Raspberry Pi Compute Module: new product!

As regular readers will know, it’s been a busy time here at Pi Towers recently with the launch of our new website, free educational materials and £1m education fund.

On the engineering side of things we’ve also been very busy over the past year, and not to be outdone by the education team, we are ready to take the wraps off something special, this time aimed at business and industrial users.

What's this little thing? Read on to find out.

What’s this little thing? Read on to find out.

From humble beginnings, the Raspberry Pi platform has grown and matured: the software is now full-featured and stable, and is still constantly improving thanks to the continuing hard work of our heroic community of volunteers; as well as targeted injections of funding to solve some specific issues. The Pi, and the Broadcom BCM2835 SoC at its heart, are also steadily becoming more open.

We love hearing about what users are doing with their Raspberry Pis, and are constantly amazed at the range of projects, as well as the inventiveness and creativeness of the community. We are also aware that there are a very significant number of users out there who are embedding the Raspberry Pi into systems and even commercial products. We think there needs to be a better way to allow people to get their hands on this great technology in a more flexible form factor, but still keep things at a sensible price.

Like proud parents, we want to free the core technology of the Raspberry Pi to go forth and become an integral part of new and exciting products and devices, and so today we are announcing the forthcoming Raspberry Pi Compute Module.


Compute Module on the left. What does it do? Read on to find out.

The compute module contains the guts of a Raspberry Pi (the BCM2835 processor and 512Mbyte of RAM) as well as a 4Gbyte eMMC Flash device (which is the equivalent of the SD card in the Pi). This is all integrated on to a small 67.6x30mm board which fits into a standard DDR2 SODIMM connector (the same type of connector as used for laptop memory*). The Flash memory is connected directly to the processor on the board, but the remaining processor interfaces are available to the user via the connector pins. You get the full flexibility of the BCM2835 SoC (which means that many more GPIOs and interfaces are available as compared to the Raspberry Pi), and designing the module into a custom system should be relatively straightforward as we’ve put all the tricky bits onto the module itself.

So what you are seeing here is a Raspberry Pi shrunk down to fit on a SODIMM with onboard memory, whose connectors you can customise for your own needs.

The Compute Module is primarily designed for those who are going to create their own PCB. However, we are also launching something called the Compute Module IO Board to help designers get started.

Empty IO board on the left: Compute Module snapped into place on the right.

Empty IO Board on the left: Compute Module snapped into place on the right.

The Compute Module IO Board is a simple, open-source breakout board that you can plug a Compute Module into. It provides the necessary power to the module, and gives you the ability to program the module’s Flash memory, access the processor interfaces in a slightly more friendly fashion (pin headers and flexi connectors, much like the Pi) and provides the necessary HDMI and USB connectors so that you have an entire system that can boot Raspbian (or the OS of your choice). This board provides both a starting template for those who want to design with the Compute Module, and a quick way to start experimenting with the hardware and building and testing a system before going to the expense of fabricating a custom board.

IO Board

IO Board

Initially, the Compute Module and IO Board will be available to buy together as the Raspberry Pi Compute Module Development Kit.

These kits will be available from RS and element14 some time in June. Shortly after that the Compute Module will be available to buy separately, with a unit cost of around $30 in batches of 100; you will also be able to buy them individually, but the price will be slightly higher. The Raspberry Pi Foundation is a charity, and as with everything we make here, all profits are pushed straight back into educating kids in computing.

I’m sure people will be keen to get their design process started; initially we are releasing just the schematics for both the Compute Module and IO Board, but we will be adding plenty more documentation over the coming days and weeks.

Happy creating!

*But don’t go plugging the Compute Module into your laptop – the pins assignments aren’t even remotely the same!


Chris avatar

Looks like this could be implemented into a boiler system!

John avatar

Actually I am in the middle of building a boiler monitor with a Raspberry Pi. This would be perfect to minimize the extraneous components on the system.

Jemmyn avatar

Interesting idea. I thought about doing the same thing to watch the temp of the boiler and if it dropped below a certain temp the pi would email letting me know.

Rob avatar

er, I wouldn’t, boiler controls are safety critical.

James avatar

hmm, I second that. I would certainly not use this with anything critical – let alone a boiler.

ukscone avatar

That is beautiful. Love it

Kenneth Lim avatar

Impressive stuff!

Just to ask, will there be any RAM upgrade for that matter, or since it’s made this way, is there ever a chance we can add more RAM? (I’m just trying my luck since it doesn’t work that way on the Rpi board and this is just a different form factors :))

Kudos to all at Raspberry Pi Tower!

Kenneth Lim

James Adams avatar

I’m afraid the RAM is soldered onto the board same as the Pi so you can’t change it.

Kenneth Lim avatar

So i guess we are still on 512mb for that matter? :)

That’s fine! We can have multiple running and still have a workaround for that.

Hope to buy one soon!

Caleb avatar

Well you could try upgrading the RAM the same way this person did on their PC graphics card. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dnnU5-83QUM

Isaac avatar

Is this Caleb Caleb Conoly from Plymouth road Totnes.

Marcus avatar

As the 512MByte of RAM is build into the CPU, it will not be posible to upgrade the amount of RAM on the board.
Maby you could upgrade the amount of flash memory (4Gbyte eMMC Flash) by replace the IC soldered on to the PCB-board.

Edwinj85 avatar

A small(er) form factor pi with integrated memory? Why I am imagining somebody kickstating an interface to turn these into server blades for an AWESOME home server setup. You could have one as a DND server, one as your mail server, one to host a website etc.

I’m really oddly excited by that idea. What’s the power consumption of one of these lovely things?

Chris avatar

Too bad there is a MOQ

James Adams avatar

There’s an MOQ for hitting the $30 price point but they will also be available individually.

Liz Upton avatar

That MOQ is 100 units: I think you’ll easily be able to find enough people to come in on a bulk order on the forums here, though.

Squeamish Ossifrage avatar

>These kits will be available from RS and element14 some time in June. Shortly after that the Compute Module will be available to buy separately, with a unit cost of around $30 in batches of 100; you will also be able to buy them individually, but the price will be slightly higher

Liz Upton avatar

We MAY end up releasing them initially with an MOQ – given what the reaction today has been like (and bitter past experience – mention Feb 29 2012 to anyone round here and they start crying) it may be the best way to avoid being swamped with orders for the initial batch. We’ll see. The plan is to have them available individually, but that *might* not be the case right at the start.

u8nc avatar

Let me guess, you’re hoping to sell 10,000 . . .

