[NanoPi M3] Cheap 8 core (35$)


Recommended Posts

Armbian is a community driven open source project. Do you like to contribute your code?

Some sort of hope? :ph34r:

Hope for what?

 

For another board with microUSB connector for power input? (Though it can be powered through GPIO pins too)

Or for another SoC with no mainline support in near future (Samsung S5P6818)?

 

I don't see that many common use cases for 8 cores with 1GB RAM, no native SATA or USB 3.0 or at least USB2.0+UAS, especially for its price.

Link to post
Share on other sites

More about NanoPi M3 - USB ports are behind USB hub...

 

And what do you think about this ? -> https://www.parallella.org/  

Very specific board with high enough price, "Applications" tab on their site tells enough use cases where this price is OK. Unless you need FPGA  or RISC co-processor and you know how to work with this stuff, you don't need this board.

 

...what you do with your

  • Cubietruck

Using as headless server: NAS with 2 HDD drives for storing stuff (Samba, rsync, syncthing), headless music server (mpd controlled via IR remote or Android app).

 

  • Orange Pi One

Waiting for Ethernet and USB support in mainline kernel, meanwhile it's useful for testing intermediate Armbian releases.

 

  • Paperweight A64 aka Pine64+

Waiting for the bright future (at least mainline u-boot with SPL and basic support in mainline kernel).

 

  • Raspberry Pi B

Turn lights on and off with IR remote using connected IR sensor and nRF24L01+ module

Display stuff (weather forecast, date&time, new e-mail notifications and some other things) on HD44780-compatible LCD display.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have looked at the M3, honestly the CPU/GPU is far too powerful (& maybe overheating) with so limited interface. Better go with T3 version.

looking quickly at the M3 SoC datasheet, Samsung has plagued the SoC with the same "Trusted Zone" (firmware) as Ordroid XU4.

 

So, I have ordered a M1 1GB yesterday as a "spare" for the Raspi 2... Well Armbian have some support with the Allwinner H3 SoC => 16 USD + 10 USD

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think I order the NanoPi M3 . I found a lot of interesting properties . Actually , GPIO is compatible with all other boards (40pin banana, raspi, orange...) . But , there is something interesting to read : http://wiki.friendlyarm.com/wiki/images/8/8b/SEC_S5P6818X_Users_Manual_preliminary_Ver_0.00.pdf

SPDIF - TX and RX, LVDS, HDMI and MIPI, ADC (!) & more.... and, and, and...

 

And 45 bucks (with shipping) are 40 Yuros ^_^  That I can still afford ( for fun ) :lol: 

The T3 would be better, but it costs more than twice M3

 

And ... this is completely different than the 'banana' or 'orange' (at least for me)
 

Great

eternal

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think I order the NanoPi M3 . I found a lot of interesting properties . Actually , GPIO is compatible with all other boards (40pin banana, raspi, orange...) . But , there is something interesting to read : http://wiki.friendlyarm.com/wiki/images/8/8b/SEC_S5P6818X_Users_Manual_preliminary_Ver_0.00.pdf

SPDIF - TX and RX, LVDS, HDMI and MIPI, ADC (!) & more.... and, and, and...

 

yes the SoC has some interesting DIY features yes ADC 12bits DAC 10bit etc. but are the kernels going to make the features work???? Hope dies last

Link to post
Share on other sites

So, I have ordered a M1 1GB yesterday as a "spare" for the Raspi 2... Well Armbian have some support with the Allwinner H3 SoC => 16 USD + 10 USD

 

Strange. Since Orange Pi PC costs less (15$ + 3.50$) and is faster if you run heavy workloads (since throttling will happen later due to the better voltage regulator there). Further reading regarding NanoPI M1: http://forum.armbian.com/index.php/topic/1015-nanopi-m1/ and http://forum.armbian.com/index.php/topic/1213-ov5640-camera-with-orange-pi/  (camera stuff).

