The Raspberry Pi isn’t the only single-board computer in town, and the folks at Hardkernel have been making some impressive alternatives for years.

The new ODROID-C4 is a pretty good example. It’s a $50 mini computer with a 2 GHz Amlogic S950X3 quad-core ARM Cortex-A55 processor, 4GB of RAM, Gigabit Ethernet, HDMI 2.0, 4 USB 3.0 ports, and a Raspberry Pi-compatible 40-pin header.

In other words, it’s $5 cheaper than a Raspberry Pi 4 with the same amount of RAM and according to Hardkernel it scores higher in at least some benchmarks. But there are some trade-offs.

For example, the latest Raspberry Pi computers include WiFi and Bluetooth. You’ll need to use an optional USB adapter to add those features to an ODROID-C4.

And while the Raspberry Pi 4 has two micro HDMI ports and a USB-C port, the ODROID-C4 has just a single full-sized HDMI port and a micro USB port.

On the other hand, all of its USB Type-A ports support USB 3.0 speeds, while two of the Raspberry Pi’s ports are USB 2.0. And the ODROID-C4 has optional support for eMMC storage modules, while the Raspberry Pi series computers use only microSD cards for their primary storage. Hardkernel’s board also comes with a heat sink.

You can find detailed specs for the ODROID-C4 at Hardkernel’s website, but here are some highlights:

  • Dimensions: 85mm x 56mm x 1mm
  • Weight: 59 grams (including heat sink)
  • Processor: Amlogic S905X3 12nm, 2 GHz ARM Cortex-A55
  • Graphics: Mali-G31 MP2 @ 650 MHz
  • RAM: 4GB DDR4
  • Storage: eMMC (8GB to 64GB) and/or microSD card (up to UHS-I)
  • Networking: Gigabit Ethernet
  • Video: HDMI 2.0 (up to 4K@60Hz with HDR, CEC, EDID)
  • Audio: HDMI and optional SPDIF
  • USB: 4 x USB 3.0 + 1 micro USB 2.0
  • Other I/O: 40-pin header + 7-pin audio expansion header + IR receiver
  • Power: DC jack (12V/2A power adapters recommended)

The ODROID-C4 supports Android and Linux and there are currently builds of Ubuntu 20.04 and Android 9 Pie available for download from the ODROID Wiki.

via CNX-Software


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2 replies on “$50 ODROID-C4 is a single board computer with 4GB RAM, quad-core ARM Cortex-A55 processor”

  1. After my experience with Odroid C2, I am going to pass on this one. Doesn’t appear to have a hardware/software feature that justifies the time investment.

    1. I think for ultra-low-power stuff that only need a lightweight Linux kernel running, the Arduino Nano is best. The Raspberry Pi Zero-W is a good alternative if you’re planning on portability.

      For some low-power stuff for Linux software development, the Raspberry Pi 4B is best. The ASUS Tinker Board-S is an alternative.

      For mesium-performance stuff for home-use case the Odroid N2 is the best. A good alternative is to use the Atomic Pi, which is x86 based.

      For better Stock Firmware, you’re better off getting the Nvidia Shield TV instead of the above options for Android. And for better value, you’re better off getting a USED Intel NUC (which has a Core i3 chipset) for Windows10 support.

      If you want even more performance than that, on ARM, you’re going to have to go for an Android Ex-flagship Phone. And for x86 you’re going to have to go for a SFF/mITX Desktop PC that you build yourself.

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