Author Topic: 9$ computer  (Read 20898 times)

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Offline frenky

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9$ computer
« on: May 08, 2015, 11:39:06 am »
What do you guys think of this?
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1598272670/chip-the-worlds-first-9-computer

Make video:


I wanted to pledge at 9$ but shipping to SLO (EU) is 20$ so to me that is a deal breaker...
 

Offline janoc

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2015, 12:03:19 pm »
Don't bother. For what they advertise it for (office, games, etc.) it is underpowered (A13 and 512MB RAM is really low for Linux and that type of workload) and most likely similar modules will show up on Aliexpress/Alibaba later. Moreover, you will wait a year (at least) to get one, according to their schedule.

The only thing going for this is the cuthroat price - the A13 SoCs alone sell for about $5/piece, so I am not sure how they are planning to fit everything into that $9 price point ...
 

Offline Wh1sper

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2015, 12:03:44 pm »
The Pocket thingy sounds cool
 

Offline donotdespisethesnake

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2015, 01:26:31 pm »
The only thing going for this is the cuthroat price - the A13 SoCs alone sell for about $5/piece, so I am not sure how they are planning to fit everything into that $9 price point ...

That puzzles me too - I will wait and see on this one.
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Offline frenky

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2015, 01:39:48 pm »
This might explain the price:
Quote
At the same time they were meeting with Allwinner and explaining their aspirations for a dirt-cheap computer, Allwinner was looking to redesign their successful A13 processor in a new, smaller form factor as a cheaper system-on-chip. It is this new chip, called the R8, that Next Thing received early access to and used in its board design.
http://makezine.com/2015/05/07/next-thing-co-releases-worlds-first-9-computer/
 

Offline Prime73

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2015, 01:41:11 pm »
I was excited at first. however and it turns out for a $9 thingy they ask $20 shipping (to Canada). I'll pass...
and that's how they probably make it "cheap"
« Last Edit: May 08, 2015, 01:42:54 pm by Prime73 »
 

Online lutkeveld

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2015, 02:21:43 pm »
That's only with international shipping, as pointed out in the FAQ. They're working on it.
Don't know why a simple envelop would cost so much to ship.....
 

Offline dr.diesel

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2015, 03:00:11 pm »
They claim completely open with Allwinner,  :-DD  :-DD  :-DD  :-DD  :-DD  :-DD  :-DD  :-DD  :-DD


Offline free_electron

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2015, 03:07:42 pm »
and wait for the 'binary blob' shitstorm to commence ...
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Offline notzippy

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #9 on: May 08, 2015, 08:45:53 pm »
I was excited at first. however and it turns out for a $9 thingy they ask $20 shipping (to Canada). I'll pass...
and that's how they probably make it "cheap"

Ditto here, I was like WTF I clicked the $9 pledge didn't I ....
 

Offline rickey1990

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #10 on: May 08, 2015, 09:46:06 pm »
Good price, but tbh little bit too small for me, I have a ongoing project with a old sega master system, using a £22 banana pi http://www.aliexpress.com/item/2015-New-Single-Board-Computer-Hardware-Product-Accessary-Dual-Core-1GB-DDR3-Banana-Pi/32271121792.html , project wise iv found it great, at first i only wanted a retro gaming console then i went abit over the top :o.



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Offline FrankenPC

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #11 on: May 09, 2015, 06:08:55 am »
I like the screen/keyboard shield.  That brings it up to about $50 if I read that right.

Here's the thing...  For $25 I can go to Ebay and find a really good used cell phone.  First one I found:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Motorola-Droid-X2-MB870-verizon-smartphone-clean-ESN-black-/141187012224?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item20df66d680

$25 dollars.  A TON of toys in one compact package!  High powered processor.  Internal flash.  Camera.  Insane touch screen.  Built in battery.  Every type of radio conceivable.  It's so much for so little.  All we need is something USB/Bluetooth-y to act as a I/O interface and you have a fantastic Linux based platform. 

