Saturday, May 25, 2024
HomeReviews20 Best Raspberry Pi Alternatives Single-board Computer

20 Best Raspberry Pi Alternatives Single-board Computer

As a single-board computer, Raspberry Pi has already earned the reputation of being the prominent one over its competitors. It contains loads of options that include CPU, GPU, Memory, USB ports, Video outputs: HDMI, Network, etc. However, the number of Raspberry Pi alternatives is increasing day by day.

The best choice from Raspberry Pi alternatives depends on the goal you are trying to accomplish. For example, while a Pi Zero can complete all the modest tasks, it might not be a good fit for powerful processing. OS, number of ports, and supported devices should also be considered while choosing an alternative SBC over Raspberry Pi.

Best Raspberry Pi Alternatives


Cheap Raspberry Pi alternatives

Some SBCs work better in certain cases, like Odroid-XU4, which can boost performance better than Pi. Some SBCs can be compatible with the devices you want to use, while Pi can not. Check out the best alternatives of Raspberry Pi and determine the appropriate SBC for you.

1. Orange Pi Prime


Raspberry Pi may be the most popular SBC, but Orange Pi has seen huge growth in recent years. It is available at cheaper prices, and the company is focused on customizing the board to meet all computer needs. It can process a 2 K video using a Mali GPU.

Raspberry Pi alternatives orangepizero

Insights of Orange Pi Prime

  • Operating Systems like Ubuntu, Debian, and Raspbian alongside Linux can be used on this board. You can even run Android in this powerful SBC. 
  • AllWinner H5 system portrays the role of System-on-a-chip. HDMI output, Gigabit Ethernet port, Wi-Fi b/g/n, and Bluetooth are used to provide connectivity. 
  • 2GB of RAM can generate performance comparable to Raspberry Pi 3. 
  • The Orange Pi 2G-IoT can be considered one of the cheap Pi alternatives, although it comes with a 2G modem for short-distance data transfer.

2. Banana Pi M3


Banana Pi M3 can be considered as the direct competitor of the Raspberry Pi 3. It comes with an elite processing unit that is supercharged with eight cores. It can even process videos using the PowerVR GPU.  It is focused on providing power to the SBCs, although the device is not cheap.

Banana Pi M3 raspberry-pi-alternatives-banana-pi-m64

Insights of Banana Pi M3

  • Powered by  2GB of RAM and connectivity, it uses Gigabit Ethernet, a SATA port, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth.
  • Simplistic and minimum hardware connectivity is required, and you will just need to burn the OS image onto onboard eMMC or storage. 
  • You can use many applications that were primarily designed for Raspberry Pi, such as WiringPi, which uses the C/C++ library to access Raspberry’s I/O.
  • The parallel 8-bit camera interface and onboard microphone are available. 
  • Provides official support for multiple desktop versions of Linux. You can even use Raspbian or Android. 
  • The lack of an off-the-shelf camera module is also mentionable, and the device is not cheap.

3. Rock64


Raspberry Pi alternatives rock64

This is one of the unique Raspberry Pi alternatives by Pine64 that offers an A53 RK3328 SoC with GbE and USB 3.0 ports. It follows the style of Raspberry Pi and is known as Rock64.

When every other alternative uses Allwinner A64, this device is powered by a brand new quadcore processor by Rockchip. Developers can work on it as it is an open-source project. Full schematics and community support are also available.

Insights of Rock64

  • 1Gb, 2Gb, and 4Gb ram variants are available.
  • It allows the user to use a wide range of OS while currently using Android 7.1 plus Debian and Yocto Linux. 
  • It is using RK3328 that can be clocked to 1.5GHz, and the powerful GPU Mali-450 MP2 can decode 4k @ 60fps videos, 
  • An empty, bootable eMMC socket is installed, along with a bootable microSD slot for storage. 
  • 5 Volts 3 Amps is required as power input for Rock64, and it can easily be connected through a 3.5mm barrel connector.
  • It contains 2x USB 2.0 host ports and supports OTG. It is very powerful, but again, it is a great energy-efficient SBC.

4. Odroid XU4


Raspberry Pi alternatives

Odroid XU4 is the most potent Raspberry Pi alternative. It offers spectacular hardware and software features at a very reasonable price. If you are looking for an SBC that can support you like a desktop computer, then Odroid XU4 is the best choice for you. It can deliver more than what most projects require.

