM3358 (1x Cortex-A8 @ 1GHz) with PRU MCU chips; PowerVR SGX530 GPU
  • Memory — 512MB RAM; 4GB eMMC
  • Price — $48

The Debian-ready BeagleBone Black Rev C, which came in at third place out of 81 in our June 2016 survey, is available from numerous sources, with the $48 MCM Electronics currently offering the lowest price. This industrial-oriented SBC stands out with its numerous expansion interfaces and programmable “PRU” MCUs, as well as its deeply rooted BeagleBoard.org community and ecosystem. In recent years, the design has spawned several BeagleBoard.org authorized clones. In addition to two SeeedStudio BeagleBone Green models, Octavo’s BeagleBone Black Wireless, and BeagleBoard.org’s own BeagleBone Blue (see reports below), these include Element14’s new BeagleBone Black Industrial 4G, which is identical to the BB Black except for its conformal coating and -20 to 85°C support. SanCloud’s feature-rich BeagleBone Enhanced shipped to Indiegogo backers, and although the design is free to use, the board itself is no longer available. As for the long delayed, dual-core Cortex-A15 based BeagleBoard-X15 successor to the venerable BeagleBoard, it’s finally available from locations including Mouser. At a low of $264, however, it’s over our $200 limit.

 

BeagleBone Black Wireless

  • Company/project — BeagleBoard.org; Octavo Systems
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Octavo Systems OSD3358 SiP with TI Sitara AM3358 (1x Cortex-A8 @ 1GHz) with PRU MCUs; PowerVR SGX530 GPU
  • Memory — 512MB RAM; 4GB eMMC
  • Price — $68.75

This BeagleBoard.org backed, Octavo Systems built alternative to Seeed’s BeagleBone Green Wireless (see below) similarly adds 2.4GHz 802.11a/b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.1 BLE to the BeagleBone Black design. Unlike Seeed’s two BB Green models, the BeagleBone Black Wireless retains the BB Black’s micro-HDMI port, but removes the Ethernet port. It is otherwise identical to the BB Black with one big exception: It incorporates the Octavo Systems OSD3358 SiP (system-in-package) module, “which integrates BeagleBone functionality into one easy-to-use BGA package,” making it easier to create custom variations.

 

BeagleBone Blue

  • Company/project — BeagleBoard.org
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Octavo Systems OSD3358 SiP with TI Sitara AM3358 (1x Cortex-A8 @ 1GHz) with PRU MCU chips and PowerVR SGX530 GPU
  • Memory — 512MB RAM; 4GB eMMC
  • Price — $80

This robotics-focused BeagleBoard.org collaboration with the UCSD Coordinated Robotics Lab is a BeagleBone clone that adds motion control and battery friendly power. Like the BeagleBone Black Wireless, the BeagleBone Blue integrates a TI WiLink 8 with WiFi and Bluetooth 4.1 LE, as well as an Octavo Systems OSD3358 SiP module that encapsulates the Sitara AM3358 SoC, RAM, and flash along with a PMIC and other features. There’s no Ethernet port or display interfaces, but you get micro-USB 2.0 host and client ports, 8x servo outputs, 4x DC motor outputs, and 4x quad encoder inputs. Other features include an IMU, barometer, JTAG, and GPS and DSM2 radio interfaces. There’s a wide-range 9-18V DC input, a LiPo battery connector, and the usual extensive list of BB Black interfaces. Plenty of user buttons and LEDs are also onboard. The BeagleBone Blue defaults to a real-time enhanced Debian stack, but also runs Ubuntu Core, and supports ROS and ArduPilot.

 

BeagleBone Green

  • Company/project — SeeedStudio; BeagleBoard.org
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — TI Sitara AM3358 (1x Cortex-A8 @ 1GHz) with PRU MCU chips; PowerVR SGX530 GPU
  • Memory — 512MB RAM; 4GB eMMC
  • Price — $39

SeeedStudio’s BeagleBoard.org-sanctioned, IoT-focused re-spin of the BeagleBone Black sells for a low of $39 at Banana Robotics. The BeagleBone Green loses the BB Black’s micro-HDMI port and 5V barrel jack connector. However, it costs less, and it adds expansion connectors for Seeed’s Grove sensors. It also replaces the mini-USB connector with a micro-USB port. Seeed offers its own Grove-oriented BB Green developers site in addition to drawing on the support of the larger BeagleBoard community.

 

BeagleBone Green Wireless

  • Company/project — SeeedStudio; BeagleBoard.org
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — TI Sitara AM3358 (1x Cortex-A8 @ 1GHz) with PRU MCU chips; PowerVR SGX530 GPU
  • Memory — 512MB RAM; 4GB eMMC
  • Price — $49.90

The BeagleBone Green Wireless has the same base feature set as the BB Green, with identical additions and subtractions from the BB Black, including the addition of a Grove interface. The Wireless model adds WiFi and Bluetooth, as well as three more USB host ports for a total of four, making it the USB leader among all the currently announced BB Black clones. A TI WiLink8 module is now standard, boosting wireless capabilities to Bluetooth 4.1 LE and 2.4GHz 802.11a/b/g/n with 2×2 MIMO.

 

Bubblegum-96

  • Company/project — uCRobotics
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Actions Semiconductor Actions S900 (4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.8GHz); PowerVR G6230 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB LPDDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $89

Based on an earlier ActDuino S900 prototype, the uCRobotics Bubblegum-96 adopts Linaro’s 96Boards CE spec. The Bubblegum-96 lacks the rival 96Boards compatible DragonBoard 410c’s GPS chip, but has a faster SoC and twice the RAM at 2GB. Aside from the 96Boards 40- and 60-pin expansion connectors, the Bubblegum-96 supplies an HDMI port, a microSD slot, a micro-USB port, and dual USB host ports, one of which is USB 3.0. WiFi and Bluetooth are also available.

 

Chip Pro Dev Kit

  • Company/project — Next Thing Co.
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner/Next Thing GR8 (1x Cortex-A8 @ 1GHz); Mali-400 GPU
  • Memory — 256MB or 512MB DDR3 (SiP) RAM; 512MB NAND flash
  • Price — $49

The $9 Chip SBC has been long out of stock, although it’s coming back “soon” with Next Thing’s new open-spec, GR8 SiP version of the Allwinner R8 SoC. In the meantime, you can buy a sandwich style Chip Pro Dev Kit which ships with two GR8-based Chip Pro computer-on-modules that integrate 802.11b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.2 BLE. One of these Chip-like modules is soldered on the board, and the other is included separately. The baseboard provides a USB 2.0 host port, a micro-USB port with UART support, an audio jack, and dual microphones. You also get 6-23V DC and 3.7V LiPo battery inputs, as well as PWM, UART, and GPIO interfaces. The kit includes a mini-breadboard, jumper wires, headers, and a WiFi antenna. Mainline Linux support is available with Buildroot and Debian. Next Thing also sells a $69, Chip-based PocketChip handheld with a 4.3-inch touchscreen and keyboard.

 

CloudBit

  • Company/project — LittleBits Electronics
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX233 (1x ARM9 @ 454MHz)
  • Memory — 64MB RAM; 4GB microSD card
  • Price — $60

The lone Linux board in the Arduino-oriented LittleBits maker platform is one of the smallest SBCs around at 15 x 10mm. The CloudBit integrates WiFi, a power-only micro-USB port, and dual “BitSnap” connectors for adding standard LittleBits modules, six of which are provided in a $90 bundle. The Arch Linux based platform connects to a Node.js-oriented cloud platform designed for monitoring IoT gizmos, and supports IFTTT scripting.

 

Creator Ci40

  • Company/project — Imagination Technologies
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Imagination cXT200 (2x MIPS InterAptiv @ 550MHz)
  • Memory — 256MB DDR3 RAM; 512MB flash
  • Price — $85 (65 Pounds), or $169 (130 Pounds) for full IoT kit

Imagination Technologies is trying to sell its MIPS business, so the Creator Ci40 may be the end of a line that started with the Creator Ci20. The IoT-focused is still available, however, at RS Electronics for 65 Pound. The complete, 130-Pound IoT Kit adds several MikroBus Clicker wireless modules and Click daughterboards from MikroElektronika. The Ci40 replaces the Ci20’s Ingenic XBurst processor with the Imagination cXT200 — a slower, more power efficient MIPS InterAptiv chip that lacks a GPU. Other major changes include better wireless support and the new MikroBus and Raspberry Pi expansion interfaces.

 

CubieAIO-A20

  • Company/project — Cubieboard.org, CubieTech Limited
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A20 (2x Cortex-A7 @ up to 1GHz); Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM; 8GB flash expandable to 32GB (eMMC) or 64GB (TSD)
  • Price — $122

We have retired the Cubieboard 3 from our contest due to its age, high $100 price, and current out-of-stock status, and have replaced it with another Allwinner A20 board. The CubieAIO-A20 is notable for offering 6x USB 2.0 host ports plus a micro-USB OTG, as well as dual serial UART DIN sockets that support up to 6x serial ports via an extension. This sandwich-style board integrates CubieTech’s 75 x 50mm Einstein-A20 COM, which features WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0, an RTC, 200-pin expansion, and its own micro-USB port. The COM and the SBC support the same Linux and Android distributions that run on the Cubieboard 2 and 3. Like the COM, the 172 x 106mm CubieAIO-A20 SBC, which sells for $122 at Amazon, can handle -20 to 70°C temperatures. It offers a GbE port, as well as dual mini-PCIe slots with support for mSATA and 3G or 4G modules, respectively. There’s also a SIM slot and antennas for the standard WiFi/BT module. Other features include microSD, IR, HDMI, VGA, SPDIF 3.5mm audio, and a 54-pin expansion interface. The CubieAIO-A20 is also sold as an encased, All-in-One mini-PC version of the same name. The AIO model, which costs about $20 more, has a built-in 7-inch, 1024 x 600 capacitive touchscreen.

 

Cubieboard4

  • Company/project — Cubieboard.org, CubieTech Limited
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A80 (4x Cortex-A15 @ up to 2GHz, 4x Cortex-A7 @ up to 1.3GHz); PowerVR G6230 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC, expandable to 64GB
  • Price — $120

The Cubieboard4 is equipped with an octa-core Allwinner A80 SoC with a 64-core PowerVR G6230 GPU. The 111 x 111mm SBC offers WiFi, Bluetooth, and GbE, as well as VGA, HDMI, USB 3.0, and 4x USB 2.0 ports. There’s also a 54-pin expansion connector. The SBC provides optional configurations including dual microSD slots, or a mix of microSD and onboard flash. There are plenty of cases and other add-ons for all the Cubieboards, as well as images for Debian, Linaro Ubuntu 14.04, and Android 4.4, with mainline Linux support.