3bs avatar

+100500 blade rpi awesome!

SImon avatar

A cloud computing server based on a batch of these is a mouth-watering prospect. It will be interesting to see if anyone comes up with a host motherboard that can accommodate, 25, 50, 100 of these in a single box, perhaps with an integral switch/load-balancer. Will knock the socks off the regular server mfrs and reduce computing costs dramatically.

I still remember my PDP-aa days when someone created a multiprocessor PDP-11 that made Digital’s next-gen VAX systems look like snails. Ah, those were the days…. :)

Maxthon Chan avatar

Actually that can be relatively easy – one can use intermediate strip boards that have USB ethernet chips and a 100BASE-TX switch (with a gigabit uplink) circuitry on it, and plugs into backpanes that have gigabit ethernet switch circuitry. The size of this board allow fitting 50+ of these into a 1U server chassis and filling up a whole 42U server rack with those makes a 2,100+ units. That gives a cluster of 2,100 CPUs and GPUs, ~1TB RAM and ~8TB nonvolatile storage. By organising cleverly this will make a cheap but powerful supercomputer.

Edwinj85 avatar

A small(er) form factor pi with integrated memory? Why I am imagining somebody kickstarting an interface to turn these into server blades for an AWESOME home server setup. You could have one as a DNS server, one as your mail server, one to host a website etc.

I’m really oddly excited by that idea. What’s the power consumption of one of these lovely things?

Liz Upton avatar

Depends what you’re doing with it – it’s broadly the same as a Model A.

Mike Redrobe avatar

The video of the compute module + IO Board shows 92ma idle to 190ma running the 3d teapot.
So same as the Model A

The Raspberry Pi Guy avatar

WOAH! When can I get one?!

The Raspberry Pi Guy

StuartP avatar

Bear in mind that there’s no USB & Ethernet chip on these. Unless I’m missing something.

Liz Upton avatar

That’s correct, but there’s much more IO, so you can add your own. The idea here is that it’s the barest minimum, so folks working on industrial applications can add the ports and extra connectivity they need.

StuartP avatar

Looks great. Solves so many of the issues that exist with Pi in it’s current form factor.
Going to be interesting to see what comes of it.
KiCAD & EAGLE libraries being the first key to implementation.

Joel avatar

Is Raspbian embedded in the on board flash module? With no usb port how would one install an OS?

Codu avatar

Onboard telepathy module.

PS: JTAG or direct pin access to eMMC is much closer to our era.

James Hughes avatar

USB is what is used to program the eMMC.

Ken MacIver avatar

Generation game in Reverse,
On the conveyor belt we have…

Smart Tv Box, Home heating contol ,Smart Alarm system, Internet of things Brain, Cuddly Toy aka Babbage, 3D Printer Brain, Home robotics, Disablity Aids, Environmental Sensor, Home Cloud-VoiP-VPN Controller,

OOh my bain hurts..

asb avatar

Congratulations on the launch. How many layers is the reference IO board PCB?

James Adams avatar

The reference IO board is 6 layers, but that’s because we had to route out *all* the interfaces in a convenient fashion. A 4 layer board would probably be sufficient for most projects.

Samuel avatar

I don’t know if I would have bothered buying this because I thought it was going to be more expensive, but as I as going to get another pi anyway, and considering I would love to make a custom pcb… I want to buy one of these, all those GPIOs!

silvio avatar

Hello, guys, I’ve read this twice, and I have to say…
You are changing the world!

Stefan Nilsson avatar

Awesame! Keep up the great work!!

dean avatar

How much will each item cost?
Its not clear about a rough price for the IO board

Dave Akerman avatar

I note with interest the 2 camera connectors on the dev motherboard … when will there be software support for both? Lots of stereo vision applications possible with this :-)

Gordon avatar

Software support already ‘exists’ in as much as any support exists when it’s untested!

So it probably needs a bit of fixing but basically allows you to press a button and record into 3D (we even have the HDMI signalling software somewhere)


Dave Akerman avatar

Excellent. I’d just want simultaneous stills. Stereo from a HAB will only work with something in the foreground, otherwise the cams would need to be 100m+ apart, but I’m sure that Babbage could be coaxed into that role :-)

Dave Akerman avatar

Actually stereo video would be cool too, for storage as we sadly don’t have the bandwidth to transmit it.

Henrik Laursen avatar

I took note of the two camera ports as well. I’ve been trying to use a cheep usb stereo webcam, but RPi/ffmpeg doesn’t quite work. I can get a few seconds of side-by-side stereo to stream, but then it stops. Given the hw-optimization you have done with the RPi camera, I’d expect two of these could work.

Ready for a new stereo-3D helmet-cam?

Gordon avatar

What like this?


Check out the video at the bottom of the page!

Henrik Laursen avatar

Yes, that was originally what led me to try the 3D usb-webcam on the RPi. I don’t know enough about vdo processing to sync two streams, so I thought a 3D webcam with a single usb connector would keep the streams in sync. However, the cameras apparently connects as two separate devices.

But – did you ever locate the sw setup you used? I’m still interested :-)

This is a ffmpeg setup which almost works. With a Windows7 pc and my small 3Dcam it records for a few seconds and then freezes, so I’m not sure how good the sync is, but at least it produces a full-SBS picture

ffmpeg -s 320×240 -r 5 -f dshow -video_device_number 1 -i video=”USB Camera” -s 320×240 -r 5 -f dshow -video_device_number 0 -i video=”USB Camera” -filter_complex “[0:v] pad=iw*2:ih:0 [left]; [left] [1:v] overlay=W/2:0 [fileout]” -map “[fileout]” -b:v 768k “OutSBS-LR.mp4”

Gordon avatar

Unfortunately I never did, although I wrote it in my spare time I did it on an old work laptop and therefore lost it in the move to Raspberry Pi.

I’m very disappointed because it took me a long long time to get all the processing correct to interleave the two streams correctly!

