Would you like to see a Pine 64 mini computer?
Yes
61.54%
8
No
38.46%
5
13 vote(s)
* You voted for this item. [Show Results]

How about a arm based pine 64 mini to go with the pinebook
#1
I find it is interesting that there is a pinebook 64 to purchase but am thinking that it would be nice to have a higher end arm based Pine Mini based loosely as something similar to a mac mini or a Nuc computer as a project mini desktop. The general idea would be a usable mini arm computer of many usages suck as a Media box, large screen tv web surfer, software development device and other options such as a media center. So not quite a pc desktop but way more advanced than a arm media center and usable as a computer for say Arch Linux for pine arm development with a high end arm system with a newer arm processor as they are getting to the point to be competitive with a X86 system.
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#2
The Rock64, Rock64Pro, H64, and A64 can all already be used much like as you described. The Rock64Pro and (upcoming) Hard Rock would both be capable of all these things, and offer performance very similar to the PBP (same SoC.) There are even cases for the Rock64Pro already available in the Pine store.
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#3
Yes, they should offer this.

You don't need to do any design work, it can be built 100% out of the components already offered. Just use the highest-spec SoC, emmc, PSU and case, and put an entry for it at the top of the page, in the same section with the other pre-built options. Ship it pre-assembled and pre-flashed.

You would get many more sales and many more users. You don't realize how many people are looking at that long page full of bare electronic guts and thinking this isn't for them, not realizing that you can slot some of the pieces together relatively simply, closing the tab without even digging through it. You need to make it as easy as possible for people to pick up a linux mini-desktop PC.

And if they want to customize it, they can. But pre-built would get many more people in the door and into the community, and sticking around long enough to realize what they can do. And you'd also get a lot more press, which means dramatically more people coming in.
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#4
We all have our preferences and theories on how to get more press coverage and or popularity for the Pine64 products.
My theory is that the Pinephone is currently the best bet for more coverage and popularity, as the only other competitor seems to be Librem, at the moment.

The SBC market is dominated by Raspberries and it's hard for other players to get a decent slice of the market.
With the current state of the OS's, I wouldn't recommend these machines to the "average" user, as it's still too complicated for them.
A complete SBC with a case won't make it simple enough for them.

What we can do is make blog posts about Pine64 products, write on Reddit, Facebook and make videos on Youtube or LBRY.
I also showed the Pinebook Pro to some friends, but only to friends that I know that can work with Linux.
I wouldn't recommend a Pine64 product to my mother.
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#5
Making it easier to use by preassembling and preflashing would still be a good thing, and expand the pool of people who can use it. Microsoft doesn't worry that people might get in over their heads if they can buy pre-built PCs with preinstalled Windows.

I'm looking at getting the next larger lake of users here, who have the skills or can quickly pick them up, but don't realize a low financial commitment, Intel/AMD "trusted computing module"-free linux mini-PC is already available. If they're looking at your store page, you want to get the sale. Don't assume they're already on an RPi; I've been a linux user for over 20 years, and simply never had time to pay attention to single-board computers. For most of its history, RPi was a doohickey for people who had time to burn, and it will take a while for it to shed that image.

Press attention was something which occurred to me as an additional benefit, not the main purpose.
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#6
I entered a "Yes" but it comes with caveats. Yes, I would love a desktop/workstation Pine. No, I do not want all the limitations that come from the current lineup of SoCs from Rock Chip. I am very seriously considering a Honeycomb LX2K from Solid Run (link: https://www.solid-run.com/nxp-lx2160a-fa...rkstation/). There are Cavium/ThunderX and Ampere/eMAG offerings from Avantech but the prices are steep for my desires.

I've been saying it, now, for two or three years: If Pine64 puts together a 16 - 32 core system with all the usual things people expect in a desktop or workstation, it will sell. I, for one, would buy it, especially if it came in different core-counts with a slotted SoC I could upgrade at a later date.

