There’s no shortage of single-board, low-power computers on the market these days. But several years after launch, the Raspberry Pi is still probably the most popular. It’s just hardly the most powerful.
So what’s a Raspberry Pi lover who wants a bit better performance to do? How about buying a board with more memory, a faster processor but a virtually identical layout to the original Raspberry Pi and compatibility with pretty much every Raspberry Pi add-on boards and peripherals?
Meet the Banana Pi.
While the Raspberry Pi features a 700 MHz single-core Broadcom BCM2835 ARM11 processor, the Banana Pi has a 1 GHz Allwinner A20 dual-core ARM Cortex-A7 processor.
The Raspberry Pi has up to 512MB of RAM, and the Banana Pi has 1GB.
The Banana Pi features an SD card slot, HDMI and composite video jacks, a 3.5mm audio jack and built-in microphone, Gigabit Ethernet, 2 USB 2.0 ports, a micro USB port for power, an IR receiver, and Raspberry Pi compatible headers including a 26-pin header, camera connector, and more.
In other words, it should be pretty easy to use most Raspberry Pi-compatible hardware with a Banana Pi — but the Banana Pi offers more processing power and more memory, which could come in handy whether you’re looking to build a home theater PC, a general purpose computer, or a hardware prototyping system.
The official Banana Pi website has some typos and non-working links, which doesn’t inspire a lot of confidence in the project. But if you’re interested in picking one up, it’s available from several sellers at AliExpress for around $57 and up.
Update: Looking for something a little different? Solid Run plans to launch a similar device, but with a Freescale i.MX6 processor. It’s called the Hummingbird.
via CNX Software