Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby Fred From France » Sun Jul 30, 2017 8:23 pm

elatllat wrote:The ROCK64 is looking nice so I hope odroid will do something to prevent the 2 WIPs from being underwhelming.

This post was first created few days before 2015 Christmas. ..
Except a passive heatseek introduced with Q version. Hardkernel devs dedicated to XU platforms seem to be into a frozen period.

Shall we have to create a post to vintage classified architectures with XU4 as main target?
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby crashoverride » Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:51 am

I agree that HardKernel should post some updated information about their product road map. At the least, I would like to know what SoC is used and which quarter it should be expected (4Q2017 ?).

The XU4 and C2 were revolutionary. The XU4 was one of the first boards to offer 8 cores and USB3. The C2 was one of the first boards to offer 64bit and 4K. However, this generation of SoC are evolutionary. There is nothing ground breaking about any of them. They are simply small improvements over what we currently have. For this reason, we can already speculate what will be offered, and I believe the need for secrecy is more diminished than it was in the past. My concerns are more about having information to guide my decisions that I am making today for what I will be doing in the near future. I can not align my plans with a vendor unless I know something about the vendor's plans. ;)
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby hugolp » Mon Jul 31, 2017 3:49 pm

crashoverride indeed. Plus mobile Ryzen APU's are also coming late this year and they could nicely compete with some ARM segments depending on power consumption.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby odroid » Mon Jul 31, 2017 4:18 pm

I agree too.
We will release our road map within 2~3 weeks. ;)
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby Fred From France » Tue Aug 01, 2017 2:42 am

odroid wrote:I agree too.
We will release our road map within 2~3 weeks. ;)


Here we use to say: "promises only bind those who believe in them".
so let see!
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby hugolp » Tue Aug 01, 2017 3:18 am

Using libreboot or having libreboot compatibility for the xu5.

I know at least one rockchip ARM soc that uses coreboot/libreboot, so it would be great if Hard kernel could look into using or at least having compatibiliylty with libreboot for its devices.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby Fred From France » Tue Aug 08, 2017 6:55 am

hugolp wrote:Using libreboot or having libreboot compatibility for the xu5.

I know at least one rockchip ARM soc that uses coreboot/libreboot, so it would be great if Hard kernel could look into using or at least having compatibiliylty with libreboot for its devices.

regarding actual upgrade period (how long to get the Q release that is a passive heatsink), it shouldn't be for next decade...
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby indium » Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:33 am

hugolp wrote:Using libreboot or having libreboot compatibility for the xu5.

I know at least one rockchip ARM soc that uses coreboot/libreboot, so it would be great if Hard kernel could look into using or at least having compatibiliylty with libreboot for its devices.

you are advertising this thing extensively. i understand it, you have gotten a task, and work hard. but tell me why a serious hardware vendor should align with such a moronic thing. why ordinary users, normal ones, not FSF-brain washed should care about it? "having libreboot compatibility". what on this planet, should this mean? should HK make some ritual of consecration to become "libreboot compatible"? Eat Stallman's toe cheese? :lol:
according to wikipedia, these guys smoke a very strong weed:
According to its own documentation, it can work with any Linux distribution that uses kernel mode setting (KMS) for the graphics, while Windows is not supported and its use is discouraged by Libreboot. Support for BSD is largely untested, with some successful reports while booting OpenBSD and NetBSD.

whoa? who the hell they think they are? Nirvana? :lol: they "discourage" me? you f&&ing idiots do decide what you are doing - writing firmware or giving shitty advices noone asks. I can't stand that impudence. having zero useful featues to propose (at least to say, because it smells that dealing with their shit is a whole PITA for those unfortunate, believed their fairy tales about "libre" shit), only those fanatic bullshit, bald spam-like promotion and ovearall arrogance, they are really sick there? c'mon, man.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby hugolp » Wed Aug 09, 2017 5:04 pm

indium wrote:you are advertising this thing extensively. i understand it, you have gotten a task, and work hard. but tell me why a serious hardware vendor should align with such a moronic thing. why ordinary users, normal ones, not FSF-brain washed should care about it? "having libreboot compatibility". what on this planet, should this mean? should HK make some ritual of consecration to become "libreboot compatible"? Eat Stallman's toe cheese? :lol:


Are you feeling ok?
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby mad_ady » Wed Aug 09, 2017 5:25 pm

I've just seen a talk about coreboot - an open source BIOS replacement for Intel platforms and they state the reasons why "firmware" should not be trusted: https://media.ccc.de/v/33c3-8314-bootst ... #video&t=8
Near the end there's a question about ARM platforms (around 35:40) and the guy states that since ARM platforms don't have all of BIOS's legacy code they have a smaller attack surface and are safer, implying that there's no real need to implement something "libre" (there's a chain of trust from the moment of boot, bootloader load/initialization, OS load).