Insights of Odroid XU4 

  • It renders the best performance in terms of the benchmark score in C-Ray, FLAC audio encoding, and MAFFT alignment.
  • Powered by Exynos5422 Cortex A-15 2GHz and Cortex A7 CPUs, it can render Hexa core processing. 
  • Contains a Mali-T628 GPU, 2GB of RAM, and eMMC plus microSD card slots. 
  • Popular operating systems Ubuntu, Armbian, Arch Linux, and Kali Linux to Lakka, RetroPi, Recalbox, and GameStation Turbo can be run easily. 
  • Using the GameStation Turbo and the OGST Gamer Kit case, someone can easily convert this SBC into a personal Nintendo. 
  • It can be referred to as the best single-board computer, and it can compete with Raspberry Pi in every sector.

5. UDOO Bolty


Raspberry Pi alternatives

If you are looking for desktop power from a single-board computer at a reasonable rate, then you can check UDOO Bolty out. The architecture is not ARM-based, and it is loaded with impressive features and specs. The project works are crowdfunded, and you can accomplish any task, including the development of games.

Insights of UDOO Bolty

  • It is powered by AMD Ryzen Embedded V1000 graphics, which is comparable to Nvidia GTX 950M. 
  • Compatible with a 64-bit operating system. It supports virtually all Linux Distro. Also, you can install Windows 10 on this SBC. 
  • Arduino connectivity allows makers to build their projects. It offers many storage options like M.2, SATA, eMMC, and USB 3.1 ports. 
  • Alongside Bolty, there are three other versions of UDOO available out there: UDOO Neo, UDOO Neo Extended, and UDOO Neo Basic.
  • You can play games like Grand Theft Auto v and Fortnite on 1080p smoothly.
  • It can emulate Nintendo 64, PS Portable, and Dreamcast titles, PS 2, and PS 3.

6. ASUS Tinker Board


If you consider the number of software compatibility, ASUS Thiker Board can be referred to as the best single-board computer. It yields loads of power and is focused on minimizing the processing time to a considerable extent. This SBC is heavily popular for its amazing performance in retro gaming. It is also known as the Raspberry Killer. 

Raspberry Pi alternatives

Insights of ASUS Tinker Board 

  • It is powered by Rockchip RK3328 Cortex-A17 quad-core system on an SoC. You can use this SBS to complete any task. 
  • It has a built-in ARM Mali-T764 GPU for graphics, while 2GB of RAM ensures rapid task processing. 
  • Its 40-pin GPIO header can connect all kinds of accessories, and the Raspberry Compatibility also plays a significant role. 
  •  16GB eMMC serves the purpose of storage. HDMI-CEC and enhanced power management are also available. 
  • You can get the output of the music using a smart 3.5mm Jack, and a library of software and OSes, like Raspberry, are also available. 
  • Supports all the major operating systems like all the Linux Distributions, Android, and even Retropi.

7. LattePanda Alpha


It is intended to become the most powerful single-board computer. It offers a wide range of hefty features. ARM or Edison processing power is offered depending on the demand and supports Windows 10. The best part is it is powered by a quad-core Intel Celeron N4100 CPU. 

Raspberry Pi alternatives

Insights of LattePanda Alpha 

  • While every other single-board computer offers Windows 10 IoT Core to its users, it enables users to use the full version of Windows 10. 
  • It is one of the few single computer boards with an x86 version that can render service like a desktop computer. 
  • ATmega32U4 co-processor for Arduino use is included in the package alongside an Intel Core m3 processor. 
  • This SBC includes hardware features like M.2, SATA 3.0, PCIe x2, microSD, eMMC, 2x 50-pin GPIO connectors, etc.
  • 8GB of RAM provides lightning-fast processing speed, while a smart power management system and an Extendable power button make life easy. 
  • 3x USB 3.0 Type-A and 1x USB Type-C are available for connectivity and also support PD and DP.

8. Onion Omega2Plus


If you are looking to develop an IoT project, this is the best single-board computer. It is popular for its price and size. The development board is Linux-based, and the best part is it will automatically boot up once you plug in the Omega2Plus. As the operating system is pre-installed, it increases efficiency by decreasing the time to get started.  

Raspberry Pi alternatives

Insights of Onion Omega2Plus 

  • This tiny board has so much to offer and is powered by a 580Hz central processing unit. 
  • For storage, it has 32MB storage, and it offers 128MB memory. You can transfer data from your microSD also. 
  • This device is really special as many docky and add-on boards are available to extend the functionalities to accomplish a wide range of projects. 
  • The processing speed is really slow, and it does not contain a mini HDMI port like its competitor, Raspberry Pi Zero.

9. PocketBeagle


BeagleBone offers this single-board computer. It can also be considered one of the great Raspberry Pi alternatives. PocketBeagle has a micro USB port and a  MicroSD slot, just like Raspberry Pi. It can be carried easily because of its size, but unlike Omega2Plus, it has a great processing speed that enables users to complete any project. 