It seems to me that we should all be looking at how we can keep recycling all these consumer electronics for hobby/robotics use.  Save the environment.  Have real hardwarepower. 
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Offline EEVblog

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #12 on: May 09, 2015, 07:51:31 am »
Don't know why a simple envelop would cost so much to ship.....

a) Not legal to ship as a letter
b) They won't survive
 

Online lutkeveld

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #13 on: May 09, 2015, 07:58:18 am »
How about those packets that fit through the mailbox?
 

Online mikeselectricstuff

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #14 on: May 09, 2015, 08:54:24 am »
At that price they must be getting the SoC for nearly free - my guess is the manufacturer is dumping their over-production  before it gets replaced by a newer version.

I really don't see the point in doing something that cheap - nobody can be  making any money out of it, and it hurts the market in general by being unfair competition. I almost hope they discover that they are actually losing money and it all goes tits-up, as an example to others.
For most people buying 1-offs for hobby use it wouldn't make a difference whether it was $9 or $19.

A simple solution to the shipping cost issue is to sell packs of 5 - cost would be little or no more, and buyers could effectively become local micro-distributors by selling on to friends & colleagues.
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Offline janoc

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #15 on: May 09, 2015, 05:47:13 pm »
How about those packets that fit through the mailbox?

Those may not be standard world-wide. For example, I know that the French post doesn't allow the "Lettre Max" (or what used to be called that way) to be sent abroad, those were offered only for local French service.

So they may not have a choice, really, only to send as a small package - and that can cost arm and leg internationally even for small packages, unless you are sending a lot of it and have special deal with the shipping company/postal service. So $20 for overseas shipment with insurance and tracking is not really that unusual, at least if they are getting normal retail rate.
 

 

Offline abigbell

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #16 on: May 10, 2015, 01:53:07 pm »
9$ computer! no shit.

and I like the PDA style, like the $500 blackberry passport .

toy price deserve a toy functionality. you really can't expect too much from that.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2015, 08:43:34 am by abigbell »
 

Offline Fantasma25

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #17 on: May 10, 2015, 04:33:05 pm »
It would be cool to make a portable sampler module (like this one http://www.roland.com/products/soniccell/) with it
 

Offline eas

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #18 on: May 11, 2015, 01:20:43 am »
I like the screen/keyboard shield.  That brings it up to about $50 if I read that right.

Here's the thing...  For $25 I can go to Ebay and find a really good used cell phone.  First one I found:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Motorola-Droid-X2-MB870-verizon-smartphone-clean-ESN-black-/141187012224?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item20df66d680

$25 dollars.  A TON of toys in one compact package!  High powered processor.  Internal flash.  Camera.  Insane touch screen.  Built in battery.  Every type of radio conceivable.  It's so much for so little.  All we need is something USB/Bluetooth-y to act as a I/O interface and you have a fantastic Linux based platform. 

Sometimes, some people just want to be able to buy something and get started with their project. Selecting and buying a used cell phone is sort of a small project in itself, rooting the phone and installing a suitable firmware is another project. That's fine if thats the kind of project you want, but thats not what everyone wants.

It seems to me that we should all be looking at how we can keep recycling all these consumer electronics for hobby/robotics use.  Save the environment.  Have real hardwarepower.

I'm all for more re-use, but...
 

Offline jonese

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #19 on: May 11, 2015, 03:03:45 am »
Didn't AllWinner have GPL compliance issues on a past product? I don't think that was resolved. 

Not getting my money until it's been properly open sourced as promised.
 

Offline mikerj

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #20 on: May 11, 2015, 12:04:38 pm »
For most people buying 1-offs for hobby use it wouldn't make a difference whether it was $9 or $19.

Exactly this, it's just a pointless race to the bottom.
 

