H5 wishlist

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fvolk
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H5 wishlist

Post by fvolk »

Let's keep with the tradition and wish what features would be useful for a future H5...

* Staggered spin-up logic/configuration for SATA disks to lessen startup strain on PSU: viewtopic.php?p=384378#p384378

* 24V compatible for industrial use: viewtopic.php?p=374321#p374321

* I still want: USB-C with DP-alt video capability - to quickly attach a small, portable USB-C monitor, with just one USB cable carrying power+signal, for quick debugging of headless servers

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Re: H5 wishlist

Post by mad_ady »

USB-C with DP-alt video capability
I wonder - If I were to add a usb-a male to usb-c female adapter and plug in a usb-c dongle with hdmi/display port out into a regular usb-3 port, would video out work? From what I'm reading, the "alternate mode" used by usb-c has nothing to do with usb, and are special-purpose lines for video data, is this correct?

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Re: H5 wishlist

Post by fvolk »

mad_ady wrote:
Sun Apr 21, 2024 5:14 pm
USB-C with DP-alt video capability
From what I'm reading, the "alternate mode" used by usb-c has nothing to do with usb, and are special-purpose lines for video data, is this correct?
It is only specified for USB-C? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USB-C#Alternate_modes
And the video signal from the GPU needs to be wired to the respective port, too. (does that need an additional chip?)
An Alternate Mode dedicates some of the physical wires in a USB-C cable for direct device-to-host transmission using non-USB data protocols, such as DisplayPort [...] The modes are configured using vendor-defined messages (VDM) through the configuration channel.

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Re: H5 wishlist

Post by hominoid »

How about a standard form motherboard, either Mini-STX(140mm x 147mm, I/O shield 123.95mm x 40mm) or even a Mini-ITX(170mm x 170mm, I/O shield 158.75mm x 44mm) with a reduced height heatsink and I/O components for a standard fit. The extra size of the either would provide the real-estate to use lower I/O connectors and standard cases. A Nano-ITX comes in at 120mm x 120mm but the PCB hole pattern is different then the H4 series and it's not clear to me that there is any standard for the I/O on a Nano-ITX.

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Re: H5 wishlist

Post by mctom »

I think that PCB surface area plays a significant role in production cost, worth remembering.
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Re: H5 wishlist

Post by hominoid »

I understand but it is also worth noting that lost opportunity and the lack of synergy comes with a cost as well, as we have already seen. If cost and hence price is the only or most worthwhile metric then we are simply in a race to the bottom, devoid of innovation and progress. There is also an environmental cost, as we are starting to experience, due to the lack of a multi-purpose approach, recycling and re-usability, who’s cost is even great and will effect us in ways that are only starting to become evident and will continue to get worse for multiple generations. IMO we cannot continue to spew out products with no consideration to the multiple direct and indirect long term costs by doing business as usual. Things have now fundamentally changed and regardless of one’s current opinion, it is only a matter of time before everyone clearly understands this point, unfortunately.

IMO and others, the weakest point of Hardkernel’s product line are their cases. How many man hours and other human and material resources are used in their current approach and at what cost? How about the cost of e-waste and the cost to their customers? Lost synergy has a direct impact on cost and productivity, but it can be easily captured by fore thought and long-term planning. What if the H5 case could be deployed in their ARM SBC product line and reused for both x86 and ARM future products? What is the savings and benefits of such cross product development and deployment as far as it relates to real company capital requirements, human resources, material cost and goodwill to the protection of our only known habitable environment?

For years as an Executive in the industry and as an investor, I have heard CEO’s talk about product margins and short term profits while totally ignoring or transferring many of the other real costs that impact their business. We must start to consider all costs, not just the ones that matter to margins and short term profits. As an analogy: Imagine someone who gets a cut on their finger and was to cheap or lazy to dress it or use an antibiotic, but the infection gets worse and they loose their finger or their arm or they die of sepsis. How much was the savings? IMO, that is the real world situation we are all in now. We either put a band-aid on the thing or suffer the consequences.

Here is one possible dual use example from the upcoming SBC Case Builder 3.0 release. A Mini-STX dual-use case for x86 and ARM SBC. It also holds two 2.5” drives under the chassis. I believe the synergy as well as the human and material savings from this kind of approach will significantly offset the additional cost of a larger PCB while providing other benefits to both HK, their customers and the world at large. I’ll have more examples when SBC Case Builder 3.0 is released in the near future.
    Odroid-M1S and UPS in a Mini-STX Case.jpg
    Odroid-M1S and UPS in a Mini-STX Case.jpg (220.64 KiB) Viewed 372 times
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    mctom (Mon Apr 22, 2024 4:29 am)

    fvolk
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    Re: H5 wishlist

    Post by fvolk »

    hominoid wrote:
    Mon Apr 22, 2024 4:15 am
    A Mini-STX dual-use case for x86 and ARM SBC. It also holds two 2.5” drives under the chassis.
    I already suggested in 2022 to reuse the ASRock DeskMini Mini-STX cases: viewtopic.php?p=361271#p361271

    There are now 7 models of 5 generations of DeskMinis on the market,
    with the oldest being thrown out - or sold for very cheap when the mainboard dies.
    The case and PSU could be reused - if there was an H-series to mini-STX mod-kit.

    For illustration of size (sorry for photo and I was too lazy to remove the spacers)
    stx1.jpg
    stx1.jpg (33.98 KiB) Viewed 360 times
    stx2.jpg
    stx2.jpg (25.11 KiB) Viewed 360 times

    hominoid
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    Re: H5 wishlist

    Post by hominoid »

    That’s wonderful and a good idea. Hopefully you and others will find some use for SBCB v3.0 once released. It currently includes the ability to produce adapters and custom I/O shields for SSI-EEB, SSI-CEB, ATX, Micro-ATX, DTX, Flex-ATX, Mini-DTX, Mini-ITX, Mini-ITX-Thin and Mini-STX cases for all SBC included in SBC Model Framework. It also includes the ability to go the other way and produce standard form cases for preexisting motherboards for all the above and additionally the Nano-ITX, NUC and Pico-ITX motherboards...with some caveats for the last three due to non-standard I/O layouts.

    During my research I also saw older A100, A200 and A300 DeskMini systems for less then a new case, which should be a bonanza for those interested in this approach. Unfortunately at approximately 11mm, due to the dual channel memory connectors on the bottom, the H2 and H3 will not fit many cases unless the case happens to have an opening in the base plate at that location - one could always make an opening though - get your Dremels fired up! The standard standoff for these cases is 6mm which barely allows the new H4 to use them and there may be cases that the HK Mini-ITX adapter won’t work if that space is violated in anyway by the case manufacturer. The H4 memory holder is 5.1mm which leaves little clearance. But hey, we know that all manufactures always follow the standards exactly and if they don't, a Dremel can fix that too.

    fvolk
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    Re: H5 wishlist

    Post by fvolk »

    hominoid wrote:
    Mon Apr 22, 2024 6:56 am

    During my research I also saw older [...] DeskMini systems for less then a new case, which should be a bonanza for those interested in this approach.
    [...]
    The standard standoff for these cases is 6mm which barely allows the new H4 to use them
    An old dead DeskMini can be bought for ~30-50 EUR, case and PSU. Now comparing that to H-PSU and H-case price of Odroid distributors....

    ~3 EUR for a power 5.1<->5.5 adapter.
    And then you would need a mod-kit for board placement, a backplate, cabling for power switch, leds, ...

    Yeah, the H3 is thicker at the bottom, but the H4 has only one ram and should be thinner? Hmm...

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