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gounthar

Sunvell H3 2GB RAM + 16GB ROM TV Box

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28 minutes ago, gounthar said:

I bought today a Sunvell H3 2GB RAM + 16GB ROM TV Box.

 

Advertised as Android 7 capable so it must be running with Allwinner's 4.4 kernel which is bad news since not supporting voltage regulation any more (same with Libre Computer Tritium boards): https://github.com/Allwinner-Homlet/H3-BSP4.4-linux/issues/1 -- be prepared that maximum cpufreq is lower than any of the older H3 boards.

 

Device tree settings from this Allwinner BSP kernel (and most probably u-boot too) are incompatible with mainline stuff so good luck with extracting settings and transforming them into something suitable for Linux (applies also to DRAM timings). How fast is the 16 GB eMMC? Which wireless chip?

 

In the past with Allwinner H3 based TV boxes it was rather easy to get them supported in Armbian since it was reading out the proprietary fex stuff and then adjusting few bits. Could be done for the legacy Allwinner kernel even without having the device in front of you (see Sunvell R69) but the situation with boards based on the new BSP is entirely different.

 

And I don't know who is still interested in Allwinner H3 here (at least me definitely not :) )

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20 hours ago, tkaiser said:

And I don't know who is still interested in Allwinner H3 here (at least me definitely not :) )

I am still interested in it. Fast enough for lots of my uses. I use an OrangePi Zero with 512Mb, and it is sometimes not enough.
We'll see what this box is capable of, but I was tempted by 4 times the amount of memory I use on the Zero.

 

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H3 boxes are interesting...

 

Last time I looked at Beelink X2 - it's was pretty smart on the layout - thermals were a challenge.

 

If you are going to do a teardown - board pics are nice, but also the housing and thermals...

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12 hours ago, gounthar said:

Ok, will do... with a very bad stupidphone. :D

 

Sounds good...  When/If pics happen - top/bottom of the board, thermal solution, take a close look at WiFi (should be a system on module, if you can note the vendor/model there), and mass storage... also look for UART pads, as this is key - if you can get into uBoot, that's a good thing...

 

I suspect that whatever they're doing, it's going to be super cost optimized... at the sub-$30USD price, including an IR Remote, HDMI cable, AC adapter, and of course the shipping box -- Sunveil must have done lot of work to reduce any additional BOM costs to keep some profit on the product.

 

In past experience with AllWinnner Android boxes, ADB is there, and fairly open, at least on Android 4.x - this one runs Android 7* (Nougat) so all bets are off - just note that there might be some security items with the BSP that you can take advantage of to get root for spelunking of the OS in general... First shot would be -- If Google's PlayStore is enabled within the stock Android on that box, one might consider getting "Termux" (it's free) and dig around a bit - it's sandboxed, but one can still get some decent info about the environment it runs in...

 

* bit surprised with Nougat support, but hey, it's current enough...

 

Anyways - to check the kernel/etc - go into Kodi, and there, you should be able to confirm the android and kernel versions...

 

Best case - might be a good alternative for the OrangePI Plus 2E...
 

 

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Started up this small machine tonight, and I am impressed. It's the best version of Android I have seen on AllWinner Hx (ok, I only tried OrangePi's Android versions on the Zero and the One Plus).

Pretty responsive, adb does work:

$ adb connect 192.168.0.21
already connected to 192.168.0.21:5555

$ adb devices
List of devices attached
192.168.0.21:5555       device

dolphin-fvd-p1:/ # cat /proc/cpuinfo
cat /proc/cpuinfo
processor       : 0
model name      : ARMv7 Processor rev 5 (v7l)
BogoMIPS        : 48.00
Features        : half thumb fastmult vfp edsp neon vfpv3 tls vfpv4 idiva idivt vfpd32 lpae
CPU implementer : 0x41
CPU architecture: 7
CPU variant     : 0x0
CPU part        : 0xc07
CPU revision    : 5

processor       : 1
model name      : ARMv7 Processor rev 5 (v7l)
BogoMIPS        : 48.00
Features        : half thumb fastmult vfp edsp neon vfpv3 tls vfpv4 idiva idivt vfpd32 lpae
CPU implementer : 0x41
CPU architecture: 7
CPU variant     : 0x0
CPU part        : 0xc07
CPU revision    : 5

Hardware        : sun8iw7
Revision        : 0000
Serial          : 740078864424142508d1

I don't know Kodi well enough to test the functionalities, but it launched and gave me a few info. I will take some bad pics and post them.