 

Cubieboard5 (CubieTruck-Plus)

  • Company/project — Cubieboard.org, CubieTech Limited
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H8 (8x Cortex-A7 @ up to 2GHz); PowerVR SGX544 GPU @ up to 700MHz
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $99

The CubieBoard5 showcases an Allwinner H8 with eight Cortex-A7 cores. The SBC provides microSD and SATA storage, with an optional RAID add-on board. For connectivity, you get WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0, and a GbE port. Dual display support is available via the HDMI and DisplayPorts. You also get a pair of USB host ports, plus an IR sensor, S/PDIF audio, and an optional lithium battery.

 

DE0-Nano-SoC Development Kit / Atlas-SoC Kit

  • Company/project — Terasic; RocketBoards.org
  • Product page
  • Processor — Atheros (Intel) Cyclone V SE (Cyclone V FPGA + 2x Cortex-A9 @ 952MHz)
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $99

The DE0-Nano-SoC Development Kit looks like a commercial development board, but it offers open specifications and costs only $99, which seems like a reasonable deal for a Cyclone V based board. The DE0-Nano-SoC uses the lower-end SE variety, which is roughly equivalent to a Xilinx Zynq-7020. The SoC similarly combines FPGA circuitry with dual Cortex-A9 cores running Angstrom v2014.12 Yocto 1.7 with a Linux 4.0 kernel. The board has GbE, USB OTG, and micro-USB ports, as well as a microSD slot with a 4GB data card. There’s also an accelerometer, an ARM-linked expansion header, and a variety of FPGA-linked interfaces, including a 40-pin header and an Arduino shield connector. There’s also an identical Atlas-SoC version that is packaged for software rather than hardware developers. RocketBoards.org provides the community.

 

DPT-Board

  • Company/project — DPTechnics
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Qualcomm Atheros AR9331 (1x MIPS24k @ up to 400MHz)
  • Memory — 64MB DDR2 RAM
  • Price — $56 (50 Euros) or $66 for Plus version

The DPT-Board is a sandwich-style SBC that integrates a separately available DPT-Module COM with an Atheros AR9331 chip running OpenWrt. This power-sipping IoT board offers WiFi, GPIO, and JTAG, as well as dual 10/100 Ethernet ports and dual USB ports. A Plus version adds more interfaces, and there’s a 99-Euro IoT kit that combines the SBC with a mini-LCD, breadboard, a 9g micro servo, sensors, and other gizmos. All the boards ship with BlueCherry.io IoT connectivity software.

 

DragonBoard 410c

  • Company/project — Arrow; Qualcomm
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Snapdragon 410 (4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.2GHz); Adreno 306 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB LPDDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $75

Arrow’s Qualcomm-backed DragonBoard 410c was one of the first 64-bit ARM hacker SBCs, in this case showcasing Qualcomm’s quad-core -A53 Snapdragon 410. At 85 x 54mm, the 96Boards CE compliant SBC is about the same size as the Raspberry Pi. There’s no Ethernet port, but you get WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, HDMI, microSD, 3x USB ports, and the 96Boards 40-pin low-speed and 60-pin high-speed connectors. The SBC supports Android 5.1, Debian 8.0, and Windows 10 IoT Core. In March, Arrow announced a 96Boards CE Chameleon96 SBC that runs Linux on an Intel Cyclone V ARM/FPGA SoC, and offers WiFi, BT, and quantum-resistant security. There’s still no pricing or availability, however.

 

Edison Kit for Arduino

  • Company/project — Intel
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Intel Atom “Tangier” (2x x86 @ 500MHz); Quark co-processor
  • Memory — 1GB LPDDR3 RAM; 4GB eMMC
  • Price — $110

The Intel Edison computer-on-module is not an SBC, but it’s also sold as part of a sandwich-style SBC called the Edison Kit for Arduino. Intel is now focusing on its Intel Joule follow-on, but the Edison should be around for awhile. Intel’s Edison Kit for Arduino goes for $110 at Sparkfun and Adafruit. The 36 x 25mm Edison module runs a Yocto Project build on a 22nm Intel Atom that has been stripped of its HD graphics. The full kit offers WiFi, BLE, a microSD slot, and dual micro-USB ports. Additional I/O includes an Arduino connector and a 70-pin header. Arduino extensions are also found in many of the specialized Edison hacker kits available from third parties like SeeedStudio (Grove sensors) and DSF Robot.

 

Firefly-RK3288

  • Company/project — Firefly
  • Product page
  • Processor — Rockchip RK3288 (4x Cortex-A17 @ 1.8GHz); Mali-T760 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3 RAM expandable to 4GB; 16GB eMMC expandable to 32GB
  • Price — $129

With the RK3128-based FirePrime S/S+ board out of stock, the Firefly-RK3288 is now Firefly’s entry level SBC. The 118 x 85mm SBC dual boots Ubuntu and Android with mainline Linux 4.4 support on a 1.8GHz, quad -A17 RK3288 with Mali-T760 GPU. The Firefly-RK3288 offers an HDMI 2.0 port that can output at up to [email protected] The board offers dual-band 802.11ac, Bluetooth 4.0, a GbE port, and three USB ports. The SBC is further equipped with VGA, LVDS, eDP, MIPI-DSI, MIPI-CSI, S/PDIF, serial debug, and IR connections. More I/O is available via dual 42-pin connectors. The board supports a doubling of RAM and flash to 4GB and 32GB, but we no longer see these options broken out for purchase. Previously, there was a “Plus” version that offered both for $199. A “Fireasy” WiFi remote, as well as touchscreens, fans, and cameras, are optional.

 

Firefly-RK3288 Reload

  • Company/project — Firefly
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Rockchip RK3288 (4x Cortex-A17 @ 1.8GHz); Mali-T760 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3 RAM; 16GB eMMC
  • Price — $159

The Firefly-RK3288 Reload has the same SoC and OS support as the Firefly-RK3288, but is recast as a sandwich-style COM/baseboard product. The 178 x 117mm baseboard connects to the 82 x 60mm COM via a 314-pin MXM connector. The Reload provides all the features of the original, and adds a second HDMI output, a new HDMI input, and a second DVP interface for a 5MP camera in addition to the 13MP-ready DVP. The Reload also adds a SATA port, a third USB host, and a micro-USB OTG, and boosts the expansion pins to 184.

 

Firefly-RK3399

  • Company/project — Firefly
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Rockchip RK3399 (2x Cortex-A72 @ up to 2.0GHz, 4x Cortex-A53 at up to 1.42GHz); Mali-T860 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB or 4GB (Plus) DDR3 RAM; 16GB or 32GB eMMC (Plus)
  • Price — $179 or $219 (Plus)

The new Firefly-RK3399 is one of the most powerful hacker boards around. Its Rockchip RK3399 SoC features two Cortex-A72 and four -A53 cores, as well as a high-end Mali-T860 GPU. For the next two months, the 124 x 93mm SBC will ship at its promotional prices of $179 with 2GB RAM and 16GB eMMC or $219 with 4GB/32GB before Firefly adds $20 to the prices. You also get a microSD slot and an M.2 slot that can be used for an SSD. A GbE port, dual-band 802.11b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.1 with BLE, and a SIM card slot are standard, and a mini-PCIe slot is designed for an optional LTE module. Other features include HDMI and DP ports for up to [email protected], plus MIPI-DSI, eDP, DVP, IR, and 2x MIPI-CSI. The Firefly-RK3399 is further equipped with 2x USB 3.0 ports (including a Type-C), 2x USB 2.0 ports, a 42-pin expansion header, and numerous audio options. The board dual-boots Android 6.0.1 and Ubuntu 14.04. 

 

Galileo Gen 2

  • Company/project — Intel
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Intel Quark X1000 (1x Pentium-compatible @ 400MHz)
  • Memory — 256MB DRAM
  • Price — $61.69

Intel’s IoT-focused Galileo 2 offers a power-sipping Quark X1000, Arduino compatibility, optional 12V PoE, and a smattering of USB, PWMs, and GPIOs. With Intel’s Quark focus shifting to the non-Linux Quark SE in the Intel Curie module, the Galileo seems to be fading from view, but it’s still the only game in town if you want to tinker with Linux on Quark. The current low price is $61.69 at Newegg.

 

Gizmo 2

  • Company/project — AMD, GizmoSphere.org, Symmetry Electronics
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — AMD G-Series GX210HA SoC (2x x86 @ 1GHz); Radeon HD 800 graphics
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 SDRAM
  • Price — $165

The Symmetry (Semiconductorstore.com) backed GizmoSphere.org has not recently updated this Linux-supported G-Series SoC showcase. The Gizmo 2 offers HDMI, microSD, mSATA, and USB 3.0 ports. The open spec Gizmo 2 has been overshadowed by cheaper, more capable x86 hacker boards, and the forums link no longer works, suggesting the project may be close to EOL. This may be your last chance at finding a G-series based hacker board.

 

HiKey

  • Company/project — LeMaker
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — HiSilicon Kirin 6220 (8x Cortex-A53 @ 1.2GHz); Mali 450-MP4 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB or 2GB LPDDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $75 (1GB) or $109 (2GB)

The flagship 96Boards compatible Hikey SBC is built by LeMaker (Banana Pro), and ships with 8GB flash, with a choice of 1GB or 2GB RAM. This 64-bit, octa-core SBC adopts the 85 x 54mm 96Boards Consumer Edition form-factor, featuring a 40-pin low-speed and 60-pin high-speed connector. Features include WiFi, Bluetooth, HDMI, MIPI-DSI, and three USB ports. Like other 96Boards SBCs, the HiKey is supported by up-to-date Linaro Debian Linux (4.4.11) and Linaro/AOSP Android distributions. Both LeMaker and ArcherMind recently launched a 96Boards CE compatible Hikey 960 SBC using HiSilicon’s quad -A73, quad -A53 Kirin 960 SoC, but it’s over our limit at $239.

