some questions regarding the pinebook
#1
hi all , i'm new here and applied for the BTO of the 14" pinebook.
at first i thouhg the ""BTO" meant i can customize some things, but then i saw the product page in the store, which explains the term better than the bto page itself ^^;

i do have some questions about the pinebook
1: why is is so cheap in comparision to the olimex open source laptop? Big Grin
2: is there any upgrade path for the mainboard in the future, by which i only need to swap it and plug the emmc module in?
2-1: if so, what will those specs be? (i hope for >= 4gb ram, extra storage options, like a second emmc slot or a sata 3 or m.2 slot)
3: can there be a bigger battery in the unit, as i saw on google images that the insides between the 2 pcb's is unused space.
4: what is the sound quality like? if it is 'meh' , then i would sugggest for a newer revision the have a pair of high note speakers pointing out at the back of the system, like between the 2 hinges for the display (i did a similar mod to a el cheapo yepo 737s and the sound sounded waaay fuller, even pleasant for such a thin laptop!)
5: will there ever be a usb type c connector on a newer revision of the laptop?
6: would be fun to have an internal usb 2 port as well, for a usb to sata hdd for the lose space in the laptop
7: is the headphone jack also a mic in (2-in-1 solution?)
8: what are the thermals under load right now? does the cpu throttle? and what is the TDP of the SOC in watts peak?
9: is there a possibility of extra cooling by adding a flat copper plat or something?
10: what is the bottom panel made of? i hope aluminium, as my yepo 737s had that, and it acted as a cooling plate for the intel atom with a TDP of roughly 6W peak (2w average SDP (scenario design power))
11: does it run u-boot or some other bootloader?
12: what's the maximum battery lifespan on the default OS, at 50% brightness of the lcd, while having firefox with a youtube video running? (at the refernce 360p)
13: if i place a BTO request like right now, what will the expected waiting time be? (so i know around what period i can pay)
#2
(07-16-2017, 09:56 AM)schepers_cp Wrote: hi all , i'm new here and applied for the BTO of the 14" pinebook.
at first i thouhg the ""BTO" meant i can customize some things, but then i saw the product page in the store, which explains the term better than the bto page itself ^^;

i do have some questions about the pinebook
1: why is is so cheap in comparision to the olimex open source laptop? Big Grin
2: is there any upgrade path for the mainboard in the future, by which i only need to swap it and plug the emmc module in?
2-1: if so, what will those specs be? (i hope for >= 4gb ram, extra storage options, like a second emmc slot or a sata 3 or m.2 slot)
3: can there be a bigger battery in the unit, as i saw on google images that the insides between the 2 pcb's is unused space.
4: what is the sound quality like? if it is 'meh' , then i would sugggest for a newer revision the have a pair of high note speakers pointing out at the back of the system, like between the 2 hinges for the display (i did a similar mod to a el cheapo yepo 737s and the sound sounded waaay fuller, even pleasant for such a thin laptop!)
5: will there ever be a usb type c connector on a newer revision of the laptop?
6: would be fun to have an internal usb 2 port as well, for a usb to sata hdd for the lose space in the laptop
7: is the headphone jack also a mic in (2-in-1 solution?)
8: what are the thermals under load right now? does the cpu throttle? and what is the TDP of the SOC in watts peak?
9: is there a possibility of extra cooling by adding a flat copper plat or something?
10: what is the bottom panel made of? i hope aluminium, as my yepo 737s had that, and it acted as a cooling plate for the intel atom with a TDP of roughly 6W peak (2w average SDP (scenario design power))
11: does it run u-boot or some other bootloader?
12: what's the maximum battery lifespan on the default OS, at 50% brightness of the lcd, while having firefox with a youtube video running? (at the refernce 360p)
13: if i place a BTO request like right now, what will the expected waiting time be? (so i know around what period i can pay)

1. I have no idea. I saw the Olimex lappy at FOSDEM 17 in person and didn't see anything that would explain the price tag.
2. yes
2-1. no clue, but there is some speculation that A63 may be used for a future mainboard
3. The battery is large already - 7-10hrs of battery life, depending on what you are doing
4. meh
5.no clue - doubt it as USB type c is expensive
6. There is an internal USB 2.0 hub, I belive one USB 2.0 port is left open (dont quote me on this).
7. Will have to check withi someone more knowledgable Wink
8. Does throttle a bit under generic benchmarks load (past 80*C) - but rarely if ever in realistic use
9. The cooling is sufficient as is
10. the entire laptop is plastic
11. uboot
12. max ? - Id say close to 7-8hrs or so hrs
13. No clue
You can find me on IRC, Discord and Twitter


#3
thanks for answering most of my questions, i didn't expect such a fast response!

the cooling seems to be insuffifient, as cpu throttling is usually applied to prevent damage from overheating.
the ideal cooling would be to have enough cooling to keep throttling at 0% and stay under the SOC's max temperature (70C), this will improve lifespan under heavy loads too.

also, can i suggest someting?
to be able to have a removable panel on the bottom side for emmc removal, shoudln't be too hard to do, as the bottom is plastic and not aluminium.
this would be usefull for people who need to switch between different OS' on different EMMC's on a ragular base.

another question: is it possible to order a spare battery seperately as i can't find it in the shop? usefull for those extra hours needed ^^;

lastly: will there ever be an option on making the battery replacable with pgo pin connectors in a seperate compatrment on the bottom accessible trough a removable panel on the bottom?

i know these will be slighty more expensive options, but i think it might be worth it in the end.

to be honest, i wouldn't mind it if a higher end 14" pinebook costed 150$ in the future*, which is still pretty awesome.

