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Khadas VIM4 Raspberry Pi Competitor Has 8 Cores, Wi-Fi 6

Khadas VIM4
(Image credit: Leepspvideo)

There are a number of alternatives to the Raspberry Pi out there, but the  Khadas VIM4 sets itself apart in a crowded field  with its considerable muscle.

The VIM4 packs an Amlogic A311D2 octa-core processor, 8GB of LPDDR4X RAM, its Wi-Fi 6 connectivity, the 4K/60 HDMI input and output, plus independent USB 3.0 and PCIe (via M.2 socket) interfaces. This successor to the Khadas VIM3 ($120) will launch on May 10, and has just started to go around the review circuit. Sadly we will have to wait for launch day for pricing.

Kadas VIM4 (left) next to a Raspberry Pi 4 (Image credit: Leepspvideo)

We are now starting to see reviews of the Khadas VIM4 drip-drip onto websites and social media platforms.

CNX Software has published part one of a multi-part review of the VIM4 today. The single-page piece provides an unboxing experience, with a closer look at the product, the supplied accessories and quick start guide. Then there is a segment about the trials and tribulations of fitting the VIM4 in the supplied translucent case (dimensions are a little different to the Pi). Lastly, CNX booted the machine and was greeted with an OOWOW wizard to choose an OS to install from the cloud (Android 11 or three Ubuntu variants could be chosen at the time of writing).

For another example of an early review of the Khadas VIM4, kick off your shoes, put your feet up and watch the half hour video below, from YouTuber Leepspvideo, who is something of a Raspberry Pi specialist who likes a bit of retro-emulation gaming.

Lee's video takes you straight to plugging in the VIM4 with his usual Raspberry Pi peripherals and screen. This brings up the OOWOW wizard, as mentioned above, but Lee goes and installs Ubuntu with Gnome without any issues. First impressions are that this powerful SBC is a snappy performer in most respects.

Later in the video, Lee notes that Ubuntu might not be totally ready for mass consumption on the VIM4 due to app and drivers support – though it's possible some of this will be fixed ahead of launch. Lee found solid performance on Android 11, with emulation and demanding PlayStation Portable (PSP) games running smoothly. Lee declared the VIM4 is "a great device."

(Image credit: Leepspvideo)

Another Raspberry Pi alternative with an Amlogic processor that we recently looked at was the Banana Pi BPI-M2S, with Amlogic A311D. This processor is a hexa-core unit, so a little bit less powerful than the A311D2. It features 4GB LPDDR4 RAM and its own particular charms like twin gigabit Ethernet ports.

 

Mark Tyson is a Freelance News Writer at Tom's Hardware US. He enjoys covering the full breadth of PC tech; from business and semiconductor design to products approaching the edge of reason.

  • mail4asim
    There are dozens of Raspberry Pi Alternatives and they all seem to have the same goal. Provide better performance than the Raspberry Pi. This just tells you that none of these boardmakers understand what Raspberry Pi foundation stands for.

    Raspberry Pi are cheap
    Have loads of documentation to learn.
    Is supported by several Linux distros.
    Free forums and Raspberry Pi Mag for information and projects.

    The competitors like Khadas have none of these features. Looking at their website, they're very eager to sell their board and cost twice as much as Raspberry Pi. But when I try to search for learning resources or documentation, they fall short of provide anything useful. Khadas VIM4 is not supported by Ubuntu at the moment due to driver issues. I don't have these issues with Raspberry Pi.
    Reply
  • domih
    mail4asim said:
    There are dozens of Raspberry Pi Alternatives and they all seem to have the same goal. Provide better performance than the Raspberry Pi. This just tells you that none of these boardmakers understand what Raspberry Pi foundation stands for.

    Raspberry Pi are cheap
    Have loads of documentation to learn.
    Is supported by several Linux distros.
    Free forums and Raspberry Pi Mag for information and projects.

    The competitors like Khadas have none of these features. Looking at their website, they're very eager to sell their board and cost twice as much as Raspberry Pi. But when I try to search for learning resources or documentation, they fall short of provide anything useful. Khadas VIM4 is not supported by Ubuntu at the moment due to driver issues. I don't have these issues with Raspberry Pi.

    SBC makers like Khadas, Radxa and Odroid are not into making Raspberry Pi Alternatives. Only the main stream press say they are. Big difference.

    The markets are partially overlapping but are different. Looking into more details at the specifications show the differences. In the case of VIM4, true PCIe NVMe is a rather big difference. For instance if you want to do database at the edge. Same thing for SATAIII in for instance Odroid HC4 or M1. You can make nice NAS'es with them. Not so with USB drives. Etc.

    SBC makers usually have a business market (e.g. signage, industrial, medical). They just happen to also sell to end users for additional revenues. But for most of them, their business customers are their main source of revenues. They don't care about Raspberry.
    Reply
  • Fred Thompson
    Competitor implies they're... competing... for the same customers.

    These aren't competitors, how do tech publications not understand this.

    The Tesla Model S 100D isn't a "faster Honda Accord competitor". And the price difference between those two is less than the price difference % between a Khadas and a Raspberry Pi.

    "It has better performance for only quadruple the price" tells us exactly one useful thing; the author has low literacy in either tech, or mathematics.
    Reply
  • Fred Thompson
    mail4asim said:
    There are dozens of Raspberry Pi Alternatives and they all seem to have the same goal. Provide better performance than the Raspberry Pi. This just tells you that none of these boardmakers understand what Raspberry Pi foundation stands for.

    Raspberry Pi are cheap
    Have loads of documentation to learn.
    Is supported by several Linux distros.
    Free forums and Raspberry Pi Mag for information and projects.

    The competitors like Khadas have none of these features. Looking at their website, they're very eager to sell their board and cost twice as much as Raspberry Pi. But when I try to search for learning resources or documentation, they fall short of provide anything useful. Khadas VIM4 is not supported by Ubuntu at the moment due to driver issues. I don't have these issues with Raspberry Pi.

    This, on all points. Something quadruple the price isn't a competitor, that's not even a remotely useful thing to report. "Space shuttle much faster than most airplanes" or "sports car much faster than minivan" aren't valid or useful topics for an article. Are the author, editor, and publication not aware of this?
    Reply
  • Dyseman
    mail4asim said:
    There are dozens of Raspberry Pi Alternatives and they all seem to have the same goal. Provide better performance than the Raspberry Pi. This just tells you that none of these boardmakers understand what Raspberry Pi foundation stands for.

    Raspberry Pi are cheap
    Have loads of documentation to learn.
    Is supported by several Linux distros.
    Free forums and Raspberry Pi Mag for information and projects.

    The competitors like Khadas have none of these features. Looking at their website, they're very eager to sell their board and cost twice as much as Raspberry Pi. But when I try to search for learning resources or documentation, they fall short of provide anything useful. Khadas VIM4 is not supported by Ubuntu at the moment due to driver issues. I don't have these issues with Raspberry Pi.

    Even Tom's Hardware has a Raspberry Pi section. Haven't seen a "Pi Competitor" section.
    Reply