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Odroid-N2 SBC launches at $63 with new Cortex-A73 SoC

Mar 27, 2019 — by Eric Brown — 3235 views

Hardkernel’s open-spec Odroid-N2 SBC has gone on sale for $63 (2GB RAM) or $79 (4GB). The SBC runs Ubuntu or Android on an Amlogic S922X with 4x 1.8GHz -A73 and 2x 1.9GHz -A53 cores.

As promised, the Odroid-N2 has gone on sale for $63 (2GB DDR4 RAM) or $79 (4GB), with shipments beginning April 3. Like another hotly anticipated community-backed SBC that’s due to launch publicly in the next week or so — Seco’s AMD Ryzen Embedded V1000-based Udoo Bolt — the Odroid-N1 features a powerful new system-on-chip that has yet to appear on an open-spec hacker board: the Amlogic S922X.



Odroid-N1 with heatsink (left) and within black case
(click images to enlarge)

The specs for the Odroid-N2 appear to be the same as those we detailed in February when the SBC was formally announced. Judging from the high traffic we received for the story, there’s considerably interest in the N2. Partially, this is due to the high marks Hardkernel’s Odroid project has received for quality in hardware, software, and support.

Odroid fans have waited a long time since the last Arm-based Odroid, although the impressive, Intel Gemini Lake based Odroid-H2 launched in November. They waited even longer than expected since Hardkernel shelved its Rockchip RK3399-based Odroid-N1 before it came out due to sourcing issues.

Another reason for the interest may be the new Amlogic S922X SoC that replaced the RK3399 while offering somewhat similar hexa-core specs. Yet the 12nm fabricated S922X appears to be much faster than the ubiquitous RK3399. Hardkernel has posted benchmarks that claim around 20 percent faster CPU performance than the RK3399-driven N1. The inclusion of a substantial metal heatsink and the placement of the SoC and RAM on the bottom of the board enable top speeds “without thermal throttling,” says Hardkernel’s Odroid project.

Instead of the RK3399’s 2x Cortex-A72 and 4x -A53 cores, the S922X offers 4x 1.8GHz Cortex-A73 cores and 2x 1.9GHz -A53 cores. It’s equipped with an even more advanced Arm Mali GPU with a Mali-G52 equipped with 6x 846MHz EEs.

The Odroid-N2 is available with 64-bit Ubuntu 18.04 LTS with Linux 4.9.162 LTS and Android 9 Pie “with full source code BSP and pre-built image together.” Since the Mali G52 GPU is so new, there are still limitations to its Linux driver. However, as reported by CNXSoft, Hardkernel has finally released its promised userland Mali-G52 Wayland driver. It has some problems on the current Linux 4.9 platform but works fine with new Linux 5.0.



Odroid-N2 detail view (see legend farther below)
(click image to enlarge)

The 90 x 90 x 17mm Odroid-N2 has a microSD slot and an empty eMMC socket that supports up to 128GB. There’s a GbE port and an optional USB WiFi adapter that fits into one of the 4x USB 3.0 host ports.


Legend for detail view above
(click image to enlarge)

Other features include a micro-USB OTG port, a composite A/V jack, and an HDMI 2.0 port with [email protected] with HDR, CEC, and EDID support. An SPDIF digital audio output is optional. The 40-pin expansion header is similar to the Raspberry Pi-like, Amlogic S905 (quad -A53) based Odroid-C2.

There’s a wide-range 7.5-20V DC jack, and power consumption is listed as 1.8W idle to 5.5W CPU stress. Also onboard are an RTC with battery, a serial console interface, and an IR receiver. There’s still no listed temperature range, and a cooling fan is optional. (For a spec list and other details, see our previous Odroid-N2 report.)

 
Further information

The Odroid-N2 has gone on sale for $63 (2GB RAM) or $79 (4GB) with shipments beginning April 3. More information may be found on Hardkernel’s $63 (2GB RAM) and $79 (4GB) shopping pages and the Odroid-N2 wiki.

 

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