Offline Esposch T. Tapir

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #21 on: May 11, 2015, 12:20:31 pm »
Wow, that's actually really impressive.
Yeah, the specs are a bit shit, but it's a full computer for $9.  Compatible with old CRT TVs too.
Could see this being big in those places where people are earning $9 a day...

Even for us developed world folks, though, you get an insanely powerful micro with USB, Bluetooth, WiFi and connectors for the same cost as an Arduino.

I can see this thing being big...
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Online andersm

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #22 on: May 11, 2015, 12:26:07 pm »
These boards live and die by their support, and I'm not convinced they will be able to build a community that even approaches what the Beagle boards and Raspberries have.

Offline donotdespisethesnake

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #23 on: May 11, 2015, 02:47:59 pm »
I can see this thing being big...

Definitely, it has now appeared on BBC website. Headed for $4 million according to Kicktraq, those projections are just ballpark.

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Offline Muxr

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #24 on: May 17, 2015, 06:47:04 am »
These boards live and die by their support, and I'm not convinced they will be able to build a community that even approaches what the Beagle boards and Raspberries have.
If they can manage to survive by selling them for $9 a pop the community will spring up on its own. Just look at the ESP8266 compared to CC3200.

I doubt that $9 per unit is a sustainable business model though.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2015, 03:55:30 pm by Muxr »
 

Offline anujdeshpande

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #25 on: May 25, 2015, 11:28:46 am »
There was a pretty interesting discussion about the BOM costs for this on G+

https://plus.google.com/+ArndBergmann/posts/Mt61RznVrpm
Check out the comments.

Bottomline is that they can barely attain that price based on publicly available prices for bulk.
 

Online coppice

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #26 on: May 26, 2015, 12:40:48 am »
There was a pretty interesting discussion about the BOM costs for this on G+

https://plus.google.com/+ArndBergmann/posts/Mt61RznVrpm
Check out the comments.

Bottomline is that they can barely attain that price based on publicly available prices for bulk.
When did real bulk semiconductor prices ever become public?
 

Offline edy

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #27 on: May 28, 2015, 01:32:40 pm »
Hi guys,

I'm a sucker for this stuff. I bought an Arduino a while ago and also the first batch of RasPi when they announced it.

So I went on Kickstarter and expected to buy a CHIP for $9. But then shipping to Canada is $20! So minimum would be $29. Then I noticed you only have a crappy low-res composite video output. So I looked at getting the package with a VGA or HDMI adapter board which adds another $10 and $15 respectively.

So to get a CHIP to plug into an HDMI monitor or TV, like RaspBerry Pi, costs a minimum of $9+15+20 shipping = $44.

Then I saw the Pocket CHIP and was liking the fact that I could take it with me. But that was $49 and did not include any battery or VGA/HDMI adapter so if I wanted to use it on a TV I would still need that, and I would have to get a battery still. Add shipping and that option would have been I think about $74 because shipping goes up.

Finally I settled on "All The Things" which includes 2 CHIP boards, a VGA and HDMI adapters and a battery and a Pocket CHIP for $93, and shipping goes up to $30 so in the end I pay $123 US which in Canadian is $150-something! And with the VISA exchange and other ripoff practices they will likely overcharge on conversion fees too and foreign currency. I originally was planning to use my PayPal US account.

So at the end of a day, a $9 computer ended up costing me $150+ dollars. Go figure! And I won't get anything for 1 year! Geez!

So did I get suckered or what?  :palm:

Ok so apparently the BOM for the $9 CHIP is supposed to  be more than $9 according to many who have analyzed this. Many speculate that the shipping fee ($20 to Canada) is "padded" so they can make up some of the money in shipping. But also, the $9 CHIP is bare-bones and most anticipate that the accessories (like the VGA and HDMI adapter boards) actually are over-priced based on their BOM so it evens out. Most people will have to buy one of those boards or else they will be stuck on a low-resolution composite video out. Plus the "PocketCHIP" is also a popular addition and there is more room to pad the cost on that item as well.

