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      Unless it’s pricing at range <50$, they just stay on the news and fade.

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      I wonder if I don’t understand something, but it is a second board with that strange components placement I’m seeing, the first being Radxa Rock Pi 4.

      The main SoC chip is on the bottom of the board, that means whatever cooling solution is there - it has to face downwards. Quite awkward with all the other wiring/gpio facing up.

      That board has an M.2 slot too, but it face outwards, meaning that SSD or something else won’t have anything physical to keep it down, and it is just flailing around.

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        On the other hand, the main heat generating component has nothing in the way to apply a good cooling solution. It’s way harder to do it when you have your ports sticking in all the places around.

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          Yeah the original rpi design was built around having no cooling solution; later tiny radiators appeared, but it still wasn’t an issue even in that form-factor. Now some of them are way too hot even for that, but they still stick to that credit-card size.

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            I’ve got a couple rpi-4s in aluminum cases, and they seem to do fine with passive cooling.

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        PCengines boards have the cpu and chipsed at the bottom so that they can be in contact (via a thermal pad) with the aluminium case, which serves as a heat sink. Seems to work pretty well. Speaking of which, that’s the x86_64 board I would recommend, it’s been rock solid. The only thing that some may find surprising is the use of the serial console instead of the video output.

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          Yeah I’ve seen those, pretty cool! Makes sense there because it is not of rpi form-factor. Serial console is a given with that kind of boards for me :)

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      I have an Apollo Lake board around (not this one) and it was a huge disappointment. It’s actually slower than a Raspberry Pi 4, and ALSO it randomly crashes every ~30 days. Although to be fair my Raspberry Pi randomly crashes sometimes too. I had a vague idea I could run a few small VMs but it just didn’t work well enough. If you really need x86 compatibility it might be worth it.