Pine64's RISC-V Ox64 Takes On Raspberry Pi Pico W

The Pine64 Ox64 RISC-V microcontroller
(Image credit: Pine64)

The Raspberry Pi Pico W has a new competitor in the form of Pine64’s upcoming Ox64, spotted by CNX Software, which uses the increasingly popular RISC-V architecture to pack a lot of computing power into a tiny space. So much, in fact, that it's starting to blur the boundaries between microcontrollers and SBCs.

A plan of the Pine64 board

(Image credit: Pine64)

There's been no official announcement, the company hasn't tweeted or blogged about it, and there's no way to actually buy the board yet, but we do know a lot about it thanks to a post on the Pine64 Wiki. There's a dual-core Bouffalo Lab BL808 RISC-V SoC at the heart of it, but the cores are mismatched: one is an Alibaba T-head C906 64-bit core running at 480MHz, while the other is an Alibaba T-head E907 32-bit core at 230MHz. There's a massive, for a microcontroller, 64MB of RAM, an AI engine (Bouffalo’s BLAI-100), Wi-Fi 4 and Bluetooth 5, plus IEEE 802.15.4, better known as Zigbee. There's up to 128Mbit of flash storage too, plus a micro SD card slot, and if you fit it into a carrier board with an Ethernet port, it can use that too.

Data and power are catered for by a Type-C USB 2 OTG port, while the micro SD slot can also accept power. The USB also carries a two-lane MIPI CSI interface for a camera connection. Spread around the edges of the board are 26 GPIO holes, which support protocols such as SPI, I2C and UART. There's an on-board MJPEG and h.264 encoder that can manage up to 1920×1080 at 30fps.

The Ox64 is exactly the same size as a Raspberry Pi Pico, at a breadboard-friendly 51mm x 21mm (2in x 0.8in) and seems likely to run a Linux-based OS, though no images are currently available apart from those for Alpha testing. The board is not yet a final product, and not currently for sale, but is likely to be less than $10.

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Ox64 Vs Raspberry Pi Pico
Row 0 - Cell 0 Ox64Raspberry Pi Pico
Size21 mm x 51 mm21 mm x 51 mm
ProcessorDual-core Alibaba T-head C906, 480MHz and 230MHzDual-core Arm Cortex-M0+, 133MHz
StorageUp to 128Mb2Mb
NetworkingWi-Fi 4, Bluetooth 5, ZigbeeWi-Fi 4 (W and WH variants only)
GPIO pins2626
Additional interfacesSPI, I2C, UART, MIPI CSISPI, i2C, UART, PWM
Ian Evenden
Freelance News Writer

Ian Evenden is a UK-based news writer for Tom’s Hardware US. He’ll write about anything, but stories about Raspberry Pi and DIY robots seem to find their way to him.

  • coromonadalix
    Impressive little things
  • DotNetMaster777
    WoW a lot of power ! ! ! ! !
  • ivyplayer
    the guy over at techradar is says it comes with 62 bit processor