W. H. Heydt
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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 2:40 am

jacobchen wrote:I am a engineer in rockchip, I think you guys have a prejudice against Chinese SoC manufacturer..... :?
According to my previous experience with rpi, I don't think broadcom is more open than rockchip.......

If you have concern about mainline kernel, you will find that linux-rockchip list is one of the most busy venodr lists.
Almost all rockchip SoC can run with mainline kernel. We upstream code before even selling the chip.
We also have offical github to release our linux projects.

Just Rockchip community is not big like rpi community and most work is done by vendor.
Fair enough. While you're here, I have one basic question about whatever OS you've got for Rockchip...out of the box does it read EDID information from an attached monitor and set the resolution to appropriate values? If not, is there a straight forward, well documented, way to set the resolution parameters, such as some sort of well documented configuration file?

I happen to consider that to be pretty basic user functionality and I've found it to be missing on a number of OSes run on SBCs, with Raspbian and the Pi a notable exception that gets it right.

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 3:12 am

I hadn't been paying much attention to this thread, but after reading more of the comments, I did some poking around. I find that the Tinker (apparently) benchmarks a bit under 2x the speed of a Pi3B, has 2GB RAM, and GbE. Looking at the accompanying pictures, it has USB 2 ports. I can't see paying for a premium for this board over a Pi3B when it doesn't solve what I consider to be the one remaining bottleneck on the Pi3B. Rather, by being faster and having more RAM, it will only exacerbate the problem of connecting external storage over the USB 2 ports.

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 9:17 am

W. H. Heydt wrote:I hadn't been paying much attention to this thread, but after reading more of the comments, I did some poking around. I find that the Tinker (apparently) benchmarks a bit under 2x the speed of a Pi3B, has 2GB RAM, and GbE. Looking at the accompanying pictures, it has USB 2 ports. I can't see paying for a premium for this board over a Pi3B when it doesn't solve what I consider to be the one remaining bottleneck on the Pi3B. Rather, by being faster and having more RAM, it will only exacerbate the problem of connecting external storage over the USB 2 ports.
Yes I agree. And its an ARMv7 CPU that cannot run 64-bit (like the original Pi2). The Pi at least has a reasonably current ARM v8 CPU that can run aarch64.

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 11:07 am

jahboater wrote:
W. H. Heydt wrote:I hadn't been paying much attention to this thread, but after reading more of the comments, I did some poking around. I find that the Tinker (apparently) benchmarks a bit under 2x the speed of a Pi3B, has 2GB RAM, and GbE. Looking at the accompanying pictures, it has USB 2 ports. I can't see paying for a premium for this board over a Pi3B when it doesn't solve what I consider to be the one remaining bottleneck on the Pi3B. Rather, by being faster and having more RAM, it will only exacerbate the problem of connecting external storage over the USB 2 ports.
Yes I agree. And its an ARMv7 CPU that cannot run 64-bit (like the original Pi2). The Pi at least has a reasonably current ARM v8 CPU that can run aarch64.
Who does this benefit with these boards (interested as current Raspian 32bit is working fine for me)

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 11:29 am

That was quick, theyve sold all the stock out, which was a massive 54 last time I looked.

Still you'll get one sooner than a CM3.
And given the waits people have had for A+'s, Zero's etc (we're still waiting for the 3A+ that was 'announced' beginning of last year)

Ok they are a motherboard manufacturer, but hey it's the first few days of them.
Still with no support forum and lack of simple usage setup, it'll not gain traction with the general user until they do.
Which is what I like about the Pi's.

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 1:08 pm

The ASUS Tinker Board, seems to be well and truly a "do it yourself" project. Including the operating system?

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 1:16 pm

jacobchen,

No prejudice against Chinese SoC manufactures from me. (I wonder where the Raspi SoC is fabed anyway)

Clearly ASUS have copied the Pi form factor and architecture as best they can, with some improvements. Presumably with an intent to grab a slice of the Pi market. As such one would expect them to have an OS download to go with it already. I have yet to find one. Without that it's a bit of a no go for most people.

I guess it will come in time.

Contrast that with the Pi foundation which put it's OS image online before even launching the board!

Personally I think it's a shame they did not go for a 64 bit machine. Especially as they have bumped the RAM size.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 2:52 pm

bensimmo wrote: And given the waits people have had for A+'s, Zero's etc (we're still waiting for the 3A+ that was 'announced' beginning of last year)
Hardly "beginning" of the year. The Pi3A was mention in early March, and it was stated that it would launch *after* the CM3. Well...the CM3 has now launched so the Pi3A is next. My presumption is that the Pi3A will have to wait for enough production capacity to open up after the initial surge of CM3 orders. With a modicum of luck, the Pi3A will come out for the 5th anniversary, but I wouldn't actually count on it.