 

HummingBoard-Base

  • Company/project — SolidRun
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX6 Solo, DualLite, Dual, or Quad (1x, 2x, 2x, or 4x Cortex-A9 @ up to 1.2GHz); Vivante 2D/3D GPU
  • Memory — Solo (512MB), DualLite and Dual (1GB), and Quad (2GB) DDR3 RAM; optional eMMC or NOR flash
  • Price — $74 to $130

Like the HummingBoard-Pro, the -Base edition is a sandwich-style, 86 x 55mm boardset, and like the HummingBoard-Gate and -Edge, it provides optional WiFi and Bluetooth, and supports a choice of MicroSOM computer-on-modules based on all four versions of the i.MX6. In Oct. 2016, SolidRun released revised MicroSOM 1.5 versions of the COMs, which are available for all the HummingBoard models, and can also be bought separately. The rev 1.5 MicroSOMs add improved FlexCAN and TI WiLink8 wireless, as well as optional eMMC and NOR flash up to 8GB. The HummingBoard Base carrier has Raspberry Pi-like ports and layout, as well as the original 26-pin RPi connector. Both the -Base and -Pro offer dual USB 2.0 ports, as well as HDMI, MIPI-CSI, and S/PDIF audio. As with the other HummingBoards, the GbE port is limited to 470Mbps due to i.MX6 thresholds, and there are Debian, Yocto Project, and Android versions available based on mainline kernels.

 

HummingBoard-Pro

  • Company/project — SolidRun
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX6 Solo, DualLite, Dual, or Quad (1x, 2x, 2x, or 4x Cortex-A9 @ up to 1.2GHz); Vivante 2D/3D GPU
  • Memory — Solo (512MB), DualLite and Dual (1GB), and Quad (2GB) DDR3 RAM; optional eMMC or NOR flash
  • Price — $84 to $210 (Pro)

The HummingBoard-Pro is identical to the HummingBoard-Base except that it adds mini-PCIe, mSATA, LVDS, analog audio, RTC, and IR. It also offers two more internal USB headers. Options on both models include microSD slots, a wireless module, a power adapter, and a custom enclosure.

 

HummingBoard-Edge

  • Company/project — SolidRun
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX6 Solo, DualLite, Dual, or Quad (1x, 2x, 2x, or 4x Cortex-A9 @ up to 1.2GHz); Vivante 2D/3D GPU
  • Memory — Solo (512MB), DualLite and Dual (1GB), and Quad (2GB or 4GB) DDR3 RAM; 4GB eMMC plus optional eMMC or NOR flash on MicroSOM
  • Price — $99 to $252

The HummingBoard-Edge is larger (102 x 69mm) than the HummingBoard-Pro, and shares all its features. It also doubles the USB 2.0 count to four, and adds M.2, SIM, and MIPI-DSI connections. In addition, it provides a larger 36-pin GPIO connector, boosts the power supply to a wide-range 7-36V, and adds optional onboard eMMC. As with the Pro, there are numerous options including wireless modules, and in the case of the Quad model, which exceeds our $200 limit in the higher configurations, 4GB of RAM.

 

HummingBoard-Gate

  • Company/project — SolidRun
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX6 Solo, DualLite, Dual, or Quad (1x, 2x, 2x, or 4x Cortex-A9 @ up to 1.2GHz); Vivante 2D/3D GPU
  • Memory — Solo (512MB), DualLite and Dual (1GB), and Quad (2GB or 4GB) DDR3 RAM; optional eMMC or NOR flash
  • Price — $84 to $235

As the name suggests, the HummingBoard-Gate is designed primarily for IoT gateway duty. The SBC lacks HummingBoard-Edge features like LVDS, analog audio, or eMMC and M.2 storage. Otherwise, it’s almost identical, with the same 102 x 69mm footprint, 7-36V power supply, mini-PCIe slot, and optional wireless modules and metal enclosure. Its major new offering is a MikroBus socket that accepts MikroElektronika’s 200-plus Click add-on I/O and sensor modules.

 

Inforce 6410Plus

  • Company/project — Inforce Computing
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 (4x “Krait” cores @ 1.7GHz); Adreno 320 GPU; QDSP6V4 DSP
  • Memory — 2GB PCDDR3 RAM; 4GB eMMC
  • Price — $143

The Inforce 6410Plus is aimed primarily at the commercial market, but is an open platform that has attracted interest among makers. The Plus model updates the original with robotics and IoT focused features including GPS, MIPI-CSI, MIPI-DSI, a beefier 12V power supply, a slimmer, 16mm profile, and a new 34-pin PAC expansion header. The 100 x 70mm Pico-ITX board runs Ubuntu Linux (“periodic upstream” Kernel now at 3.4) or Android 4.4 on the quad-core, Cortex-A15-like Snapdragon 600. Inforce has replaced LVDS with dual MIPI-DSI interfaces that join the pre-existing micro-HDMI port. Other features include GbE, microSD, SATA, WiFi, BT, and three USB ports, including an OTG port.

 

Khadas Vim

  • Company/project — Khadas
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Amlogic S905X (4x Cortex-53 @ up to 2GHz); Mali-450 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3 RAM; 8GB or 16GB (Pro) eMMC
  • Price — $50 or $65 (Pro)

Chinese startup Khadas debuted its media-oriented Khadas Vim at the end of 2016. The 82 x 58mm board adopts the Amlogic S905X, a lower-cost upgrade to the quad-core, Cortex-A53 Amlogic S905 found on the Odroid-C2. Khadas supports Android 6.0 with built-in Kodi-17 media software, as well as Ubuntu 16.04, Buildroot, and 7.0 versions of the Kodi-oriented OpenELEC/LibreELEC. A Pro version boosts eMMC 5.0 storage from 8GB to 16GB, and advances from 802.11n to 802.11ac WiFi. Both versions also offer Bluetooth 4.2, Fast Ethernet, and 3x USB 2.0 host ports, one of which is a Type C OTG port with power support. Other features include HDMI 2.0a, IR, microSD, and 40-pin expansion (but with no claims of RPi support). Shipping is free to the U.S.

 

LeMaker Guitar

  • Company/project — LeMaker
  • Product page
  • Processor — Actions S500 (4x Cortex-A9 @ up to 1.6GHz); PowerVR SGX544 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB or 2GB DDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $59

LeMaker’s sandwich-style Guitar SBC integrates a COM with a quad-core Actions S500. Images are available for Android 5.0, Ubuntu Mate, Ubuntu Core, Lemuntu, Armbian, ArchLinux, and a LeMaker XBMC (Kodi) media playing variant called LeMedia. The 88 x 81mm baseboard offers WiFi, Bluetooth, Ethernet, HDMI, micro-USB 3.0, and dual USB host ports. There’s also a MIPI-CSI interface and RPi-compatible 40-pin connector.

 

LinkIt Smart 7688

  • Company/project — MediaTek Labs, SeeedStudio
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — MediaTek MT7688AN (1x MIPS core @ 580MHz); Atmel ATmega32U4 MPU (Duo only)
  • Memory — 128MB RAM; 32MB flash
  • Price — $12.90 or $15.90 (Duo)

MediaTek Labs’s tiny, SeeedStudio-built LinkIt boards run OpenWrt on a 580MHz MIPS SoC, and target IoT endpoints and gateways. The $13 model measures 56 x 26mm, and offers WiFi, microSD, and dual micro-USB ports, while the $16, 61 x 26mm LinkIt Smart 7688 Duo adds an MPU for Arduino support. The boards provide GPIO, I2C, SPI, UART, PWM, and Fast Ethernet, plus I2S audio on the base model and ADC and SPI on the Duo. SeeedStudio offers an optional breakout board for the standard LinkIt, and provides three options for the Duo: breakouts for Arduino and Grove sensors, and a more feature-rich Grove Starter Kit. A MediaTek Cloud Sandbox service is available for IoT data collection and analytics.

 

LinkSprite Acadia V3

  • Company/project — LinkSprite Technologies
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX6 Quad (4x Cortex-A9 @ up to 1.2GHz); Vivante GC355 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DRAM
  • Price — $119

The LinkSprite Acadia runs Ubuntu 12.04 or Android 4.4 on an i.MX6 Quad, rather than the Allwinner SoCs typically used on LinkSprite’s pcDuino boards. Compared to the V2 model covered in our original report linked to above, the V3 loses the onboard eMMC flash but furnishes both a microSD slot and dual SD slots. Other features include HDMI, LVDS, SATA, audio, and GbE connections, as well as three USB ports, dual cameras interfaces, and an Arduino-compatible header.

 

LinkSprite Arches

  • Company/project — LinkSprite Technologies
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A80 (4x Cortex-A15 @ up to 2GHz, 4x Cortex-A7 @ up to 1.3GHz); PowerVR G6230 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB DRAM; 8GB flash
  • Price — $95

The LinkSprite Arches was originally unveiled as the pcDuino8 in May 2014, and then arrived in beta form later in the year, before going final in 2015. The Arches runs Linux or Android on an octa-core Allwinner A80, and is configured much like the A80-based Cubieboard4. The SBC is equipped with microSD, HDMI, GbE, and three USB ports (one of them 3.0 OTG), as well as WiFi, Bluetooth, and a CSI interface.

 

MarsBoard RK3066 Pro

  • Company/project — Haoyu Electronics, MarsBoard.com
  • Product page
  • Processor — Rockchip RK3066 (2x Cortex-A9 @ 1.6GHz); Mali-400 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM; 4GB eMMC flash
  • Price — $140

Haoyu’s MarsBoard RK3066 Pro, which is sold by Waveshare, has the same RK3066 SoC, memory, and modular, COM+baseboard design, and Linux/Android support as the standard MarsBoard RK3066, but adds an Arduino interface, a VGA port, a microSD slot, and 1-Wire, SPI, I2C, and UART interfaces. The Pro also offers the previously supplied five USB ports, 10/100 Ethernet, HDMI, LCD, S/PDIF, IR, and camera interfaces. We removed the standard MarsBoard RK3066 model from our list because it is no longer being sold from the site, and the price has ballooned to $77 on Amazon. We also retired the Marsboard AM335x since there are many more feature-rich, lower cost, and officially sanctioned BeagleBone clones on the market. The spam-clogged forum suggests the Marsboard expedition may be nearing the end.

