The Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 is a tiny computer with the brains of a Raspberry Pi 4 packed into an even smaller package with fewer ready-to-use ports. It’s designed to be used by hobbyists, developers, or companies that want to embed the module in hardware projects or use it with a carrier board that adds ports and functionality.

But at its heart, the Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 (CM4) is a computer. So maybe it’s not surprising that somebody designed a carrier board that lets use it as a desktop PC.

The Over:Board is a mini-ITX motherboard designed to make it easy to use the CM4 in any mini ITX computer case. The developer is running a crowdfunding campaign for the project and says it should be ready to ship by September (although folks who want something sooner can reserve a prototype or pre-production unit).

That said, the campaign doesn’t appear to be off to a great start with only 3 backers and $668 raised a day after launch. I suspect the starting price of £99 GBP ($134 US) may have something to do with that – I’m not sure how many folks are looking to spend that much money on an accessory for a little computer that itself sells for as little as $25.

The Over:Board carrier board measures 170mm x 170mm (6.7″ x 6.7″) and features a Rasberry Pi CM4 connectors as well as:

  • 2 x HDMI ports
  • 2 x USB 2.0 ports
  • 1 x micro USB port
  • 1 x Gigabit Ethernet jack
  • 1 x microSD card reader
  • 1 x RS-232 COM port
  • 1 x 3.5mm audio jack
  • PCI-Express slot
  • SATA connector
  • USB SATA controller
  • USB Audio controller
  • 40-pin Raspberry Pi GPIO header
  • UART header
  • CPU fan header
  • RTC with backup battery

Note that the price does not include the Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4, which you’ll need to supply. The little computer-on-a-module sells for $25 – $90 and features up to 8GB of RAM and up to 32GB of eMMC storage with optional support for WiFi 5 and Bluetooth 5.0.

via LinuxGizmos

 

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  1. I’m guessing this is geared more to someone with a very specific need to use this kind of set up with the compute module rather than just someone looking to build a cheap computer.

  2. While looking up something else, I happened upon an earlier attempt at this with this accessory for normal raspberry pis.
    While this is certainly an improvement over that, if you’ve already accepted the mini ITX form factor, this thing and other motherboards like it look like they kinda have more to offer.

    If, however, they were to make a mini-ITX board that could hold an up-to-4 Compute Module cluster, that is probably a niche not covered by anything else yet.

    1. Yup. Even the ASRock J5040-ITX (update of the very same board I’m using now) only costs $120 and has WAY more performance than a RasPi 4.

  3. To use a car analogy… this is like taking a discount car and adding performance features that double the entire cost. If the same money was used to buy a mid-range sports car, it would have been the same price with much more performance (and more reliability).
    I guess bragging rights is worth something to some people.