The problem with Intel platforms and BIOS/UEFI is that they may execute code from Option ROMS from various subsystems (like network, dongles) which can lead to serious attacks: https://trmm.net/Thunderstrike
Also, Intel platforms have broken management which can control anything your computer does (inject/receive packets on the network, record/inject keystrokes, etc).
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby hugolp » Wed Aug 09, 2017 5:39 pm

mad_ady wrote:I've just seen a talk about coreboot - an open source BIOS replacement for Intel platforms and they state the reasons why "firmware" should not be trusted: https://media.ccc.de/v/33c3-8314-bootst ... #video&t=8
Near the end there's a question about ARM platforms (around 35:40) and the guy states that since ARM platforms don't have all of BIOS's legacy code they have a smaller attack surface and are safer, implying that there's no real need to implement something "libre" (there's a chain of trust from the moment of boot, bootloader load/initialization, OS load).

The problem with Intel platforms and BIOS/UEFI is that they may execute code from Option ROMS from various subsystems (like network, dongles) which can lead to serious attacks: https://trmm.net/Thunderstrike
Also, Intel platforms have broken management which can control anything your computer does (inject/receive packets on the network, record/inject keystrokes, etc).


Yes, Intel BIOS/UEFI are all kind of fucked up and ARM equivalents are not so bad, but it is always good to not have to trust the company and have an open source firmware.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby mad_ady » Wed Aug 09, 2017 5:44 pm

I'm guessing that's rather impossible with SBCs, mostly because you no longer have physical access to all chips, since they are all sandwiched together and use BGA so you can't intercept pins easily. Maybe you could do it with jtag - override the CPU during boot and inject your own instructions, but it's cumbersome. But I do agree, it's a noble attempt, and somebody should pursue it - but it should come from the vendors.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby hugolp » Wed Aug 09, 2017 6:06 pm

mad_ady wrote:I'm guessing that's rather impossible with SBCs, mostly because you no longer have physical access to all chips, since they are all sandwiched together and use BGA so you can't intercept pins easily. Maybe you could do it with jtag - override the CPU during boot and inject your own instructions, but it's cumbersome. But I do agree, it's a noble attempt, and somebody should pursue it - but it should come from the vendors.


I own a Chromebook C201 and I have flashed libreboot on it. You can do it using jtag, but I did not have to (I would not know how to, nor do I have the cable). I could flash the firmware using software. I had to mingle with the hardware to remove a screw that blocks the firmware from being modified and adding the screw back once libreboot was installed and tested. So I am guessing the same could theoretically be possible with other chipsets. The C201 uses an ARM Rockchip SoC. The advantage is that it uses Coreboot as its firmaware, so creating an open source version was relatively simple.

I agree that it should come from the vendors and SoC developers. But you have to start somewhere, if clients do not ask for it, vendors might not even know we are interested. And it should not be a big deal for vendors really. I bet a lot of them use Coreboot already like Rockchip.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby Fred From France » Sun Aug 13, 2017 9:41 am

To come back to next evolution that's aging for years, competitors deliver new sbc that are interesting :
http://www.cnx-software.com/2017/07/02/the-first-amlogic-s912-development-board-is-coming-soon-with-khadas-vim2/
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby tchiwam » Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:39 pm

The 3GB of ram is interesting, the rest including the 4 cores is a bit less...
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby hugolp » Sun Aug 27, 2017 2:02 pm

odroid wrote:I agree too.
We will release our road map within 2~3 weeks. ;)


Any update?
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby armandob » Mon Aug 28, 2017 10:48 pm

Any Update ?
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby odroid » Mon Aug 28, 2017 11:19 pm

We have no firm plan yet.
I hope we can disclose our road map in October.
Sorry for the delay.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby mad_ady » Tue Aug 29, 2017 2:50 am

HC1 and MC1 should keep us busy until then :)
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby wqcr » Mon Sep 04, 2017 5:35 am

XU5 should have (any) variant of 14nm CPU, possibly Exynos 7880 or other Snapdragon 625 equivalent and 4GB of RAM or more.
5422 runs WAY hotter than necessary, and considering my S625 equipped phone outperforms 5422 on both performace and efficiency even with hugely inferior thermal dissipation design.
7880 (and 4+GB RAM) would shift XU5 into an actual PC replacement category ;) unlike the rest of COBs.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby memeka » Mon Sep 04, 2017 6:58 pm

There are many new boards that support PCIe now. But for some reason, they expose either mini-PCIe or M.2 interfaces, or there are more interfaces connected to the PCIe internally.

