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MILK-V Dup 256MB - my experiences


Hello everybody,
long time without posting, now because of my illness, the boat-anchor time is over, I was was thinking of trying have some fun with the latest Chinesian developments, a board that has a very strange SOC, that has a (selectable at boot time) main core that can be an ARM A53 or a RISC-V 64bit, plus a coprocessor core that is another RISC-V a bit more modest, plus an 8051!!! as a super watchdog, so it has everything for all taste, not to mention an image processing block that if it makes 50% of what is in the data sheet, then is truly remarkable.

A very strange animal indeed this Sophon SG2002.
I've also bought two of their very cheap cameras and two of their carrier boards that have an USB switch with four !!! ports for fan-out and the 100Mbit/a Ethernet magnetics, along with a 3V3 serial header and power-only USB C connector. There are a LOT of not populated stuff, hinting at some RS-485 serial interface (?!?), we'll see during bring-up what is what.

I've got the doube duo set  ;D from their ARACHE TECH store ( that now seem to have removed the 256MB variant and only carry the 64MB ones, all other parts seem to still be available. They've delayed for two weeks because I've selected with soldered headers and only got the Duos without headers, after telling them I don't care they've even refunded me 2USD and the parcel arrived very fast in DE with regular DHL. I have to say I was STRONGLY impressed by the packaging, event the individual boards were nicely packaged (see pics).
EDIT: Now I see why the pink ones are gone, they have new models in beautiful red, Year of the Dragon Edition  ;D

I have discovered that I don't have any uSD cards that I want to delete so I've bought from a German EBAY seller a set of 4 x 64GB, for no other reason that they were a pinkish-purple color as the board, so they fit in the big scheme of things probably being Chines enough  :-DD.

The Github has the BSP&SDK based on the buildroot build system (thanks God, none of that miserable Yocto nonsense) and the image has build immediately on a vanilla Ubuntu 22.04. I'll come with another post after the uSD cards arrive, right ow I can't stay too much in semi-bipedal position  :'(.
Also a separate Sophon repository has the Datasheet and the TRM,  in alpha form but still useful, I have starting to slowly translate the datasheet to see what features are hidden inside of this peculiar chip.

In the meanwhile enjoy the pics and hopefully there are some forum members that will also have an interest in this very special CPU, finally we can make comparisons with ARM on the same silicon  ;D.


This may be of interest...

@brucehoult: That was a very unremarkable review, to not say it was totally useless out of politeness.
I know that the influencers and audience don't have any attention span anymore and the only reason this "review" has stolen 15mins of my life is most likely that the sponsors mandates a minimum length of a sponsored video to pay their sponsorship.
Otherwise in summary: [Greetings][PcbWay sponsored content][ Some ridiculously miserable attempt to boot the ARM core from the same firmware image :wtf: by fiddling with the boot-selector pin on different voltages (thanks God it had a protection resistor in series) ][Give me ideas and I give you some stuff][Outro].

Well, I had to bleach my eyes with some RISC-V and ARM boot videos just to forget that horrible fumbling with the boot pin   :palm:.

Anyways a very super-superficial review that didn't touch anything of the chip multimedia and image processing functions, the manufacturer github has some very nice utilities (number plate recognition, face and object recognition and so on).

I'm no "influecer", but I believe I can do better, even if will be mostly posts here  ;D.


Yeah, he has more misconceptions than knowledge about low level hardware. But it's one of the first if not the first video of the Duo 256M and you do get to see it in action a little bit.

The thing has more RAM and processing power than the desktop PC I had in around 2000. For just over $10.

It's not superscalar, so you need to discount the MHz a little, but it does have a 128 bit vector unit. I reckon it would give a 500 MHz PowerBook G4 Titanium 500 MHz from 2001 a good run for its money.


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