The Raspberry Pi is the king of low-cost single-board computers, but it uses an ARM-based chipset, and the more open RISC-V architecture is becoming a popular alternative. Pine64 has now released a Pi alternative with a RISC-V chip: the Star64.
Pine64 just launched the Star64, and it’s main selling point is that it’s powered by a RISC-V CPU rather than by an ARM CPU. RISC-V is a growing standard that, unlike ARM, is completely open-source. Its designs are provided under open-source licenses that don’t require fees or royalties of any kind to use.
The Star64 uses a StarFive JH7110 CPU, with four cores clocked at 1.5 GHz. It’s by no means the fastest or most documented chip out there, but then again, RISC-V is a relatively new standard — launching in 2015 — while ARM and x86 CPUs have been around for decades. RISC-V is not currently in a position to replace or even challenge ARM, but it needs work and adoption before that can happen, and this is a step in that direction.
If you’re interested in buying it, you can check it out on the Pine64 store — it doesn’t look to be up yet as of the time of writing, but it’ll probably go on sale soon (or it’s already sold out).
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