 

MediaTek X20 Development Board

  • Company/project — ArcherMind (AlphaStar); MediaTek
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — MediaTek Helio X20 (4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.4GHz, 4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.95GHz, 2x Cortex-A72 cores @ 2.5GHz); Mali-T880 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB LPDDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $199

The Android focused MediaTek X20 Development Board is not only the most expensive board in the round-up, bumping up against our $200 limit, but also one the most powerful, rivaled perhaps only by the similarly priced, Intel Apollo Lake based UP Squared. Available in the U.S. at Seeed and AliExpress for $199, the board complies with the 96Boards CE standard, and showcases MediaTek’s deca-core Cortex-A53 and -A72 Helio X20 SoC. The Helio X20 features a pair of Cortex-A72 cores clockable to 2.5GHz, plus two quad-core, Big.Little banks of Cortex-A53 cores at up to 1.95GHz. There’s also a powerful Mali-T880 MP4 GPU. The 85 x 54mm board has the usual 96Boards 40- and 60-pin connectors plus a 16-pin analog interface. You also get WiFi, BT, GPS, HDMI, and microSD, plus dual USB 2.0 host ports and a device-only micro-USB. An Android 6.0 BSP is currently the only firmware available.

 

MinnowBoard Turbot Dual

  • Company/project — Intel, ADI, MinnowBoard.org
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Intel Atom E3826 (2x Bay Trail @ 1.46GHz); Intel HD Graphics
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3L RAM
  • Price — $146

Built by ADI Engineering, with the support of the Intel-backed MinnowBoard.org community, the 3.9 x 2.9-inch MinnowBoard Turbot has replaced the CircuitCo-built MinnowBoard Max. Prices range to $160, but you can get it for a low of $146 at Netgate. The board includes a low-speed expansion header that provides Arduino-like prototyping I/O, as well as a 60-pin high speed connector for add-on boards called Lures. Other I/O includes dual USB ports plus GbE, micro-HDMI, and SATA. Firmware support includes Debian, Ubuntu, Yocto Project, Android 4.4, and Windows 10. The Turbot Dual, has recently been joined by an almost identical MinnowBoard Turbo Quad-core (see item below).

 

MinnowBoard Turbot Quad-core

  • Company/project — Intel, ADI, MinnowBoard.org
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Intel Atom E3845 (4x Bay Trail @ 1.91GHz); Intel HD Graphics
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3L RAM
  • Price — $190

The MinnowBoard Turbo Quad-core, which began shipping only last week, has the same 99 x 74mm footprint as the dual-core Turbot Dual, and much the same layout and feature set. The Quad advances to the quad-core, 1.91GHz Atom E3845 from the same 22nm Bay Trail generation, and adds a heatsink, a fan, and a faster Intel I210 GbE controller. Almost a year ago, ADI announced a larger (103 x 99mm) MinnowBoard Turbot Dual-E SBC with a choice of dual-core Atom E3826 or quad-core E3845 SoCs. The Dual-E is named for it second GbE port, and it also offers an M.2/micro-SIM combo for WiFi, LTE, or SSD. There’s still no word on pricing or availability.

 

MYS-6ULX SBC

  • Company/project — MYIR
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX6 ULL or i.MX6 UL (1x Cortex-A7 @ 528MHz or 696MHz, respectively); 2D PXP GPU
  • Memory — 256MB DDR3 RAM; 256MB NAND
  • Price — $24.80 (i.MX6 ULL) or $26.80 (UL)

MYIR is primarily a commercial board vendor, but it has spun several open-spec hacker boards like the MYS-6ULX SBC that have crossover appeal to makers. Others include the Rico Board (Sitara) and Z-turn (Zynq) (see farther below). The $25 to $27 MYS-6ULX offers a choice of i.MX6 UL (UltraLite) or its newer, down-clocked sibling, the i.MX6 ULL. Each SBC model has its own unique super power: The i.MX6 UL version offers -40 to 85°C support instead of 0 to 70°C, and the i.MX6 ULL model features a USB-powered WiFi radio. Otherwise, the 70 x 55mm boards are identical. You get a microSD slot, Fast Ethernet port, USB host and micro-USB 2.0 OTG ports, a debug connector, and an LCD interface with optional touchscreens. The dual 20-pin expansion connectors can be used to attach an optional baseboard, which is not yet available. The MYS-6ULX comes with an open source Linux BSP with a 4.1.15 kernel and either Debian or Yocto Project with ported Qt. There’s no forum or dedicated community site, but you get full schematics and extensive documentation.

 

NanoPC-T3

  • Company/project — FriendlyElec (FriendlyARM)
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Samsung S5P6818 (8x Cortex-A53 @ 400MHz to 1.4GHz); Mali-400 MP GPU
  • Memory — 1GB or 2GB DDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $60

FriendlyElec (AKA FriendlyARM) now offers at least a dozen SBC SKUs, depending on how you delineate them, leading us for the first time to apply our 10-product limit and trim a few from the list. Those that didn’t make it are noted in the blurbs of similar NanoPi models. The 100 x 60mm NanoPC-T3 is one of the few without NanoPi branding. As the PC nomenclature suggests, this is one of the most feature-rich FriendlyElec boards. Equipped with an octa-core Samsung S5P6818, the NanoPC-T3 SBC is almost identical to the earlier, quad-core NanoPC-T2. In addition to the faster processor, the T3 adds a 2GB RAM option. Other features common to both NanoPC boards include an SD slot, GbE, WiFi, and Bluetooth 4.0. The board provides 4x USB host, a micro-USB client, and media ports include HDMI, LVDS, LCD, MIPI-DSI, MIPI-CSI, and audio. In place of the usual 40-pin RPi connector, the NanoPC-T3 provides a 30-pin GPIO header.

 

NanoPi A64

  • Company/project — FriendlyElec (FriendlyARM)
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A64 (4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.2GHz); Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $25

The NanoPi A64, which appeared in December, was FriendlyElec’s first 64-bit quad-core NanoPi. It has since been joined by the NanoPi K2 and NanoPi Neo 2, and there’s also the earlier octa-core NanoPi-T3. The NanoPi A64 has a compact, 64 x 60mm footprint that matches that of the NanoPi M3. The board provides two USB host ports, a power-only micro-USB, and HDMI, MIPI-DSI, microSD, audio, and DVP camera connections. The 5V SBC offers GbE and WiFi, but no Bluetooth, and you get the NanoPi-typical 40-pin Raspberry Pi expansion header. Images are available for Ubuntu Core and Ubuntu Mate. Most of the NanoPi boards are available with a growing list of options ranging from cases to heat sinks to camera modules. Shipping to the U.S., however, is expensive. Single-unit prices range from $16 to $36, compared to under $4 for the Orange Pi project.

 

NanoPi K2

  • Company/project — FriendlyElec (FriendlyARM)
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Amlogic S905 (4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.5GHz); Mali-450 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $40

If the specs for the video-oriented NanoPi K2 look familiar, that’s because they almost perfectly mimic the $46 Odroid-C2, which aside from the processor is itself a near doppelgänger of the $35 Raspberry Pi 3. The NanoPi K2 has the same quad -A53 Amlogic SoC and 85 x 56mm footprint as the Odroid-C2, as well as similar features like 2GB RAM, 4x USB, GbE, and a 40-pin RPi-like bus. Unlike the Odroid-C2, but like the RPi 3, the NanoPi K2 adds WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0, so you don’t have to use up a USB port. The Amlogic S905 with Mali 450 GPU is considerably more powerful than the RPi3’s Broadcom/VideoCore IV SoC, and supports [email protected] decoding and DVFS. Android 5.1 is available, with Ubuntu in development.

 

NanoPi M1

  • Company/project — FriendlyElec (FriendlyARM)
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H3 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.2GHz); ARM Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 512MB or 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $15 or $20 (1GB)

The 69 × 48mm NanoPi M1 adopts the quad-core Allwinner H3, the same SoC found on the $10, H3-based Orange Pi One. The M1 offers more features, however, including a CVBS A/V output, an IR receiver, a mic, and two more USB 2.0 host ports for a total of three. Standard features shared by both include microSD, Fast Ethernet, HDMI, DVP camera, and a 40-pin RPi connector. Images are available for Ubuntu MATE and Ubuntu Core. Last year, LinkSprite launched a rebranded version of the NanoPi M1 called the pcDuino4 Nano, selling for $25 with 1GB.

 

NanoPi M1 Plus

  • Company/project — FriendlyElec (FriendlyARM)
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H3 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.2GHz); ARM Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $35

This recent, more feature-rich version of the $15 NanoPi M1 retains the Allwinner H3, but is slightly smaller at 64 × 60mm. The higher price reflects the standard 1GB RAM and 8GB eMMC, as well as new features like WiFi, Bluetooth, mic, and the advance to Gigabit Ethernet. One of the three USB 2.0 host ports, however, has moved to an onboard header. OS options include Ubuntu Mate, Ubuntu Core, Debian, and Android.

 

NanoPi M2A / M3

  • Company/project — FriendlyElec (FriendlyARM)
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Samsung S5P4418 (4x Cortex-A9 @ 400MHz to 1.4GHz with 3D GPU) for M2A or Samsung S5P6818 (8x Cortex-A53 @ 400MHz to 1.46GHz with Mali-400MP GPU) for M3
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $30 (M2A) or $35 (M3)

The recently released NanoPi M2A replaces the similarly Samsung S5P4418 driven, $25 NanoPi M2, which we removed from the list due to being out of stock. Aside from the SoC, the NanoPi M2A is almost exactly like the still available, $35, octa-core Samsung S5P6818 based NanoPi M3, so we’ve combined the two SBCs here. The 64 x 60mm footprint, layout, and features appear to be identical except for the M2A’s addition of an onboard mic and a switch from a 5V @ 2A to a 5V @ 3A input. Both SBCs provide WiFi, BT 4.0, and a GbE port, plus media interfaces like HDMI, LCD, LVDS, DVP, and audio. They both offer dual USB 2.0 host ports and two more USB headers, a micro-USB port, and a 40-pin, RPi-ready header. Images listed for the NanoPi M2A include Android 4.4 and 5.1, Debian 8.1, and Ubuntu Core with Qt.

 

NanoPi 2 Fire

  • Company/project — FriendlyElec (FriendlyARM)
  • Product page
  • Processor — Samsung S5P4418 (4x Cortex-A9 @ 400MHz to 1.4GHz); 3D GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $29

The NanoPi 2 Fire replaces the earlier NanoPi 2 SBC, and similarly runs Android or Debian on a quad -A9 S5P4418 SoC. The Fire swaps out the earlier wireless module for a GbE port, and adds a PMIC. The 75 x 40mm SBC offers both an HDMI port and an LCD interface, and supplies a DVP camera link. Other features include a microSD slot, a 40-pin RPi connector, a micro-USB OTG port, and a USB host port.