Francis avatar

when i have got time i make a compact stereo board.

Pliny The Elder avatar

This is amazing news! I have a feeling we will see even more exciting and adventurous projects in the future. The best just keeps getting better!

Radu avatar

Hey guys, question: Can you pair the compute module to a RPi? And create a super RPi? :) Would be interesting to double the amount of RAM and CPU power. Thx

Dan Udey avatar

This is an RPi in a different shape. You could do the same with one of these and a regular RPi as you could with two RPi (in the context of your question).

winkleink avatar

One of the micro-USB connectors is labelled USB Boot.

So, looks like it can support 2 camera, 2 displays and boot from USB.

Wow – that Broadcom chip is amazing. Hats off the people who designed it.

James Adams avatar

The ‘USB BOOT’ is to solve the problem of getting data onto the on-board Flash. Basically the module can read its boot code over USB as a slave – we have some software (that runs on – guess what – a Raspberry Pi!) that can act as a host and write the Flash using this method.

Liz Upton avatar

Three of them are beaming at me and saying thank you. :D

Gordon avatar

Wow – that Broadcom chip is amazing. Hats off the people who designed it.

James, Eben and I doff our hats…

Dave Akerman avatar

Is that the same hat that I saved Eben from the pleasure of eating? http://www.zdnet.com/raspberry-pi-in-space-putting-the-linux-pc-into-orbit-7000000577/ :-)

Liz Upton avatar

It is! That’s a blast from the past.

Dave Akerman avatar

It is! I found that the evening before my first Pi flight, when I spent a while googling to see if anyone else had flown one already. That article was posted earlier the same day, and was the only thing I found aside from a couple of “I want to fly a Pi” posts.

Chris Evans avatar

Is there an on board RTC?
On the ‘Pi Compute Module’ TP1 is marked ‘VBAT’ !
VBAT is often used to mean the power to a RTC unit or a power battery source.

James Adams avatar

VBAT is the voltage that goes to the on-board BCM2835 SMPS that generates the processor 1.2V core voltage. It can be powered from ~2.5-5V (various batteries will give you this including a single cell li-ion). No RTC but you can add your own!

AndrewS avatar

From the schematics, looks like you need to provide at least VBAT, 1v8 and 3v3 to the compute module? (and 2v5 if you want to use composite video)

Chris Evans avatar

Hi I can’t spot any reference to composite video. Can you give me a pointer please?
Ta. Chris

Chris Evans avatar

Found it!

Alex Holden avatar

Excellent news! This board looks ideal for a project I’m working on. One question: is there any way to rewrite the disk image on the eMMC if you accidentally brick the device?

James Adams avatar

Yes. You can force the module to boot as a slave over USB and therefore have full control of the Flash, even if you have corrupted it and it won’t boot normally.

Shea Silverman avatar

Can’t wait to pick one up!

Shea Silverman avatar

Can’t wait to pick one up!

riskpw avatar

hi Shea Silverman !!
i glad to here is can seen your post.
and because, your friday post through my website(http://www.rasplay.org) is been introduce on the france and spain. thanx you.

Daniel Bates avatar

I got most of the way through this post before realising that it was called the “compute module” and not the “compote module”… I must have dessert on the brain.

Jasen Betts avatar

desert: raspberry pie perhaps?

Steven Richardson avatar

Hey, Nice idea but I’m not sure why its more expensive than a standard PI? Surely the BOM is much cheaper without all of the connectors, headers, phy and usb chips.

Guessing the price is due to flash + lower volume?

James Adams avatar

Raspberry Pi Model B = $35, Compute Module (which has the same processor and same amount of RAM but also has 4GByte Flash) = $30.

fanoush avatar

Will there be a “model A” without the emmc? are SD pins brought to dimm pins? If one needs extra board anyway, adding SD sd slot would be easy. So why raising the price by (possibly too small) eMMC chip?

Robert Copelan avatar

AWESOME: This is similar, from a concept point of view, to the TINI module that was available some years ago and Java based. Great to see the hardware moving along and being more flexible. As we saw with the original system I am sure that the community will find uses for this that are not yet imagined.

MattSpeakman avatar

This is brilliant. Is there a way of connecting to the internet using an RJ45 connection?

the_milord avatar

Now that you have two MIPI display outputs it’s about time to provide some piece of SW/HW to make them useful :)

meltwater avatar

Awesome! Have new schematic reading to do now. :)
Congrats on the new addition to the RPi family.

Can you post birth weight and size please! :)

Liz Upton avatar

Size is in the post – we’re just scampering around the office trying to find some scales!

James Adams avatar

Module is 7g according to our scales (which are probably only accurate to +/- 1g)

meltwater avatar

Thank you for the reply (sorry i missed the size in the post). Only just had chance to see the video, two cams and two displays…oculus rift and google glass combined me-thinks.

Time to buy shares in SO-DIMM sockets!

acb avatar

Would it be possible to connect a SATA controller to the compute module and get reasonable I/O performance?

Liz Upton avatar

Yes, it would. As James says, you’ll need to design your own PCB, though.

James Adams avatar

The way to do it would be to use a USB to SATA bridge chip.

acb avatar

So it won’t perform any better or be any more robust than plugging a USB-SATA dongle into an existing Pi? Isn’t there a way to bypass the USB layer altogether?

gert avatar

The USB is the only high speed data interface which the BCM2835 has. It has very high speed video ports (CSI and DSI) each can run ~1 GBITS/sec physically. However getting those to transport data is difficult and will not give you the full 1G bandwidth. But it is not impossible….

David Driscoll avatar

Any chance there is some ADC on the IO now?

Alex Eames (RasPi.TV) avatar

Well that _is_ a surprise. Excellent.

Michael Horne avatar

Is there analog input on any of those pins?

Liz Upton avatar

For certain values of “analogue”…I’ll let James answer this one for me when he has a minute later!

James Adams avatar

No analogue input – but the point is you can add whatever flavour and quantity you want to the many free GPIOs yourself!

Gordon avatar

No the BCM2835 doesn’t have any analogue inputs, you’d just need to add an ADC

Tom West avatar

Part of me wants to call this the Rapsberry Pi Model C (for “Compute” / “Compact” / “Cute” )

Ravenous avatar

Well spotted!

