The Raspberry Pi has completely changed DIY. In the years since its release, the Pocket PC has proven to be a multi-tool for software and hardware crossover development. We’ve covered it in detail: beginner’s guides guide guide in pay, and to use Pi. Since the release, several competitors have joined the market. Today, we’ll take a look at some notable Pi alternatives, as well as some more expensive computers that perform a similar function.


First on the list is the computer for the Rock64 multimedia board. [больше не доступен] by Pine64. Designed to be a direct competitor to the Pi, this board has several key advantages over the Pi.


The board comes at several prices, reflecting the amount of onboard RAM. For a fair comparison, we will consider the 2 GB version, since according to $34.95 It competes with the Pi 3. At the time of writing, Rock64 has not yet shipped, although its setup looks extremely promising. quad core CPU Rockchip RK3328 with clocked at 1.5GHz ahead of the Pi 3. The Rock64 has twice as much RAM as its Pi counterpart, as well as a socket for adding eMMC boot memory. It comes with the familiar full set of GPIO pins.

Other goodies include a Gigabit Ethernet port, and while the Rock64 has one less USB port, it does have one USB 3.0 port and two USB 2.0 ports. The HDMI output on the Rock64 supports 4K at 60 frames per second (FPS).

This board seems like a no brainer? Well, it’s not without its limitations. It doesn’t have built-in Wi-Fi or Bluetooth support, while the Pi 3 has both. The Rock64 needs to be powered by a +5V 3A jack, and while it’s not that hard, it’s not as convenient as the micro USB cable needed to power the Pi.

The power and connection speed this board brings to the table, along with the ability to connect to external storage, makes it ideal for running a powerful server. There are several Linux distributions that run on the Pi already. but if you want something with a lot of punch, Rock64 is a very strong contender.

2. NanoPi NEO Plus2

Another strong contender from FriendlyArm is the NanoPi NEO Plus2. The quad-core 64-bit Cortex A53 Allwinner H5 can outperform the Pi 3 on paper, though that’s not the main advantage.

This board combines a huge amount of features with a small footprint, half the size of the Raspberry. It also boasts a Gigabit Ethernet port, as well as built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connections. It has 8GB of internal eMMC storage and a MicroSD slot, along with 1GB of DDR3 RAM. All these features are also available at a lower price as the board is available for just $24.99 from the FriendlyArm website.


Now this board is incredibly versatile so far, not without its problems. It comes without an HDMI port as the board is designed to be used without an operating system via the Ubuntu Core operating system. This means you should be comfortable using the Pi with SSH. . There is no direct audio output, although there are connections on the board that allow you to connect the output yourself.

USB communication with the board is only possible using a USB-TTL cable. While it only adds a few dollars to your order, it’s all worth keeping in mind. The board also only has two USB ports, although it supports power from the built-in MicroUSB port, just like the Pi.

With its tiny size and impressive feature set, this board is a real contender. Although the Pi still wins if you want to make a home media center, Plus2’s small size makes it an attractive option for more advanced users.

3. Banana pi

The Banana Pi came into being shortly after the Raspberry Pi took off. Some of the boards they’ve released look more like straight clones, but today we’re going to take a look at the M2 Berry. This board meets the comparison criteria with similar computing power provided by Allwinner V40 SoC and 1GB DDR3 SDRAM. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth come standard along with a Gigabit Ethernet connector.

Banana Pi

The board is comparable to raspberries in many ways. It’s the same size and available from Aliexpress for the same price as the Pi 3. It has the same number of USB 2.0 ports, the same camera connectors, and a digital display.

It does pack a few extra features though. The network chip on the Banana is separate so the bandwidth isn’t limited by other systems on the board. It also has a SATA port, allowing storage to be directly connected to the board. This, combined with the built-in microphone and camera port, would make the perfect home cooking security system. security system

The Banana Pi isn’t without problems either. The board has a much smaller community and the Bananian image designed for use with boards has been discontinued. While there are plenty of other compatible operating systems out there, for the same price, it’s probably more convenient to just use a Raspberry Pi 3. If you’re interested in something a little different with a few other features, then Banana Pi might well be worth a look. With a clone of Orange Pi clones available even cheaper, a bank will have no problem getting one of these boards.

Moving away from direct Raspberry Pi comparisons, it’s worth taking a look at some boards attacking things from different angles.

4. Espressobin

Espressobin approaches single board computers a little differently. Designed with storage and networking in mind, it features a dedicated Topaz network switch that uses three Ethernet ports along with SATA connectors, allowing it to act as a server, router, or just about any other device.

There is no video on this board, and again, this is most likely not the best choice for beginners. It has a USB 3.0 port as well as another USB 2.0 port. The ability to connect additional peripherals via the miniPCIe port somewhat compensates for the lack of built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth functionality.


The board has a 64-bit processor built by Marvell, who launched the board on Kickstarter and is currently in the process of shipping boards to early backers. This board is available on Amazon for $49. While it costs a bit more than our previous picks, it’s a very specialized board that, under the right circumstances, can do a lot more than the Raspberry Pi or any of its brethren.

5. LattePanda

LattePanda first appeared in 2015 and made a splash with its powerful quad-core processor. Cherry Trail Z8350 . Produced by DFRobot, the board has an onboard Atmega32u4 making it compatible with Arduino and runs Windows 10 as its main operating system. This board is designed to be in every way a step up from cheap hobby development boards.

This move is also accompanied by a price hike. LattePanda is available for $209 making it the most expensive board we’ve ever seen, though lower-spec models are available for $89. However, the higher price is justified if you need something that powerful for your projects or if you are generally more comfortable working in a Windows 10 environment.

Choice, Choice

There are many reasons to use the official Raspberry Pi, the community is huge and well supported, they are cheap, and overall they are reliable. However, this article has shown that sometimes there are alternatives that can make more sense. Sometimes you may even realize that you shouldn’t be using the Pi at all.

There are many more competitors than we mentioned today, and the only way to decide what to get is to compare hardware and see how well it is supported by the online community. You can simply find the perfect board for a fraction of the price you expect to pay. Maybe micro:bit will draw you in, especially with its range of accessories

Have you used any of these boards? Is there a board we forgot about that really shouldn’t have been? Let us know in the comments below.

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