 

NanoPi Neo/Neo2

  • Company/project — FriendlyElec (FriendlyARM)
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H3 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.2GHz with Mali-400 MP2 GPU) for Neo or Allwinner H5 (4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.2GHz with Mali-450 GPU) for Neo2
  • Memory — 256MB or 512MB DDR3 RAM (Neo) or 512MB DDR3 (Neo2)
  • Price — $8 or $10 (512MB) for Neo or $15 for Neo2

Earlier this year, the quad -A7, 40 x 40mm NanoPi Neo was joined by a 64-bit quad -A53 near twin called the NanoPi Neo2. The Neo2 is the same as the Neo except for the faster SoC, GbE instead of 10/100 Ethernet, two more USB headers, and lack of a 256MB RAM option. Both boards, along with a third, wireless enabled Neo Air option (see below) are the world’s smallest and most affordable quad-core ARM SBCs. At 40 x 40mm, they consume only 1,600 square millimeters, compared to 1,950 sq. mm for the 65 x 30mm Raspberry Pi Zero. The NanoPi Neo and Neo2 are further equipped with microSD, USB 2.0 host, and micro-USB OTG ports. All three Neo boards, which run Ubuntu Core or Mate, lack display or camera interfaces. You get 36 GPIO pins instead of the usual RPi connector.

 

NanoPi Neo Air

  • Company/project — FriendlyElec (FriendlyARM)
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H3 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.2GHz); ARM Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 512MB DDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $20

The NanoPi Neo Air is a juiced up NanoPi Neo. This headless, IoT board has the same minisicule 40 x 40mm footprint, and similarly runs Ubuntu Core and Mate on an Allwinner H3. The Neo Air comes standard with 512MB of RAM, and adds 8GB eMMC, WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0, and a DVP camera connector. The Air also sacrifices the Ethernet port and the sole USB host port, however, leaving you only a micro-USB OTG for power and data. You can get more USB ports or a power connection via the split bank of 36 GPIO pins.

 

NanoPi S2

  • Company/project — FriendlyElec (FriendlyARM)
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Samsung S5P4418 (4x Cortex-A9 @ 400MHz to 1.4GHz); 3D GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $45

The NanoPi S2 is like a pumped up, wireless-enabled NanoPi 2 Fire, sharing the same 75 x 40mm footprint and quad -A9 S5P4418 with Debian and Android support. Other common features include USB 2.0 host and micro-USB ports, a microSD slot, a PMIC, a 40-pin RPi connector, and links for LCD and camera. The NanoPi S2 dispenses with the Fire’s GbE port, but adds WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0. It also shrinks the HDMI port to mini-HDMI. Unlike the 2 Fire, the S2 features 8GB of eMMC, an ADC pin header, an audio jack, and an LVDS interface.

 

Odroid-C0

  • Company/project — Hardkernel, Odroid project
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Amlogic S805 (4x Cortex-A5 @ 1.5GHz); Mali-450 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM; optional eMMC 4.5
  • Price — $30.80 (with $1.80 Connector Pack)

Aimed at IoT and robotics, the Odroid-C0 is a smaller (65 x 56mm), somewhat stripped-down version of the Odroid C and C+ (see below). It has the same quad-core -A5 Amlogic SoC, and offers the same Ubuntu and Android 4.4 support with GCC 4.9.2 Linux toolchain. The C0’s only coastline port is an HDMI port. However, an optional Connector Pack lets you solder on real-world connections for unpopulated interfaces including dual USB host, serial console, IR, I2S, and an RPi 40-pin interface. A battery connector with charging circuit supports an optional 3.7V Li-Po battery. Internet connectivity requires an optional WiFi dongle. As with all Odroid boards, the price includes worldwide shipping.

 

Odroid-C1+

  • Company/project — Hardkernel, Odroid project
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Amlogic S805 (4x Cortex-A5 @ 1.5GHz); Mali-450 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM; optional 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $35

The Odroid-C1+ upgraded the earlier, very similar Odroid-C1 with features like a full-size HDMI port, a standard heatsink, and I2S audio and micro-USB-OTG links. The C1+ has a price, footprint, and feature set that is almost identical to the original, 32-bit Raspberry Pi 2, but is more fully open source, has a faster processor, and supports Android 4.4 in addition to Ubuntu 14.04. The C1+ is further equipped with a microSD slot and optional eMMC, as well as GbE, serial console, ADC, and a RPi-compatible 40-pin connector.

 

Odroid-C2

  • Company/project — Hardkernel, Odroid project
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Amlogic S905 (4x Cortex-53 @ up to 1.5GHz); Mali-450 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3 RAM; optional 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $46

The Odroid-C2 came in second out of 81 hacker SBCs in our June 2016 survey. It has the same 85 x 56mm size and layout as the Odroid-C1+ and Raspberry Pi 3, but advances to a quad -A53 Amlogic S905 SoC. It’s faster and more open source than the RPi 3, but there’s no WiFi or Bluetooth, and the price has edged up to be $11 more expensive. The C2 doubles the RAM of the C1+ to 2GB, and offers a choice of optional storage between up to 64GB of eMMC and an 8GB or 16GB SD 3.01 compatible UHS-1 microSD card. The Odroid-C2 can output 4k/60Hz video, and has almost everything the C1+ has, including GbE and HDMI ports, four USB host ports, and a 40-pin RPi connector. Images are available for Android 5.1 or Ubuntu 16.04, based on a Linux 3.14 LTS kernel.

 

Odroid-XU4

  • Company/project — Hardkernel, Odroid project
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Samsung Exynos5422 (4x Cortex-A15 @ 2.0GHz and 4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.4GHz); Mali-T628 MP6 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB LPDDR3 RAM; optional up to 64GB eMMC
  • Price — $59

While the other Odroid boards have crept up in price, the Odroid-XU4 recently received a $15 price cut. This 83 x 58mm Odroid-XU3 replacement uses the same octa-core Exynos5422 and Mali-T628 GPU. Features include a GbE port, audio-enabled HDMI port, 2x USB 3.0 ports, and a USB 2.0 port. The XU4 offers a 12-pin GPIO header in addition to a 30-pin expansion connector. There’s an option for a USB-based SATA 3 module, an I/O board, and various wireless add-ons. The Odroid-XU4 features several versions of Android up to 7.1 Nougat, as well as Ubuntu 16.04, based on a Linux 4.9 LTS kernel.

 

Orange Pi 2G-IOT

  • Company/project — Shenzhen Xunlong Software
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — RDA RDA8810PL (1x Cortex-A5); Vivante GC860 GPU
  • Memory — 256MB LPDDR2 RAM; 500MB NAND
  • Price — $9.90

Shenzhen Xunlong sells a lot of dirt-cheap Orange Pi models — adding over a half dozen more since our June 2016 round-up — and they all ship to the U.S. for under $4. The Orange Pi project has been criticized for poor Linux support and HW quality issues, but it appears to be improving. The Armbian community is helping to improve Linux support, and in March, Shenzhen Xunlong partnered with Canonical to launch an Ubuntu snap app store for its Orange Pi SBCs. Linux and Android OS images available on the Orange Pi site vary widely by board. The first Orange Pi on our list is somewhat atypical. The tiny, 68 x 42mm Orange Pi 2G-IOT can withstand -10 to 65°C temperatures, and runs Android 4.4, Ubuntu, Debian, or an RPi image on a single-core, Cortex-A5 RDA RDA8810PL SoC (typically 1GHz) with an integrated 2G GSM/GPRS/EDGE baseband. The $10 board offers WiFi, BT, and a SIM card slot with 2G antenna. Other features include LCD, MIPI-CSI, and audio interfaces, as well as USB 2.0 host and micro-USB OTG ports, and a 40-pin RPi-style connector.

 

Orange Pi Lite

  • Company/project — Shenzhen Xunlong Software
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H3 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.2GHz); Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 512MB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $12

The fetchingly priced Orange Pi Lite, a WiFi variant of the Orange Pi One, offers the 1.2GHz version of the quad-core H3 SoC compared to 1.6GHz on the Orange Pi PC. It’s also limited to a half gig of RAM, and lacks an Ethernet port, but you get a second USB host port. Other features include microSD, WiFi, HDMI, MIPI-CSI, micro-USB OTG, and the usual Orange Pi 40-pin RPi header.

 

Orange Pi One

  • Company/project — Shenzhen Xunlong Software
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H3 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.2GHz); ARM Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 512MB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $10

The highly affordable Orange Pi One preceded the similar $12 Lite version. It provides 10/100 Ethernet instead of WiFi, and supplies a single USB host port instead of two. Otherwise, the specs are identical, including microSD, HDMI, MIPI-CSI, micro-USB OTG, and 40-pin connections. Comparing only by price, performance, and features, the Orange Pi One clearly beats the $5 to $25 RPi Zero. Meanwhile, the tiny, H3-based NanoPi M1 has a few more features, but has crept up to $15 to $20. A hands-on report on the Orange Pi One can be found here.

 

Orange Pi PC / PC Plus

  • Company/project — Shenzhen Xunlong Software
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H3 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.6GHz); Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC on PC Plus
  • Price — $15 ($22 for PC Plus)

The $15 Orange Pi PC provides an Allwinner H3, a Raspberry Pi-like 85 x 55mm footprint, and RPi-compatible 40-pin expansion. It has twice the RAM of the Lite and One models, and provides microSD, HDMI, CVBS, CSI, USB OTG, and 10/100 Ethernet connections. A newer Orange Pi PC Plus model adds 8GB of eMMC flash.

 

Orange Pi PC 2

  • Company/project — Shenzhen Xunlong Software
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H5 (4x Cortex-A53); Mali-450 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $20

Shenzhen Xunlong’s first 64-bit Orange Pi arrived in November with the same 85 x 55mm footprint, 40-pin RPi header, and many other features found on the Orange Pi PC. However, it offers a quad -A53 Allwinner H5 instead of a quad -A7 H3. The PC 2 is further equipped with 3x USB host ports, as well as micro-USB OTG, HDMI, GbE, microSD, CVBS, audio, and MIPI-CSI.

 

Orange Pi Plus2 / Plus2E

  • Company/project — Shenzhen Xunlong Software
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H3 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.6GHz); Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $49 ($35 for Plus2E)

Like the Orange Pi 2 and the still available, $39 Orange Pi Plus1, the Orange Pi Plus2 and new Plus2E run distributions such as Lubuntu, Raspbian, and Android on a quad-core, 1.6GHz Allwinner H3. Compared to the Plus1, the Plus2 doubles the RAM to 2GB and expands slightly to 108 x 67mm. Other features appear to be identical, including an RPi-compatible 40-pin connector, four USB host ports, a GbE port, and WiFi. The board is further equipped with micro-USB, microSD, SATA, HDMI, CVBS, and CSI connections. The Orange Pi Plus2E swaps the four-port USB hub for three separate USB ports, and loses the SATA connection, but shaves $14 off the price.