 

Regarding NanoPi M3: Better avoid at all: http://www.cnx-software.com/2016/05/20/35-nanopi-m3-octa-core-64-bit-arm-development-board-is-powered-by-samsung-s5p6818-processor/

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello TK,

 

Strange. Since Orange Pi PC costs less (15$ + 3.50$) and is faster if you run heavy workloads (since throttling will happen later due to the better voltage regulator there). Further reading regarding NanoPI M1: http://forum.armbian.com/index.php/topic/1015-nanopi-m1/ and http://forum.armbian.com/index.php/topic/1213-ov5640-camera-with-orange-pi/  (camera stuff).

 

Regarding NanoPi M3: Better avoid at all: http://www.cnx-software.com/2016/05/20/35-nanopi-m3-octa-core-64-bit-arm-development-board-is-powered-by-samsung-s5p6818-processor/

 

yes I looked @M3, thought of Odroid-XU4, then looked back to M1

 

I stopped looking @M3 with

Source code is available but awful.
…
Specifically, this is a Linux-3.4 kernel that looks more like a Linux-2.6.28 platform port that was forward-ported.

 

your review of M1 is almost fine, comparing with Rpi2

 

The big deal is the power supply. I can do DIY to make a good power supply with a step-down mini-board. I am re-learning and testing electronic, even now power electronic like solar panels (or AC) regulator to fill a 12V lead battery, then trying DC/AC inverter (hoping to approach sine wave form), current regulator (I have ACS712 hall effect miniboards)

 

So I am learning, making mistakes, learning, testing... :)

Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Eric Olson

The NanoPi looks interesting to me as an affordable computer for teaching parallel processing.

 

Why do people like all these horrible octa-core designs? If you want an opinion: http://www.cnx-software.com/2016/05/20/35-nanopi-m3-octa-core-64-bit-arm-development-board-is-powered-by-samsung-s5p6818-processor/#comment-526861  ;)

 

'Teaching parallel processing' should also work with a way more affordable Orange Pi One and if I would be interested in aarch64/arm64/ARMv8 (which I'm not that much since my use cases don't benefit from 'twice the bits') then the Pine64 would be my board of choice (due to being a 'real' 64bit board where you can learn to deal with ARM's Trusted Firmware, bringing up the board in aarch64 state and so on -- all that not possible with the Cortex-A53 design we're talking about here -- Nano Pi M3 -- or Raspberry Pi 3 for example that's currently also a 64-bit SoC that can run only in 32-bit mode)

Link to post
Share on other sites

'Teaching parallel processing' should also work with a way more affordable Orange Pi One.

It is definitely possible to introduce parallel processing with a quad core. My thread on the Raspberry Pi forum discusses compiling new versions on gcc with support for the MIT/Intel Cilk parallel programming extensions on ARM devices. The compiler is tested with parallel algorithms for sorting, prime number sieves, fast Fourier transforms, computing fractal basins of attractions for complex Newton methods, numerical quadrature and approximating solutions to high-dimensional systems of ODEs.

 

It is of practical interest how well the implementation of each algorithm scales on physical hardware. Due to constraints of shared memory and I/O very few algorithms scale linearly with the number of cores over a very large range. This leads to an engineering problem that may trade off algorithmic efficiency for parallel scalability to achieve fastest execution times on multi core CPUs.

 

With a quad core CPU the maximum theoretical scaling is four fold, while an eight fold increase is possible with an octo core. Modern compute nodes have 16 to 48 CPU cores and thousands of GPU cores. Thus, while it is possible to consider parallel optimization for a quad core, the problem is more interesting with eight cores.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thus, while it is possible to consider parallel optimization for a quad core, the problem is more interesting with eight cores.