I don't know either what we could do with that, but there is this directory:

dolphin-fvd-p1:/proc/device-tree # ls
ls
#address-cells dvfs_table                   prcm
#size-cells    firmware                     psci
aliases        gpu@0x01c40000               s_brom
bt             interrupt-controller@1c81000 soc@01c00000
btlpm          interrupt-parent             sunxi-chipid@01c14200
chosen         ion                          sunxi-sid@01c14000
clocks         memory@40000000              timer
compatible     model                        uboot
cpus           n_brom                       watchdog@01c20ca0
cpuscfg        name                         wlan
dram           opp_dvfs_table
dramfreq       pmu

The kernel is not that old:

dolphin-fvd-p1:/proc # uname -a
uname -a
Linux localhost 4.4.55 #1 SMP PREEMPT Tue Aug 14 11:27:43 CST 2018 armv7l

 

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6 hours ago, gounthar said:

It's the best version of Android I have seen on AllWinner Hx

 

Does it have Google Play?

 

Would also be interesting perhaps if it has Widevine Support (this is a DRM scheme that can cause problems with AOSP and haxxored play store support - if Netflix runs from the playstore it might have valid keys there

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The PlayStore is there, and Netflix starts (but as I don't have a Netflix account, I haven't been able to test it).

As for the Widevine Support, it is only L3 (logical for an H3, am I right?).

screenshot-1539686705096.jpg

screenshot-1539686998992.jpg

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I still fail to understand what you want to achieve... 

5 hours ago, gounthar said:

DTB is better than nothing I guess.

A correct DTB, together with 2-3 pictures of the opened box (e.g. wifi chip, eMMC or nand - in case nand forget about the 16GB 'storage' cause nand not supported in mainline) and you're done. You may then adjust the DTB to mainline-style and finished. Assuming AW 4.4 kernel is really based on DT not some fex style anymore (the had it with 3.4, but from what I've in mind 4.4 is now also DT based). You now that this thingie is H3 based, so it's only figuring out where and how stuff is connected to it... 

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18 hours ago, gounthar said:

As for the Widevine Support, it is only L3 (logical for an H3, am I right?).

 

Yes and no - It's not H3 actually - one can have L1 even on H3 or any chipset - it's more the ARM TEE and requirements there - and with Android, this means full-on GMS compliance, which means that the OEM/ODM has to have written agreements with Google, and do all the compliance/conformance testing around those requirements.

 

Widevine L3 limits output to sub-HD, and sounds like Netflix from Google Play likely won't work (there are ways around this with a patched apk there) - this is not unexpected with AOSP, even with Play Store hacked in...

 

L1 is full on compliance with Widevine, all keys are good, and everything runs inside the ARM Trust Environment - most NA/EU mobile phones have that, but cheap TV boxes, and AOSP handsets likely don't.

 

Many AOSP TV boxes will have test keys installed, but TEE and the APK's know this - grrr... DRM, and I understand why content distributors want this, but still...

 

Anyways - Widevine is an android thing - and android support does mean that the box is still useful if mainline support is lacking...

 

3 hours ago, chwe said:

A correct DTB, together with 2-3 pictures of the opened box (e.g. wifi chip, eMMC or nand - in case nand forget about the 16GB 'storage' cause nand not supported in mainline) and you're done.

 

16GB - most likely eMMC, IMHO...  if one is going to put 16GB on the board, might as well be eMMC.

 

One could have 'naked' NAND and run it as a MTD device I suppose, but mmcblk is less work, and more flexibility with supply chain,  besides, eMMC prices are probably better, and eMMC has knockon benefits later on with OS level support...

 

Anyways - good res pics of the board, along with RAM, WiFi, eMMC, that's a good start - high resolution of just the board - top and bottom, goes a long way - there's only so many ways to do a H3 board, and now that the chip in question is pretty old, most of the options have been refined to a narrow set of choices...

 

Good example of board pix - http://linux-sunxi.org/HYH-TBH3

 

 

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moved the thread to p2p.. Probably TV boxes subforum would also fit.. 