Cyk avatar

I think that there should be an IO board with analog video output.
Because many people still use analog video to drive car infotainment monitors, Scada monitors, etc.

James Adams avatar

Composite video is available from the module (and available on the IO board from one of the header pins).

Jason Seymour avatar

The single USB bus of the Raspberry Pi is a bandwidth choke point if you want to use a Pi as a NAS. With the extra I/O pins exposed by the Compute Module will it be possible to connect a gigabit ethernet controller and possibly some additional storage controller directly to the BCM2835? Can the ARM core in the BCM2835 handle higher speed peripherals?

James Adams avatar

In the short term, no. In the longer term if Broadcom release more information about some of the undocumented interfaces then maybe.

gert avatar

See my reply a bit further back about high speed data port, USB, CSI, DSI.

Chris Evans avatar

Will reading or writing to the eMMC be any quicker than a class 10 SD card?
The schematic on the RS site does say how it connects to the BCM2835.
Is there anything on the expansion connectors that would alow USB to connected (I realise at extra hardware would be required).
Many opportunities = many questions :-)

Chris Evans avatar

Just found on the schematic that the eMMC is connected to SD-D0-3 as the Pi’s SD card.

gert avatar

You might try an SD-card with a power switch between 3V3 and 1V8. The 3V3-only supply is a possible reason for the speed limitation as it needs a bigger swing. I can’t promise anything though!!!

Gordon avatar

We’ve run through testing on the eMMC and it is a little faster at some things and slower at others!

Haven’t actually done a full timing test (i.e. timing lots of different use cases to find out which is fastest) but it’s looking quite good so far…


Harrison avatar


Not sure how to feel about this, I love the Pi and it’s humble goal towards education. (I am 16 year old Aussie Kid who built a MAME cabinet & used the Pi to learn Linux – it has opened a new world for me).
In saying that, although the Pi has been used by makers and many enthusiast, seeing the RasPi been used purely for industrial applications is a bit worrying to me. Though maybe it allows the best of both worlds? In any case look forward to designing some PCB’s and using it :)

Liz Upton avatar

No matter how humble your goals are, if you’re going to follow through on them, you need money. This is a way for us to raise that money. All profits go straight to the Foundation: we use every penny sales raise to build more educational resources, donate more Pis to more schools, train more teachers and help more kids.

James Adams avatar

It’s also designed to allow the ‘maker in a shed’ with a great idea to access this technology cheaply. It is impossible to get hold of the silicon devices on this module unless you’re a ‘big guy’ who can buy very large volumes. We’re trying to give power to the ‘little guy’ to make cool stuff!

Harrison avatar

Fair Enough. In any sense, its good to see an open platform, driven by the community open up possibilities in commercial applications and possibly aspiring start-ups.

P.S. Personal Thank You – The RasPi platform has been a massive influence in learning about computers and electronics and has offered a new possible career path in computing. Plus my school has recently started a RasPi club which has been great fun too!

James Adams avatar

You are very welcome – good luck with the club!

Neil Jansen avatar

This module is going to amazing! It’s like you guys read my mind. I’m going to design a PCB around this for my current project immediately.

I really, really hope that the second camera interface is functional and fully supported in the near future.]

Thank you, Raspberry Pi Foundation and Broadcom! You guys rock.

justr24 avatar

Problem will be the bandwith limitations of the raspi/CPU.
1.) Limitation on USB: how to get two streams out of the raspi where one is already filling up the line
2.) the GPU internal video processing units are also limited in bandwith and processing power. Not sure if this would compute all what’s possible with e.g. raspimjpeg for one camera module

All of this regarding good quality video. Reducing quality/fps should help (but it was a littly bit pitty when having such a nice cam module).

LCarter avatar

Does the new form factor imply that we’ll be seeing newer computes with the same pin outs that will be compatible with the IO module to provide more cores/faster processors/more RAM? Get the feeling that we’re witnessing the birth of the AT form factor in miniature all over again :-)

Peter Green avatar

The trouble is each SoC has a slightly different set of interfaces, pin muxing rules and so-on. So having designed a module arround the interfaces available on one SoC it’s very hard to make a compatible module around a different one.

bitbite123 avatar

“Get the feeling that we’re witnessing the birth of the AT form factor in miniature all over again”

Not really. The idea to put a computing module on a form factor like this is quite old. There are quasi standards out there for more than a decade now. Take a look at the KuK ARM modules at http://www.keith-koep.com. Their initial pinout was copied many times by companies like Toradex or DH…

Dave Rensberger avatar

Just curious if you guys had any idea how much cheaper the module could become if it had less flash storage (maybe 128-256MB)? For most embedded systems, 4GB seems pretty over-the-top. Only a few years ago, most of us who did “embedded linux” had to work within 16-64MB, and even applications with a heavy graphic component like OpenELEC could live comfortably in 256M. I understand that flash is cheap nowadays, though, so the savings might be a lot less than I’d expect.

James Adams avatar

You’ve hit the nail on the head – yes smaller eMMC devices are cheaper, but not really by much. We’re trying to pitch this at the widest audience but still at a knock-down price.

fanoush avatar

I would rephrase the question as “Just curious if you guys had any idea how much cheaper the module could become if it had _NO_ flash storage?”

From schematics it looks like there is no 8bit emmc interface (so it won’t be faster than SD card) and sadly those pins are not(?) brought to the connector so no possibility of cheaper “mode A” with emmc not soldered :-(

Dave Rensberger avatar

For embedded designs, you almost always want built in storage. If you have an application that needs extra/removable storage, you can always do it via USB (which will be faster anyway).

trans avatar

Looks awesome. Any hope we will see IO boards w/ SATA?

James Hughes avatar

Dunno, that depends on anyone who wants to make one! Unlikely the Foundation will do so, but the design is open do people can do whatever they want.

Chris Evans avatar

With the extra GPIO pins is there a faster way of connecting SATA or Ethernet other than the USB?

Is there a way of getting USB from the motherboard expansion connectors?
i.e. other than USB socket on the side!

Piotr avatar

The Broadcom SoC doesn’t support SATA nor PCIe nor Gigabith Ethernet – so no ;) Only USB solutions.

duda avatar

doh, so much for storage/NAS usage.

