I can finally announce that we have received a driver board. Iteration 1 didn't work well enough for our suppliers to send to us, so they went straight into iteration 2. In consulation with Realtek, the chip manufacturer, it was decided to enlarge the board slightly to avoid what looked like interference issues. (It's a bit of a black art, so I'm told.)
Driver Board Received
Dave received an iteration 2 board on Tuesday morning of this week (15th April) and instantly tweeted a few photos.
Dave Sent One Straight to Me
I'm in Poland for the Easter holidays, so Dave instantly FedExed me one of the two boards he received. I got it on Thursday (17th April) and have just started testing it. Here's what it looks like...
Here's a comparison with the V2 'off-the-shelf' board. Ours is bigger because we've added sound, an extra HDMI port, an extra power in port, a USB 'Pi power port' and an additional USB interface for possible future use (e.g. touch etc.) We've also got the menu control buttons on the board instead of on a separate board. Note that the final board will have neither the VGA connector nor the middle USBA port on it, but will have the pads for one if you wish to add it yourself.
I Made a Little Video showing it working
Quick 'First Look' Tests
So far I've tested both HDMI ports, sound output, and the ability to run both screen and Pi model A from a single power source - the USB power in port and a 2 Amp supply. That's all working well.
But there's a lot more to test, including a complete run-through of the menu system, and Easter is looming. I fly back to UK next Wednesday (23rd). I'll compare notes with Dave at the end of next week and we'll take it from there.
The most important thing though, is that it works :)
We're Not Going to Rush
Several of you have been absolutely rampant for an update, and if you've been watching the comments section, you'll see that I have leaked out bits and pieces of information there in response to anguished queries. But I was determined not to issue another "nothing much to say" update. If you want the latest information, you can usually find something in the comments section or on @HDMIPi at twitter.
I will still endeavour to send out an update, either when there's some important/interesting news, or once a month. But we hope there won't be too many more monthlies :)
We want to do this properly and we want it to work. The modifications, which came up during the campaign, have caused some delays. Anyone who's done a hardware project before will know this was inevitable.
You may not realise this, but you can't change the reward target dates once you've started a campaign. Kickstarter prevents this. Otherwise we would have needed to add at least a month or two.
Of course we're sorry that it takes a long time, but we are trying to bring you the best product we can, at a price that nobody else has yet matched. (And it's somewhat doubtful that they will until LCD prices drop radically.)
Depending on how well testing goes, we may have to go another iteration, or we may approve the board. Once we do approve the board it will be around 8 weeks before we receive the screens, hopefully less.
That's it for now. Testing has only just begun. There may be another testing update after further work has been done.
For now, we'd like to wish you a Happy Easter. If you don't celebrate Easter, have a nice week-end.
Alex and Dave @hdmipi http://hdmipi.com