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 2:54 pm

jahboater wrote:
W. H. Heydt wrote:I hadn't been paying much attention to this thread, but after reading more of the comments, I did some poking around. I find that the Tinker (apparently) benchmarks a bit under 2x the speed of a Pi3B, has 2GB RAM, and GbE. Looking at the accompanying pictures, it has USB 2 ports. I can't see paying for a premium for this board over a Pi3B when it doesn't solve what I consider to be the one remaining bottleneck on the Pi3B. Rather, by being faster and having more RAM, it will only exacerbate the problem of connecting external storage over the USB 2 ports.
Yes I agree. And its an ARMv7 CPU that cannot run 64-bit (like the original Pi2). The Pi at least has a reasonably current ARM v8 CPU that can run aarch64.
I don't actually see that as a problem. While the *ability* to run a 64-bit OS is a "nice to have" feature, I don't see it as essential.

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 4:49 pm

W. H. Heydt wrote:
jacobchen wrote: We have two hdmi drivers, one is drm-hdmi and the other is fb-hdmi. Both of them read edid from the attached monitor.

I guesses your are using fb-hdmi. I am not familiar with fb-hdmi which is old and replaced by drm-hdmi now, so i can't answer you how to force the resolution parameters without edid.
Usually we don't recommend to force edid. Setting the resolution can be done by libdrm or xserver.
I think you read more into my remarks than was actually there. I don't have any SBCs with Rockchip SoCs. My observation about the failure to read and respond to EDID was more general than that.

As for having a way to explicitly set it...that's because not all monitors play nicely. Sometime you need to force the issue.

One the subject of China...the Pi SoCs are fabbed in Taiwan, so far as I know, the PCBs are made in China and some of the final assembly is done in China. So China is not an issue with regard to the Pi.
Assuming Farnell's Shenzhen Embest wing have all factories in PRC, then all current models bar the CM3 have been known to be made there.
Zero/A+512/B2/B3.

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 5:21 pm

Since this is the same chipset as the Asus Chromebook Flip, I wonder if it can boot the same code. Here's a link to a version of Kali Linux which boots on the Flip:

http://docs.kali.org/kali-on-arm/kali-l ... ebook-flip
The fastest code is none at all :)

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 5:58 pm

bensimmo wrote: Assuming Farnell's Shenzhen Embest wing have all factories in PRC, then all current models bar the CM3 have been known to be made there.
Zero/A+512/B2/B3.
So far as I know, Pi Zeros are only assembled in Wales. Plus, where Farnell has assembly done is irrelevant with regard to the Pi Zero as neither Farnell nor RS get them made, only the RPF does that. As for the CM3...I don't think we've seen enough of them to make that determination, though since Farnell carries them, I wouldn't rule out assembly in China.

And, of course, all this goes to the point that people here--by and large--have no issues with regard to Chinese manufacturers. Nor, I think, does anyone have any general issues with Chinese chip makers, though there are some specific issues that individuals may take exception to with particular chip companies.

The overarching concern with the plethora of new SBCs is that it has now been shown that making and selling an inexpensive SBC is the easy part. Anyone can do that. Properly *supporting* (software, toubleshooting, etc.) is a much bigger problem and it is one that the RPF has done well at and many other SBC suppliers have done poorly to extremely poorly at. One sometimes gets the impression that companies whip out an SBC and throw it out on the market hoping it will take off. At this point, that's not going to happen because the RPF has set a standard for software and support that has to be at least acknowledged even if it can't be completely. met.

It may be ironic that the RPF approach is not new. In the 1950s and 1960s, IBM sold large amounts of inferior hardware at high prices simply because they put a lot of effort into software and support.

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 8:35 pm

W. H. Heydt wrote:
bensimmo wrote: Assuming Farnell's Shenzhen Embest wing have all factories in PRC, then all current models bar the CM3 have been known to be made there.
Zero/A+512/B2/B3.
So far as I know, Pi Zeros are only assembled in Wales. Plus, where Farnell has assembly done is irrelevant with regard to the Pi Zero as neither Farnell nor RS get them made, only the RPF does that. As for the CM3...I don't think we've seen enough of them to make that determination, though since Farnell carries them, I wouldn't rule out assembly in China.t.
Going to check tomorrow where the Zero is made. I wonder if it is multi site.
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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 8:58 pm

There's been no anouncement made, but I've seen some PRC Zero in the wild for sure.

Product coming out of the Embest factory bears an 18x18 Datamatrix 2-D barcode representation of the numbers alongside. The lead number is some sort of product code. Here's the family, numbers allocated in date order by the looks of it:

Code: Select all

400601	2B
400648	A+ 256/512
400774	3B
400788	CM3(L)
400796	Zero v1.3
400819	2B v1.2
The reverse of the PRC Zero has such a barcode, and the PCB manufacturer details are printed are right-angles to the ones from Wales.

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 9:09 pm

W. H. Heydt,
In the 1950s and 1960s, IBM sold large amounts of inferior hardware at high prices simply because they put a lot of effort into software and support.
And in the 1980's, remember the IBM PC!

As a young Cambridge CS grad said to me when we took delivery of the first IBM PC: "IBM always holds up the development of computing by ten years, with this pile of junk they have done it again".

And so it was.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Mon Jan 23, 2017 10:43 pm

Cool.

