Time for a change. You need a new challenge. There are several Raspberry Pi computers scattered around your house (or just your hobby), each of which performs different tasks. You may have a home security system. security system works on your Pi or media center . You may have converted an old non-wireless printer to a wireless printer. using Raspberry Pi or you have a website or even an automated Twitter account.

Simply put, you feel like you’ve mastered the Raspberry Pi, there’s nowhere else to go.

You’re wrong: take a look at these five alternatives, each of which can open up a whole new world of DIY technology for you.

But first: what to look for in a Raspberry Pi alternative

Most people use Raspberry Pi Model B or B+ so we’ll use that as a basis for comparison. Although the new Raspberry Pi 2 is a strong alternative in its own right, and we’ll be assuming you’re Pi’d out enough to leave the platform behind, quad-core or not.

To do this, we will compare the main characteristics, price and operating system, and highlight the key differences. By the end, you should have an idea of ​​which Raspberry Pi alternative is right for you.

ODroid-C1 [больше не доступен] $35


As a low-cost alternative to the Raspberry Pi, the first place to look is the ODroid-C1, the most basic of the ODroid series of devices that supports Ubuntu 14.04 and Android KitKat.

The board is equipped with a quad-core 1.5GHz ARM processor, a Mali-450 MP2 GPU and 1GB DDR3 SDRAM, a board with an Ethernet port, four USB 2.0 slots, and an infrared receiver. There is a micro-USB port, but this is for USB OTG ; unlike the Raspberry Pi, the ODroid-C1 requires DC power through a traditional connector.

A type-D micro HDMI connector is available, and the board can be expanded and interoperated via a 40-pin GPIO header.

Beaglebone Black $55


The next step is definitely the Beaglebone Black, a computer that, while superior to the Pi, certainly owes its continued existence to the expansion of the small computing sector that was spearheaded by the launch of the Pi.

With Debian, Android, Ubuntu, and Cloud9 IDE support, the Beaglebone Black features a 1GHz Cortex-A8 processor, 512MB DDR3 RAM, 4GB onboard eMMC flash, a 3D graphics accelerator, a NEON floating point accelerator, and 2x PRU 32 microcontrollers . There are OSB OTG, USB host, Ethernet and HDMI connectors, as well as two 46-pin connectors. A wide variety of Beaglebone Black designs are available, including mobile game console design.

Once advertised as the successor to the successor to the Raspberry Pi The Beaglebone Black has built its own user base while remaining relatively successful without matching the popularity of the Pi.

Banana Pi $35


Built on Android, the Banana Pi isn’t exactly a clone of the Raspberry Pi, it’s more of an improvement. Approximately 10% larger than the Raspberry Pi, various OS options are available on this board, such as the Debian Bananian variant (although the Raspberry Pi is also compatible), Lubuntu, Fedora, Arch Linux and FreeBSD and more, as well as Android 4.2 and 4.4.

The device is driven by a dual-core ARM Cortex A7 processor, a dual-core Mali-400 MP2 GPU, and 1GB DDR3 RAM equipped with a Raspberry Pi-style microUSB connector. The kit includes two USB ports and one USB OTG connector, as well as the expected SD card slot, Ethernet, HDMI, camera connector and audio output. Some differences from the Raspberry Pi include on-board power, reset, and reset switches, a custom LED, and an IR receiver.

The Banana Pi is a curious beast, but one that offers an introduction to the Raspberry Pi at the same time as an upgrade of sorts.

A slightly updated version, Banana Pro, is also available.

Hummingboard-i1 $70

More expensive than the Raspberry Pi but with more connectivity options, the Hummingboard comes in three models. We’re looking at the least expensive option, which includes Ethernet, powered USB ports (no more external hubs!), GPIO header, HDMI, microSD slot, digital and analog audio, and an IR receiver and camera.

The control of this batch is a single-core system on a chip processor with 512 MB of memory and a GC880 graphics processor. Power is supplied to the board via microUSB, and the Hummingboard-i1 can run XBMC and Linux. Additional options are available with other models as well as additional costs. If you’re looking at a home media project that’s more powerful than the Pi on offer, this should be your pick.

Minnowboard Max $99


Finally, we have the single-core version of the Minnowboard Max, an open source board with an Intel Atom processor (1.46 GHz, 64-bit). This particular component allows the device to run Windows 8.1 as well as Debian, Android 4.4 and is compatible with the Yocto Project (unofficially also works with Fedora, Linux Mint and CentOS).

$99 version (upgraded $139 alternative also available) with 1GB DDR3 RAM, Intel HD graphics, HDMI output, microSD card slot, SATA2 connector, Ethernet, USB 3.0 and USB 2.0, GPIO pins, and UEFI firmware capability.

Simply put, this is a clash between the Raspberry Pi-style project board and a Windows PC. Minnowboard Max was used in the creation of the K9 robot from the popular British series Doctor Who — this video tells you more…

These are the five best Raspberry Pi alternatives, but which one will you choose? Do you know someone we missed? Write to us in the comments!

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