 

Orange Pi Prime

  • Company/project — Shenzhen Xunlong Software
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H5 (4x Cortex-A53); Mali-450 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $29.90

Like the $20 Orange Pi PC 2, the $30 Orange Pi Prime offers a quad -A53 Allwinner H5, a 40-pin RPi header, 3x USB host ports, and micro-USB OTG, HDMI, GbE, microSD, CVBS, audio, and MIPI-CSI connections. This larger, 98 x 60mm SBC doubles the RAM to 2GB, however, and adds WiFi, Bluetooth, and extended -10 to 65°C support. Images are available for Android 4.4, Debian Desktop, Ubuntu Desktop, Arch Server, Raspberry Pi, and Banana Pi.

 

Orange Pi Win Plus / Win

  • Company/project — Shenzhen Xunlong Software
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A64 (4x Cortex-A53); Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB DDR3 RAM for Win Plus (1GB on Win); optional eMMC
  • Price — $29.90 (Win Plus) or $25 (Win)

While most of the new 64-bit Orange Pi models use the Allwinner H5, the 2GB Orange Pi Win Plus and 1GB Orange Pi Win tap the older Allwinner A64, which is much the same except for its weaker Mali-400 GPU. The Win boards, which appear to be named for its upcoming Windows 10 IoT support, can currently run Android 6.0, Ubuntu Desktop/Server Xenial, Debian Server Jessie, and a Raspberry Pi image. The 93 x 60mm SBC is only slightly smaller than the similarly priced and configured, H5-based Orange Pi Prime. Like the Prime, the Win SBCs provide micro-USB OTG, HDMI, GbE, microSD, audio, MIPI-CSI, and 40-pin RPi connections. They similarly furnish WiFi and Bluetooth, and offer -10 to 65°C support. Differences include a MIPI-DSI LCD interface on the Win boards in place of RCA/CVBS/AV, and the availability of 4x USB host ports instead of three. You also get optional eMMC.

 

Orange Pi Zero

  • Company/project — Shenzhen Xunlong Software
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H2 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.2GHz); Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 256MB or 512MB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $7 or $9 (512MB)

The Orange Pi Zero is the smallest and cheapest SBC in the lineup. Just a bit smaller than the Raspberry Pi Zero, the 48 x 46mm SBC uses an Allwinner H2 SoC that is much like an H3, but is limited to HD instead of 4K video. The headless, IoT-oriented Orange Pi Zero has only a single USB 2.0 host port, as well as a micro-USB OTG for power, but it offers both WiFi and Ethernet. There’s a 26-pin header compatible with older Raspberry Pis, as well as a separate 13-pin high-power interface, 3x GPIO, debug serial, and a mic interface.

 

Orange Pi Zero Plus 2 H3 / Zero Plus 2 H5

  • Company/project — Shenzhen Xunlong Software
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H3 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 1.2GHz with Mali-400 MP2 GPU) or Allwinner H5 (4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.2GHz with ARM Mali-450 MP2 GPU)
  • Memory — 512MB DDR3 RAM; 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $18.90 or $19.90 (H5)

These rev’d up versions of the Orange Pi Zero have the same tiny, 48 x 46mm dimensions, but offer a choice of two more powerful processors. The Orange Pi Zero Plus 2 H3 has an Allwinner H3 instead of an H2, which adds 4K support. The Orange Pi Zero Plus 2 H5 advances to a quad -A53 Allwinner H5, which also moves up to a Mali-450 GPU. Otherwise, the H3 and H5 devices are identical and only $1 difference in price. Differences with the still available Zero include the removal of the USB 2.0 host and 10/100 Ethernet ports, as well as the dedicated mic interface. Yet while the headless Zero was limited to an AV-out interface grouped along with other I/O on the still-available 13-pin function header, the Zero Plus 2 boards add an HDMI port and MIPI-CSI camera interface. They also add 8GB eMMC and Bluetooth 4.2, which is provided on an Ampak AP6212 module along with the previously supplied WiFi. It all looks good for low-cost multimedia, except that the H5 version could really use a 1GB RAM option.

 

Parallella

  • Company/project — Adapteva, Parallella.org
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Xilinx Zynq-7020 or -7010 SoC (2x Cortex-A9 @ 667MHz plus FPGA); 16-core Epiphany RISC chip
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $99

Aimed at power-efficient server clustering applications and parallel programming research, the ever popular Parallella features a Zynq ARM/FPGA SoC running an optimized Ubuntu 15.05 distro called Parabuntu, plus a homegrown 16-core Epiphany coprocessor. I/O includes microSD, GbE, micro-HDMI, and dual USB ports. Four 60-pin connectors provide extensions for I/O linked to FPGA and its novel Epiphany parallel processing chip. Adapteva also offers a $75 Micro-Server version with a Zynq-7010 that omits the USB, HDMI, and expansion I/O. Also new since last year is a $29.50 Parallella Aluminum Case with heat spreading plate and thermal pad, but it’s currently out of stock. A new Epiphany-V chip with 4.5 billion transistors is now several months overdue.

 

pcDuino Lite WiFi

  • Company/project — LinkSprite Technologies
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A10 (1x Cortex-A8 @ 1GHz); Mali-400 GPU
  • Memory — 256MB RAM; 2GB flash
  • Price — $29

LinkSprite’s pcDuino Lite has been retired, but the similar pcDuino Lite WiFi lives on. The 100 x 52mm board runs Ubuntu 12.04 with Linux 3.0 on the old-school, Cortex-A8 Allwinner A10. The 5V board offers 256MB RAM, 2GB flash, an HDMI port, an Arduino-style interface, and of course, WiFi. LinkSprite appears to have retired several other boards over the last year, including the pcDuino2, pcDuino3, and pcDuino3B. The newer Allwinner A20 based pcDuino3 Nano is listed as “out of stock — check back later.”

 

pcDuino8 Uno

  • Company/project — LinkSprite Technologies
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner H8 (8x Cortex-A7 @ 2GHz); PowerVR SGX544 GPU
  • Memory — 1GB DRAM
  • Price — $49

The pcDuino 8 Uno isn’t listed on LinkSprite’s main pcDuino page, but a shopping page is buried on the site. The board features an octa-core Allwinner H8 clocked to 2GHz, combined with the usual pcDuino Arduino expansion. The 92 x 54mm board provides microSD, GbE, USB host, USB OTG, HDMI, audio, MIPI-CSI, and IR connections. An Android-only PCDuino 8 STB set-top box version for the OEM market ships with slightly different I/O and an enclosure.

 

Pepper 43R / 43C

  • Company/project — Gumstix
  • Product page
  • Processor — TI Sitara AM3354 (1x Cortex-A8 @ 800MHz); PowerVR SGX530 3D GPU
  • Memory — 512MB RAM
  • Price — $169

Gumstix, which is known for its Overo and DuoVero modules and associated carrier boards, has also shipped some Pepper SBCs in recent years, now supported with full schematics. The original, $250 Pepper that appeared back in 2013 has been replaced with three new models, although with a lower-end TI AM3354 SoC rather than the original AM3359. The AM3354 is paired with a 3D-ready PowerVR GPU, but the SoC lacks the PRU units found on some models. The $169 Pepper 43R and 43C are very similar, but the Pepper DVI-D is sufficiently divergent to deserve its own blurb below. The Pepper 43R supports resistive touchscreens while the Pepper 43C supports capacitive, and each are supported with $39, 4.3-inch Newhaven touchscreen options. The 43R version also adds an 8-ch. bidirectional level shifter and a TI step-down converter among other minor variations. Both boards have a GbE port, microSD slot, dual micro-USB ports, a USB console port, and a TI WiLink 8 WiFi/BT 4.1 LE module with access point mode and U.FL connectors. The Pepper 43 boards are further equipped with 20-pin GPIO, an audio jack, LiPo battery support, a PMIC, and LEDs. The board can be further customized in the Gumstix Geppetto online design and manufacturing service.

 

Pepper DVI-D

  • Company/project — Gumstix
  • Product page
  • Processor — TI Sitara AM3354 (1x Cortex-A8 @ 800MHz); PowerVR SGX530 3D GPU
  • Memory — 512MB RAM
  • Price — $119

The Pepper DVI-D has a similar size, TI AM3354 SoC, and 512MB RAM as the Pepper 43R and 43C (see above), but has a much lower price and a different layout and purpose. Instead of supporting touchscreens, the Pepper DVI-D features an HDMI port (via DVI-D) to support HD output instead of 720p. Other features include a microSD slot, GbE port, audio jack, console port, USB host port, and dual micro-USB device ports. As with the Pepper 43 boards, images are available for Yocto, Ubuntu, and Android. A community portion of the site shared with other Gumstix developers provides projects and tutorials. Like the other Peppers, the SBC is designed with the Gumstix Geppetto DIY design service, and supports further user customization of I/O using Geppetto. You can then send your design to the related Gumstix Geppetto short-run, fast-turnaround manufacturing service.

 

PICO-IMX6UL-KIT

  • Company/project — Wandboard.org; Technexion; NXP
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX6 UltraLite (1x Cortex-A7 @ 528MHz); WXGA graphics
  • Memory — 512MB RAM; 4GB eMMC
  • Price — $65

The sandwich-style PICO-IMX6UL-KIT is last year’s HobbitBoard rebranded and enhanced with 512MB RAM. Instead of supporting Google’s Brillo OS, it comes pre-loaded with Google’s revamped version of Brillo, called Android Things. The PICO-IMX6UL-KIT appears to be the de facto reference platform for the IoT-oriented OS, which also supports the Raspberry Pi 3 and the Intel Edison. Like the HobbitBoard and the almost identical NXP I.MX6UL Development Platform [PDF], the PICO-IMX6UL-KIT is based on TechNexion’s PICO-IMX6UL COM (sold by NXP as the NXP Pico). Despite its commercial foundations, the PICO-IMX6UL-KIT’s COM and carrier have been released with full schematics and open licensing. Aside from the RAM and the OS, the PICO-IMX6UL-KIT is identical to the HobbitBoard, and features a low-power i.MX6 UltraLite (UL), plus WiFi, BT 4.0, 10/100 Ethernet, dual USB ports, an audio jack, and a PMIC. The COM can be removed and plugged into the 70-pin Hirose socket on an Intel Edison carrier. When connected to the 100 x 45mm PICO-IMX6UL-KIT carrier, the Edison connector remains active. The board also offers a MikroBus socket for Click add-ons, as well as four Wandboard-compatible board-to-board expansion headers. The kit goes for as high as $90, but can be found for $65 at ARMkits.

