Frequently Asked Questions
Wireless radios add significant regulatory overhead because our product is exported to countries around the world. All of the product we offer are FCC and CE certified. Most board vendors do not bother to certify their hardware even if they include wireless radios but this is technically breaking the law and violating customs. We are in the process of evaluating how to integrate wireless offerings into our reward lineup. This will appear in the middle of the campaign.Last updated:
In the PC world, the GPU is five components clumped together. GPU would contains 2D engines (scalers, bit blit), 3D engines (vertex/pixel shaders), video decoders, bitstream encoders (HDMI/DP/DVI/VGA), and a pipeline for handling planes. In the ARM world, these five components can be created by different companies. Usually only the 3D engine (Mali) is designed by ARM. You can also have a chip without a 3D engine and still have all the other pieces like video decoding, 2D, overlays, etc working.
On La Frite and Le Potato, the only piece that doesn't have a driver is the 2D engine but most software use the 3D engine as a substitute since it is more standardized. The 3D engine is the ARM Mali-450. It has an open-source kernel shim and an user-space binary driver (no source code). This unique combination is due the ARM's, in our opinion poor, business model. Lima is an open source project to create a full kernel driver to replace the kernel shim and user-space binary driver. Video playback and most other functions of the "GPU" do not typically need the 3D engine (Mali) to work.Last updated:
eMMC is a flash device that can be thought of as a mini-SSD. Where as SSDs have controller and flash separately, eMMC is like a combination of those two in one device. While eMMC flash is standardized, there is no standardized connector for eMMC modules. eMMC is therefore proprietary to each board vendor that implements them. We created our own eMMC 5.x modules both available with screw mounting and without. You can purchase them through our distributors, resellers, and Amazon.
There are numerous differences broken down at three levels:
Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ is powered by the Broadcom BCM2837 SoC. This SoC is built on the 40nm process and has four ARM Cortex-A53 processors without Crypto Extensions at 1.4GHz. The GPU, which also is the boot device, is capable of OpenGL ES 2.0 and the video accelerator is capable of encoding and decoding H.264 at 1080P30. It requires special firmware that only works in 32-bit mode. It features one USB 2.0 channel that is shared between all USB ports and Ethernet. It has onboard dual-band WiFi and Bluetooth. It features non-UHS MicroSD slot.
La Frite is powered by the Amlogic S805X SoC. This is built on the 28nm process and has four ARM Cortex-A53 cores with Crypto Extensions at 1.2GHz. The ARM GPU is capable of OpenGL ES 2.0 and the video accelerator capable of encoding H.264 at 1080P30 and decoding H.265, H.264, and VP9 at 1080P60. It features two USB 2.0 channels with OTG functionality on one. Ethernet channel is dedicated with full speed and not part of the USB bus. It does not feature any onboard wireless radios. It features an eMMC connector and IR sensor.
Raspberry Pi's most popular distribution is Raspbian. The Debian Linux based distribution is compiled only in 32-bit to maintain backwards compatibility with the older Raspberry Pi models. There are a variety of other distributions that are compiled for 64-bit but they do not support video acceleration since Raspberry Pi's firmware does not support 64-bit mode. Due to the GPU design, it is not capable of supporting standard ARM64 kernels for unified software images.
La Frite can run any Linux distribution compiled for 32-bit or 64-bit ARM architectures. It features standardized upstream Linux kernel and u-boot and is fully compatible with future ARM standards like EBBR. It supports 3D and video acceleration through normal Linux kernel interfaces like DRM, KMS, GBM, V4L and works for both 32-bit and 64-bit distributions.
Raspberry Pi has a large community of users exclusive to its ecosystem that provide support to each other.
La Frite builds on upstream open-source projects that provides support for their respective projects.Last updated:
La Frite 1GB can run Android since it has sufficient memory. La Frite 512MB will not be able to run Android because it does not have enough memory.Last updated:
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