Banana Pi BPI-M4 SBC Features Realtek Quadcore Soc
This year SinoVoip revealed Banana Pi BPI-M4 – a mid-range SBC that runs Android 8.1 or Linux on a quad -A53 Realtek RTD1395 SoC featuring HDMI, M.2, WiFi/BT, 40-pin GPIO, PoE support, and 5x USB ports. SinoVoip is well-known for its Allwinner SoC based single board computers and the Banana Pi line of product. But this BPI-M4 SBC sports a quad-core, Cortex-A53 based Realtek RTD1395. Their earlier BPI-W2 router board was also powered by a Realtek quadcore SoC.
The Banana Pi BPI-M4 is said to have a Raspberry Pi layout, despite being a bit larger in both dimensions with a footprint of 92 x 60mm. Unlike the RPi SBCs, there’s an option for 2GB in addition to 1GB RAM, and it’s DDR4. You also get 8GB to 64GB eMMC and a microSD slot. The clock rate of RTD1395 SoC is not listed but the Cortex-A53 foundation and Mali 470 MP4 GPU would make it more powerful than the BPI-M2 series of boards like BPI-M2 Berry, BPI-M2 Magic, and BPI-M2 Zero. The 1.8GHz octa-core BPI-M3, with PowerVR SGX544MP1 GPU, might outperform it though this is not confirmed yet.
The Ethernet speed of BPI-M4 is 10/100Mbps, and there’s a Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) connector that supports the official Raspberry Pi PoE HAT. The YouTube video below shows the SBC booting Android 8.1.1 via PoE power. SinoVoip also states it will run full Linux with a new Realtek SoC, which may take a while. The Banana Pi BPI-M4’s HDMI port is limited to 1080p. This SBC also lacks the support for H.265. There are 4x USB host ports on BPI-M4. You also get a USB Type-C port that offers another power alternative. The board ships with WiFi-ac and BT 4.2. A cellular modem can also be attached using the M.2 E-Key slot. This 5V board has power and boot buttons.
The key specifications are:
- Realtek RTD1395 (4x Cortex-A53)
- ARM Mali-470 MP4 GPU
- RAM — 1GB or 2GB DDR4 RAM
- 8GB eMMC expandable to up to 64GB
- MicroSD slot for up to 256GB
- 802.11b/g/n/ac WiFi with Bluetooth 4.2 (RTL8821 module)
- antenna connector
- M.2 (see farther below)
- 10/100 Ethernet port
- PoE connector for RPi PoE HAT
- Media I/O:
- HDMI port with support for 1080p and multi-channel audio
- 3.5mm audio jack
- Other I/O:
- 4x USB 2.0 host ports
- USB 2.0 Type-C port
- Debug UART
- 40-pin, RPi 3-compatible expansion header with 28x GPIO, UART, I2C, power, SPI (or PWM), etc.
- M.2 E-key (PCIe 2.0 and USB 2.0)
- Other features:
- 2x LEDs
- reset, power, install, UBoot buttons
- boot select switch
- Power: 5V/2A DC jack (or USB Type-C or PoE)
- Weight: 48 g
- Dimensions: 92 x 60mm
- Operating system:
- Android 8 1 1
Pricing for the Banana Pi BPI-M4 is not yet available on the official product page.