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Alternative to Raspberry Pi 3?

Discussion in 'Microcontrollers, Programming and IoT' started by Anon_LG, Oct 10, 2016.

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  1. Anon_LG


    Jun 24, 2014
    As the flight simulator progresses, the program has became increasingly developed. The Pi 3 can not keep up with rendering solid faces, leading to an unnavigable decrease in fps from a range of ~74fps when no faces are rendered to ~4fps when the projection area is full of the faces at the graphic entity density present in my graphics. GL_LINES brings it up to a minimum of ~10fps with a 14fps average. Even this is poor.

    The Pi won't do, certainly not at least until they bring out a Pi with a spec comparable to a modern PC. Now I have to look at two options.

    The others working on the simulator suggested building a PC and loading it with a Linux OS. On the other hand, it appears this: or would function like a powerful of extremely powerful Pi respectively.

    The problem with the PC is the IO, I need digital IO that:
    Works with Linux
    Is controllable with a C++ library
    Is compatible with the architecture of the CPU (if necessary)

    I assume that this will be some IO unit that attaches in the place of an audio card. It appears national instruments has lots, but I have no idea which one is the right choice.

    The second option, the premade units, which are actually development kits, look to be a more convenient option. But I do not even know if these are what I want. The tx1 is within our budget (£5000), but I could only have one, get it wrong and that is it. The tk1 on the other hand, I could try that and get another one, but I would prefer not so I would be putting reverse protection diodes and buffers on all of the IO lines.

    There is also the Odroid-xu4, another option I am looking into, which looks like a suitable upgrade.

    I may have not picked any useful options here, has anybody else used some other computing unit more powerful than the Pi that also has GPIO?
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2016
  2. LightShow


    Jun 9, 2016
    if i remember correctly there are adaptors that allow a pc running linux to have gpio pins.. allthough a better solution could be raspberry pi "clones" or even single board computers

    You could look into this (only issue being that its windows10 :/ ) -
  3. Amar Dhore

    Amar Dhore

    Dec 2, 2015
  4. skenn_ie


    Sep 7, 2009
    Get a Mini ITX board that you can plug a decent graphics card into. Just make sure that the boards work with Linux. That was the major problem with earlier VIA boards. It may have improved since then.
  5. kooth


    Jan 8, 2012
    Anon_LG likes this.
  6. x1215


    Oct 30, 2016
    Anon_LG likes this.
  7. Gryd3


    Jun 25, 2014
    Your best bet in my opinion is to go with a standard PC and use either a PCI peripheral or a USB peripheral to give yourself GPIO capability... This would vastly decrease the limitations you have not only for hardware, but for software and compatibility as well.
    It's easier to go to a local mom&pop shop for a replacement PC part than to find/locate/buy some bizarre now out-dated single board PC when something goes wrong in a month or two.
    That being said... I'm unsure the polygon count you have in your game. I know it sounds a little funny, but do some digging into the Nintendo64 and PS1 world. Mainly for hardware specs and emulation. It would be wise to work within expected limitations rather than working blindly until you hit them. Looking into these two systems may give you an understanding of how they did 3D on these earlier gaming systems and what kind of limitations they had to work with.
    Anon_LG likes this.
  8. Anon_LG


    Jun 24, 2014
    Ok, looking over the options, my friemds and I have concluded that a PC is what we are going for. It will be x86, potentially 64 bit. I therefore need a Linux version compatible with the x86 architecture, Arch Linux seems to be popular, any advice on this? Some of my friends has experience building PC's, they can sort connecting up the hardware etc, but have no experience with Linux. I only have experience with Raspbian, which is based on Debian (along with Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10 but those are all out of box use). Can anybody make any recommendations with getting started with the recommended OS quickly.

    So for the GPIO @x1215's suggestion seems the most promising, I have looked some at this: . The device appears under /class, this is similar to the ODroid XU4, is it as simple as entering a string to /class?

    I am going with a single board computer, the UDOO quad which seems to have the specs I need, as a back up option. But the PC is my main focus. @Gryd3 I have looked a little bit into the mid-early to mid console era, very interesting and I am still reading about it.

    If this thread is dead, I will start a new one because it is a while since I last posted. I wish I had more time, so much to do.
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