Personally, I think having a single PCIe port (not mini) would be the best - there are a lot of PCIe cards that could be used to provide a lot of functionality that would make such a board useful in many edge cases. For example, you could connect a GPU (with "real" OpenGL), dedicated GPGPU/accelerator, a video processing card, 10Gb eth card, 4 (maybe even 8) SATA adapter, 4 (maybe 8) extra USB3, RAID, SAS ... lots of possibilities...

I also like the SoM approach more and more ... why not make a small SOM, then different carrier boards? Since the XU4-MC1 is nearing release, I must say I like better the approach in the SoPine cluster board - https://www.cnx-software.com/wp-content ... -Large.jpg - just having 1 power and 1 network port makes management so much easier!

In conclusion, I would really like a XU5 series with a small SOM, multiple carrier boards, and one of the carrier board having as-fast-as-possible PCIe port (and maybe another having multiple SoMs + network switch + why not even an integrated KVM switch - or at least 2xUSB2 switch :D)
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby crashoverride » Tue Sep 05, 2017 12:09 pm

I have found that both mini-PCIe and M.2 are not suitable for modern ARM SBCs (with 4 PCIe lanes). The mini-PCIe standard includes USB and only allows for up to 2 PCIe lanes. The M.2 standard allows for USB, SATA, and 4 PCIe lanes, but only storage devices support it. While PCs typically have a generous amount of USB/SATA ports, ARM boards do not have enough to "waste" on a slot that may or may not be used.

The issue with using a standard PCIeX4 slot is power. It requires many voltages (including 12V) with high current. Most ARM boards do not use 12V and are low current.

There is only one connection standard that I know of that meets all the requirements: Thunderbolt 3. It provides 4 lanes of PCIe and is low power. Its also the only connector that can be implement in compliance with standards. The mini-PCIe and M.2 on ARM boards that I have seen are non-standard "hacks" meaning they will only work with select devices.

Using a carrier board approach (module), would allow a compromise. A mini-ITX carrier board with a PCIe16X slot (using only 4 lanes) and a PC power supply could be made meeting the connector and power requirements. However, at this scale (size) and price point, its likely better/cheaper to just use a x86 mini-ITX board instead.

I believe that Thunderbolt 3 is the best path forward. The main drawback currently is cost. Broad market adoption in PCs will be needed to drive the cost down. Until that time, we will need a cost analysis to determine which of the other options is "second best".

[edit]
A possible suggestion is to place a M.2 slot on the main board instead of making it a SoM (module). Then a custom base board with PCIe16X and ATX power supply connector could be offered. The two boards would connect via the M.2 slot providing all 4 PCIe lanes.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby memeka » Tue Sep 05, 2017 2:37 pm

Yeah i know power is an issue ... can't there be a separate power for pcie?
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby elatllat » Tue Sep 05, 2017 5:43 pm

AFAIK
Code: Select all
Gbps,     V,     A,     Specification
  10,     5,   0.5,     USB 3.1
  20,    20,     3,     USB 3.2
  40,    18,   0.5,     Thunderbolt 3
 252,    12,     3,     PCIe
Last edited by elatllat on Wed Sep 06, 2017 1:25 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby Francisco » Wed Sep 06, 2017 12:37 am

I think silence is a big buying factor at the SBC market.
Some peolple buy an XU4Q and puts it near a normal (and quieter) fan as this post shows: https://forum.odroid.com/viewtopic.php?f=93&t=26855&hilit=survive&start=100#p197995

HC1 metal frame is also a good pasive and massive heatsink.
I have seen also some SBC builder that sells their boards screwed to a metal board underneath, separated 5 mm, but with one part ot it touching the SoC.
Please, consider these options when designing your next boards. Some people would prefer to have a big metal frame (or box) and no need to put the new board besides a fan.
Last edited by Francisco on Wed Sep 06, 2017 11:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby hugolp » Wed Sep 06, 2017 2:24 am

elatllat wrote:AFAIK
Code: Select all
Gbps,     V,     A,     Specification
  10,     5,   0.5,     USB 3.1
  20,    20,     3,     USB 3.2
  40,    18,   0.5,     Thunderbolt 3
 252,    12,     3,     PCIe