So all-in-all I believe the "$9" was a marketing tactic in order to generate as much hype as possible. And yes, while you can technically function on the $9 CHIP (using composite video and some USB or Bluetooth keyboard/mice you need to buy separately anyways), most people will likely not be stopping at just the bare-bones CHIP. There may also be some corporate subsidizing going on here but it probably isn't all that much. I'm sure most of the profit-making will be on the add-ons to make the CHIP actually more usable... bringing up the price as you can see to the cost of RasPi's, although CHIP does have integrated memory and also Bluetooth/WiFi which is an advantage over the RasPi (at least the first version). The processor may be a bit under-powered but good enough for basic tasks..... You are not likely going to make a media-box out of it.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2015, 03:52:56 pm by edy »
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Offline edy

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #28 on: May 29, 2015, 09:32:49 pm »
The pledge I understand is also a support for a project but this one was decided long ago that it was going to happen, with or without my money. And since the CHIP project is way over-funded... I thought more about my pledge and decided to cancel it before it was too late.

I felt like it was too much of an impulse buy on my part... especially when after shipping and conversion rates to $CAN it was over $150+ for a product coming to me in over 1 year away. A lot can happen in that time.

So if anything, this CHIP Kickstarter just got me more interested in using what I already have.... my Arduino and RasPi. I don't want yet another board sitting collecting dust in the basement.
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Offline madires

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #29 on: June 05, 2015, 04:50:31 pm »
Some interesting news: https://olimex.wordpress.com/2015/06/05/how-to-get-in-the-news-tell-people-that-you-will-make-and-sell-something-which-cost-you-20-for-9/

So the actual price is 39$ and the 9$ kickstarter is just a promo to get media attention.
 

Offline janoc

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #30 on: June 06, 2015, 12:46:27 am »
I do wonder how they will handle the bad press that will inevitably follow once people learn that they have been duped.

These sort of campaigns sound like something a fly by night outfit that will be gone tomorrow will do, not a company that plans on actually staying around for a while.
 

Online Marco

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #31 on: June 06, 2015, 01:26:52 am »
You aren't really duped ... they never promised continued availability at that price, or continued availability at all.
 

Online Rasz

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #32 on: June 06, 2015, 02:47:49 am »
I do wonder how they will handle the bad press that will inevitably follow once people learn that they have been duped.

they will be very very sad on their walk to the bank
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Online edavid

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #33 on: June 06, 2015, 05:56:06 pm »
Some interesting news: https://olimex.wordpress.com/2015/06/05/how-to-get-in-the-news-tell-people-that-you-will-make-and-sell-something-which-cost-you-20-for-9/

So the actual price is 39$ and the 9$ kickstarter is just a promo to get media attention.

That is not news, it's just FUD.  They may screw up and not deliver, but the actual price is $9 plus shipping ($14 in the US).

BTW, they have said that the post-Kickstarter pre-order price will be the same.

 

Offline madires

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #34 on: June 06, 2015, 06:42:22 pm »
That is not news, it's just FUD.  They may screw up and not deliver, but the actual price is $9 plus shipping ($14 in the US).

BTW, they have said that the post-Kickstarter pre-order price will be the same.

I think that $9 is simply too inexpensive. And we've read too much false promises on kickstarter. Until they deliver and don't increase the price later on I'll stay sceptical.
 

Offline Howardlong

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #35 on: June 06, 2015, 07:17:33 pm »
Work the figures for yourselves, if you've ever brought a product to market you will know that this smells. The more I look at this the more I think either, at best, it's a bunch of naive hipsters with an awful lot of time and spare philanthropy on their hands, or it's a scam. Either way, it's not a $9 computer.

If it looks too good to be true etc.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2015, 07:21:16 pm by Howardlong »
 

Offline ez24

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #36 on: June 06, 2015, 07:46:31 pm »
seems to me you can do a lot with

39,560 backers pledged $2,071,927 ($50,000 goal) to help bring this project to life (dated June 6 '15).

like really make 40,000 units ?

