Piw32
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Tue Dec 06, 2011 11:11 am

Chinese company Allwinner http://www.allwinnertech.com/ will release a $4.99 A8 chip next year.
http://micdigi.com/2011/12/allwinner-wi ... -for-4-99/
Maybe in RasPi V2 or some clone ( remember, the original Arduino lead to 80Mhz \"clones\" ) ?

Neil
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Tue Dec 06, 2011 1:53 pm

$4.99...maybe. In what volume though? 100k/wk??

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crundy
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Tue Dec 06, 2011 2:00 pm

Hmm, I was under the impression that one of the goals of the foundation was to try and use UK suppliers and factories as much as possible, to help boost the economy as well as improve ICT, so I\'m not sure if they\'d go for it. I might be wrong though.

Piw32
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Tue Dec 06, 2011 2:26 pm

Yes, but maybe it will initiate a trend, just like for Arduino and Beagleboard. For example, Olimex have nice derivative boards.

jamesh
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Tue Dec 06, 2011 3:34 pm

Well, not much information to go on there. Is there a GPU in the device would be top of the list of questions.

I don\'t know how much Raspi pay for the BRCM2835, but considering the whole board costs $25, to the end user, it would be fairly simple working out an approximate figure. Don\'t forget to take in to account H264 and other licence fees.
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shivansps
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Thu Jan 26, 2012 5:36 pm

But AllWinner A10 is a Cortex A8 that could go up to 1.5ghz, incluides all features needed for a board, like ethernet, usb 2.0, sata, etc.

It has a 2160p decoder, but thats something i need to see with my own eyes.

It also has a multi-core Mali-400 gpu, not sure on the number of cores but is giving better numbers on benchmarks than a Tegra 2, so i bet is quad.

Searching i found this list of features:

Features
VPU


HD Video Decoding (Super HD 2160P/3D Film)
Support all popular video formats, including VP8AVS,
H. 264 MVC, VC-1, MPEG-1/2/4, ...
HD Video Encoding (H.264 High Profile)
Support encoding in H.264 format


DPU


MULTI-CHANNEL HD displays
Built-in HDMI
YPbPr, CVBS, VGA
LCD interfaces: CPU, RGB, LVDS up to Full HD


Memory


DDR2,DDR3 SDRAM up to 1GB, 32-bit
SLC/MLC/TLC/DDR NAND


Rich Connectivity


USB2.0 Port
CSI, TS
SD Card3.0
10/100 Ethernet controller
CAN Bus, Built-in SATA2.0 Interface
I2S,SPDIF and AC97 audio interfaces
PS2 , SPI , TWI and UART


Boot Devices


NAND FLASH
SPI NOR FLASH
SD Card
USB

Die size is way bigger than BCM, but i think the chip well worth the cost and extra size.

hyena
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Thu Jan 26, 2012 6:19 pm

its a killer soc for the price ... caused chaos in the chinese tablet and settop box makers ... and now delivering $50 >1ghz a8 /512mb settop boxes which would be great for the pi2 .. makes the pi able to do useful cpu meaty tasks

theres now three or 4 similar a8/a9 with mali cpu soc's available in a range up to quad cpu quad mali on the same soc

for real work the lack of ram is an issue for the pi as well as the lack of cpu grunt

the other gr8 think about the allwinner a8 is its difficult to brick (as u can flash from usb)

all it really needs is some unix guy to have a play and put a uboot/kernel on it and its ready to boot debian or the like ready for some action

shivansps
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Thu Jan 26, 2012 6:53 pm

and dont forget SATA support. I never really sought any tablet with an A10 making use of the embedded sata port, but its there.

http://www.cnx-software.com/20.....d-and-sdk/

richardp
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Thu Jan 26, 2012 6:58 pm

Crundy said:


Hmm, I was under the impression that one of the goals of the foundation was to try and use UK suppliers and factories as much as possible, to help boost the economy as well as improve ICT, so I\"m not sure if they\"d go for it. I might be wrong though.


Erumm... and a Broadcom CPU is British ? Made in China commissioned by an American company (thats if Broadcom are american)
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hyena
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Thu Jan 26, 2012 7:19 pm

In respect of the impact of the new range of super cheap SOC's here are a couple of videos :

feature=player_embedded

feature=player_embedded

shivansps
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Thu Jan 26, 2012 7:22 pm

the A10 eats the AM8726 for breakfeast. and not to mention is way cheaper.

bnolsen
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:35 am

This is based on their current A10, it doesn't necessarily mean it has all those extra features.  However if it does AND it has the quad mali 400 on it with soon to be release full open source stack AND sata…watch out rpi folks (maybe its the rpi2.0 chip??).

Of course cortex a8 not even be worth mentioning in 2013…

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Jessie
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 6:48 am

bnolsen said:


Of course cortex a8 not even be worth mentioning in 2013…


Sure it will, ARM is very good about lowering the license cost of older designs to keep them useful.  They will keep incentives out there to license their tech.

adlambert

Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 8:17 am

For all the extra MHz, is there a cost in terms of power consumption?

Neil
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 10:25 am

richardp said:


Crundy said:


Hmm, I was under the impression that one of the goals of the foundation was to try and use UK suppliers and factories as much as possible, to help boost the economy as well as improve ICT, so I\"m not sure if they\"d go for it. I might be wrong though.


