Jaguarboard – Yet another (not so impressive) SBC

December 29, 2015

I usually back Kickstarter projects(in the DIY electronics domain) that peek my interest. I recently backed the Pine A64, UP and the Latte Panda boards but the Jaguarboard is not one of them.

I usually look for a cool feature that would enable me to build a cool project using the backer reward. For e.g. The Latte Panda comes with onboard Wi-Fi/Bluetooth. It has an ATmega32U4 microcontroller that enables easier interface of sensors.

The Jaguarboard failed to impress me for a couple of reasons:

  1. Lack of sufficient GPIO count – They provide access to only 4 GPIO pins. I usually make use of more than 4 GPIO pins in my projects. However, it does come with an I²C port which could be used to expand the GPIO capabilities.
  2. Incompatible with the Raspberry Pi/Arduino add-on boards – It is not possible to port Raspberry Pi/Arduino projects that makes use of an add-on board to the JaguarBoard platform. It also doesn’t make sense developing expansion modules for the JaguarBoard as the lack of a broad user base is a distinct possibility.
  3. Comparison of specs on the campaign page – The campaign creators have compared the specifications of the board to the Raspberry Pi Model 1 rather than Model 2. The Raspberry Pi Model 2 comes with 1 GB RAM while Model 1 comes with 512 MB RAM. I think that is not a fair comparison.
  4. Unrealistic campaign schedule – In my opinion, the promised delivery date of the board is a tad unrealistic. They promised to deliver the boards by January 2016. The Kickstarter campaign itself ends only on January 22, 2016. As far as I know, Kickstarter takes at least 10 days to transfer the campaign money to your pocket. This puts the campaign roughly in the first week of February. Unless the campaign creators, plan to ship the boards using money out of their pocket, this is not possible.

They also have not released any planned timeline of the project. This is possible only if they already have a stash of boards manufactured, packed and stored in a warehouse.

In summary, I am not impressed by the JaguarBoard Kickstarter campaign.

 

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Cubieboard goes for crowd funding

October 25, 2012

The DIY world is abuzz with Raspberry Pi news. I read a new project idea based on the Raspberry Pi every other day.  Though not a competitor to the Pi, there is another product in the market that uses a Cortex A8 processor.

Cubieboard

Photosource: Cubieboard

In my opinion, the Raspberry Pi’s sole purpose is to help students (it is being used by anyone who wants to be “hands-on”) while the Cubieboard is more directed towards DIY enthusiasts.  I do envision an “Arduino like revolution” with the Cubieboard. I wouldn’t be surprised if Cubieboard complements Raspberry Pi in reaching a larger audience. Their website claims the following:

  • 1G ARM cortex-A8 processor, NEON, VFPv3, 256KB L2 cache
  • Mali400, OpenGL ES GPU
  • 1GB DDR3 @480MHz
  • HDMI 1080p Output
  • 10/100M Ethernet
  • 4GB Nand Flash
  • 2 USB Host, 1 micro SD slot, 1 SATA, 1 ir
  • 96 extend pin including I2C, SPI, RGB/LVDS, CSI/TS, FM-IN, ADC, CVBS, VGA, SPDIF-OUT, R-TP..
  • Running Android, Ubuntu and other Linux distributions

This might attract any DIY enthusiast 🙂 They have been selling it via Ali-express and also shipped the first batch to developers. They are currently pitching for crowd funding through Indiegogo. I am also a proud supporter of the Cubieboard. I can’t wait to get my hands on it.