* = for 32gb emmc, and 4gb of RAM and a 2mp camera
#4
(07-16-2017, 11:01 AM)schepers_cp Wrote: thanks for answering most of my questions,  i didn't expect such a fast response!

the cooling seems to be insuffifient, as cpu throttling is usually applied to prevent damage from overheating.
the ideal cooling would be to have enough cooling to keep throttling at 0% and stay under the SOC's max temperature (70C), this will improve lifespan under heavy loads too.

also, can i suggest someting?
to be able to have a removable panel on the bottom side for emmc removal, shoudln't be too hard to do, as the bottom is plastic and not aluminium.
this would be usefull for people who need to switch between different OS' on different EMMC's on a ragular base.

another question: is it possible to order a spare battery seperately as i can't find it in the shop? usefull for those extra hours needed ^^;

lastly: will there ever be an option on making the battery replacable with pgo pin connectors in a seperate compatrment on the bottom accessible trough a removable panel on the bottom?

i know these will be slighty more expensive options, but i think it might be worth it in the end.

to be honest, i wouldn't mind it if a higher end 14" pinebook costed 150$ in the future*, which is still pretty awesome.

* = for 32gb emmc, and 4gb of RAM and a 2mp camera

The cooling is sufficient for normal workload. Case in point, here are temp readings while running make, watching youtube in VLC (720p), also terminal and a few firefox windows open: 

Code:
CPU freq       : 1152.00 MHz
GPU freq       : 456.00 MHz
CPU count      : 4  
Governor       : interactive  
Core voltage   : 1.30 V
GPU voltage    : 1.10 V
SOC Temp       : 58 C
GPU Temp       : 52 C
PMIC Temp      : 48 C
Cooling state  : 0  
 
You are welcome to differ of course. 
As for selling spare parts, they will be available in the future. The battery may however be the one thing not available (or not available outside US) due to issues with shipping batteries. 
However, you could just use an external power bank and an A-to-A USB 2.0 cable plugged into the OTG port to charge the Pinebook -- if this feature is enabled in software (it is not by default/ in current images).  I was incorrect, you cant charge via the OTG port.

Lastly, regarding: 
Quote:to be honest, i wouldn't mind it if a higher end 14" pinebook costed 150$ in the future*, which is still pretty awesome.

There are many considerations for future products as well as iterations of the Pinebook -- if such will ever exist. That said, with the current hardware - the current feature-to-price point ratio  has been considered quite carefully ;Wink Personally, I feel a $150 tag would be pushing it for what the A64 has to offer, even if used only as a tinkering gadget.
You can find me on IRC, Discord and Twitter


#5
thank you for clarifying more things.

i can fully understand your point of view.

you stated:

Personally, I feel a $150 tag would be pushing it for what the A64 has to offer, even if used only as a tinkering gadget.

but at 150$ with the features i named it ain't a tinkering gadget anymore, but a real netbook (at least to me).

also, when i get my chance of buying one, i will use it for development purposes, so it doesn't have a value of gadget to me, but more like a netbook for work related things.
#6
Do not forget, what if you live in EU or US you will pay additional some 30-40 USD for transport and another 40 USD for taxes... I paid for 14" totally more than 170 EUR.
#7
i don't mind customs costs tbh Tongue

at 100US$ for a pine notebook, the customs would be about 38$ here in the NL, so the total will be around 138$
and i will be ordering multiple things in one time, reducing shipping costs(?)
so total would be about 160$ (130 euro)

although i meant raw product costs, rather than final costs.

is still will be way cheaper (and more capable) than the olimex alternative though, even including shipment and customs. (that's why i don't mind it being 50% more expensive for a few extra default features)
#8
Got the last answer: the jack does have line in for mic.

edit: and a correction, you can't charge via the OTG port
You can find me on IRC, Discord and Twitter


#9
(07-16-2017, 05:08 PM)Luke Wrote: Got the last answer: the jack does have line in for mic.

Damn you... I was just reading through that list and had noted to answer 7 :-P

But yes, the jack is the 4 pole TRRS type and has a mic connection. The switches in that jack appear to be smart enough to tell between a standard 3-pole headphone plug and a 4 pole plug... one smart jack!


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