Erumm... and a Broadcom CPU is British ? Made in China commissioned by an American company (thats if Broadcom are american)


Designed in Cambridge, UK, and including ARM processor IP also designed in Cambridge, UK.   And yes, Broadcom is an American corporation -- more specific details available through this link:

http://bit.ly/yGWDjN

Regards,

Neil

jamesh
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 11:35 am

richardp said:


Crundy said:


Hmm, I was under the impression that one of the goals of the foundation was to try and use UK suppliers and factories as much as possible, to help boost the economy as well as improve ICT, so I\"m not sure if they\"d go for it. I might be wrong though.


Erumm... and a Broadcom CPU is British ? Made in China commissioned by an American company (thats if Broadcom are american)


As Neil said, plus, it's not made in China, just leaving the last fact that Broadcom are indeed an American company (with more offices round the globe than actually in America)
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jamesh
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 11:37 am

It does look like a pretty good chip for the price. If indeed you can get it in the required quantities at the $4.99 price (which is doubtful, I guess you need to buy a LOT to get that price).

Would be interested in the full spec of the GPU performance.
Principal Software Engineer at Raspberry Pi (Trading) Ltd.
Contrary to popular belief, humorous signatures are allowed. Here's an example...
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shivansps
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:44 pm

In terms of power consuption is does very very well, the power consupmtion of a A10 tablet is below 600ma (5v), and A10 tablet has excellent battery life compared to similar tablets (+8 hours video playback, +5 hours of web browsing/wifi with 3700mah bats).

this is the gpu of the A10 http://www.arm.com/products/mu.....400-mp.php

Yet im unsure on the number of cores, but seeing the high number is getting on benchmarks with A10 tablets, it has to be quad. (check reviews for Novo 7 Advanced, Novo 7 Elf, Novo 7 Aurora).

Mali-400 has open source drivers, so it has to be a pro.

BTW check the A10 dev board:


hyena
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:56 pm

Not sure about the allwinner A10 but the lesser amlogic (if you check out the youtube link posted above) is demo'd in a variety of configs (from single CPUcore singleGPUcore to quad CPU core quad GPU)  ..

I'm hoping someone hacks one of these in its $50 android settop box guise (approaching 1.5GHZ single core CPU/Mali GPU/512MR RAM) and publishes a simple guide to hack a decent uboot and kernel on to it  hopefully without needing console access (like was done for the plug computer dockstar a couple of years ago) ...

the pace of change is so fast at the mmt the pi2 hopefully will be fully stacked for not much more cash

shivansps
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:58 pm

Mali-T604 and T658 are WAY better, and with OpenCL and Directx 11 support, but getting a cheap chip that uses it is another matter.

shivansps
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 5:06 pm

The AMlogic cost $13, compared to $5 A10, it its using 32kb cache for mali, the max mhz is 1ghz, and it its using a 65nm process.

Novo 8 is using that amlogic, and everyone is companing about battery on that model.

The only good thing on is, its using Cortex-A9, but the mayor diference of A8 and A9 is power comsumption, and that advantage is null because of the 65nm process.

richardp
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 5:32 pm

~Neil~ said:


richardp said:


Crundy said:


Hmm, I was under the impression that one of the goals of the foundation was to try and use UK suppliers and factories as much as possible, to help boost the economy as well as improve ICT, so I\"m not sure if they\"d go for it. I might be wrong though.


Erumm... and a Broadcom CPU is British ? Made in China commissioned by an American company (thats if Broadcom are american)


Designed in Cambridge, UK, and including ARM processor IP also designed in Cambridge, UK.   And yes, Broadcom is an American corporation -- more specific details available through this link:

http://bit.ly/yGWDjN

Regards,

Neil


I am in no-way going against anyone sense of pride or allegiance , but Broadcom have their chips made around the world.. being American means very little. I would suspect the CPU being used is made somewhere in the east, Thailand perhaps.

Say for instance *shock horror* that the A10 CPU was used on Rpi, what would change?

ARM CPU : Cambridge, UK

Design and IPR : UK

The difference is it would not be Allwinner employees doing the work. I really dont see what the difference is... in the end its a cheap computer.

If the other aim is to stimulate the UK economy, then that is really in doubt as the production costs are ludicrous and not competitive in the REAL world. Maybe the Rpi is the catalyst for these industries in the UK to get a wake-up call.

So whats left?.. cheap.. programming starter pack and school friendly.  The 'Made in Britain' is a raaah-raaah cheer for the School board/Politicians to 'Invest in Britain' but now its just a 'Designed in Britain' product which doesn't have the same punch in it.

These are my views, and are (c) by myself.
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shivansps
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 5:40 pm

The thing is, Raspberry PI is not even out yet and it already has a direct competition(Rhombus-Tech), that it does intent to use the A10 for its board and price may end up cheaper than Raspberry...

richardp
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 5:46 pm

To be honest, the A10 CPU might be cheaper, but I dont think it has onboard RAM (it uses external DDR3 looking at the diagram) – $5 is a myth when you have to add all the bits to MAKE it work.
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HansH
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Re: $4.99 A8 chip from Allwinner

Fri Jan 27, 2012 7:05 pm

shivansps said:


The thing is, Raspberry PI is not even out yet and it already has a direct competition(Rhombus-Tech), that it does intent to use the A10 for its board and price may end up cheaper than Raspberry...


Nonsens, the Raspberry Pi is in production, Rhombus-Tech is still designing/drawing it

And that $5 pricetag for the chip is just sales talk... no quantities are mentioned..

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