 

10 hours ago, sfx2000 said:

Yes and no - It's not H3 actually - one can have L1 even on H3 or any chipset - it's more the ARM TEE and requirements there - and with Android, this means full-on GMS compliance, which means that the OEM/ODM has to have written agreements with Google, and do all the compliance/conformance testing around those requirements.

 

Widevine L3 limits output to sub-HD, and sounds like Netflix from Google Play likely won't work (there are ways around this with a patched apk there) - this is not unexpected with AOSP, even with Play Store hacked in...

Well I do in organic chemistry.. Before we're arguing back and forth for days we collect the infos we think are needed and then go to the bench and start an practical experiment.. Sometimes I feel dump that I missed something mostly I get more information to babbling/working with.. The original goal was running 'Armbian' on it:

On 9/11/2018 at 7:35 PM, gounthar said:

I have no idea if this will run Armbian someday, but I had to try...

and @gounthar realized that dram initialization with the default armbian bootloader seems to fail:

Quote

U-Boot SPL 2018.05-armbian (Aug 20 2018 - 12:41:20 +0000)
DRAM: 0 MiB
### ERROR ### Please RESET the board ###

 

well at least for @lucastriches, seems that @gounthar never provided a bootlog but that's why I said:

13 hours ago, chwe said:

I still fail to understand what you want to achieve... 

 

Allwinner is failsafe! you can try whatever you want without messing up the stock OS... Insert some SD-Card try it and if it fails.. shit happens, next bootloader, next idea.. It doesn't matter if this is some sort of a new iteration of H3 (IMO unlikely but can be..). Or how good the Android support is.. If the goal is still bringing up 'Armbian' you shouldn't waste time with hypothetical issues.. First try the obvious ones.. Search for an UART cause debugging low-level issues without is blind flying.  Start with the lowest possible DRAM clock speed assuming that routing on the board is crap.. and try do extract the device tree to see if you get some information from there cause it will be the only source of information you'll likely get for this thingie.. As long as you're not an expert on 'board bring up' you'll probably fail 10 times before you get a step further but it doesn't matter.. You'll learn from your failures.. 

After: 

On 10/15/2018 at 7:27 PM, gounthar said:

Hardware : sun8iw7

and:

On 10/15/2018 at 7:27 PM, gounthar said:

Linux localhost 4.4.55 #1 SMP PREEMPT Tue Aug 14 11:27:43 CST 2018 armv7l

you're done with android... 

The first tells you it is an H3/H2+ the second tells you (likely) it's based on this kernel:

https://github.com/Allwinner-Homlet/H3-BSP4.4-linux/blob/ddcfef77177e66f73db94c9be4090ab6ff9ccef8/Makefile#L1-L3

so there's not much interesting left here.. (expect an DT). Boot loader is likely based on this bits here:

https://github.com/Allwinner-Homlet/H3-BSP4.4-bootloader

 

Everything was there with the third post.. after then.. it was mostly babbling but not much progress..

On 9/11/2018 at 8:12 PM, tkaiser said:

Device tree settings from this Allwinner BSP kernel (and most probably u-boot too) are incompatible with mainline stuff so good luck with extracting settings and transforming them into something suitable for Linux (applies also to DRAM timings).

 

IMO now it's time to open this thingie and get access to a UART otherwise.. Have fun with blind flying.. Most of the interesting stuff happens before HDMI is initialized.. 

 

Before you build up your dreams what it could be, you need to know what it actually is.. At the moment it's an boring Android box with an outdated 4.4.55 kernel which likely never gets updates....

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20 hours ago, sfx2000 said:

16GB - most likely eMMC, IMHO...  if one is going to put 16GB on the board, might as well be eMMC.

aaaand.. you're likely wrong.. cause eMMC is normally packed BGA whereas NAND not.. the eMMC 'socket' is there. but they went for NAND.. Have fun find a u-boot which supports NAND and linux mainline also doesn't support it as far as I know.. 

 

  • Wifi is a boring XR819 which 'nobody really wants'
  • RAM seems to be okay but bootscript somehow messes up.. Well dig into it and you'll find out what's wrong
1 hour ago, gounthar said:

I have this TTL2USB, but as there is no pin on the card, I will have to fiddle with that.