They got 41 times the goal - maybe they can start their own company in China.   I wonder how much someone could raise with a $1.00 computer?
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Offline miguelvp

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #37 on: June 06, 2015, 08:09:35 pm »
On my count it's 48,519 units for a total of $436,671, the rest ($1,635,256) for paying kickstarter and the other peripherals that seems to have a high profit margin.

$10 LiPO Battery
$10 VGA Adapter
$15 HDMI Adapter
$40 PocketC.H.I.P.

They should be able to reach their goal even if they sold 14,623 units at a lost.

Take into account that the lost leaders where capped at 5000 units, so they decided to offer another 5000 units when the first ones were all gone, and then a third offer after that.

So they probably where running the numbers to make sure they could still offer another 5000 lost leader batches.
 

Offline Howardlong

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #38 on: June 06, 2015, 08:10:25 pm »
seems to me you can do a lot with

39,560 backers pledged $2,071,927 ($50,000 goal) to help bring this project to life (dated June 6 '15).

like really make 40,000 units ?

They got 41 times the goal - maybe they can start their own company in China.   I wonder how much someone could raise with a $1.00 computer?

Because, with your figures, each backer had pledged $52, not $9? None of them will be receiving a $9 computer.
 

Online edavid

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #39 on: June 06, 2015, 10:04:29 pm »
Because, with your figures, each backer had pledged $52, not $9? None of them will be receiving a $9 computer.

I guess you don't understand what an average is.
 

Offline Howardlong

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #40 on: June 06, 2015, 11:02:29 pm »
Because, with your figures, each backer had pledged $52, not $9? None of them will be receiving a $9 computer.

I guess you don't understand what an average is.

I re-worked ez24's own figures. What did I get wrong?

seems to me you can do a lot with

39,560 backers pledged $2,071,927 ($50,000 goal) to help bring this project to life (dated June 6 '15).

like really make 40,000 units ?


Edit to add: for the proponents of this alleged $9 computer, please feel free to show what you believe to be the cost breakdown and biz model.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2015, 11:17:17 pm by Howardlong »
 

Online edavid

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #41 on: June 07, 2015, 12:39:33 am »
Because, with your figures, each backer had pledged $52, not $9? None of them will be receiving a $9 computer.

I guess you don't understand what an average is.

I re-worked ez24's own figures. What did I get wrong?

The higher margin items like the battery may well be subsidizing the CPU boards.  That doesn't mean that some people didn't buy just a CPU.  For example, I did, so I will be receiving a $14 CPU, unless they fail to deliver.

Quote
Edit to add: for the proponents of this alleged $9 computer, please feel free to show what you believe to be the cost breakdown and biz model.

It seems a little cheaper than the Raspberry Pi 1 A+, so maybe $15 cost for the CPU?  No idea of the biz model, but I don't know that for Raspberry Pi either (nor do I particularly care).
« Last Edit: June 24, 2015, 06:17:45 pm by edavid »
 

Offline miguelvp

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #42 on: June 07, 2015, 03:34:24 am »
Yup,  14,623 got the CHIP by itself, but international shipping was a bit high and probably they still make a profit out of the S&H for each of those boards, they were able to reduce shipping but there might still break even for customers outside of the US.

But for the rest there is a catch, they can't refund the extra money for the shipping meaning that the 44% "savings" in shipping might end up in their pockets unless the customer does one of the following:

A) A fresh pledge reward tier for 5,000 C.H.I.P.s shipping in March with the new reduced shipping costs. To join this new tier, please click *MANAGE MY PLEDGE* on the campaign page and select the March C.H.I.P. tier.

B) Special treats and accessories only available via BACKERKIT post-campaign for backers who wind up with a little extra left on their pledge.