NickMon68 avatar

So what would be nice is if the compute module in time can be upgraded IE swapped for a different version with say a faster processor 1,2,3,4gb of ram etc

Then its a plug in and go on the IO board

Mike Redrobe avatar

How big is the IO board ?

It looks the same length as the Pi, but a little wider ?

James Adams avatar

The IO board is 85x105mm

Sam avatar

I’m used to desoldering most of the extraneous connections on my RPi’s, so great that I wont have to do that in the future!

Awesome to see this, and you’ve crammed an awful lot into a small package.

I was recently looking for a suitable carrier board for my RPi’s … if I REALLY had my cake the command module I/O board would be 5mm narrower to meet a Eurocard standard width ;-p

Yet again, sincere thanks to the Foundation for another great bit of kit.

George avatar

With new GPIOs being brought out when will we be able to know what functions can be used on each GPIO? Would love to start working on a baseboard for a project but need to know what can be used for what functions.

James Adams avatar

We’ll be releasing that information in an easily digestible fashion very soon now.

gert avatar

All the GPIO functions ARE already in the existing datasheet. It was just thus far not possible to use many of them as they where not brought out. Look at the second, beautiful designed SPI interface which is now available. They guy who designed that must be a genius. :-) :ugeek: :-)

George avatar

Sorry, can you point to a link that lists the GPIO pins of the BCM2835 and what each pin is capable of, I didn’t think that was fully available.

AndrewS avatar

Almost two years ago, I copied the table from the datasheet you’ll probably find most interesting to the eLinux wiki:

Jeff Ledger avatar

That’s pretty cool.. (A little off-topic) Where does one find that 3d Teapot video demo?

Liz Upton avatar

It’s there in Raspbian: there’s a tutorial in our new resources section that walks you through it. http://www.raspberrypi.org/learning/demo-programs/

Tom Skwara avatar

Awesome news!

You can look forward to new Proto Armour enclosures that will support the new form factor!


David avatar

Nice board. Honestly though I think you missed the mark here if your goal is the industrial market. Well at least the market I’m interested in. Here we want the I/O but we also want high quality connections to that I/O!

Consider here the engineer that needs a one off solution or a very limited quantity of solutions. Designing an interface board will never happen.

That being said I see a real opportunity here for a well designed mother board for this module. A board with real RS232 ports, 24 VDC tolerant I/O, a power supply and other goodies. If the cost is reasonable it could drive success for this product.

JBeale avatar

You can design what you need using free PCB design tools (KiCad, etc.) and you can have a PCB made for crazy cheap prices these days, for example $25 can get you 10 pieces of 10 cm x 10 cm 2-layer board from iteadstudio.com Not much barrier to entry there, so if you don’t want to do it yourself, maybe someone will see the opportunity and provide a solution for you.

Jeppe avatar

Will there ever be a larger board to host more than one of those compute units (would be a nice and small cluster )?? Also it would be nice with an ethernet port. I really like the small “Ram” like design of the module!!

gert avatar

That is the trick of the module: maybe. Anybody can now design a ‘carrier’ board which holds up to X raspberry-Pis. We just have to wait and see what appears in the next few days.
It is nice that the announcement is ahead of the actual availability. This gives time to have plug-in boards available by the time the module comes out.

diereinegier avatar

When I played around with my cluster of 4 Raspis I saw that the USB-connected Ethernet is a real bottleneck.

I want to have a PCB that connects say 8 of them in a way that appears as a switched Ethernet connection and that makes them available via an external Ethernet jack (or even a little switch to cascade them) to have a real cluster.

It could even be a PCI or PCIe card so we would have a Plug-In-Cluster for our PC!

Greg avatar

Looks good, how does the flash memory compare in speed to a class 10 SD Card ? Thanks.

James Adams avatar

Our internal testing shows it is definitely at the upper end of the speed scale. eMMC is also specifically designed and optimised for embedded filesystems.
Difficult to compare to a class 10 SD card as all SD cards speed are dependent on the internal Flash controller implementation (note that some class 10 cards are in fact slower than lower class cards when used in a Pi as they are only optimised for large streaming writes – perfect for your camcorder, not so good for a filesystem which has lots of small random reads).

Andrew avatar

If someone creates a board to plug 100 of these in afford-ably, with proper power supply and decent port selection of course, $300 would be 70GHz of arm processing power and 50GB of RAM. Even if the board and power supply cost $200 it would be a nice $500 server with some fun Linux parallel processing power. Not to mention 3D GPU/Video Transcoding power. Can’t wait to see what people do. Scalable Plex server is on my “crazy idea” wish list.

Steve avatar

Sorry to burst your bubble, but $30 x 100 = $3,000 not $300!

Andrew avatar

#face-palm I was drooling over the ideas too much to do proper math. lol.

Andrew avatar

Still has a lot of cost/performance potential though.

tim Rowledge avatar

… and a board(s) to support 100 units might be a bit more complex than $200 worth, too. That adds up to quite a bit of power to move around – why almost as much as an x86 uses! – and a lot of sodium sockets. But it’s the way we need to go to get real performance improvements. Serious parallelism has to become mainstream; a few cores sharing one memory just isn’t going to cut it.

Dave Rensberger avatar

If you’re looking for high-performance and maximum MIPS/dollar (or pound), you’re going to have an awfully hard time beating a mid-range x86 board. I think the point of RaspberryPi is just the opposite (you only get a fraction of the performance, but you can actually cheaply buy a fraction the MIPS of an i7 for a fraction of the price (which is perfect for things that don’t need a lot of raw performance, of which there are many).

Dan avatar

This is great news!

For Industrial/Business users, will Broadcom and the RaspberryPi Foundation be putting any Long-Term-Availability guarantees in place for these modules?

(i.e. so that products can be developed around these modules with the re-assurance that they will still be a supply of these, or a suitable replacement, available 5 years from now)

Liz Upton avatar

This isn’t a Broadcom product; it’s a Raspberry Pi product, and yes, we are making them available long term.

Adam avatar

Liz, can you be more specific on what you mean by long-term available?

Liz Upton avatar

We’ll have a statement about it in due course (probably when sales start), but that’ll say at a very minimum that it’ll be available for five years. I’d be interested in feedback on what sort of long-term availability you guys would be interested in.