  • you see the 4 pins next IR? 

they're labeled GND, UTX, URX and 3V... likely that it's 3.3V check with a voltmeter and likely do be UART0... Then someone can have a look into a 'proper' bootlog.. not print-screens.. ;) It's just easier to read.. :) 

 

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4 hours ago, chwe said:

aaaand.. you're likely wrong.. cause eMMC is normally packed BGA whereas NAND not.. the eMMC 'socket' is there. but they went for NAND.. Have fun find a u-boot which supports NAND and linux mainline also doesn't support it as far as I know.. 

 

  • Wifi is a boring XR819 which 'nobody really wants'
  • RAM seems to be okay but bootscript somehow messes up.. Well dig into it and you'll find out what's wrong

 

Gah - they did go with naked NAND - unexpected, but not surprised - Android AOSP can live with this... but getting to something beyond the ASOP is going to be a challenge - something tells me that this is an android box, straight up, and that's what it is going to run... At least with the NAND it's good flash - SpecTek is Micron...

 

RAM - Lot of RAM chips there - which makes uBoot a bit interesting - 2Gbit*8 is 2GB...  is Samsung running a special sale on them these days?

 

WiFi - XR819 - boring to some, weird to others - nothing exciting....  BTW note the really neat Inverted-F antenna - STB boards do leave a bit of room to be inventive there - although this isn't too terribly clever - but it is cheap, and gives decent enough gain there - maybe unity even. FWIW, Wifi front end is a bit of a mess, so some loss there - more that most...

 

Looking at the board power - LDO's actually look ok - cheap and good enough - I wouldn't expect more at this price point...

 

UART - 3.3 is likely good there - follow the pins, and consider this is one of many boards, so everything should align there///

 

Thermal Solution - with more recent H3's, and community understanding with Android - it's likely good - older H3 boards and distros - Allwinner got a bit of a bad reputation... but is cost is an issue, they could have done like Beelink with the X2, and put a big check of iron there - but who knows, extruded heatsinks like this are probably cheap enough these days in Shenzen.

 

Anyways - like I mentioned earlier - this is a hyper optimized board for cost, and sensitive to the current supply chain (note the RAM, they wouldn't do this unless it was cost-efficient)

 

BTW - @chwe - it's an H3 - H2+ is H3 with the GPU/VPU disabled if I trust what I read - I'm not a native Chinese speaker...

 

Anyways - it's up to others whether to support this board in Armbian - it's going to be specific work, and time/resources are tight.

 

 

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On 10/17/2018 at 2:20 PM, chwe said:

Have fun find a u-boot which supports NAND and linux mainline also doesn't support it as far as I know.. 

 

Ignore the NAND

 

Once he gets serial up and running, he can play around with FEL, and take things from there.

 

Totally possible, IMHO, to just run everything Armbian off the SDCard, and leave Android as the secondary option if the card is removed.

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44 minutes ago, sfx2000 said:

Once he gets serial up and running, he can play around with FEL, and take things from there.

doesn't need FEL, bootorder for H3 is SD-->NAND-->SPI if I've it right in mind.. The print-screens from the opi-zero image show clearly that he's booting armbians 2018 u-boot.. ;) 

 

But without the 16GB 'ROM' the most interesting part of this board IMO disappears.. A 16GB eMMC 2GB RAM box with an acceptable wifi chips for 30 bucks in an nice looking case could be interesting. NAND and  XR819 makes it rather uninteresting (at least for me)..

 

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22 minutes ago, chwe said:

doesn't need FEL, bootorder for H3 is SD-->NAND-->SPI if I've it right in mind.. The print-screens from the opi-zero image show clearly that he's booting armbians 2018 u-boot.. ;) 

 

But without the 16GB 'ROM' the most interesting part of this board IMO disappears.. A 16GB eMMC 2GB RAM box with an acceptable wifi chips for 30 bucks in an nice looking case could be interesting. NAND and  XR819 makes it rather uninteresting (at least for me)..

 

Yeah - but for OP - it's perhaps a challenge to contribute ;)

 

Keep NAND sane and untouched - makes it possible to continue to use the TV box as an Android - and 7.x isn't a bad place to be there for the intended apps...

 

Worst case - one can always run termux in the android space - which isn't bad actually - I do that with my little chromebook, and it's debian like enough...

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