Only 627 backers chose option A, so they do keep the change :)
 

Offline bakerts

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #43 on: June 20, 2015, 05:19:32 am »
So at the end of a day, a $9 computer ended up costing me $150+ dollars. Go figure! And I won't get anything for 1 year! Geez!

So did I get suckered or what?  :palm:

I felt the same way. I went in wanting a cheap and fun new toy, but left $74 in the hole. I got the pocket chip and HDMI adapter. Also, the base level pocket chip does come with it's own battery installed.
 

Offline edy

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #44 on: June 20, 2015, 01:19:49 pm »
I'm glad I got out. I'm the sucker that got excited about getting a Pocket CHIP and by the time I was done pledged >$150 Canadian for it. Thankfully as a first time Kickstarter user I learned you can still back out if the campaign isn't over yet.

They are not shipping anything for at least a year...a lot can happen. I would rather sit on the sidelines and wait.

If I do get anything, I would rather pay for a RaspBerry Pi 2 where I know it is an organization that has helped educational goals and has some charitable projects...
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Offline ranch varment

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #45 on: June 21, 2015, 11:56:08 pm »
well if its $9 for a gig.

if you want a terrahert computer costs you $9000 and a shitload of wireless networking. :)
 

Offline hamster_nz

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #46 on: June 22, 2015, 01:51:31 am »
well if its $9 for a gig.

if you want a terrahert computer costs you $9000 and a shitload of wireless networking. :)

Strangely enough, I've just finished off a 1/8th TFPOP (Fixed Point Operations Per Second - I'm using 35-bit numbers) computer, and it cost me nothing close to that.

Since a 32-bit multiply on an ARM takes 4 cycles and the mix of math operations I use it performs in the ball-park of 1 THz of ARM cores (which would be slowed down by code jumps and load/store cycles).

It is also run by a single 36W plug pack and needs no networking 8-)

What do you want to compute that needs a THz of CPUs?
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Offline Mr.B

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #47 on: June 22, 2015, 08:00:57 am »
sounds really good doesnt it,  terrahert! :)

well, by being that wasteful and not using custom ttl,  I guess it actually even wouldnt be that fast.  its only a 1000 times 1 gig,  so its not much.
I think my gtx980 (64x32 stream processors -2048!!!!) would beat it anyway, and it only cost $800, and only worth about $350 today. :P

20c cores. hehehe

WTF...  |O
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Offline hamster_nz

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #48 on: June 22, 2015, 07:06:31 pm »
oh im sorry, you better go network a 1000 cpus at 1ghz when ive already got 2048 cuda cores at 3ghz on my little ordinary seeming little graphics card.

its just true man,  im sorry if its just too hard to understand...  :(

Man its consumer equipment but I do work on the best.  I forked out $800!!!! when it just came out,  im sorry that it wasnt price performance and its only worth about $350 now - you can get a 40x40 system for that much now the price functions rolled over, its just the truth.


Its just too hard to know that 1000 pieces of shit, cant even match one video card....

Wow man! Turn down the dial down a little!

There are definitely use-cases where 1000 small computers is better than your video card.

Easy ones:

1) Driving video wall of 30 by 30 displays (57,600 x 32,400 pixels). You could do that with 1000 little ARM boards,one strapped to each monitor. No video card would have the 4Tb/s of video bandwidth required for the screens :-)

2) With 512MB of RAM each, that gives about 0.5TB of memory which can be accessed almost instantly. This would allow you to do map-reduce queries much quicker than you could on a PC with video cards - assume that the memory bandwidth on a board is approximately the same as that of a SSD disk (see http://www.roylongbottom.org.uk/Raspberry%20Pi%20Benchmarks.htm#anchor9 for actual numbers for an actual board), this would be able to process data 1000x quicker than any SSD equipped PC could.

3) Particle simulations, where different nodes could manage the life of different sets of particles.