And, of course, we are not limiting these to n units per customer: you can buy as many as you like.

Thilo avatar


to be honest: 5 years is nothing in industrial use. 5 years is the absolute bare minimum.

Think about it. Somebody starts building a device this years using that module. Including all required qualifications for industrial use, the device will be ready to sell next year. The device then is used within a greater system. The system design can start earliest with system design +1 year. Again, until the complete system is available including all qualifications, will be minimum 1 year. So we are at +2 years. That means, the module will now be available only 3 years left. That is best case scenario. Not even counting servicing for the final system that in industrial use will run minimum 10 years.
Parts availability of 5 years in industrial use is not long term. That is short term.

This comes to the other requirements: what is about qualifications: shock, temperature, EMI?
What is with type E1 qualification, which is required in automotive use?
What is about extended temperature, like it is required in mobile applications, railway or even stuff like ticketing stations (-40°C)?

The current Raspberry PI has none of these. Especially, the design in terms of EMI requirements is far from industrial use. “Friends” use the current Raspberry PI for pre-prototyping in terms of validating ideas. But when it comes to real prototyping, then everybody is doing its own design.

a69 avatar

Nice work. I started dreaming of specialized breakout boxes and also Pi foundation to start offering of server (or simply more beefed-up) Pi’s (DualCore SoC and 1GB of RAM is enough to make the difference, along with 1Gbps LAN and at least one SATA port).

We really need more choices of Pi flavors.

John avatar

Maybe I’m missing something, but wouldn’t this be a good form factor for schools as well? As it stands, one of the barriers keeping me from embracing the pi at y school is the nightmare I imagine would ensue when the kids get to class and all have to plug in five or six connectors to get their Pis running. This makes me imagine a relatively dumb and cheapish “dock” that stays set up (potentially both at school and at home, or even in multiple rooms within the school) and a Rasperry pi in roughly the same form factor as an old NES cartridge. I know the docks would have to implement networking and usb, and the total would be more expensive than the Pi is now– but as an educational technologist, I feel that long setup time is the number one factor that stops adoption of new technologies in schools.

Liz Upton avatar

You should apply to our next Picademy – I’m sure we can talk you through how other schools are managing it. (And there are a LOT of them now.)

AndrewS avatar

What would be the advantage of a system like you describe, over simply treating the RaspberryPi as the ‘dock’ and the SD card as the ‘cartridge’ ?

Gordon Endersby avatar

I predict a large number of add on and adapter boards being designed right now that will appear on ebay within the next few weeks.

Should be very interesting to see what the comunity comes up with.

Bernd Kohlstedt avatar

Nice made ! WANT !!

Andrew Meier avatar

Minor gripe, the 3 & 4th page in the PDF of the schematic for the CM is slightly cropped, not a big deal as I don’t think there is any missing data. More of just a FYI. Great job, and looks great! Look forward to getting my hands on a pair of CM/CMIO boards.

dan3008 avatar

WOW, I cant wait to get my hands on one (or more) of these beauties. Might be worth looking into making an expansion board for arcade (and similar) controls. So, roughly how many addressable GPIO pins are there?
I can see on the IO board, there are 120 physical pins, and on the module itself, there are 200 pins. But i’m guessing a pile of these are used by default for hdmi/video out/audio/usb/CSI and DSI
I’d also imagine that there are still the standard power (3.3v and 5v) and ground pins?
I’m just wondering how many of the 200 I’ll be able to use as standard IO pins, and will existing code (such as the python gpio module) work with them or not?

James Adams avatar

There are 46 free GPIOs to do whatever you like with. They can be used as general I/O or configured as I2C/SPI/PCM/UART/PWM/GPCLKs etc like the (more limited) subset on the Pi. (More docs on this in the coming days).

dan3008 avatar

46??? thats amazing. I wonder if PiKeyed will be able to work with them all :D

I’ve been wanting to make an arcade cabinet with my pi for ages, but there arnt enough gpio pins for all the controls I wanted (2 joysticks, 12 buttons, plus some extra buttons) but there are on here :D :D :D :D

I’m going to end up with a few of these, Might even replace my current one (hosting my website) for a couple to run my site, and web server on one :D

Joachim Haagen Skeie avatar

Is that hardware, or software PWM on the GPIO pins?

gert avatar

Hardware on two. But somebody wrote a very reliable SW PWM package for the other pins. I think it uses DMA. If so it will not suffer from Linux task switching/interrupts hick-ups. I am sure somebody can provide a link to the forum posts about that.

Matthew avatar

Oooh, I don’t think anyone predicted these coming out!

Might try and get my school to start a Pi club using these (I’m 11 =D)!

Andy Crofts avatar

Almost pased out when I looked at the schematics – shed-loads of lovely jubbly connections!
Seriously, I believe this’ll be a big boost for the Raspberry Pi foundation – especially if the undoubtedly numerous spin-off boards donate a portion of profits to the Foundation, as a lot of vendors are doing currently.
I’m trying to use a couple of Pi’s for a remote forest/env. monitoring thingy.
If someone sticks an Arduino-type Atmel 328 whatsit on a board to interface to it and give it some analog, and an RTC (SleepyPi, nudge, nudge) this’ll be a real treat. Plus, luuuve the power consumption (GPU unused – not many HDMI displays in forests.) Looks like 1Watt or so can be acheived easily. My solar panels and batteries just became:
Less visible, therefore less nickable.

Yeps, be saving up for one or three of these chaps!

Great idea!

Jon Watkins avatar


Already on it ;-)


Look the product and all the possibilities!
….But can we have a cooler name?????

Hendra avatar

This news just really made my days.
The update of my beloved Raspberry Pi

I’m a college student from Indonesia who doesn’t really understand about anything related to Computer.
But Raspberry Pi teach me a lot about programming, embedded system, robotics, electronics, etc.
And make me get scholarship for full time master program at my campus.
So Thank You for you guys at the Raspberry Pi foundation for making this awesome Thing.

jay1100 avatar

Very exciting stuff. I’m one of the people using RPi’s in a project that will soon be commercial. Glad to see the NAND on board.

wombat avatar

arduino killer?