Raspberry Pi alternatives

Insights of PocketBeagle

  • This SBC is powered by Octavo Systems OSD3358 1GHz ARM Cortex-A8 with integrated 512MB DDR3 RAM.
  • Its size is about 56 x 35mm in dimension, easily compared to Raspberry Pi Zero.
  • It can be programmed easily by just plugging it into a laptop-like USB device.
  • The device can be programmed using an interactive web browser that gives access to the Linux command line. 
  • Although Pi Zero offers more impressive specs at a lower price.

10. Arduino Mega 2560


You can misinterpret this device with Raspberry Pi as they share the same root. They are often equally effective in budget hardware and STEM education but not the same. While Arduino works based on a microcontroller, Raspberry Pi is built based on a microprocessor that maintains communication with RAM and other features to operate.  

Raspberry Pi alternatives

Insights of Arduino Mega 2560

  • Arduino can control electronics by connecting them with a pin, just like the popular Raspberry Pi.
  • It can be considered as a replacement for a microcontroller while developing a prototype.  
  • Able to accomplish and support any powerful and vast project. It has already been used in many renowned projects like 3D printers.
  • Available as a programmable circuit board. Besides, it also offers an integrated development environment or software to program on a desktop computer. 
  • You can write the code on your laptop and then upload it to the physical unit, which helps the developers work. 
  • Uno is the most popular SBC from the Arduino series, and it can do pretty much everything that microcontrollers have to offer.

11. Le Potato


It can be considered one of the best single-board computers that can easily compete with Raspberry Pi. It is backed with an Amlogic quad-core A53 S905X processor that can be clocked up to 2GHz. The manufacturer is currently working on adding more features to the upcoming boards. 

Raspberry Pi alternatives

Insights of Le Potato 

  • Two variants of different volatile memory sizes are available. They are 1 GB or 2 GB. 
  • It uses Mali-450 MP2 GPU alongside an optional 8GB to 64GB eMMC for storage for generating accurate graphics.
  • Like Raspberry Pi for connectivity, it has 4x USB ports, Fast Ethernet, and 40-pin expansion to work with a wide range of devices. 
  • It is not suitable for developing IoT projects as there is no Bluetooth or WiFI available on the board. 
  • All versions of Linux can be installed on this single board computer. You can also use Android as the operating system. 
  • If you are looking for more powerful computing features, just wait for few days. La Frite, the most powerful SBC, is going to be available soon.

12. BBC micro: bit


micro:bit has a long history of being the most popular among young people back in the 1989s. When it was first released in the UK, it brought a revolutionary change to solve computational problems. It was the first 8-bit computer for many people and rendered the first experience of computer programming. 

Insights of BBC Micro: bit

  • It is a cheap device and backed by an ARM Cortex-M0 processor.
  • Sensors like accelerometer and magnetometer sensors are available to support you while you are building certain projects. 
  • Two programmable buttons can be used for multi-purpose connectivity, and it has Bluetooth and USB. 
  • The display consists of 25 LEDs and can be charged through USB or external battery packs. 
  • It can be paired with Raspberry Pi for developing projects, but it is a great device to start programming or access basic projects.

13. Pine A64-LTS


The size of the device is 127 x 79mm. It offers Gigabit Ethernet, an audio jack, dual USB 2.0, and also multiple micro-USB ports. This is a great device that provides excellent support as one of many Raspberry Pi alternatives available out there. The HDMI output is also available on this single-board computer. 

pinea64-lts1

Insights of Pine A64-LTS

  • It has extensible connectivity, which is rendered by a Pi-compatible 40-pin connector and a 14-pin Euler connector.
  • For processing, it has an ARM Cortex A53 1.2GHz 64-bit processor, and for graphics, it is powered by  Mali-400 MP2 GPU.
  • 2GB Ram can serve the purpose of volatile storage, while the storage can be extended to 128GB using an eMMC module. 
  • Can install the operating system using bootable microSD. Besides, it offers a five-year guarantee to its users. 
  • OS like Android, Remix, Debian Jesse Mate, and Ubuntu Mate. This SBC is also compatible with openSUSE, Armbian, Arch, Fedora, Gentoo, and more.