4) Monte carlo simulations

5) Combined I/O - As each of these boards has 4GB of NAND. On other boards NAND has around 20MB/s of bandwidth so a cluster of 1000 of these would have about 20GB/s of bandwidth from a pool of 4TB.

As an example application, a cluster of 1000 would be perfect to hold a 2TB database with the genomes of a 1000 people, and to be able to pattern match against it in under a minute.... it would be about 100x faster than a PC.
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Offline edy

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #49 on: June 27, 2015, 03:56:57 pm »
So after I backed out of this $9 computer (which came closer to $50 once you get all the bits you need to actually plug it into an HDMI TV and the high cost of shipping)... I got more interested in my Rasberry Pi sitting in my basement (which cost less). I downloaded all the main SD card images they promote and made up SD's....  NOOBS, Raspian, OpenELEC, OSMC, Pidora, RISC OS... and "rediscovered" all the fun I can have with it.

One thing I didn't know is you can use OpenELEC and OSMC to make it into a media-player that will support MP4, MKV, AVI.... all up to 1080p resolution played fine on my 40" TV! I just plugged a USB stick with movies on it and it played all the formats no problem, with fast seeking! It was faster and easier to use than my WDTV player!

This is a great substitute if I need to buy any more players to use in various installations. I can't wait to try other things with it. I imagine they will try to port stuff to the "$9" Banana computer too but will they have a big enough support community and easy images to download and run?
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Offline hamster_nz

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #50 on: June 27, 2015, 09:36:36 pm »
I imagine they will try to port stuff to the "$9" Banana computer too but will they have a big enough support community and easy images to download and run?

The support will be pretty much the same as any other Allwinner board (e.g. CubieBoard, PCduino, BananaPi... ), which is pretty good. On top of that android runs really well.
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Offline janoc

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #51 on: June 28, 2015, 07:36:57 pm »
I imagine they will try to port stuff to the "$9" Banana computer too but will they have a big enough support community and easy images to download and run?

The support will be pretty much the same as any other Allwinner board (e.g. CubieBoard, PCduino, BananaPi... ), which is pretty good. On top of that android runs really well.

That something is running the same CPU as some other wildly popular board does not mean that the support will be any good. You wouldn't be able to run PCduino or BananaPi images on this without (significant) modifications, despite the same/compatible CPU.

Someone needs to be actually preparing those SD Card images, maintaining and updating the software on them and actually be hosting the distribution. That is a LOT of work. The worst thing that can happen is that half-broken card image with obsolete software is released and never updated - as is frequently the case. The community can fix that only if there is a sufficient critical mass of users volunteering to do the unpaid work - which isn't that common. Apart from the Raspberry Pi and perhaps the BeagleBones none of these boards has a self-sustaining community behind it - most of the work is up to the company manufacturing the board. And if they do their job poorly, the support will suck.

 

Online Rasz

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #52 on: June 29, 2015, 05:12:19 am »
I imagine they will try to port stuff to the "$9" Banana computer too but will they have a big enough support community and easy images to download and run?

The support will be pretty much the same as any other Allwinner board (e.g. CubieBoard, PCduino, BananaPi... ), which is pretty

pretty shit actually :) allwinner = gpl violations left right and center
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Offline hamster_nz

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #53 on: June 29, 2015, 05:46:46 am »
I imagine they will try to port stuff to the "$9" Banana computer too but will they have a big enough support community and easy images to download and run?

The support will be pretty much the same as any other Allwinner board (e.g. CubieBoard, PCduino, BananaPi... ), which is pretty good. On top of that android runs really well.

That something is running the same CPU as some other wildly popular board does not mean that the support will be any good. You wouldn't be able to run PCduino or BananaPi images on this without (significant) modifications, despite the same/compatible CPU.

