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Orange Pi 3 Ready To Take On Raspberry Pi 3

Shenzhen Xunlong Software has released its latest Orange Pi 3 development board to rival the Raspberry Pi 3. The Orange Pi 3 is available on AliExpress with the base model starting from $29.90 (£23.59), while the highest-end model will set you back $39.90 (£31.48).

(Image credit: AliExpress)

Measuring 90 x 64mm and weighing in at 75 grams, the Orange Pi 3 boasts a blue PCB. It sports the Allwinner H6 SoC (system-on-a-chip) that features a quad-core ARM Cortex-A53 processor clocked at 1.8GHz with an ARM Mali-T720 graphics processing unit. The Orange Pi 3 comes with 1GB of LPDDR3 memory, which can be expanded to 2GB for an extra $5 (£3.95). For the same fee, consumers also have the option to add 8GB of eMMC flash storage to the Orange Pi 3. There's a total of four models to choose from.

ModelPricing (USD)Pricing (GBP)
Orange Pi 3 with 1GB LPDDR3$29.90£23.59
Orange Pi 3 with 1GB LPDDR3 and 8GB eMMC$34.90£27.54
Orange Pi 3 with 2GB LPDDR3$34.90£27.54
Orange Pi 3 with 2GB LPDDR3 and 8GB eMMC$39.90£31.48

Connectivity on the Orange Pi 3 includes four USB 3.0 Type-A ports, one USB 2.0 port, and a micro-USB 2.0 OTG (On-The-Go) port with support for power input. However, micro-USB power supplies aren't compatible with the Orange Pi 3. Therefore, consumers are encouraged to purchase a quality DC 5V 3A charger to power the Orange Pi 3.

Shenzhen Xunlong Software has equipped the Orange Pi 3 with an HDMI 2.0a port with audio and HDCP 2.2 output, and a Composite video output. The Orange Pi has an integrated microphone and a 3.5mm jack for audio devices.

(Image credit: AliExpress)

The Orange Pi 3 connects to the Internet via a Gigabit Ethernet port based on the Realtek RTL8211 controller, or wirelessly via the built-in Ampak AP6256 module that provides Wi-Fi 802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5) and Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity. The Orange Pi 3 also comes with its own IR receiver, mini-PCIe (mPCIe) 2.0 x1 slot, and a 26-pin GPIO expansion header for connecting devices like sensors, motors, etc. There's also a 3-pin serial console / UART (Universal Asynchronous Receiver-Transmitter) header for debugging purposes.

The Orange Pi 3 has its own power button and power, status, and USB 3.0 LED indicators for easy monitoring.

The Orange Pi 3 is compatible with Android 7.0 and Linux distributions, such as Ubuntu and Debian, although the images aren't available yet at the time of writing.

  • popatim
    Seems odd to spec a 5v 3a charger when the unit has 2 usb2 ports (5v@ 0.5a each - 1a total) and 4 usb3 ports (5v@0.9a each = 3.6a total) for a total of 4.6a needed just to be able to supply the spec'd USB power.
    Reply
  • shrapnel_indie
    21700246 said:
    Seems odd to spec a 5v 3a charger when the unit has 2 usb2 ports (5v@ 0.5a each - 1a total) and 4 usb3 ports (5v@0.9a each = 3.6a total) for a total of 4.6a needed just to be able to supply the spec'd USB power.

    Maybe they're not expecting someone to use all ports and draw power from them all... maybe... It would have been smart to have spec'd it for 5a instead though.
    Reply
  • aaronacj
    If you were to spec the the amps of plugs of your house based on all your devices being turned on each plug would be like 30-40 amps.
    Reply
  • beppomarx
    I love how devices like this are 40 bucks but a phone- because it has a shell and screen runs $600. I know it's not apples to apples but I mean there has to be at LEAST 25%-50% if not more markup for these devices for the company to profit.
    Reply
  • BryanFRitt
    four USB 3.0 Type-A ports, one USB 2.0 port
    4*(6*1.5*A=.9*A)*5*V+4*(5*.1*A=.5*A)*5*V=28*W, The add the Pi itself...
    "consumers are encouraged to purchase a quality DC 5V 3A charger to power the Orange Pi 3"
    5*V*3*A=15*W
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USB#PowerYou don't have to have all USB ports putting out full power at the same time. (some devices come with an wall outlet plug)
    Reply
  • BryanFRitt
    "Orange Pi 3 includes four USB 3.0 Type-A ports, one USB 2.0 port, and a micro-USB 2.0 OTG (On-The-Go) port with support for power input"
    A USB 3 port, --> 6*.150*A*5*V = 4.5*W max power draw in non-charging only mode
    A USB 2 port, --> 5*.100*A*5*V = 2.5*W max power draw in non-charging only mode
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USB#Power"consumers are encouraged to purchase a quality DC 5V 3A charger to power the Orange Pi 3"
    3*A*5*V=15*W
    4*4.5*W=18*W, 4 USB 3.0 at max power draw in non-charging only mode
    You don't have have full power on all USB ports at the same time, and some devices come with their own DC adapter.
    Reply
  • elroy.coltof
    The only way for this to be considered a good RPi alternative is if they have released the kernel sources and the opensourced the video driver. If not this will simply stop working when allwinner decides there isnt enough money to be made from the SoC anymore.
    Reply
  • djonbellis
    "You don't have have full power on all USB ports at the same time, and some devices come with their own DC adapter."

    That's not following proper design processes. You always consider the max amperage of all the inputs during your design phase and label/spec according. If it's a UL approved device you better believe they max them all out and ensure you have proper labeling and protection. Yes, this probably isn't UL approved but this is sloppy specs.
    Reply
  • BryanFRitt
    "That's not following proper design processes. You always consider the max amperage of all the inputs during your design phase and label/spec according. If it's a UL approved device you better believe they max them all out and ensure you have proper labeling and protection. Yes, this probably isn't UL approved but this is sloppy specs."

    USB hubs have he same issue.

    ops... math above had it with 4 USB 2.0 ports instead of 2 (micro + regular).
    It has 4(type A) USB 3.0, 1(type A) USB 2.0, 1(Micro) USB 2.0
    (4 ? (6 ? 0.15 ? ampere) ? 5 ? volt) + ((1 + 1) ? (5 ? 0.1 ? ampere) ? 5 ? volt)
    = 23 W
    Reply