Rock Pi E: A compact Raspberry Pi alternative with dual Ethernet ports
Radxa has announced its latest single-board computer (SBC), the Rock Pi E. Powered by a Rockchip RK3328 SoC, the Rock Pi E features a quad-core ARM Cortex-A53 processor that can clock up to 1.3 GHz and an ARM Mali-450 MP4 GPU. Also packed onto 56 x 65 mm board is 256 MB, 512 MB, 1 GB or 2 GB of DDR3 RAM. The Rock Pi E does not have built-in storage, but it does support 16 GB-128 GB eMMC flash storage and up to 128 GB microSD cards.
The RK3328 supports up to 4K VP9 and 4K 10-bit H264/H265 video decoding at up to 60 FPS, or 1080p video encoding for the H264 and H265 codecs. The board has a 3.5 mm headphone jack, but there is no dedicated display output. Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are on board though, albeit they require an external antenna. Radxa has integrated two Ethernet ports too. One supports 10/100M Ethernet, while the other can operate at Gigabit speeds and supports Power over Ethernet (PoE) through a HAT.
The Rock Pi E runs on 5 V, which can be supplied by its USB Type-C port or a 40-pin header. The latter can be utilised for USB 2.0, I2C, SPI, UART and I2S, along with 3.3 V DC power. Finally, there is a USB 3.0 Type-A port and several LEDs.
The Rock Pi E starts at US$24.00 from Seeedstudio for the 512 MB model. The retailer charges US$26.00 for the 1 GB model, but this version lacks PoE support. If you want PoE and 1 GB of RAM, then you must spend US$28.00. Radxa states that Debian 10 Buster and Ubuntu 18.04 Bionic are supported, the details of which you can find on the Rock Pi E wiki.