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Raspberry Pi with extra punch: New Orange Pi 3 packs powerful Allwinner H6 from $30

The Orange Pi 3 pushes RAM beyond the 1GB limit on earlier Orange Pi boards running on the Allwinner H6 system on chip.
Written by Liam Tung, Contributing Writer

Orange Pi maker Shenzhen Xunlong Software has launched the Allwinner H6-based development board Orange Pi 3, offering a new rival to the Raspberry Pi 3. 

The Orange Pi 3 follows the company's previous Allwinner H6 boards, the Orange Pi Lite 2 and Orange Pi One Plus, but offers more features and more than 1GB or RAM. 

The Orange Pi 3 is available with up to 2GB of RAM, the option of adding 8GB eMMC flash storage, as well as Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, two double USB 3.0 ports, Bluetooth 5.0, and a USB 2.0 port. 

The board, which measures 90mm by 64mm, also features an mPCIe socket and a 26-pin expansion header. Video and audio features include HDMI, a 3.5mm audiovisual jack, and a built-in microphone.    

The Allwinner H6 is a 1.8GHz quad-core Cortex A53 processor, and the Orange Pi 3 is available in four variants, including 1GB RAM and a 2GB RAM options without onboard storage. Alternatively, both models can be bought with 8GB of eMMC flash storage. 

SEE: How to build a successful developer career (free PDF)

The board can run on Android 7.0, Ubuntu or Debian, though images aren't yet available from the Orange Pi download page.      

As noted by CNX-Software, another resource for the Orange Pi 3 is Armbian, which provides experimental Ubuntu Bionic and Debian Stretch images for Allwinner H6 boards. 

The 1GB version is available for $29.90, while the 2GB model costs $34.90. The 1GB and 2GB models with 8GB onboard storage cost $34.90 and $39.90. Prices exclude shipping costs. 

orangepi3.jpg

The Allwinner H6 is a 1.8GHz quad-core Cortex A53 processor, and the Orange Pi 3 is available in four variants.

Image: AliExpress/Shenzhen Xunlong Software

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