I have been scouting for a suitable SBC for some client work and came across Olimex A20 OLinuXino MICRO. The board is a bit pricey (55€) but does pack some serious punch.
Getting the board to boot was a bit more complicated compared to – say a Raspberry Pi, but was completed after carefully reading the manual (RTFM does work).
Some findings which may help someone – these apply for Linux image which can be downloaded from the Olimex website
- If you power the board from mini USB OTG port the power LED WILL NOT LIGHT UP
- when everything is OK, the green LED will first burn steady and will blink when the OS is running
- The board boots only FROM THE MICRO SD SLOT
- default output is HDMI
- however THERE WILL BE NO VIDEO UNTIL THE WINDOW MANAGER IS RUNNING
- the NETWORK IS DISABLED BY DEFAULT
- sometimes you need to press the power button once to begin the boot sequence
Some of these are due to hardware limitations, but some are just a bit bizarre design decisions. Hope this list helps someone – I did waste some time for mainly two reasons
- I didn’t read ALL the documentation (user manual, wiki pages and discussion forum)
- The power LED didn’t light up – I kept switching power supplies until I figured this out
All in all – the board is reasonably well built – some solder joints look a bit shady but everything works OK. It is noticeably faster compared to Raspberry Pi and has plenty more connectors and possibilities. What I really like is the LiPo cell power option.