14. NanoPC-T3 Plus


If you are looking to work with more computational power, this is the best single board computer. It will add an extra add punch to the system. It is powered by an octa-core processor, which is built by the tech giant Samsung. The central processing unit can be clocked up to 1.4GHz. 

nanopct3plus

Insights of NanoPC-T3 Plus

  • Graphical performance is boosted by Mali-400 MP GPU, which is supported by 2Gb of Ram. 
  • Available storage is 16GB and has a size of 100 x 64 x 11.8mm. 2x USB ports are also included for connecting other devices. 
  • Micro SD, Micro USB, Wifi, Ethernet, and Bluetooth can play a vital role in developing advanced projects. 
  • Media-friendly ports such as HDMI, LVDS, LCD, MIPI-DSI, MIPI-CSI, and audio are included in the package. 
  • Operating systems like Android, Debian, and the Ubuntu Core can be used without facing any sort of difficulties.

15. Minnowboard Turbot


This dual-board, single board computer, is available as an open-source hardware board operated by a 64-bit Intel Atom E38xx Series processor. Several versions are available. Among them, the dual and quad-core versions are the most popular. The company is focused on delivering better products at a lower cost, and its R&D is continuing its research on it. 

Insights of Minnowboard Turbot 

  • It has been upgraded to deliver flawless performance, much better than the previous version, which is MinnowBoard MAX. 
  • Intel 7th generation HD graphics are incorporated to provide better graphics, and the drivers for the Linux are open-source and easily available. 
  • You can connect many devices and UARTs, and USB 3.0, SATA, and PCI Express will enable you to work with any device. 
  • Unlike other Raspberry Pi alternatives, it has 2 ethernet ports, and you will need some expertise to work on this board. 
  • Suitable for professional and experienced developers because of its connectivity, performance, and graphics. 
  • Operating systems like Windows 10, Android, and all Linux distributions can run smoothly.

16. Huawei HiKey 960


This single-board computer is designed to work with operating systems like Android and Linux. It is the most powerful Raspberry Pi alternative that enables the user to build prototypes. The best-performing list of smartphones includes Huawei Mate. This SBC device is built using the same chip and performs like Mate 9.

hikey

Insights of Huawei HiKey 960

  • It comes with Kirin 960 SoC Quad-Core ARM chip that offers two versions of the processor, which are 4 x 2.3GHz ARM A73 and 4 x 1.8GHz ARM A53 cores.
  • If you are looking for a 4k screen, 3GB RAM, and the Mali G71 MP8 GPU can produce 4k. 
  • You can connect cooling fans and cameras as well with the 40 and 60-pin connectors. 
  • The device is not really cheap and is advised to use only to work for building advanced projects. 
  • 32GB flash storage can generate super speedy access to the memory like an SSD. 
  • This is a high-end alternative to Raspberry Pi, which has Bluetooth and a wireless connection, as well.

17. NVIDIA Jetson Nano Developer Kit


This single-board computer is specially designed for developers who want to work with Artificial Intelligence, Image Processing, Neural networks, or Big Data related projects. This is a unique and advanced-level SBC that offers some unique features.

Jetson-nano-Nvidia--768x431

Insights of NVIDIA Jetson Nano

  • Support parallel processing, although the device is small and can be carried easily. 
  • All the sophisticated tasks of neural networks include image classification, object detection, segmentation, and speech processing.
  • The platform is really simple to use, and it requires only 5 watts of electricity to run the device. 
  • The central processing unit is powered by a Quad-core ARM A57 that can be clocked up to 1.45 GHz. 
  • Backed by 4 GB of 64-bit LPDDR4 RAM and providing a smooth graphical performance, it uses 128-core Maxwell. 
  • It is best for working with deep learning, and it is also the best seller of Raspberry Pi alternatives around the world.

18. ClockworkPi


Basically, this single-board computer is a part of the game shell, which you can also buy separately. If you want to build a modular retro game console, then this is the perfect choice for you. Besides, you can also build any kind of IoT project using this SBC. As the size is compact, you can easily carry it with you. 

Raspberry Pi alternatives

Insights of ClockworkPi 

  • For connectivity, it has a WIFI and an ethernet port. Besides the availability of a micro HDMI port, you can easily do any project using this SBC. 
  • Powered by Allwinner R16-J Quad-core Cortex-A7 CPU processor, which can be clocked up to 1.2GHz. It can be run with ClockworkPI OS. 
  • Its graphical processing unit is backed up by Mali-400 MP2, and a dedicated 1GB DDR3 ram makes the package efficient. 
  • It also offers an ATmega168p programmable keypad so that you can customize the functionality of the keyboard according to your demand. 
  • Provides 16GB of storage using eMMC and USB 2.0 alongside 28 GPIO pins are available for extending the amount of supported device.

19. VIM2 SBC by Khadas


This is one of the best Raspberry Pi alternatives that offers extensible connectivity. It comes with wifi and Bluetooth. Besides, the ethernet port is also available. This tiny package is really powerful and can virtually accomplish any project.