USB 3.2 can deliver 60W (20V * 3A)? Up from 2.5W of USB 3.1. That seems massive.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby wqcr » Wed Sep 06, 2017 8:15 pm

crashoverride wrote:I have found that both mini-PCIe and M.2 are not suitable for modern ARM SBCs (with 4 PCIe lanes). The mini-PCIe standard includes USB and only allows for up to 2 PCIe lanes. The M.2 standard allows for USB, SATA, and 4 PCIe lanes, but only storage devices support it. While PCs typically have a generous amount of USB/SATA ports, ARM boards do not have enough to "waste" on a slot that may or may not be used.

The issue with using a standard PCIeX4 slot is power. It requires many voltages (including 12V) with high current. Most ARM boards do not use 12V and are low current.

There is only one connection standard that I know of that meets all the requirements: Thunderbolt 3. It provides 4 lanes of PCIe and is low power. Its also the only connector that can be implement in compliance with standards. The mini-PCIe and M.2 on ARM boards that I have seen are non-standard "hacks" meaning they will only work with select devices.

Using a carrier board approach (module), would allow a compromise. A mini-ITX carrier board with a PCIe16X slot (using only 4 lanes) and a PC power supply could be made meeting the connector and power requirements. However, at this scale (size) and price point, its likely better/cheaper to just use a x86 mini-ITX board instead.

I believe that Thunderbolt 3 is the best path forward. The main drawback currently is cost. Broad market adoption in PCs will be needed to drive the cost down. Until that time, we will need a cost analysis to determine which of the other options is "second best".

[edit]
A possible suggestion is to place a M.2 slot on the main board instead of making it a SoM (module). Then a custom base board with PCIe16X and ATX power supply connector could be offered. The two boards would connect via the M.2 slot providing all 4 PCIe lanes.


There's one more interface which supports 3.3V and would offer PCIe-x1 3.0 connection - ExpressCard
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby memeka » Wed Sep 06, 2017 8:20 pm

The idea was to have a very fast interface, faster than USB3.
PCIe x4 = 16gb/s, faster than USB3.1; ExpressCard is slower than USB3.0 :)
Also to have an interface that is useful, i.e. there are a lot of devices to connect to it. There aren't a lot of useful ExpressCard devices :)
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby wqcr » Wed Sep 06, 2017 8:29 pm

memeka wrote:The idea was to have a very fast interface, faster than USB3.
PCIe x4 = 16gb/s, faster than USB3.1; ExpressCard is slower than USB3.0 :)
Also to have an interface that is useful, i.e. there are a lot of devices to connect to it. There aren't a lot of useful ExpressCard devices :)

USB 3.1 = old USB 3.0 with a new name
Also in the above specs USB 3.1 should be 5V 0.9A = 4.5W

Thunderbolt is super expensive, everything using it is expensive too - even cables. Expresscard with single lane PCIe 3.0 can realistically provide 10Gbps, approx 1GiB/s transfer rates. Why would you need more on ARM board? Even eMMC can't utilize such speeds.
Not to mention there are hundreds of expansion cards for Expresscard (just look on eBay or into Delock catalogue), from network, sound to I/O cards.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby nobe » Wed Sep 06, 2017 9:10 pm

@memeka

As far as i can tell, the XU3/4 series momentum has gone towards minimizing price (+ form factor with HC1/MC1) and maximizing sales volume.

It seems your wish is a device which looks like MacchiatoBIN from SolidRun (~350-500$, excluding taxes).
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby elatllat » Wed Sep 06, 2017 11:50 pm

Be the first to make a SBC with Thunderbolt 3 compatible with an eGPU and get some Unity/Unreal/etc game running.
Make a cheap (~$50) ROCK64 clone (4k+USB3+>4GB) +drivers workstation replacement.
1up by using a MSM8998 if it can be done for cheap (<$100).

Whatever happens it will all be obsolete in a few decades (keeping faith with the evolution of electronics :).
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby crashoverride » Thu Sep 07, 2017 11:58 am

elatllat wrote:Be the first to make a SBC with Thunderbolt 3 compatible with an eGPU and get some Unity/Unreal/etc game running.