 

Pine A64

  • Company/project — Pine64, Inc.
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Allwinner A64 (4x Cortex-A53 cores @ 1.2GHz); Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory — 512MB (standard), 1GB ($19 Plus), 2GB ($29 Plus) DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $15 to $29

This quad-core, 64-bit Raspberry Pi imitator broke new price/performance ground when it arrived last spring, and it’s still very competitive. Standard features include microSD, HDMI, Fast Ethernet, audio, dual USB 2.0 host, and micro-USB ports. The 127 x 79mm board offers a Pi-compatible, 40-pin connector and a 14-pin Euler connector. There’s also an RTC and -20 to 70°C support. The $15 model ships with 512MB RAM, but we recommend the $19 or $29 Plus models, available in 1GB and 2GB configurations, respectively. These higher-end models also boost Ethernet to GbE, and add a touchpanel interface, MIPI-DSI and MIPI-CSI ports, plus display and camera options. Curated OS mainline Linux based images include Android 6.0/7.1, Remix OS 2.0, Debian Jesse Mate, and Ubuntu 16.04 in Mate, Base, and minimal images. The board is further compatible with openSUSE, Armbian, Arch, Fedora, Gentoo, and more. In January, Pine64 released a SODIMM-style SoPine A64 COM featuring the guts of the Pine A64. It also launched an open source Pinebook laptop based on the same A64 processor, sold for $89 (11.6-inch) or $99 (14-inch).

 

Raspberry Pi Zero

  • Company/project — Raspberry Pi Foundation
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Broadcom BCM2835 (1x ARM1176JZFS core @ 1GHz) with FPU and VideoCore IV dual-core GPU
  • Memory — 512MB SDRAM
  • Price — $5 and up

Even when factoring in $5 to $25 more to add various cables and adapters — we’re calling it $14 in our comparison spreadsheet — the $5 Raspberry Pi Zero is still a good deal for space-constrained IoT hacking projects. The tiny, 65 x 30mm Zero upgrades the same ARM11 processor found on the Raspberry Pi A+ and B+ to 1GHz speed. The COM-like SBC ships with a microSD slot, a pair of micro-USB ports, and a mini-HDMI port with audio support, as well as an unpopulated composite video header. Missing are all the USB ports, DSI and CSI ports, and audio jacks found on the Pi 2 and 3.

 

Raspberry Pi Zero W

  • Company/project — Raspberry Pi Foundation
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Broadcom BCM2835 (1x ARM1176JZFS core @ 1GHz) with FPU and VideoCore IV dual-core GPU
  • Memory — 512MB SDRAM
  • Price — $10 and up

The new Raspberry Pi Zero W is identical to the RPi Zero except for the addition of the same Cypress CYW43438 wireless chip found on the $35 Raspberry Pi 3, providing 802.11 b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.1 with BLE. The Zero W is available starting at only $10 at outlets like Cana Kit and BuyaPi, but you need the same add-ons as the Zero to get real-world video and USB ports.

 

Raspberry Pi 2 Model B 1.2

  • Company/project — Raspberry Pi Trading
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Broadcom BCM2836 (4x Cortex-A7 @ 900MHz) or on v1.2 model, Broadcom BCM2837 (4x Cortex-A53 @ 900MHz); Broadcom VideoCore IV GPU @ 250MHz
  • Memory — 1GB SDRAM
  • Price — $35

Last October, the Raspberry Pi 2 was revised with a v1.2 model, replacing the quad -A7 based BCM2836 with the same quad-core, Cortex-A53 BCM2837 used on the Raspberry Pi 3. However, the SoC is still clocked to 900MHz instead of 1.2GHz, and the board lacks the RPi 3’s WiFi and Bluetooth module. Otherwise the RPi 2 is almost identical to the faster, wireless-enabled RPi 3, but with no price discount.

 

Raspberry Pi 3 Model B

  • Company/project — Raspberry Pi Foundation
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Broadcom BCM2837 (4x Cortex-53 @ 1.2GHz); Broadcom VideoCore IV GPU @ 400MHz
  • Memory — 1GB SDRAM
  • Price — $35

The world’s most popular Linux hacker SBC — and the runaway winner of our 2016 survey — is commonly marked up, but it’s still found at the official $35 price at outlets like Circuit Specialists. The Raspberry Pi 3 gives you everything the new RPi 2 v1.2 does at the same price, and adds a higher clock speed plus WiFi and Bluetooth. Some other boards with the same RPI expansion compatibility can beat it on price, performance, and features, and many are more open source than RPi 3, which like its siblings does not provide complete schematics or open source licensing. Yet, if you want guaranteed Raspberry Pi compatibility (and dependability), and membership in the thriving community, this is still your top pick. Last week, the Raspberry Pi Foundation doubled down on its original educational mission by merging with CoderDojo, a non-profit that organizes learn-to-code clubs for kids 7-17. Practically, the Raspberry Pi Foundation is becoming a corporate member of the CoderDojo Foundation, but will otherwise maintain its identify and association with the commercial Raspberry Pi Trading entity.

 

Rico Board

  • Company/project — MYIR
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — TI AM437x (1x Cortex-A9 core @ up to 1GHz); PowerVR SGX530 GPU
  • Memory — 512MB DDR3 RAM (alternatively 256MB or 1GB); 4GB eMMC flash
  • Price — $99 ($149 for full kit with cables etc.)

MYIR’s open-spec, 100 x 65mm Rico Board taps TI’s single-core, Cortex-A9, Sitara AM437x SoC. The SBC integrates HDMI, GbE, and dual USB ports, as well as a 24-bit LCD interface that supports optional 7-inch touchscreens. You also get camera interfaces and dual 40-pin expansion connectors with support for CAN and other industrial I/O.

 

RioTboard

  • Company/project — Newark Element14, RioTboard.org
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX6 Solo (1x Cortex-A9 @ up to 1GHz)
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM; 4GB eMMC
  • Price — $79

The RioT (“Revolutionizing the Internet of Things”) board runs Android or Linux on a low-power, single-core Cortex-A9 SoC. The 120 x 75mm SBC offers several advantages over the similar Wandboard Solo, including twice the RAM, built-in flash, and many more USB ports.

 

SAMA5D4 Xplained

  • Company/project — Newark Element14, Atmel
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Atmel SAMA5D4 (1x Cortex-A5 @ 528MHz)
  • Memory — 512MB DDR2 RAM; 512MB NAND flash
  • Price — $93.50

SAMA5D4 Xplained is a collaboration between Atmel’s Linux4SAM developers site and Newark Element14. The Linux-ready, IoT-focused SBC showcases Atmel’s SAMA5D4 SoC, which like the earlier SAMA5D3, is limited to a single Cortex-A5 core. The SAMA5D4 adds NEON, L2 cache, and security features, and several models support 720p video. The 138 x 88mm Xplained board ships with 512MB each of RAM and NAND flash, and offers partial Arduino compatibility. You also get HDMI, Fast Ethernet, and three USB ports.

 

SavageBoard

  • Company/project — Poslab Technology
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX6 Solo, DualLite, or Quad (1x, 2x, or 4x Cortex-A9 @ 1GHz); Vivante CG880 GPU
  • Memory — 512MB (Solo) or 1GB DDR3 RAM; 4GB (Solo) or 8GB eMMC
  • Price — $59 (Solo); $79 (DualLite); $99 (Quad)

The aging, but recently revised, Wandboard now has direct competition from the similarly configured, i.MX6 based SavageBoard. The 125 x 95mm SBC is larger than the Wandboard and lacks the Wandboard Quad’s 2GB of RAM, but it’s $20 cheaper. Unlike the Wandboard, the SavageBoard offers onboard eMMC storage, although it lacks the Wandboard’s second microSD slot. Among other differences, the SavageBoard’s SDIO/UART connected WiFi and Bluetooth module is a $35 option whereas wireless is standard on the DualLite and Quad WandBoards. The SavageBoard lacks the Wandboard’s user-available mini-PCIe slot, as well as its S/PDIF audio interface, although it does provide MIPI-DSI in addition to HDMI and MIPI-CSI ports. Other features are similar, including a GbE port, 2x USB 2.0 ports, micro-USB OTG port, and COM and audio ports. BSPs are available for Android 6.0, Yocto Project, and Arch Linux. Poslab also has posted a page on its website for an apparently open source HobbitBoard. The SBC is said to be available, but has no price or shopping page. The HobbitBoard is nothing like Wandboard.org’s former Brillo-on-i.MX6 UltraLite based board of the same name, now rebranded as an Android Things based PICO-IMX6UL-KIT SBC (see blurb farther above). The HobbitBoard is based on the SavageBoard, but with a different mix of features.

 

Seeeduino Cloud

  • Company/project — SeeedStudio
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Qualcomm Atheros AR9331 (1x MIPS 24kc @ 400MHz); Atmel ATmega32u4 MCU @ 16MHz
  • Memory — 64MB RAM; 16MB flash; 32KB flash for MCU
  • Price — $70

SeeedStudio’s Seeeduino Cloud Arduino Yun clone is a variation on its Seeeduino Arduino clone, and similarly adds Arduino support and the ability to connect the company’s Grove sensor and I/O add-ons. By integrating Dragino’s HE computer-on-module, the Seeeduino Cloud provides a Yun-like Atheros AR9331 WiFi subsystem that runs OpenWrt Linux. Other features include 10/100 Ethernet, USB host, micro-USB, 20x DIO pins, 7x PWM channels, and 12x analog inputs. Like the Seeeduino, the Seeeduino Cloud eases the interface between Arduino firmware and complex web services, in this case via a YunBridge library that delegates all network connections and processing of HTTP transactions to the Linux machine.

 

Tinker Board

  • Company/project — Asus
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Rockchip RK3288 (4x Cortex-A17 @ 1.8GHz); Mali-T760 GPU
  • Memory — 2GB LPDDR3 RAM
  • Price — $60

Asus’ Tinker Board is the first open spec hacker SBC from a major PC manufacturer, and the first Rockchip-based hacker board with a Raspberry Pi style size, layout, feature set, and 40-pin connector. The RPi 3 is $25 cheaper, but the Tinker Board has advantages like a faster, although still 32-bit, RK3288 SoC, a more powerful Mali T760 GPU, twice the RAM, and GbE instead of Fast Ethernet. It also supports upscaled 4K/30fps playback. RPi3-like features include WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0, and 4x USB 2.0 ports plus microSD, micro-USB, HDMI, MIPI-CSI, and MIPI-DSI interfaces. A community site is available with a forum and schematics, 2D and 3D drawings, and other open-spec resources. The only currently available image is the Debian-based, LXDE desktop ready TinkerOS, but Android support is in the works.

