ODROID-HC4: A Raspberry Pi alternative that doubles as a dual NAS
Hardkernel has designed a compact and relatively dual NAS system, called the HC4. The ODROID-HC4, to give it its full name, is based on an Amlogic S905X3 SoC that integrates four ARM Cortex-A55 cores and an ARM Mali-G32 MP2 GPU. The device relies on 4 GB of DDR4 RAM and has a 128 Mbit SPI flash for a bootloader like Petitboot. There is also a microSD card slot for installing an OS like Ubuntu 20.04 with Linux 4.9.230, which is UHS-1 compliant.
The highlight of the single-board computer (SBC) is undoubtedly its ASM1061 PCIe to SATA controller, which allows the connection of up to two SATA III drives. Connecting the ODROID-HC4 to a network is done via its Realtek RTRL8211F PHY chip, which powers a Gigabit Ethernet RJ45 port. The SBC also has an HDMI 2.0 port that can output at up to 4K/60 Hz, although there is a 7-pin header with SPI and I2C for connecting an optional 1-inch OLED screen and a real-time clock (RTC).
ODROID has included a USB 2.0 Type port too, along with an IR receiver, a fan header, two system LEDs and a 4-pin UART header for serial console debugging. The HC4 measures 84 x 90.5 x 25 mm and weighs 280 g with its heatsink, fan and case attached. You can read more about the HC4 and the OSes with which it is compatible on Hardkernel's wiki.
The ODROID-HC4 will launch on October 27 from US$65. Ameridroid has started taking pre-orders for US$71.95, but there is also a Plus model that comes with an OLED screen and an RTC. However, you will also need a 15V/4A power supply to run the HC4, while Ameridroid also recommends purchasing a USB-UART module for testing u-boot, kernels and multiple installs, among other things.