JQLeitch
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Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android HTPC?

Mon Jul 14, 2014 4:12 pm

Okay so I want a low powered HTPC for my bedroom, to watch films, youtube etc but I want it to run on a new Android version.

I am stuck between the Rasp Pi and Banana Pi, thanks.

If you can suggest other alternative boards feel free :)

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RaTTuS
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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Mon Jul 14, 2014 4:14 pm

Why do you want android ?
if you want andriod then a RPi is not for you
RPi's do decent video
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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Mon Jul 14, 2014 4:15 pm

Android does not work on the Raspberry Pi.

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Mon Jul 14, 2014 4:18 pm

Android is something of a non starter on the Raspberry Pi, so the Banana would probably be the way to go. Don't expect support for it here though..... :)
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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Mon Jul 14, 2014 4:19 pm

joan wrote:Android does not work on the Raspberry Pi.
Ah thought so. Banana Pi it is. Do you have any experience with it?

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Mon Jul 14, 2014 4:19 pm

pluggy wrote:Android is something of a non starter on the Raspberry Pi, so the Banana would probably be the way to go. Don't expect support for it though..... :)
edited for clarity ;)
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PiGraham
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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Mon Jul 14, 2014 4:19 pm

If you want Android for media get an Android TV device.

JQLeitch
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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Mon Jul 14, 2014 4:21 pm

PiGraham wrote:If you want Android for media get an Android TV device.
Who knows if I may want to use the board as a NAS or as a MAME emulator, I like expand ability if I need it.

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Mon Jul 14, 2014 4:30 pm

JQLeitch wrote:
PiGraham wrote:If you want Android for media get an Android TV device.
Who knows if I may want to use the board as a NAS or as a MAME emulator, I like expand ability if I need it.
You can do that with an Android stick. I have an mk806 with 2.5" 300GB SSD. It runs ftp server and uPnP. XBMC, Netflix, YouTube and lots of Play Store apps including Google video and music.
You can run MAME on it, use joysticks, map inputs.

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Mon Jul 14, 2014 6:29 pm

My own view of the BPi is that is infringes all sorts of Raspberry Pi trademarks and copyrights (and therefore should not be available in the EU) , and is making money off other people efforts. Typical Chinese clone.

But it's up to you where you spend your money...
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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Mon Jul 14, 2014 7:36 pm

The Banana Pi is a poor choice for xbmc (which I assume you would want for an Android HTPC). See:
http://forum.xbmc.org/showthread.php?tid=192817

If you need more power than a Raspberry Pi, then Amazon's Fire TV is probably a better choice (but more expensive).
Faster GUI but lower quality video playback...

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Mon Jul 14, 2014 8:15 pm

jamesh wrote:My own view of the BPi is that is infringes all sorts of Raspberry Pi trademarks and copyrights (and therefore should not be available in the EU) , and is making money off other people efforts. Typical Chinese clone.

But it's up to you where you spend your money...
Well, crowdfunding a project with the use of Raspberry Pi (or even Raspberry Pi and Banana Pi) is also making money on it for given company business (where the foundation is not the primary beneficent) ;) Going to patent/law war with such projects will just end up with war - offensive marketing response of "ZOMG Super cool board" that will take easy advantage of RPi weaknesses. Big Chinese fab may also get annoyed and do more of consumer x86 laptops, PCs or their tablets as sets for education/schools/etc at lower prices than retail (just to show they can and will attack your market with better products).

Arduino likes clones very much as it lowers the prices, makes it more widespread and increases innovation as it's harder to do crowdfunding on boring Arduino project. If Raspberry foundation would be more open to the world then now most of the SBC with GPIO would offer similar API for their GPIO - API developed and popularized by Raspberry as the "most influential". But, that's didn't happened and most of them must reinvent the wheel and addon-boards compatibility is hard ;)

And I've seen it in shops, weird ones, that sell casual consumer electronics and not makers/hackers electronics (the power of virus marketing). No HummingBoard yet ;)

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Mon Jul 14, 2014 8:41 pm

riklaunim wrote:
jamesh wrote:My own view of the BPi is that is infringes all sorts of Raspberry Pi trademarks and copyrights (and therefore should not be available in the EU) , and is making money off other people efforts. Typical Chinese clone.

But it's up to you where you spend your money...
Well, crowdfunding a project with the use of Raspberry Pi (or even Raspberry Pi and Banana Pi) is also making money on it for given company business (where the foundation is not the primary beneficent) ;) Going to patent/law war with such projects will just end up with war - offensive marketing response of "ZOMG Super cool board" that will take easy advantage of RPi weaknesses. Big Chinese fab may also get annoyed and do more of consumer x86 laptops, PCs or their tablets as sets for education/schools/etc at lower prices than retail (just to show they can and will attack your market with better products).