A fine example of the problem.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Tue Jan 24, 2017 9:52 am

If you google for "Asus Tinker board" it seems the majority of headlines focus on the 4K video capability of this board.
Is that really the feature that will attract most potential buyers away from the PI ? Surley that's only important for the media centre builder ?
I wonder how many PI owners currently have a 4K monitor ?
It's going to take a while for the education market to upgrade to 4K.

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Tue Jan 24, 2017 10:00 am

PeterO wrote:If you google for "Asus Tinker board" it seems the majority of headlines focus on the 4K video capability of this board.
Is that really the feature that will attract most potential buyers away from the PI ? Surley that's only important for the media centre builder ?
I wonder how many PI owners currently have a 4K monitor ?
It's going to take a while for the education market to upgrade to 4K.

PeterO
I wonder how many PEOPLE have a 4k monitor/TV. I've only ever seen them in shops!
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Re: Asus Tinker board

Tue Jan 24, 2017 10:33 am

jamesh wrote:
PeterO wrote:If you google for "Asus Tinker board" it seems the majority of headlines focus on the 4K video capability of this board.
Is that really the feature that will attract most potential buyers away from the PI ? Surley that's only important for the media centre builder ?
I wonder how many PI owners currently have a 4K monitor ?
It's going to take a while for the education market to upgrade to 4K.
I wonder how many PEOPLE have a 4k monitor/TV. I've only ever seen them in shops!
And it doesn't help when you then find FAQ #17 off http://stw.asus.com/download/download.a ... n-ene&os=8
17. What type of hardware decoding does the tinker board offer
The GPU supports H.264/H.265 hardware decoder for media contents.(update coming soon)
So it doesn't do it yet.

And FAQ #26
26. What resolutions are supported for the HDMI output
The maximum HDMI output supports up to 4K/30fps, up-scaled from 1080P.
Pardon?! You can only have a 1080P display image, but it'll upscale it to 4K? That sounds pretty poor.

FAQ #30 is interesting too:
30. Can I stream Netflix
Yes
I wonder how they have managed that one with hardware acceleration whilst protecting the data.
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Re: Asus Tinker board

Tue Jan 24, 2017 10:37 am

Lots of Raspberry Pi's are sold as the heart of a mediacenter solution, bundles are popular with a price wehre the board itself is not the only part of the price (case, power, cables, remote control, sd card).

If only a fraction of the 11 million Pi's sold are sold to people with a 4K television there must be many ....

Besides, a mediacenter will live for more than a year, and 4K slowly seems to get a start according to this site.

Quote: The research group anticipates global market penetration for Ultra-HD televisions to pass 20 percent by the end of this year
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Re: Asus Tinker board

Tue Jan 24, 2017 10:49 am

hansotten,

Thanks for the ASUS download link. Somehow I could not find any such thing. Now it looks like I might have to get a Tinker board just to see how it flies.
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Tue Jan 24, 2017 10:53 am

hansotten wrote: Quote: The research group anticipates global market penetration for Ultra-HD televisions to pass 20 percent by the end of this year
I wonder what predictions were being made for the still-born 3D TV market a few years ago ?

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Tue Jan 24, 2017 11:36 am

PeterO wrote:If you google for "Asus Tinker board" it seems the majority of headlines focus on the 4K video capability of this board.
Is that really the feature that will attract most potential buyers away from the PI ? Surley that's only important for the media centre builder ?
I wonder how many PI owners currently have a 4K monitor ?
It's going to take a while for the education market to upgrade to 4K.

PeterO
I think the faster speed and 2GB of RAM may attract more, but the lack of 64 bit and level of support may put some off...

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Re: Asus Tinker board

Tue Jan 24, 2017 11:38 am

PeterO wrote:
hansotten wrote: Quote: The research group anticipates global market penetration for Ultra-HD televisions to pass 20 percent by the end of this year
I wonder what predictions were being made for the still-born 3D TV market a few years ago ?

PeterO
Quote from Eben "We honestly did think we would sell about 1,000, maybe 10,000 in our wildest dreams. We thought we would make a small number and give them out to people who might want to come and read computer science at Cambridge," he told ZDNet.

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Predictions are predictions, what really happens is always surprising (and sometimes bad news)

Extrapolation often works out: small SD CRT television, color television, LCD, HD ready, Full HD, larger LCD to 4k seems a logical evolution path. 3D was a disruptive technology and indeed failed.
Last edited by hansotten on Tue Jan 24, 2017 12:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Asus Tinker board

Tue Jan 24, 2017 12:06 pm

4K will just become the norm, the same thing was said for HD TVs

3D is different, it is not just a higher density panel like UHD were a user thinks, oh that's a bit clearer on a 50" TV. It was a user having to buy and wear funny glasses over their eyes and generally sit in a specific position. Basically and inconvenience.

You can get cheap-ish UHD TVs, my parents have one as they needed a new TV as the old one was failing after many years, they're not cutting edge buyers, it was about £500 maybe less from Samsung. Even cheaper if you go own brand.

There is no reason for manufacturer to sell 1080 displays unless it's budget or higher quality mid level price.

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