 

Sure, but you should still keep in mind what you're dealing with. The Nano Pi M3 we're talking here about has 8 Cortex-A53 cores but comes with a horribly outdated kernel (see the statement on CNX: "Specifically, this is a Linux-3.4 kernel that looks more like a Linux-2.6.28 platform port that was forward-ported") so be prepared that instead of focusing on the real problems you deal with crazy performance weirdness or memory constraints or something like that all the time (we just went through this with the 3.4.x kernel we used for H3 boards showing a nasty 'kswapd 100% CPU-usage' bug -- switching to a newer kernel variant that has been made available by the SoC vendor solved this specific problem for reasons unknown to us)

 

What about other octa-core boards? Banana Pi M3 (A83T) or the more affordable LinkSprite pcDuino8 Uno (H8 which is the same as A83T but with another chip ID) share the same 'crappy 3.4.x kernel' problem (it's basically the same outdated kernel sources we used for H3 before) and both vendors are clueless like hell regarding software/support. So be prepared to run into the very same problems.

 

Also all these 3 designs are both crap regarding DC-IN (Micro USB -- leading to voltage drops under high load and limiting max current to 1.8A by design) and heat dissipation (you won't be able to let them run full load on all cores since they easily overheat). So in case you improve heat dissipation and prevent throttling these boards will simply power off or freeze due to underpowering.

 

So the next board to check would be ODROID-XU4 where most of the above isn't an issue but where you might ran into the next round of problems (the SoC is AFAIK implemented as big.LITTLE with two clusters of 4 cores each that show pretty different performance behaviour -- good luck analysing the efficiency of algorithms in such a situation. Might be as horrible as when you try this out with the aforementioned boards where all the time throttling will prevent any meaningful performance analysis).

Link to post
Share on other sites

The Nano Pi M3 we're talking here about has 8 Cortex-A53 cores but comes with a horribly outdated kernel (see the statement on CNX: "Specifically, this is a Linux-3.4 kernel that looks more like a Linux-2.6.28 platform port that was forward-ported")

These concerns are why I have asked here if any one has one, how it works and whether they can run any benchmarks. I agree that heatsinks with fans are likely required for any parallel algorithm scaling studies.

 

What about other octa-core boards? Banana Pi M3 (A83T) or the more affordable LinkSprite pcDuino8 Uno (H8 which is the same as A83T but with another chip ID)

The CPU in the Banana Pi M3 and the pcDuino8 contain v7 cores. The improved floating point/NEON hardware of the v8 cores in the NanoPi M3 are preferable for numerical work.

 

So the next board to check would be ODROID-XU4 where most of the above isn't an issue but where you might ran into the next round of problems (the SoC is AFAIK implemented as big.LITTLE with two clusters of 4 cores each that show pretty different performance behaviour -- good luck analysing the efficiency of algorithms in such a situation.

The work stealing algorithms used by the Cilk programming language should balance loads fairly well on the big.LITTLE architecture. At the same time all cores the same is better.

 

At anyrate, maybe someone who has the NanoPi M3 can clarify to what extent the concerns you mention are real problems.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry, can't provide any real experiences since this is such a clear case of 'DO NOT buy'.

 

After playing around with ARMv8/NEON stuff on another board I won't clearly use anything that only provides a shitty Micro USB connector for DC-IN (why? Since it won't work).

 

It's really that simple: Have a look at the bigger sibling that uses the same SoC, the NanoPC-T3: This one comes both with a sane barrel plug for DC-IN and also mounting holes for a supplied huge heatsink. Now think a second about NanoPi M3, have a short laugh and drop the idea. Or ask the FriendlyARM people whether it's possible to limit cpufreq constantly to 400 MHz since then throttling problems might not occur and you also might be able to reliably power the board through a crappy Micro USB connector.

 

Please be aware that we recently tested a boring H3 (quad core Cortex-A7) board that throttled down to as low as 240 MHz with a specific workload and even had to drop CPU cores. While other H3 boards that are even smaller run happily with +1000 MHz and the same workload. So without ordering a sample and testing this out I doubt it's possible to draw any conclusions. Or simply ask the FriendlyARM people. These are nice guys that aren't that clueless as the other vendors mentioned in this thread.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest TheRegnirps

Look at a NanoPi M1, M2, or M3 you will see a 4 pin 0.1" .025 square post header near the 40 pin GPIO header. This has Tx Rx 5V and GND.

