In front of the abundance of computer hardware for prototyping small multimedia servers, robotics and electronics, we take a look around and select fresh development boards and present them to you in a compact overview. Every release keeps you engaged and helps makers to learn and build experimental multimedia servers, robots and electronics as well.
A new valuable 64-bit ARM single board computer is ODROID-C2, a quad-core Linux development board released by Hardkernel. Currently, the development board is priced at $40 and planned for release starting in March 2016.
Behind The Design
The ODROID-C2’s dimensions are pretty the same as ODROID-C1+, which means that the board is 85 mm long and 56 mm wide. The surface of the board looks like a city map in miniature with boulevards, buildings and a lot of parks. Despite other single board computers such as Raspberry Pi 2, ODROID-C2 is designed with components on both sides. If the main side of the board hosts the processor, two DDR3 SDRAM(2x512MB) modules, connections, the 40-pin header, sensor; on the other side, it features two DDR3 SDRAM(2x512MB) modules, the MicroSD card slot and the eMMC module socket.
When your robot or any other project works on batteries, the power consumption becomes an important factor in the working time calculation. ODROID-C2 claims to have in most cases a power consumption less than 500mA, and if the board is powered with USB peripherals, the consumption is up to 2A.
- On software:
The list of operating systems compatible with ODROID-C2 is impressive and includes Linux distributions such as Ubuntu, Fedora, ARCH Linux, Debian, OpenELEC, or Android.
- On performance:
In the middle of the board is placed the 2.0 GHz Amlogic S905 quad core cortex-A53 processor and half of its total of 2GB DDR3 SDRAM. The other half (1 GB) is on the back of the board. The processor is in the middle of the board for better heat dissipation, so you can run movies or play with your robot for long hours without heating problems.
- On connections:
ODROID-C2 is a board with numerous connections. For robotics and electronics, the board features 40 GPIO pins (PWM, UART, ADC, and GPIO) to interface physical devices like buttons and sensors. ODROID-C2 offers many options as a multimedia device including the HDMI 2.0 video output and four USB 2.0 host ports plus a micro USB OTG port. The board also is engineered with a Realtek RTL8211F Ethernet connection, I2S interface, LEDs for status and power, IR receiver, boot selector, and power jumper.
Odroid-C2 seems the ideal platform for small multimedia applications, robotics, and electronics. The price of Raspberry Pi 2 is $36 on Amazon, with $4 less than the Odroid-C2. For the price of a pizza, you’ll get more a powerful processor, 2GB RAM and a variety of connections.
Even More Linux Development Boards!
Here are more articles with references to three prototyping boards we’ve managed to collect so far.
- Orange Pi One
- An Introduction To Raspberry Pi Zero
- Arduino Zero Arrives With a Fast Microcontroller, More Features and Easy Debugging Tool Than UNO
The Final Point
We are regularly looking for the most valuable development boards on the market. If you have plans to release a high-quality development board, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org — we would like to support you on Into Robotics.