 

Udoo Neo

  • Company/project — Udoo (Seco)
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX6 SoloX (1x Cortex-A9 @ 1GHz); Cortex-M4 MCU; Vivante GPU
  • Memory — 512MB DDR3L RAM (1GB on Plus version)
  • Price — $49.90 (Basic) $59.90 (Extended), $64.90 (Full)

Like the larger Udoo Quad/Dual SBCs, the IoT-focused, 85 x 59mm Udoo Neo runs Linux or Android on a Cortex-A9-based i.MX6. The Neo, however, is optimized for the single-core i.MX6 SoloX variant, tapping its Cortex-M4 MCU to mimic an Arduino. The specs differ slightly from the Kickstarter package referenced in the news link above. The Udoo Neo Basic provides Ethernet, microSD, USB host, micro-USB OTG, micro-HDMI, LVDS with touch, and a Parallel camera interface. There’s also an Arduino connector, as well as GPIO, UART, CAN, PWM, I2C, and SPI interfaces. For $10 more, the Neo Extended bumps the RAM to 1GB, adds 3-axis motion sensors, and replaces Ethernet with a WiFi/Bluetooth module. The Neo Full is identical to the Extended, but offers both Ethernet and wireless.

 

Udoo Quad / Dual / Dual Basic

  • Company/project — Udoo (Seco)
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX6 Quad or DualLite (4x or 2x Cortex-A9 @ 1GHz with Vivante GPUs); Atmel SAM3X8E Cortex-M3 MCU
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $99 (Dual Basic); $115 (Dual); $135 (Quad)

Seco’s Udoo project offers three SKUs for its flagship Udoo board. They all measure 110 x 85mm, and are enhanced with a Cortex-M3 based Arduino Due subsystem. The Udoo Dual Basic and Udoo Dual provide the dual-core i.MX6 DualLite while the Quad has the quad-core i.MX6 with a higher-end Vivante GPU. The Dual Basic supplies microSD, HDMI, LVDS with touch, audio, and CSI connections, along with dual USB host and dual micro-USB ports, one of which is OTG. There are 76 GPIO pins in addition to the Arduino interface. The Udoo Dual adds WiFi and GbE connections, and the Quad also adds SATA.

 

Udoo X86

  • Company/project — Udoo (Seco)
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Intel Braswell quad-core SoCs (Basic: Atom x5-E8000 @ up to 2.0GHz; Advanced and Advanced Plus: Celeron N3160 @ up to 2.24GHz; Ultra: Pentium N3710 @ up to 2.56GHz); Intel Gen 8-LP GPU
  • Memory — 2GB (Basic) or 4GB (Advanced/Plus) or 8GB (Ultra) DDR3L RAM; 32GB eMMC on Advanced Plus and Ultra
  • Price — Basic $125; Advanced $149; Advanced Plus $165; Ultra $259)

The delayed, Kickstarter-backed Udoo X86 SBC finally shipped to backers in March, and is now publicly available. All but the $259 Ultra version with a quad-core Atom X5-E8000 are eligible under our $200 limit. This is the most fully open source of any of the new wave of third-party, non Intel/AMD backed x86 hacker board projects. Since our initial coverage, Seco’s Udoo project has added a Pentium N3710 based “Ultra” version with 8GB RAM and 32GB eMMC. The N3710 is from the same 14nm Intel Braswell family as the Advanced versions’ Celeron and Basic models’ Atom. The SoCs range from 5-6W TDP power consumption, which is low for the x86 world. The Udoo X86 also includes an Intel Curie chip with a Quark MCU. The feature list on this 120 x 85mm device is too extensive to cover here, but highlights include M.2, SATA III, HDMI, 2x DP, wireless, and GPIO. It runs Linux, Android, and Windows 7/8.1/10.

 

UP board

  • Company/project — Aaeon; UP Community
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Intel Atom x5-Z8350 (4x Cherry Trail @ 1.44GHz/1.92GHz burst); Intel HD 400 Graphics
  • Memory — 1GB, 2GB, or 4GB DDR3L RAM; 16GB, 32GB, or 64GB eMMC
  • Price — $89 (1GB/16GB), $99 (2GB/16GB); $109 (2GB/32GB); $129 (4GB/32GB); $149 (4GB/64GB)

The UP board shipped in time for our 2016 survey, but we disqualified it for its lack of open source compliance. Like the more powerful UP Squared (see below), and upcoming, small-footprint UP Core version of the UP board, the original UP is not backed up with full schematics. Yet, the UP Community now offers far more extensive documentation, including some schematics, as well as open source downloads, and goes beyond the typical “community” site in offering tutorials and support. The UP board runs Yocto Project or Ubuntu Linux, Android 5.0, or Windows 10 on a quad-core, 1.44GHz/1.92GHz Atom x5-Z8350 of the 14nm Cherry Trail generation. Various memory configurations are available up to a a $149 4GB RAM, 64GB flash version, and 4GB is also available on the Up board inside the Intel RealSense Robotic Development Kit. The 85.6 × 56.5mm board not only looks like a Raspberry Pi, but it offers a 40-pin expansion bus via an Altera MAX V CPLD that is said to provide RPi 2 compatibility. The UP features 16GB eMMC, a GbE port, a USB 3.0 OTG port, 4x USB 2.0 ports, and two more USB 2.0 headers. The board is further equipped with HDMI, DSI, CSI, I2S, and eDP interfaces.

 

UP Squared

  • Company/project — Aaeon; UP Community
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Intel Celeron N3350 (2x Apollo Lake @ 1.1GHz/2.4GHz) or Pentium N4200 (4x Apollo Lake @ 1.1GHz/2.5GHz); Intel Gen9 HD 500/505 graphics; Altera Max 10 FPGA
  • Memory — 2GB, 4GB, or 8GB LPDDR4; 32GB eMMC 5.0, expandable to 128GB
  • Price — $145 (Celeron with 2GB/32GB), $169 (Celeron with 4GB/32GB), $219 (Pentium with 4GB/32GB), or $269 (Pentium with 8GB/64GB)

The “Up2” (or “Up Squared”), which may be the most powerful hacker-friendly single board computer around, began shipping to Kickstarter backers only last week. It features dual-core Celeron or quad-core Pentium SoCs from Intel’s latest Atom-like “Apollo Lake” generation, although the Pentium SKUs are beyond our $200 limit. As noted in the UP board blurb above, the UP SBCs are not fully open source, but they come close. The 90 x 86mm Up Squared offers 4K video encode and decode, dual GbE ports, dual HDMI outputs, a SATA interface, M.2 support, and mini-PCIe expansion. You also get eDP, dual MIPI-CSI, 3x USB host ports, a micro-USB 3.0 OTG, and both a 60-pin GPIO and a 40-pin interface tied to an Altera Max 10 FPGA. OS support includes Linux (Ubuntu, Ubilinux, Yocto), Android Marshmallow, and Windows 10 IoT Enterprise.

 

USB Armory

  • Company/project — Inverse Path
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX53 (1x Cortex-A8 @ 800MHz)
  • Memory — 512MB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $123 (with USB host adapter); $112 (100 Euros) without

This tiny (65 x 19mm), Crowd Supply funded SBC for secure computing applications features Trustzone security, USB emulation, and a secure boot feature that lets users apply verification keys that ensure only trusted firmware can be executed on a specific device. The fully open source USB Armory is limited to two real-world ports: a USB 2.0 OTG port and a microSD slot, but you can extend that with the adapter. Surprisingly, this thumbdrive-style SBC supports Android, as well as Linux. A 10-Euro host adapter is required for stand-alone rather than USB stick mode.

 

Wandboard Reload

  • Company/project — Wandboard.org; Technexion
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — NXP i.MX6 Solo, DualLite, or Quad (1x, 2x, or 4x Cortex-A9 @ 1GHz); Vivante GPU
  • Memory — 512MB (Solo) 1GB (Dual), 2GB (Quad) DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $79 (Solo); $99 (Dual); $129 Quad

The venerable Wandboard, a modular, sandwich-style, COM+baseboard assembly featuring a replaceable compute module, was recently updated as a Wandboard Reload. The pricing is identical and the feature set is much the same. The Wandboard Reload adds the i.MX6 QuadPlus as an alternative to the Quad model, bringing an improved Vivante GC2000+ GPU. The SBC’s WiFi has been updated to 802.11ac and Bluetooth to 4.1 BLE. There’s a new PMIC, and Wandboard.org has fixed an HDMI EDID + CEC problem. Features include dual microSD slots, analog and S/PDIF audio, plus GbE, HDMI, camera, serial, USB, and USB OTG connections. The Dual lacks the Quad’s SATA connection, and the Solo also foregoes the WiFi and Bluetooth found on the Quad and Dual. The Wandboard now has head-to-head competition from a similar SavageBoard (see blurb farther above.)

 

Z-turn Board

  • Company/project — MYIR
  • LinuxGizmos coverage
  • Product page
  • Processor — Xilinx Zynq-7010 or -7020 (2x Cortex-A9 cores @ 667MHz, plus FPGA) or optional Zynq-7020
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • Price — $99 (7010) or $119 (7020)

The Z-turn Board runs Linux on the Xilinx Zynq-7010 or -7020, which combine dual Cortex-A9 cores with different levels of FPGA circuitry. The 102 x 63mm SBC features HDMI, GbE, and dual mini-USB ports, as well as a variety of sensors, buzzers, switches, buttons, and LEDs. Dual 80-pin expansion connectors express the FPGA signals, and can be configured as LVDS pairs. A $139 kit version adds a power adapter, cables, and a 4GB data card.

 

2017 Hacker SBC Survey References


 

(advertise here)


Print Friendly, PDF & Email
PLEASE COMMENT BELOW

2 responses to “Catalog of 98 open-spec, hacker friendly SBCs”

  1. LinuxGizmos says:

    Note: If you use this link to the quick reference spreadsheet instead of the one in this post you can perform some simple read-only operations, and can also download the spreadsheet in various formats including pdf, xlsx, etc.

  2. Andrew Borisov says:

    Hello!
    Add please single board computer Omega2.
    See more information https://onion.io/omega2/

Please comment here...