Liz Upton avatar

Not the same thing at all: and we’re very fond of Arduino. We’ve always said that a Pi and an Arduino make a lovely marriage.

Peter Green avatar


The arduino is aimed at people who can’t/won’t handle putting an avr on their own board and programming it.

The raspberry pi compute module is aimed at people who have moderate PCB design and assembly resources available but don’t have the resources (or can’t justify using them) to deal with a SoC comparable to the one on the Pi.

Designing and building a board to support an AVR is going to be considerablly easier than designing and building a board to support the raspberry pi compute module.

Jesse Pollard avatar

Looks good.

Possible return of the backplane – especially if you figure out how to put multiple SODIMM connectors on the I/O board.

It would also be useful if it could hold expansion system memory that way.

Scot avatar

So you can run cpu’s in parallel, can you do that with gpu’s? Sounds like it would make a pretty good rendering farm.

Piotr avatar

If you write paralel and distributed code then theoretically yes – but still note that GPU computation is mostly available for nVidia via CUDA and other via OpenCL. Maybe the open Broadcom code allows good OpenCL integration, but for anything advanced – nVidia wins.

Matthew avatar

Too bad there appears to be no RMI/RMII interface. Though there are some SPI-to-Ethernet PHYs on the market.

I’d love to see a backplane that integrates sockets for several Compute modules along with an integrated Ethernet switch.

dex avatar

This would go nice in box :D

cyryllo avatar

Best message this year:)
A lot of surprises prepared us:)

David avatar

Awesome new PI – I predict this guy will buy lots: http://www.raspberrypi.org/bitcoin-farming-on-a-industrial-scale/

Liz Upton avatar

Ha! Have to admit, that crossed our minds as well.

Remco avatar

Not too bad, now all we need is a mini ITX board we can click the RaspPi module in that contains ethernet, several USB, PCI-X, SATA, HDMI, sound, infrared etc. ;)

Piotr avatar

The SoC doesn’t support SATA nor PCIe, so you won’t get native support of those.

Alessio Cavalieri avatar
James Hughes avatar

I thought you guys would like the CM!

Liam avatar

This seems like a very smart move, and I imagine it will really help grow the platform further (although it’s already huge!) – in fact I think this is going to start an avalanche of creative responses – congratulations!

One question I haven’t seen an answer to tho’ – are the compute modules and IO boards going to be made in Wales?

Liz Upton avatar

Yes, they are.

Dutch_Master avatar

This announcement comes at a crucial time for me (great timing folks ;) ) as I was about to order some large(-ish) Arduino’s for an upcoming project as I need some more IO then what the standard RPi can give me (even with multiplexing). But now you’ve made this public, all options are back up in the air! (insert desperately-raising-of-hands-to-heaven smiley here)

I understand the $30 quoted is for the compute module alone, what’s the target price for the expander/IO board and the Development Kit combo? If not too dear, I’d consider purchasing 5-10 of the latter ;-)

Many thanks for releasing this guys, I’m sure you’d be making a whole lot of (small) manufacturers happy :-D

Piotr avatar

You could always I2C GPIO expanders or extra microcontrollers connected to Pi via USB. Or if it’s battery-powered project then microcontroller only solution would be better.

vasi avatar

Can the GPIO pins be grouped in a -say 16 bit- bidirectional parallel bus with DMA support?

jdb avatar

With the Compute Module, access is given to *all* unused GPIO pins (less a few for some essential functions and the eMMC device) which allows the use of all peripherals exposed on the GPIO banks.

Watch this space: there are additional interfaces on the GPIO banks (some of which take whole groups of pins and do bus I/O with them) that are not currently documented publicly.

Curtis avatar

What a great idea to an already fantastic product. Can’t wait to get my hands onto one of these :)

Bob Fegert avatar

Could you guys buy extra BCM2835 SoC chips and sell them to PI
enthusiasts at just a bit above cost???

Lots of us can handle soldering such a beastie onto a custom board.

Zoltan Herpai avatar

I think there are a couple people who are waiting for the schematics documentation – pin assignments on the module, etc. There is very likely some interest in designing custom boards, placing 5+ or 50+ of these into the same “compute board”.


jdb avatar

The schematics are already available in links in the body of the post.

The SODIMM connector pinout is defined on page 4 of the Compute Module schematic.

Saif avatar

Brilliant! I don’t think this will replace the one stop shop that is the Model B though. ( I do hope you wont stop production of the Model B). This form factor suggests to me that future model D etc boards will include more variety of processing power and storage upgrades etc that may be able to take advantage of IO modules that others develop. IO boards themselves are not trivial for the ordinary user to make for home experimentation.

Liz Upton avatar

The Compute Module is absolutely not competition for or any sort of replacement for the main line of Raspberry Pis – the Raspberry Pi that you’ve already got is always going to be our core business.

Loloka avatar

That’s great!
Why do you use only the USB port for power supply.
Simple hobby solution, but no other advantage.
Alternatively, get on the connector line?
Maybe screw or spring terminal?

Otherwise a really promising idea!

tzj avatar

Does this mean access to the ‘lan run’ gpio would be user accessable on the model A? It may seem feeble but can still have its uses.

Plus… glad to see a formfactor that utilizes all of the PIs potential!

Cant wait to review this in the coming months for the magpi! Especially with all those future I/O boards!

tzj avatar

Oh and just like to add, would there be dsi compatable screens in the future thats the same size as this module?

C Johnson avatar

Definitely a “TAKE MY MONEY!” kind of moment. I would like to see the host board have an option for a standard 2.1mm power jack even if it isn’t soldered on the board by default. (same for the raspberry pi really… I get the micro usb thing, but it is still not great for an industrial setting)

Rikard avatar

Fantasitc! I’ve been planning to make my own custom board with a Freescale i.MX233 + 64MB RAM + MicroSD + sensors and stuff (no BGA’s) to make a computer to wear on my arm. This looks like it could be a much better idea. Looking forward to get my hands on a few of these.

Ian Deal avatar

I saw a comment on reddit, one user suggested the name Raspberry Pip.

I am curious, will there be a competition to name this new Raspberry computer?