Someone needs to be actually preparing those SD Card images, maintaining and updating the software on them and actually be hosting the distribution. That is a LOT of work. The worst thing that can happen is that half-broken card image with obsolete software is released and never updated - as is frequently the case. The community can fix that only if there is a sufficient critical mass of users volunteering to do the unpaid work - which isn't that common. Apart from the Raspberry Pi and perhaps the BeagleBones none of these boards has a self-sustaining community behind it - most of the work is up to the company manufacturing the board. And if they do their job poorly, the support will suck.

You must use yours for different things than I do - I always found that the Raspberry Pi's USB, ethernet and audio was a piece of junk - skipping audio, dropping Ethernet packets and latching up, where as my PCduino spent many years as a well behaved web-attached MP3 jukebox without a hitch.

Hi-def video playback on the CubieBoard under Android was pretty good - much better than the Pi+Linux at the same time, and it had a SATA port for storage.

I currently use a CubieBoard running Linux to run some of the USB instruments on my bench - it is the size of a small multimeter and runs on a USB charger, and I don't have to clear a space for the laptop. Having on-board NAND for the OS is a bit of a bonus too. Meanwhile my Raspberry Pi is in a bottom draw somewhere.

These boards also have the benefit that the average community is much more capable - Google usually gives an intelligent answer, not endless newbie posts.
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Offline Howardlong

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #54 on: June 29, 2015, 07:39:44 am »
As I understand it, the USB stack on the original RPi was a bit questionable, and the Ethernet comes off that. While there were fixes, the USB was never perfect. When we had difficulty getting one of my products working on it, it turned out there was a limitation on it that limited full speed USB device performance. My understanding is that the USB stack was done in the GPU and so I don't know if it was open source or not.

In the end I released a version of firmware to deliberately restrict the bandwidth required by my device, but of course at the cost of reduced performance.

The new v2 RPi doesn't have this problem.
 

Offline janoc

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #55 on: June 29, 2015, 03:19:08 pm »

You must use yours for different things than I do - I always found that the Raspberry Pi's USB, ethernet and audio was a piece of junk - skipping audio, dropping Ethernet packets and latching up, where as my PCduino spent many years as a well behaved web-attached MP3 jukebox without a hitch.
...
These boards also have the benefit that the average community is much more capable - Google usually gives an intelligent answer, not endless newbie posts.

You are missing my point - I was not commenting on the quality of the hw support or the amount of bugs in the sw but on its availability. Big difference. You could have the best board in the world but it is going to be completely useless unless someone is actually publishing updated Linux/Android/whatever distributions for it. Which takes a lot of effort and resources.

Whether or not RasPi has better or worse performance than PCduino or Cubieboard or whatever is a completely different issue.

PS: My RasPi is driving my 3D printer over wifi just fine  :-//

« Last Edit: June 29, 2015, 03:21:27 pm by janoc »
 

Offline edy

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Re: 9$ computer
« Reply #56 on: June 30, 2015, 09:31:30 pm »
Just to add to the RaspBerry Pi version 1 usability..... I recently downloaded and wrote SD Card images for both the latest OSMC and OpenElec (both linked from the RaspBerry Pi web site) and they will play movies right off an attached USB stick, no problem. Seems the codec support is good enough to handle most of my media (AVI, MKV, MP4). No skips or frame drops. I played larger 1280p type files too! I expected slow frame rates or problems with seeking through scenes but it forwarded and reversed without any issues.

That *was not* the case originally a few years ago when I first got my RasPi and tried playing their "Big Buck Bunny" video using the mpeg player in the Linux distro at the time. It was choppy, and then I heard they were going to make you pay for codecs because they were not GPL or licensed or something. I was worried I would never be able to play smooth videos on the RasPi. Obviously it was not the hardware.... It was the software. It was not optimized or the drivers were not tweaked properly.

But as you can see, the amount of support for the RasPi community and many talented people were able to customize and create images for everything from a number of Linux, RISC OS and other distributions, several MAME-type SD Cards.... All free and easily available for download and easy to write to an SD Card. Will the $9 computer have the same support? We just don't know. Time will tell.


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