Raspberry Pi alternatives

Insights of VIM2 SBC

  • The basic model is backed up with Bluetooth 4.1, which means you can transfer data in real time. 
  • Comes with storage, which is capable of accumulating 16GB of data using an eMMC. 
  • The pro version included Bluetooth 5.0 and came with added advanced features, more storage, and connectivity. 
  • Powered by Amlogic S912 1.5GHz 64-bit Octa-Core CPU, which ensures excellent performance while building a prototype. 
  • With HDMI2.0a and a powerful VPU, this single-board computer can quickly generate 4k resolution. 
  • Operating systems like Android, Google Fuchsia OS, Linux, LibreELEC, and Ubuntu 16.04 can be easily run on this device.

20. Odroid-C2


If you compare Raspberry Pi with Odroid-C2, you will find that their size is the same, which is  85 x 56mm, but the specifications of Odroid are more advanced. It uses Amlogic ARM Cortex-A53 as the center of the central processing unit and can be clocked up to 1.5 GHz. This is a quad-core CPU, and GPU is powered by Mali-450. 

Raspberry Pi alternatives

Insights of Odroid-C2

  • 2GB RAM ensures fluent performance, while for storage, it can use a 16GB micro SD card or 64GB eMMC. 
  • You can use this for building any sophisticated project. Besides, it can also generate 4K @ 60Hz video. 
  • Provide connectivity through Gigabit ethernet alongside 4x USB ports. 
  • The board is built on a Linux kernel. You can use an Android or Linux operating system.
  • Although Odroid beats RPI in almost all sectors, there is no Bluetooth or wifi available with the package. 
  • It has 40pins and HDMI output also.

Finally, Insight


best single board computer

While these are the best Raspberry Pi alternatives, we can categorize them into three different sections. Some SBCs are intended to deliver better performance than Raspberry.

They can provide virtually anything you want. Even the most advanced prototypes can be built using this board. Again, some SBCs are focusing on delivering relatively scaled-down performance at a cheaper price tag.

They are mainly used to do simple projects. Again, SBC, like Jetson Nano, highlights particular uses that can help you reach the goal.

You should investigate and see the insights before buying an SBC. It depends on your requirements and what you want. Raspberry Pi is good, but its alternatives can deliver better performance at a lower cost, and you must try them at least once.  

Mehedi Hasan
Mehedi Hasan
Mehedi Hasan is a passionate enthusiast for technology. He admires all things tech and loves to help others understand the fundamentals of Linux, servers, networking, and computer security in an understandable way without overwhelming beginners. His articles are carefully crafted with this goal in mind - making complex topics more accessible.

7 COMMENTS

  1. virtually anything you want. Even the most advanced prototypes can be built using this board. Again, some SBCs are focusing on delivering relatively scaled-down performance at a cheaper price tag. They are mainly used to do simple projects. Again, SBC, like Jetson Nano, highlights particular uses that can help you reach the goal. You should investigate and see the insights before buying an SBC. It depends on your requirements and what you want. Raspberry Pi is good, but its alternatives can deliver better performance at a lower cost.

  2. Great review of many SBC’s, no complaints. Back in the 1980’s after IBM released the IBM PC/XT/AT at a very high price, some people reverse-engineered it and the PC Clone industry was born. Why no Raspberry Pi clones? In 2022 we’re dealing with a huge supply chain problem for Raspberry Pi. RPi is completely open-source, including the hardware. What’s wrong with creating a SBC that’s a clone but with 8G RAM and an 8-core ARM? Students, Engineers, and Software Developers love the simplicity of flashing an OS to an SD card, plugging it into an SBC, and booting. Those of us who use Home Assistant or any IoT controller platform have been through all the problems of running HA on an x86 server as a container or VM. Not good, IoT controllers use all kinds of network protocols so containers don’t work, vm’s do generally but even then, auto-discovery suffers from issues with multicast and zero configuration networking.

  3. Pi Zero 2W has Bluetooth and WiFi (N) in a smaller footprint. What’s the alternative for this Tiny Processor ?

  4. Hey!

    Why is there no alternative for networking? Like a SCB router. Orientation towards fast cpu, a few gbit+ ports and WiFi 6.

  5. The day an sbc become as costly as and complex as laptops then they start losing the initial purpose and allure.
    KISS
    Get an SBC for a purpose, not a replacement.
    And sometimes the SBC has to be single use and disposable.

    Arduino and Pi Zero are just perfect for me.

  6. Would be great if you listed one with GPS / GPRS included, I’m looking for an alternative to connect IoT sensors without android apps

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

You May Like It!

Trending Now