I think the more compelling use case is GPU neural network training / compute. This is the area Nvidia targets with modern Tegra chips: low cost + high compute.

Another possibility is to break out the PCIeX4 into 4 PCIeX1 slots for crypto currency mining ASICs.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby elatllat » Thu Sep 07, 2017 1:53 pm

Modern versions of ASICs and CUDAs are already integrated with CPUs so they don't require a separate computer, even if one scales up. I really think desktop replacement is the way to go. Or maybe there is a security perspective to take advantage of; https://youtu.be/KrksBdWcZgQ
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby hugolp » Thu Sep 07, 2017 5:28 pm

wqcr wrote:Also in the above specs USB 3.1 should be 5V 0.9A = 4.5W


Even then. Jumping from 4.5W to 60W seems massive. Are we sure the data on USB 3.2 is correct?
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby armandob » Tue Oct 10, 2017 3:55 pm

odroid wrote:We have no firm plan yet.
I hope we can disclose our road map in October.
Sorry for the delay.

now we are in October.... are there news ?
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby elatllat » Thu Nov 09, 2017 12:23 pm

meveric wrote:...Cavium ThunderX...

http://www.cavium.com/ThunderX_ARM_Processors.html
wow, I wonder what the price of the 48 core version is.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby odroid » Thu Nov 09, 2017 2:26 pm

Qualcomm's 48 core server CPU(Centriq 2460) seems to be around US$2000. :o
https://www.cnx-software.com/2017/11/09 ... xeon-socs/
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby mad_ady » Thu Nov 09, 2017 3:29 pm

Two MC1s would beat that in core count and price :)
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby nobe » Thu Nov 09, 2017 7:24 pm

unfortunately, you can't fit 768 GB RAM & 32 PCIe Gen3 lanes in two MC1s :p
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby elatllat » Fri Nov 10, 2017 12:44 am

odroid wrote:Qualcomm's 48 core server CPU(Centriq 2460) seems to be around US$2000. :o
https://www.cnx-software.com/2017/11/09 ... xeon-socs/

So per core it's $41 vs ~$2 for the XU4 but with way better performance (due to cache size and speed).
To bad that article did not mention the 8 core option; guess it's not available yet.

Though really if odroid just made a rock64 clone I'd buy a few because I like odroids Linux/Ubuntu support, unlike pines community only stance.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby elatllat » Sun Nov 19, 2017 12:06 am

Even the "Google Home Mini" has "4 GB SDRAM" and it does not even have a display, just "256 MB NAND flash".
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby mornhavon » Wed Nov 22, 2017 5:52 am

odroid wrote:We have no firm plan yet.
I hope we can disclose our road map in October.
Sorry for the delay.

Since we're nearing the end of November, do you have an update on the road map?
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby Fred From France » Mon Nov 27, 2017 10:49 am

The roadmap is to sold out 5422 stock first, I've created this post 2 years ago and 2014's exynos is still their premium item. Nothing new. HC1/MC1 appear with downsized board and downgraded scopes also.
But nothing about 64 bits nor dual gb/s usb3 type c or 4-8 GB of RAM...

Hardkernel is confirming their bottom left magic cadran affinity in a Gartner reports...
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby rooted » Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:47 am

What other SoC with this much processing power is on kernel 4.14.y?

Meaning why would we want a new SoC with some antiquity 3.y.y kernel when this is just getting good.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby elatllat » Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:19 pm

rooted wrote:What other SoC with this much processing power is on kernel 4.14.y?

Meaning why would we want a new SoC with some antiquity 3.y.y kernel when this is just getting good.


Yah I keep watching https://forum.pine64.org/showthread.php?tid=5043 hoping someone will compete ayufans work.
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby Fred From France » Tue Nov 28, 2017 8:52 am

elatllat wrote:
rooted wrote:What other SoC with this much processing power is on kernel 4.14.y?

Meaning why would we want a new SoC with some antiquity 3.y.y kernel when this is just getting good.


Yah I keep watching https://forum.pine64.org/showthread.php?tid=5043 hoping someone will compete ayufans work.

The price is not exactly the same thant HK's but with item included and a student price list it fit my budget Nvidia/TX2:
and Linux Kernet is also realy up to date
https://developer.nvidia.com/embedded/linux-tegra
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Re: Which List for Next Gem (XU5)

Unread postby elatllat » Fri Dec 08, 2017 7:54 am

Rockchip with GNU support on the way
https://libre.computer/products/boards/roc-rk3328-cc/
And ddr4.
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