Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3 Is Ten Fold More Powerful

Posted by at 11:24 am on January 17, 2017

Most people will be aware of the Raspberry Pi Foundation because of the Raspberry Pi single-board computer. However, there’s also another product offered called the Raspberry Pi Compute Module.

The Computer Module is aimed at developers wanting to create their own hardware devices. It condenses the Pi’s hardware down to a board that can sit in a DDR2 SODIMM slot, but also adds 4GB of Flash storage as an alternative to the Pi’s SD card.

Until now, the Compute Module used the hardware from the original Raspberry Pi, but this week the Foundation revealed the Compute Module 3, which is based on the Pi 3’s hardware. That means double the RAM and 10x the CPU performance. A second version of this new board, called the Compute Module 3 Lite, will also be offered, retaining the SD card interface instead of using 4GB of flash storage.

Just because these modules fit in a SODIMM port doesn’t mean you can plug one into a memory slot. You’ll also need a breakout board to provide the necessary power to the module and allow peripherals to be connected. The Foundation updated its open source breakout board as well, calling the new version the Compute Module IO Board V3.

The Compute Module 3 costs $30, while the Lite version is $25. The original Compute Module will also continue to be sold, but at a reduced price point of $25. There is no bulk discounting. Complete development kits including the new module and supporting breakout board will be offered, but pricing has yet to be revealed.

For the majority of people who are considering a Raspberry Pi purchase, unless you intend to tinker with your own hardware device, the Raspberry Pi 3 board remains the best buy.

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