Raspberry Pi 4 faces $59 Rock Pi 4C challenger with dual display output

Radxa has started selling the Rock Pi 4C, its would-be rival to the Raspberry Pi 4.
Written by Liam Tung, Contributing Writer

Single-board computer maker Radxa has finally released the Rock Pi 4C, over six months after announcing the bare-bones computer, which now gives developers an alternative to the dual video output Raspberry Pi 4. 

One of the headline features of the Raspberry Pi 4 Model B was that it supports 4K displays across two screens, allowing Raspberry Pi co-founder Eben Upton to call it a true PC.     

"We're a PC and PCs have dual display outputs. If you don't have dual display output, you're not a PC right?" Upton said at its launch in June 2019.

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Now Radxa can make the same claim about its computer being a PC, except it employs a micro HDMI port with a Mini DisplayPort Connector, as noted by embedded computing mag, CNX Software.

Radxa is now selling the Rock Pi 4C with 4GB of RAM from $59 on Chinese e-commerce sites AllNetChina and AliExpress. As of May, the Broadcom-based Raspberry Pi 4 is available with 8GB of RAM for $75, while the version with 2GB costs $35, the 4GB version costs $55.  

The Rock Pi 4C takes its name from the Arm-design six-core Rockchip RK3399 system on chip (SoC) the computer runs. It's the same SoC it used in its Raspberry Pi clone from 2018 but with just 1GB of RAM, which back then, at $39, was the one of the only RK3399 single-board computers to come close to the price of the entry-level $35 Raspberry Pi.    

The new little Rockchip-based computer features 64-bit 4GB LPDDR4 RAM, an eMMC module socket that supports up to 128GB of storage, an up to 2TB microSD card slot, and an M.2 NVMe SSD socket. 

The Micro HDMI 2.0a interface supports up to 4K at 60Hz while the Mini DisplayPort supports up to 2,560 x 1,440 pixels at 60Hz. 

There's also a 3.5mm audio jack, Gigabit Ethernet and 40-pin I/O expansion header. It also features a USB-C port with USB PowerDelivery 2.0 and Qualcomm Quick Charge version 3.0. It also has 802.11 a/c Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5.0.

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As CNX Software notes, the Rock Pi 4C doesn't have dual 4K video output due to the implementation of the Rockchip RK3399 processor and the Mini DisplayPort connector is capped at 2,560 x 1,440 pixels at 60Hz.

While Apple and Microsoft are increasingly focused on Arm-designed chips for future laptops, Radxa also announced this week that it is getting ready to launch the 4GB RAM Rock Pi X – its first x86 single-board computer that can run Windows and Linux distributions. The device runs on an Intel Cherry Trail Z8300 quad-core processor.


Radxa is now selling the Rock Pi 4C with 4GB of RAM from $59.

Image: Radxa

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