Pine/ARM mATX motherboard product?
#1
Wouldn't it be great if there were a component based market for custom PC building based around ARM?

Perhaps Pine64 could help this goal by releasing a n mATX motherboard with RAM slots, multiple SATA ports, etc

Some ARM based motherboards do exist but they all have integrated SOCs. I don't know how we can get to the point where there is a socket standard for the chips and you can just buy something to suit your budget and slot it into the motherboard.

I guess if the socket idea is too far, would be good to see Pine64 develop a multi-core power computing integrated motherboard that could work as a desktop replacement.

Would be interested to hear people's thoughts around this idea

Ashley
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#2
I would really love to know what Pine can do with a desktop or workstation configuration. However, if you're looking for something available right now, I would refer you to [url=http://www.socionext.com/en/products/assp/SynQuacer/Edge/]
Prices remain ridiculously high in the ARM market outside SBC and laptop configurations. For developers, financially, it makes more sense to buy an ARM laptop, cross-compile on an x86 workstation, hire an ARM VPS instance, or work on a stack of SBCs.

I think it will be a very long time before we see ARM socketed CPUs. I think we are much more likely to continue to see APUs and SOCs soldered to motherboards or released as compute modules for attachment (solder) inclusion in embedded devices. Until Apple completes their shift to an all-ARM company (expected around 2022; the shift has already begun) ARM and RISC-V will likely remain locked in their current niches.

ARM laptops are on the rise, though. Apple really is shifting to an all-ARM CPU base. So, maybe others will follow suit.

We certainly first have to wait for an ARM manufacturer to release a non-SOC, non-APU, general purpose CPU without the current limitations on RAM and IO bus access. It is likely that we will only ever see socketed ARM CPUs in the current configurations of Pine64 SoPine or PadI and Raspberry Pi Compute Module.

Personally, I think it much more likely that desktops will continue to be dominated by Intel and AMD and that both companies will more and more release APU systems with an increasing number of RISC-V cores and decreasing number of x86 cores. The AMD Zen2 architecture already contains several pipeline-specific RISC-V cores.
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