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$65 hacker board runs 64-bit Linux on quad-core Atom

Jan 19, 2016 — by Rick Lehrbaum 18,009 views

[Updated: 11:00PM] — The Linux- and Android-friendly “JaguarBoard” SBC, based on a 64-bit quad core Atom processor, has achieved 600 percent of its Kickstarter funding goal.

Hong Kong-based Jaguar Electronic HK’s successful Kickstarter campaign for a $65 “JaguarBoard” SBC based on the quad-core Intel Atom Z3735G processor will end on Jan 22, having conjured up more than six times its modest $3,000 funding goal. Manufacturing of the first batch of boards is in process, with first shipments expected to go out within a few weeks, says the company. Once the Kickstarter project closes, the retail price is expected to rise to $79.

JaguarBoard with its included heatsink
(click image to enlarge)

Last year, we saw the arrival of the first sub-$100 hacker oriented 64-bit ARM single board computers, including the $75 Lemaker version of Linaro’s HiKey board, Qualcomm’s $75 DragonBoard 410c, and Pine64’s $15 Pine A64.

Aaeon’s quad-core
x86-based “Up”

(click to enlarge)

Until now, the only x86-based SBCs available in the $100-or-less price range have been Intel’s MinnowBoard Max, based on a single-core Atom E3800, and Aaeon’s Raspberry Pi form-factor Up Board, which uses the quad-core Atom x5-Z8300 processor from Intel’s 14nm Cherry Trail line. Since both these boards sell for about $100, Jaguar Electronic is positioning its $65 JaguarBoard as the least expensive x86-based alternative to low cost 64-bit ARM SBCs like the HiKey and DragonBoard.


Relative to ultra-low-cost ARM SBCs like the Raspberry Pi and others, Jaguar Electronic suggests that the premium you pay for the JaguarBoard is justified by the fact that it can run mainstream, continually updated 64-bit Linux distros like Ubuntu, Debian, and Red Hat, as well as standard versions of Windows 8.1 and 10 (32-bit only). Also, embedded developers who aren’t already familiar with ARM architecture won’t need to invest the time and effort in learning something new before putting the JaguarBoard SBC to work on a project, adds the company in its promotional video.

Another view of the JaguarBoard
(click image to enlarge)

In addition to its 64-bit, quad core Atom Z3735G processor, from Intel’s 22nm Bay Trail line, the JaguarBoard gives you 1GB of DDR3L RAM memory and 16GB of on-board eMMC flash storage. There’s also an SDIO 3.0 socket that accommodates up to 32GB (or 64GB, depending on which JaguarBoard page you read) of removable flash. As shown below, the board’s coastline connectors include HDMI out, three USB 2.0 ports, a 10/100Mbit Ethernet RJ45 port, and power one side. The opposite side has a pair of 3.5mm jacks for audio in and out.

JaguarBoard details
(click image to enlarge)

Other I/O signals, available on pin headers, are a pair of 2-pin COM ports (RTS/CTS only), an I2C interface, and a group of four GPIO lines. The board also has three push-buttons, for convenient control of volume and power.

Jaguar Electronic lists the following specifications for the JaguarBoard SBC:

  • Processor — Intel Atom Z3735G (4x 64-bit cores @ 1.33GHz / 1.83GHz burst)
  • Memory/storage:
    • 1GB DDR3L RAM
    • 16GB eMMC flash (on-board)
    • Expansion — 1x SDIO 3.0 slot, for up to 32GB flash
  • Graphics:
    • GPU — integrated Intel HD graphics
    • Display interface — HDMI 1.4 @ up to 1080p
  • Networking — 10/100Mbps
  • Other I/O:
    • 3x USB 2.0
    • Audio — stereo audio out, mono (mic) in, via 2x 3.5mm jacks
    • 2x UART ports (RTS/CTS only)
    • 1x I2C
    • 4x GPIOs
  • Buttons — volume up/down, power
  • Power:
    • Consumption — 5V DC @ 7 to 7.5W (via 2.5mm jack)
    • Included power adapter — 110 or 220 VAC in, 5VDC @ 10W out
  • Dimensions — 102 x 65mm
  • Operating systems — Linux (64-bit), Android, Windows 8.1/10 (32-bit only)

Further information

The JaguarBoard is currently available for pre-order for $65 at its Kickstarter page, but note that the campaign ends Jan. 22. After the Kickstarter campaign ends, the retail price is expected to rise to $79, according to an email we received from the company. Additional details may be found at Jaguar Electronic HK’s JaguarBoard website.

(advertise here)

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2 responses to “$65 hacker board runs 64-bit Linux on quad-core Atom”

  1. bernstein says:

    lattepanda is not yet available & a bit more expensive (was $79, now $89), but the $25 gets you cherry trail soc, 2GB ram, 32GB nand, usb3, wifi+bt, integrated arduino.

  2. Hubbububba says:

    Waste of processor power, the bottleneck is still going to be the I/O. At least one SATA port is needed, a real gigabit internet too.

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