But I do not consider the rk3399 -- or anything else from RockChip's current product line -- to be desktop capable. They're barely even mobile-capable by modern mid-tier standards (which is okay because they're priced with low-tier standards where they are performance-competitive.) That said, I'm really drooling for a PineTime and PineTab. The tab is underpowered, as well, but not within its price range, and it's absolutely perfect for service as a handy org-mode note taking device.
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#7
(04-22-2020, 01:26 PM)PINETAB is great in price, and it will be in software sharing SoC with Pinephone.The cheap and good PINE family MUST GROW with a PINETAB MINI (music player) and with a PINEBOX for TV BOX and desktop computer use.  Not for the DIY and the Linux guy only, ready to use in a box, as many others Android TV boxes, but with KDE TV or Ubuntu TV (unfortunately died, but UBports guys can resucutate it with some demand).And I think it will be next PINEx generation - when it will be cheap a SoC with actual flagship features -,such as MHL, WiFi6, AV1 hw decoders, 5G, UFS 3.1, BT 5, and all the gamma of products I think 4 at least - MINI, PHONE, TAB, BOX - when sells will be great.tophneal Wrote: The Rock64, Rock64Pro, H64, and A64 can all already be used much like as you described. The Rock64Pro and (upcoming) Hard Rock would both be capable of all these things, and offer performance very similar to the PBP (same SoC.) There are even cases for the Rock64Pro already available in the Pine store.
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#8
I guess I'll throw in a few cents, as a relative newb to single board and to pine64 (getting myself a pinetab).

Over the next year or two a few really excellent and powerful ARM cores should hit the market for Laptop computing, both Microsoft and Apple are really pushing ARM on Laptop, both to break away from the sinking ship of Intel and to extend battery life. The SQ1 and 8xc aren't quite powerful enough to be daily drivers in workhorse settings. (at least with the current level of code optimization windows can give it.) But that line of investment and development should push the chipsets forward in a year or two, giving powerful, high spec workhorse processors to the ARM SOC world. Also what NUVIA is doing in servers could lead to more powerful and cost effective ARM workhorse chips. There's about to be an explosion of acceptably priced high powered ARM processors. There's also stuff like the A64FX which is a very interesting AI SoC. Lots of interesting diversification in the pipeline.

As far as I can tell, (as a newb in this space,) here's nothing obvious on the market to consolidate around for long term decade length PINE64 style build tho, (as far as I can tell from looking into this, there's a lot of potential chips in the next generation, but nothing in scale production yet)

It is going to be a few years before we're likely to have a low cost, long term, high power chipset to fit the mold of A64 and RockChip.

*So, I think this kind of workstation device is a bit premature unless we want to collectively jump into the Qualcomm world.*

That said, I do want the next gen high power ARM devices that Pine will be capable of releasing in the not to distant future!

Such a chipset could be transformative of the PINE64 line. I would love a powerfully spec'd PineBox & PineTab Pro, or a PinePhone Pro as a daily driver. I'm thinking that the RockChip just isn't powerful enough to significantly change the user experience on such devices compared to the A64. (at least its not competitive with an Intel desktop from even a decade ago.)
Really examining the release plans for chips manufactures in the next 18 months should reveal the optimal chip for a high spec line. A mid/high Range chip but priced better, something meant for use in 8xc/SQ1 inspired Next Gen Windows ultraportable laptop type devices.

*

Right now there's nothing but Flagship chips that are almost loss leaders and cutting edge sales/R&D chips, they aren't going to last for a long time, production will shift and evolve. The SQ1/8xc isn't quite hefty enough to impress Reviewers, so these chips won't last long. (Afaict the Cache just isn't big enough.) What comes after these chips should be more optimized for performance and have more heft, enough to drive a 4k convertible in a similar way to a laptop i5.

Such (Equivalent to a laptop i5) ARM SoC, say, roughly a "8xc2/SQ2 7nm gen 2, (ARM Cortex-X1/A78 based SoC)" but mass market & Manufactured by a third party is at least 5 years away from a Pine device at best.

The Allwinner A64 is a 40nm chip. RockChip Rk3399 is a 28NM process. The next Gen ARM Ultrabook processors in Windows devices will be 5nm in 2022.

*

Sorry this is a bit disjointed. I'm doing research and reasoning as I write, and so the direction of this message isn't fully coherent.

*

A Server ARM SoC with 16 Cores or such could be really interesting in a PineBoard Formfactor. There are other boards built around those chips for servers. But I don't know if I see a clear usecase for such a device in a PineBoard tinkerers mold.

