Want to build your own tablet, slap together a media center, or build an Android or Linux-based computer with one of the most powerful ARM-based chips available? The latest Arndale Developer board is one of the first devices of its type to sport a Samsung Exynos 5420 octa-core processor.

It’s available for pre-order from PyrusTek for $179, and HowChip expects to have the new board in stock soon as well.

Arndale Octa board

Samsung’s Exynos 5420 processor is an 8-core chip with 4 ARM Cortex-A15 processor cores and 4 ARM Cortex-A7 processors. Tasks can use up to all 8 cores at once, or they can use just one set of cores at a time to save power, thanks to ARM’s big.LITTLE technology.

5420

The Arndale board is aimed at developers, not casual users, and it features a range of developer-friendly features including connectors for peripherals and debugging equipment. But you could also build a pretty decent little ARM-based computer out of the board.

It features ARM Mali T-628 M6 graphics, 3GB of RAM, and support for microSD cards for storage. There’s HDMI output, line in and out ports, a USB 30 port and USB 2.0 port, and 10/100 Ethernet.

You can run Android or Ubuntu Linux on the board, and with a starting price of $179 (for early customers anyway), it’s actually cheaper than the $249 dual-core model which came out last year, and which is still available from HowChip.

The price is expected to go up to $199 for the new board after the first 1000 units are sold, but that’s still cheaper than last year’s model.

via CNX Software

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15 replies on “$179 Arndale Octa dev board features a Samsung 5420 processor”

  1. Hi,
    This board offers 8 cores working at once.
    Does it allow the user to decide which cores to run i.e pin the cores.
    Also is there any provision for data logging for power,temperature?

  2. OK just a word of caution to any budding devs out there whooping with joy at the thought of a powerful little dev board like this one. On-board radio is the little three-word phrase devs can’t help but hate. So if you’ve nothing to hide, you might well be OK with your local spiv law enforcement agency trashing your projects once they’re 90% done, but my experience of unregulated willy-nilly proxy hacking at the hands of people who’ve themselves never written a line of code suggests otherwise.

    1. You think it’s just Samsung? Benchmark rigging is a industry-wide problem. Rest assured, the Exynos 5420 is one of the very best ARM SoCs around right now. I prefer it to the Snapdragon 800, mostly because of the Mali GPU.

  3. I’m tired of using ARM boards with their crappy Linux support due to binary drivers that often never get updated for newer Linux kernels. I’m hoping the Silvermont Atoms (Avoton, Rangely and Bay Trail I) live up to their hype of comparable ARM power consumption and performance under Linux. So far, the Bay Trail T on Windows seems decent though I’m not really interested in Windows for my micro board tasks.

    With that said, does anyone know of any upcoming SBCs using one of the new Silvermont Atoms? I’m looking for gigabit Ethernet (hopefully 2), USB 3.0 and a GPIO header. I don’t need a GPU but at least a serial port for setting up Linux through a serial console is required. I’m not really interested in the 4 and 8 core chips since their reported TDPs are too high for a small embedded design meant for cramped places.

    1. I hope that Intel’s aggressive targeting of the embedded market will force ARM to develop their own USB 3.0, SD/MMC and Gigabit Ethernet controllers for use in their partners SoCs. There is some low quality IP around in these areas (I’m looking at you Synopsys) and the market could do with some cleaning up. In general Intel’s technology in these areas is superior.

  4. The board’s supported by Linaro as one of their official dev targets too.

    A big plus as far as I’m concerned.

  5. boggles my mind why it doesn’t have a 10/100/1000 network interface.

    1. Ya, it sucks that a lot of ARM SoCs don’t have gigabit Ethernet built in and require external chips to support them which results in extra cost, larger board space requirements, higher platform power, etc. The few ARM SoCs I’ve seen with gigabit Ethernet built-in peak at less than half the max gigabit speed. Although, the ones with external controllers (mostly Intel MACs and PHYs) do reach very close to the max speed.

      An example would be the Utilite device from CompuLab. The ARM SoC has a built-in GbE controller and the higher end models add a second one using an Intel chip. The built-in one peaks at 470 Mbps total for both the Tx and Rx while the Intel one doesn’t.

    2. Look at the photo again, this SoC doesn’t have ethernet, they used a USB -> Ethernet converter. They would have had to use up the one USB3 port, if there is even a cheap converter chip available.

      All of the interesting SoC products now target the tablet/phone space and ethernet isn’t included on those products.

      1. There’s a HSIC interface which could be used for Gigabit Ethernet. It wouldn’t reach gigabit speeds but it would go faster than 100 Mbit/s.

    3. or SATA, at this price.
      Worse than that, the Ethernet is probably hanging off the USB bus!

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