 

On a NanoPC T2 or T3 you will see the same 4 pins in a white socket that takes the same connector from the PSU-ONECOM. You can get them at www.andahammer.com which as I write this I see is doing some maintenance. They are probably under "Accessories".

 

 

http://bit.ly/1TX2IzP

http://bit.ly/1WFSYzM

 

Interesting as I am waiting for a NanoPi M1

Link to post
Share on other sites

Look at a NanoPi M1, M2, or M3 you will see a 4 pin 0.1" .025 square post header near the 40 pin GPIO header. This has Tx Rx 5V and GND. You can hook it up any way you want

 

Thx for adding this information! It's important to know that this header can be used on any NanoPi to provide stable DC-IN. I just missed this information from looking at FriendlyARM's wiki (maybe I were blind or it's just missing?). So powering NanoPi M3 isn't an issue using this connector but I still have doubts regarding thermal issues since mounting holes for a heatsink are present on NanoPC-T3 and the heatsink used there is rather huge.

 

Do you have any information regarding thermal 'power' of this octa-core A53 design? I didn't find anything so all my assumptions rely on experiences with other A53 SoCs/boards.

Link to post
Share on other sites

 I just missed this information from looking at FriendlyARM's wiki (maybe I were blind or it's just missing?).

 

My guess the wiki needs to be more clear. Maybe a section : "How to power the board?"

 

http://wiki.friendlyarm.com/wiki/index.php/NanoPi_M1#Layout

in the note, you need to find:

"VDD_5V: 5V power input/output. When the external device’s power is greater than the MicroUSB’s the external device is charging the board otherwise the board powers the external device. The input range is 4.7V ~ 5.6V"

 

because it is not obvious, with the Odroid-XU4, you cannot power the board with the UART plug as it is 1.8V VCC :)

Link to post
Share on other sites

"VDD_5V: 5V power input/output. When the external device’s power is greater than the MicroUSB’s the external device is charging the board otherwise the board powers the external device. The input range is 4.7V ~ 5.6V"

 

That's written there only for the M1 (H3, no PMIC!), the Samsung based M2/M3 might be totally different (they have an X-Powers/Allwinner PMIC) so information available for NanoPi M1 might be totally misleading when it's about M2/M3. And since we're talking here about something that might fry your board such assumptions might mean 'game over'.

 

So unless this is outlined in M3 wiki entry I wouldn't rely on any information for totally different hardware that just shares form factor and partially the name (same problem with the various totally incompatible Banana Pis for example) 

 

@kometchtech: Thx for the image. This should illustrate what to expect with NanoPi M3 without or with small/laughable adhesive heatsink :)

Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest TheRegnirps

The NanoPi looks interesting to me as an affordable computer for teaching parallel processing. Has anyone received the NanoPi M3? How does or work? Are there any reviews or benchmark results posted anywhere?

I have 2 Nano Pi M3 been here over 2 weeks, I know nothing about Linux and done nothing with one yet as been busy else where.

 

Quick easy delivery though.

 

Comments on crappy kernal ported forward, read.

Link to post
Share on other sites

i bought nano pi M3 .

 

uname -ar

Linux NanoPi3 3.4.39-s5p6818 #2 SMP PREEMPT Fri May 20 15:51:46 HKT 2016 armv7l GNU/Linux

 

and

cat /etc/apt/sources.list
deb http://ftp.cn.debian.org/debianjessie main non-free contrib
deb-src http://ftp.cn.debian.org/debianjessie main non-free contrib

 

but CPU is very hot .

but i can not mesure its temperature .

(lm-sensors is not OK)

 

usually armbian could make its temperature lower , this was done in case of orange pi PC  .

 

http://wiki.friendlyarm.com/wiki/index.php/NanoPi_M3is a page of nano pi M3

 

 

-----

regards

Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.