But, if we want a PineWorksation/PineBox we could put together some kind of PineBox with a Clusterboard and Sopines. ~400$ for 28 1.2ghz cores and 14 gigs of ram. Could be a great little machine for Video processing and Home Ai. Put a Rockchip in there to run the UI and 4k video out, could really be a cool little device.

Of all the options, I think if we want a PineBox in the next few years it would be a Clusterboard/Sopine based device.
I don't see a really compelling alternative that's not prohibitively expensive or that isn't such a left turn that it isn't likely to flop.
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#9
(07-04-2020, 09:45 PM)qastokes Wrote: I guess I'll throw in a few cents, as a relative newb to single board and to pine64 (getting myself a pinetab).

Over the next year or two a few really excellent and powerful ARM cores should hit the market for Laptop computing, both Microsoft and Apple are really pushing ARM on Laptop, both to break away from the sinking ship of Intel and to extend battery life. The SQ1 and 8xc aren't quite powerful enough to be daily drivers in workhorse settings. (at least with the current level of code optimization windows can give it.) But that line of investment and development should push the chipsets forward in a year or two, giving powerful, high spec workhorse processors to the ARM SOC world. Also what NUVIA is doing in servers could lead to more powerful and cost effective ARM workhorse chips. There's about to be an explosion of acceptably priced high powered ARM processors. There's also stuff like the A64FX which is a very interesting AI SoC. Lots of interesting diversification in the pipeline.

As far as I can tell, (as a newb in this space,) here's nothing obvious on the market to consolidate around for long term decade length PINE64 style build tho, (as far as I can tell from looking into this, there's a lot of potential chips in the next generation, but nothing in scale production yet)

It is going to be a few years before we're likely to have a low cost, long term, high power chipset to fit the mold of A64 and RockChip.

*So, I think this kind of workstation device is a bit premature unless we want to collectively jump into the Qualcomm world.*

That said, I do want the next gen high power ARM devices that Pine will be capable of releasing in the not to distant future!

Such a chipset could be transformative of the PINE64 line. I would love a powerfully spec'd PineBox & PineTab Pro, or a PinePhone Pro as a daily driver. I'm thinking that the RockChip just isn't powerful enough to significantly change the user experience on such devices compared to the A64. (at least its not competitive with an Intel desktop from even a decade ago.)
Really examining the release plans for chips manufactures in the next 18 months should reveal the optimal chip for a high spec line. A mid/high Range chip but priced better, something meant for use in 8xc/SQ1 inspired Next Gen Windows ultraportable laptop type devices.

*

Right now there's nothing but Flagship chips that are almost loss leaders and cutting edge sales/R&D chips, they aren't going to last for a long time, production will shift and evolve. The SQ1/8xc isn't quite hefty enough to impress Reviewers, so these chips won't last long. (Afaict the Cache just isn't big enough.) What comes after these chips should be more optimized for performance and have more heft, enough to drive a 4k convertible in a similar way to a laptop i5.

Such (Equivalent to a laptop i5) ARM SoC, say, roughly a "8xc2/SQ2 7nm gen 2, (ARM Cortex-X1/A78 based SoC)" but mass market & Manufactured by a third party is at least 5 years away from a Pine device at best.

The Allwinner A64 is a 40nm chip. RockChip Rk3399 is a 28NM process. The next Gen ARM Ultrabook processors in Windows devices will be 5nm in 2022.

*

Sorry this is a bit disjointed. I'm doing research and reasoning as I write, and so the direction of this message isn't fully coherent.

*

A Server ARM SoC with 16 Cores or such could be really interesting in a PineBoard Formfactor. There are other boards built around those chips for servers. But I don't know if I see a clear usecase for such a device in a PineBoard tinkerers mold.

But, if we want a PineWorksation/PineBox we could put together some kind of PineBox with a Clusterboard and Sopines. ~400$ for 28 1.2ghz cores and 14 gigs of ram. Could be a great little machine for Video processing and Home Ai. Put a Rockchip in there to run the UI and 4k video out, could really be a cool little device.

Of all the options, I think if we want a PineBox in the next few years it would be a Clusterboard/Sopine based device.
I don't see a really compelling alternative that's not prohibitively expensive or that isn't such a left turn that it isn't likely to flop.

Hopefully next year outcome can surprise you. This year already becomes a pandemic year :-(
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