The popular Raspberry Pi 3 has a new rival in the mini PC space. Shenzhen Xunlong Software has released its Orange Pi 3 development board, with this latest iteration addressing some of the shortcomings of previous generation models. Just as importantly from a consumer standpoint, it offers superior specs compared to the Raspberry Pi 3, while keep the price affordable at around $35 shipped.
As with its predecessor, the new Orange Pi 3 is based on the Allwinner H6 platform, which consists of a 64-bit ARM Cortex-A53 quad-core processor clocked at 1.8GHz. It also features 1GB of LPDDR3 memory for the base model, or 2GB of memory if you want to pony up an additional $5 for the upgraded version.
Both models sport four USB 3.0 ports and a single USB 2.0 port, to go along with an HDMI 2.0a output, a gigabit Ethernet port, built-in 802.11ac Wi-Fi (also known as Wi-Fi 5) and Bluetooth 5.0 wireless connectivity, an eMMC slot, an mPCIe slot, an IR receiver, and a built-in microphone.
You can purchase either model with 8GB of eMMC memory preinstalled, each of which goes for $5 over their respective base prices. So, here's how things break down...
For comparison, the most powerful Raspberry Pi, (Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+) offers a quad-core 1.4GHz processor, 1GB of DDR2 RAM, four USB 2.0 ports, HDMI 1.3 output, and gigabit Ethernet over USB 2.0.
The Orange Pi 3 targets the same kind of uses as a Raspberry Pi 3, meaning you can use it to build a low power PC, play emulated games, serve as a media center, and so forth. There is no shortage of uses for a mini PC.
You can purchase the Orange Pi 3 now via any of the product links above.