Asus reveals Tinker Board which has Rockchip RK3288 quad-core processor (Cortex-A17) and the power to play 4k videos. Miniature computers are fashionable. From the huge desktop PCs we have gone on to small-sized computers such as the HP Pavilion Mini, and the Raspberry Pi. Now, Asus has introduced its own alternative to this popular Raspberry device: it’s called Tinker Board.
Unlike the Raspberry Pi, which is more oriented towards users who want to spend hours submerged in lines of code, the Asus Tinker Board bets on the same market as the mini-PCs of the big computer manufacturers: that is, bet on the final consumer. Therefore, it incorporates much of the specifications of the Pi 3 supplemented with additions such as, for example, 4K video playback.
The Tinker Board presented by Asus is, in short is a plate designed for multimedia consumption. It is very similar to the Raspberry Pi both in design and in most of its technical specifications, although a major difference lies in the price: compared to the 42 euros that costs the Pi 3, this Asus plate is for sale in the United Kingdom for a figure that is above 60 euros.
In terms of its technical specifications, the Tinker Board is headed by a Rockchip RK3288 quad-core processor (Cortex-A17) which, at least on paper, outperforms the processor that feeds the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B (Has a clock speed of 1.8 GHz, compared to 1.2 GHz of Raspberry). This processor does not offer support for 64 bits.
The processor of the Asus board is accompanied by 2 GB of RAM (LPDDR3) and a graphics processor model Mali-T764, which according to the first tests of performance translates to a score of 3.925 points in GeekBench (compared to 2,092 of the Pi 3 Model B in the same test). This performance improvement is aimed at ensuring greater fluidity during – for example – the playback of movies stored on a KODI server, which is really the intended use for this board.
The Tinker board also comes with an HDMI port with 4K video support (using the H.264 codec), an Ethernet gigabit port, four USB 2.0 ports and a microSD memory card slot, plus WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity. Nor is it missing, of course, the 3.5mm minijack output.
The Tinker Board runs under the Debian Linux distro, and is compatible with the KODI multimedia platform. Asus has not confirmed its availability worldwide, and at present it can already be bought in some European stores for a price that is around 60 euros.