Arduino likes clones very much as it lowers the prices, makes it more widespread and increases innovation as it's harder to do crowdfunding on boring Arduino project. If Raspberry foundation would be more open to the world then now most of the SBC with GPIO would offer similar API for their GPIO - API developed and popularized by Raspberry as the "most influential". But, that's didn't happened and most of them must reinvent the wheel and addon-boards compatibility is hard ;)

And I've seen it in shops, weird ones, that sell casual consumer electronics and not makers/hackers electronics (the power of virus marketing). No HummingBoard yet ;)
Not entirely sure what you are on about, but projects that use Pi boards are fine with me - the Raspi board still need to be purchased, so the work that went in to development is still paid for, as are the charitable works.

And people making their own boards are fine - just don't try and confuse or take away customers by using similar names - that is a clear trademark infringement - and completely unnecessary. If you product is any good it should sell. BPi is deliberately infringing on the Raspberry Pi trademark in order to take customers away from Raspberry PI.

The Foundation has, since day one, been active in having fakes and trademark infringing product removed from places like Ebay, Amazon etc and will continue to do so since stopping will result in loss of trademark.
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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Tue Jul 15, 2014 12:32 am

riklaunim wrote:Arduino likes clones very much as it lowers the prices, makes it more widespread and increases innovation as it's harder to do crowdfunding on boring Arduino project.
Arduino are protective of their official trademarks too - http://arduino.cc/en/Trademark/
The reason there are so many "Arduino compatible" clones is because the ATmega chips used by Arduino are very cheap, simple to solder and widely available.
With the release of the Compute Module I expect we'll soon many products with "Raspberry Pi Inside" ;) (example)
If Raspberry foundation would be more open to the world then now most of the SBC with GPIO would offer similar API for their GPIO - API developed and popularized by Raspberry as the "most influential". But, that's didn't happened and most of them must reinvent the wheel and addon-boards compatibility is hard ;)
AFAIK all Linux boards with GPIO interfaces expose them through the standard Linux /sys/class/gpio interface, which seems to be exactly what you're asking for 8-)
It's just that with the popularity of the Raspberry Pi, many people have developed "alternative interfaces", which for the large part are open source, so there's no reason they couldn't be ported to the other SBC boards you talk of.

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Tue Jul 15, 2014 6:20 am

AndrewS wrote:With the release of the Compute Module I expect we'll soon many products with "Raspberry Pi Inside" ;) .
It's not the first COM, it's not the cheapest or it's not the most versatile - don't expect that much. Sherylbox dropped RPi COM in favour to Banana Pi - they really needed SATA for that cloud-storage device (but still they could use old Marvell Kirkwood as it has GigE and SATAs easily - but not virus marketing as the Banana ;)).

AndrewS wrote:AFAIK all Linux boards with GPIO interfaces expose them through the standard Linux /sys/class/gpio interface, which seems to be exactly what you're asking for 8-)
That's the "low level" interface, and what we like is the Python (or scratch) easy to use high level API.
AndrewS wrote: Arduino are protective of their official trademarks too - http://arduino.cc/en/Trademark/
The reason there are so many "Arduino compatible" clones is because the ATmega chips used by Arduino are very cheap, simple to solder and widely available.
It's open hardware too. The clone may be called Fooduino, Barduino, but what they share is the compatibility with Arduino SDK. The same happens with mbed - anyone can make mbed-compatible board that will be able their web IDE/compiler. Knowing one APIs, tools you can pick a device that suites your needs most. In SBC world in most cases picking different board would mean different vendor and totally different libraries (or lack of them).

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Tue Jul 15, 2014 7:19 am

riklaunim wrote:
AndrewS wrote:AFAIK all Linux boards with GPIO interfaces expose them through the standard Linux /sys/class/gpio interface, which seems to be exactly what you're asking for 8-)
That's the "low level" interface, and what we like is the Python (or scratch) easy to use high level API.
...and those interfaces are written in? I'll give you a clue, most of them are (probably) written in a language that starts with a "C" ;-)

Programming a GPIO interface on the Pi is quite easy in C (and a few other languages) by directly accessing the appropriate memory locations - all of which are fully documented and available for free. Even I have managed to write a few simple programs for command line control of switches, LEDs and a 20x2 LCD display, and I don't program in C if I can help it!

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Tue Jul 15, 2014 8:04 am

riklaunim wrote:
AndrewS wrote:With the release of the Compute Module I expect we'll soon many products with "Raspberry Pi Inside" ;) .
It's not the first COM, it's not the cheapest or it's not the most versatile - don't expect that much. Sherylbox dropped RPi COM in favour to Banana Pi - they really needed SATA for that cloud-storage device (but still they could use old Marvell Kirkwood as it has GigE and SATAs easily - but not virus marketing as the Banana ;)).
Good luck with all that support from BPi....from what I hear, Allwinner are pretty pants at support...and don't expect much from a bunch of Chinese cloners either.

