Quad-core ARM CPU and Arduino in one board

This might sound overwhelming that was why you might need a full spec.

  • Freescale i.MX 6 ARM Cortex-A9 CPU Dua/Quad core 1GHz
  • Integrated graphics, each processor provides 3 separated accelerators for 2D, OpenGL® ES2.0 3D and OpenVG™
  • Atmel SAM3X8E ARM Cortex-M3 CPU (same as Arduino Due)
  • RAM DDR3 1GB
  • 76 fully available GPIO
  • Arduino-compatible R3 1.0 pinout
  • HDMI and LVDS + Touch (I2C signals)
  • Ethernet RJ45 (10/100/1000 MBit)
  • WiFi Module
  • Mini USB and Mini USB OTG (micro with the final release)
  • USB type A (x2) and USB connector (requires a specific wire)
  • Analog Audio and Mic
  • SATA
  • Camera connection
  • Micro SD (boot device)
  • Power Supply 12V and External Battery connector

Delay

Sep 2013 was the estimated delivery date; I got in November the same year. Better than most Kickstarter’s projects.

Impression

This came in a good pretty box, but there was nothing but board. In my opinion, SATA was one rare thing in this sorta board and at the price I paid, it was quite a deal.

UDOO board UDOO back UDOO SATA UDOO 3.5 DC jack

UDOO was like every other ARM board. dd‘ing image file to micro SD card and UDOO was ready to run. You would have to bring your own 3.5mm jack 12VDC adapter with 2A to make it operate fully functional with all stuffs attached.

UDOO Buttons UDOO Arduino

GPIO max voltage was 3.3V. It did work like you connected any Arduino board to your computer with USB. If you had ever used Raspberry Pi, UDOO was faster, but it was fast enough like Intel NUC. I honestly didn’t know that ARM CPU would be able to achieve the same level as x86 CPU as far as desktop experience was concerned. To compare with more comparable CPU, Odroid-XU which had Samsung Exynos5 1.6GHz Big.Little CPU (4-core A15 + 4-core A7 which couldn’t be used at the same time, but throttling back and forth) UDOO was a bit slower. UDOO’s wasn’t that stable in hot weather at least it rebooted randomly during the day in Thailand, but worked fine at night. I guessed a big black heatsink wasn’t enough. Wifi wasn’t that reliable either; got crankly after sleep most of the time. I was happier with a Wifi USB, of course.

Honestly, I didn’t use UDOO regularly since I found an 5VDC ARM board powered was much easier to operate; smaller adapter or even obiquitous phone adapter would work properly. Also, with all extra stuffs coming with UDOO wasn’t useful to me much. I regular had only a sensor attached to gather data which 76 fully GPIO were surely overqualified. Maybe I just wasn’t the target.

Price

$129 for Udoo Quad at Kickstarter and $135 at UDOO store

Verdict

It was a fine board. It was affordable enough, but I didn’t know. This was where it got weirder since UDOO packed with tons of features and to me, that was a drawback. I would be much happier to get couple of Raspberry Pis or Odroid C1s tinkering around connecting together and had fun more. Maybe it was just me.

However, if you had a plan for a tiny computer with SATA and where Wifi was strong, UDOO might be a good choice for you. I could even imagine it was easier to pack things in one board for kids to learn which was a purpose of the board after all.


Note If I ever got around to play with UDOO SATA port, I would test how good it performed and updated here.