• Orange Pi Zero

What’s Orange Pi Zero?


It’s an open-source single-board computer. It can run Android 4.4, Ubuntu, Debian. It uses the AllWinner H2 SoC, and has 256MB/512MB DDR3 SDRAM(256MB version is Standard version)


What can I do with Orange Pi Zero?


Build… 

  • A computer
  • A wireless server
  • Games
  • Music and sounds
  • HD video
  • A speaker
  • Android
  • Scratch
  • Pretty much anything else, because Orange Pi Zero is open source


Who’s it for?


Orange Pi Zero is for anyone who wants to start creating with technology – not just consuming it. It's a simple, fun, useful tool that you can use to start taking control of the world around you.


Recommended OS

 In my experience  if you like a Debian based distro Armbian is the best option. They have a special image for the Orange Pi Zero that you can download.


To install it, just insert the SD card into your computer and write the image you downloaded to it. (Use DD from the command line or Disks in Ubuntu)


Then you can insert the card and power the zero from the USB port. You need to give it around 1.5Amps, although I run them on 5v 1000ma phone chargers and they work fine.

I would recommend that whilst you have the SD card in your machine after you have written the image you enlarge the partition to the size of the card, it's super easy with Gparted.

Finally I would mount the card and then edit the hostname (/etc/hostname) to something unique. I also usually drop a WIFI profile into /etc/NetworkManager/Systemprofiles , if you do this when you first power up the device it will connect to your WIFI automatically and register the hostname you gave it.

The first time you log in to the Armbian image use root/1234 you are then walked through your user account creation.


You can control the LEDs through /sys/class/leds  just echo 1 to turn them on or 0 to turn them off. (ie. echo 1 | sudo tee /sys/class/leds/red_led/brightness)

You can view the cpu temperatures and other stuff in a similar way.

I use these devices for Boinc processing and they get close to a RAC of 3000 per day which is very impressive.

If you are going to work them hard some kind of heatsink will help. The small ones that are size of the CPU don't do much and it's hard to fit a larger one due to the small size of the board and the higher components near by.

I have found that using the silicon putty  I can create a larger surface for a bigger heatsink. Whilst this does work it's not ideal with the putty being quite inefficient for thermal transfer.

For normal use with no heatsink or a small stick on one, you can expect to see 1.2Ghz operation for all bursts.

For heavy use it will thermally throttle and will probably average around 900Mhz.

Wireless range and signal strength are great. Wireless throughput is OK but nothing special.

Boot times are relatively slow, the hardware needs about 10 seconds to sort itself out before the OS actually starts booting.

Overall I would say that if you are looking for a small low power board with built in wireless and the power of a quad core, but with low power consumption this board is currently the best you can get at this price.



Hardware specification

CPU

H2 Quad-core Cortex-A7 H.265/HEVC 1080P.

GPU

·Mali400MP2 GPU @600MHz
·Supports OpenGL ES 2.0

Memory (SDRAM)

256MB/512MB DDR3 SDRAM(Share with GPU)(256MB version is Standard version)

Onboard Storage

TF card (Max. 32GB)/ Spi Flash

Onboard Network

10/100M Ethernet RJ45 POE is default off.

Onboard WIFI

XR819, IEEE 802.11 b/g/n

Audio Input

MIC

Video Outputs

Supports external board via 13pins

Power Source

USB OTG can supply power

USB 2.0 Ports

Only One USB 2.0 HOST, one USB 2.0 OTG

Buttons

Power Button

Low-level peripherals

26 Pins Header, compatible with Raspberry Pi B+

13 Pins Header, with 2x USB, IR pin, AUDIO(MIC, AV)

LED

Power led & Status led

Supported OS

Android, Lubuntu, Debian, Raspbian

Interface definition

Product size

48 mm × 46mm

Weight

26g

Orange Pi™ is a trademark of the Shenzhen Xunlong Software CO., Limited

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Orange Pi Zero

  • Product Code: orangepizero256
  • Availability: In Stock
  • 25

  • Ex Tax: 25

Tags: arm, wifi, linux, orangepi, zero, armbian, debian