As for the CM, can you name me another module that provides a 700Mhz ARM, twin LCD display support + HDMI, twin camera support, OpenGLES2.0 3D graphics, OpenVG, video enc/decode up to 1080p30, and 26ish GPIO's in an easy to use form factor with built in eMMC SD RAM, for $30?

I think that's pretty versatile myself.
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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Wed Jul 16, 2014 1:34 pm

I don't know if anyone said it yet but Udoo supports android and is a dev board that can use ubuntu as well.

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Wed Jul 16, 2014 2:14 pm

Good luck with all that support from BPi....from what I hear, Allwinner are pretty pants at support...and don't expect much from a bunch of Chinese cloners either.
That as may be but at least they have Android working which is more than you can say for Broadcom's support on the Pi.

If you really want Android for movies then buy an Android Box TV as one of the previous poster had already mentioned.
They're geared up for multimedia work on the TV anyway whereas the Banana Pi is frankly just an expensive Raspberry Pi ripoff on speed.
Just be aware there are many Android devices with different chipsets i.e. A20 vs RK3066 some have better video hardware decoding support with XBMC than others so do your research first before deciding.

As for the Raspberry Pi I wouldn't write it off yet for having a slow processor the GPU is still good enough for streaming 1080p content providing your USB storage device can keep up.

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Wed Jul 16, 2014 2:23 pm

I am looking forward to getting my CM Kit (after element14 has it in stock)

I have several potential projects for it, and on first blush, the only thing I wish was really different was the MMC ... I'd have preferred a uSD socket for more storage.

Mind you, if the eMMC turns out a lot faster, I may change my mind :)
jamesh wrote:
As for the CM, can you name me another module that provides a 700Mhz ARM, twin LCD display support + HDMI, twin camera support, OpenGLES2.0 3D graphics, OpenVG, video enc/decode up to 1080p30, and 26ish GPIO's in an easy to use form factor with built in eMMC SD RAM, for $30?

I think that's pretty versatile myself.
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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Wed Jul 16, 2014 2:28 pm

well if you need more space then when you build your board for the CM then add a lan9514 for 4usb ports and a NIC then you can add as much space as you want.....
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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Thu Jul 17, 2014 1:37 am

mikronauts wrote:I am looking forward to getting my CM Kit (after element14 has it in stock)

I have several potential projects for it, and on first blush, the only thing I wish was really different was the MMC ... I'd have preferred a uSD socket for more storage.

Mind you, if the eMMC turns out a lot faster, I may change my mind :)
Apparently the eMMC is much less susceptible to corruption than normal SD cards - which is obviously exactly what you want in an industrial application :)

If you need more storage, just plug in a USB stick or hard drive.

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Thu Jul 17, 2014 8:45 am

redhawk wrote:
Good luck with all that support from BPi....from what I hear, Allwinner are pretty pants at support...and don't expect much from a bunch of Chinese cloners either.
That as may be but at least they have Android working which is more than you can say for Broadcom's support on the Pi.

If you really want Android for movies then buy an Android Box TV as one of the previous poster had already mentioned.
They're geared up for multimedia work on the TV anyway whereas the Banana Pi is frankly just an expensive Raspberry Pi ripoff on speed.
Just be aware there are many Android devices with different chipsets i.e. A20 vs RK3066 some have better video hardware decoding support with XBMC than others so do your research first before deciding.

As for the Raspberry Pi I wouldn't write it off yet for having a slow processor the GPU is still good enough for streaming 1080p content providing your USB storage device can keep up.

Richard S.
We could got Android working - it's certainly possible. Just not worth the time for the limited use.

As for media support, the Raspi chip, even though it's pretty old (coming up 5 years?) is still 'state of the art' in many respects. Not many other SoC have the same capabilities at such a low power consumption. So 1080p30 encode/decode, decent 3D, fast compositing, high quality ISP (the same ISP is was used in the Nokia 808, still regarded as one of, if not the best, camera phone). It also has pretty decent support compared with many of the Chinese quick to market SoC's.
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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Sat Jul 19, 2014 9:07 am

Hi,
I fell in love with Rasberry PI however at times its CPU struggles to cope with the workload so I have found something much more powerful - a UDOO board - Quad core CPU, sata connector, built-in WiFi - the real deal.
Here is a link to my website how I have put it together:
http://it.awroblew.biz/?p=311

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Re: Should I buy a Raspberry Pi or a Banana Pi for Android H

Sat Jul 19, 2014 9:54 am

Before buying a Banana Pi I would checkout the available support. Forums, documentation, blogs, social media etc. When you get stuck who ya gonna call?

By all means buy one for fun but it could just end up in a drawer if you need any help. The BPi has been around for a while now and nothing has improved.
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