Scot avatar

Ooh shiny! Looks like it would be pretty good for mobile size stuff, I eventually want to put a pi in a psp case, and make a Pi SP

riskpw avatar

Fantasitc! I’m korean raspberrypi user.
we are hungry for raspberrypi user shield.
this is test machine for raspberrypi devloper.

Hussam Al-Hertani avatar

The Raspberry Pi Compute Module & IO Board look like awesome products! I’ve added them to my summer wishlist!

I do have one request though regarding the IO board. Please consider replacing the 0.1″ male headers with 0.1″ female headers. This will make the IO board easier to use in hardware interfacing projects.

The original RPi board had 0.1″ male connectors but could easily be interfaced to a breadboard with IDC connector/header cable due to its reasonably sized 2×13 header. The I/O board however brings out way more I/O. With this much I/O, in my humble opinion; female headers are better.


Hussam Al-Hertani avatar

The Female 0.1″ headers will mean that we could simply use a bunch of cheap male-to-male jumper wires to interface the RPI to a protoboard/breadboard. It also makes building expansion boards easier.

Hussam Al-Hertani avatar

Will the IO Board bring out SPI ports as well? I couldn’t find them labelled on the silkscreen / schematics.


gert avatar

The GPIO pins carry two SPI interfaces.

Sonam avatar

Just dreaming….

I know the pin assignments are different, BUT if there was a version of this module with DDR compatible pin assignments and it exposed, 1GB of DDR memory… basically , a shared memory interface with a PC host…

…and peripherals were connected via PC host using USB3 or PCI express…

Piotr avatar

it’s a computer on a module – COM. There are many similar SODIMM shaped, but they have nothing to do with RAM. The idea is to have a small COM board connecting to compatible baseboard of choice.

Malakai avatar

Take my money now please. How about I just get a tab going with you guys. And setup auto pay monthly. :)

Peter De Ceulaer avatar

Instead of an initial MOQ to channel order volume, isnt there something more Pi-user-friendly, more in touch with the grass-roots Pi-movement ? Add a couple dollars initially, but don’t alienate me (and so many others) pls.

James Hughes avatar

The point is that this product is aimed squarely at the embedded market – not the home user (although you can obviously still buy them if it suits your purposes) – and those guys are more interested in quantity discounts!

Dave avatar

So with two camera ports I guess we can attach a regular camera module too one of them and then a noir to the other and the sotware could switch when low light is detected. 24hr monitoring system all one sweet form factor.

Does this sound reasonable?

PS. I have to say. I have been in the IT industry for 23yrs, and unfortunately it has all been MS based.

The raspberry pi has taught even and old duffer like me linux and I recently replaced my woefully underused and overpriced windows server with a LAMP server.

I have to say a big thank you to you all for all your efforts.

PPS Are you going to be present at the Bay Area Maker Faire again this year?

James Hughes avatar

That does sound like an excellent application for the twin camera ports.

AndrewS avatar

When the PiNoIR was first announced, people were talking about simply using a servo to move an IR filter in front of the lens, so that the same noIR camera could be used both for day-time (with the filter) and night-time (without the filter).

Binoy Xavier Joy (@binoyxj) avatar

Awesome. Now this should give birth to many RPi based commercial products. Can’t wait to see what pops up once this module is out there in the wild.

Solar avatar

I had the same thoughts, a cheap powerfull SoC module with plenty of RAM, graphical capabilities and a large open source communisty is very interesting for many applications.

The 1.8V SODIMM socket is very cheap and in good supply from many vendors, also because of the light weight of the module you don’t need any additional mechanical fixations for most applications. Most applications that don’t need all the I/O’s can be implementen on a 4 layer PCB, just make sure you select the correct layer build up for the controlled impedance traces like HDMI, USB and camera interface.

MP avatar


how many serial ports will be available under this form factor ?



Solar avatar

It was about time, the raspberry pi is almost impossible to integrate into a product. Many embedded modules are already available on the market, what took it so long to get to this.

Anyway, when can we start to get more detailed information about this module?

James Hughes avatar

That’s because it was designed as an educational tool, not for embedded devices….

And why so long? Because.

Solar avatar

Yes, it was designed as an educational tool but since the community has grown, so has the scope of RP :)

Solar avatar

Amazing, I just found out the Raspberry Pi doesn’t use a RGMII transceiver. Doesn’t the Broadcom SoC have an integrated ethernet MAC? Why isn’t the LAN9512 integrated into the baseboard?

James Hughes avatar

No, it doesn’t have a integrated MAC. You’ll need to interface one via the USB. Not difficult.

Peter Berrett avatar

Looks like an ok product but one frustration people have been having with the Pi is that for some applications it s just that bit too underpowered.

Is there any chance that we could see an upgraded pi hit the shelves with perhaps a dual core arm compatible processor? The Pi is now a couple of years ago so hopefully processor costs have dropped an an upgrade could be economically feasible. Its would make the desktop experience smoother and open the door for slightly more demanding applications such as software defined radio.

Solar avatar

There are other embedded modules available that have more powerfull processors but they cost more than RP. For SDR a dedicated DSP and high speed ADC would be my prefered option, you could then use the RP for the GUI.

Hussam Al-Hertani avatar

I’m sure that we’ll see a boost in performance when using the 4GB eMMC. The SD Card and its horrible access times is one of the major RPI performance bottlenecks.

Solar avatar

I don’t think the eMMC will have much faster acces time and/or data transfer rate. Basically these technologies are the same.

James Hughes avatar

Are you sure?

Solar avatar

The schematic of RP shows all 4 data lines connected to both eMMC and SD card slot. The advantages in data rates depends largely on the maximum allowed data clock speed.

Renne avatar

Please provide a MediaPlayer IO-board!

– all cables/sockets on backside to reduce needed space
– 1x HDMI 1.4a
– HDMI-ARC (route audio signal from TV to audio DAC)
– LPCM 2.0, 5.1 and 7.1
– DTS/A52 passthrough
– 1x 7.1 LPCM high quality audio DAC (8 RCA connectors)
– 1x TOSLink-SPDIF (LPCM 2.0/DTS/A52 passthrough)
– 1x 36 KHz Windows-MCE compliant IR-receiver (GPIO pin 17 on Model B) on front side
– 1x 1000 Base-T NIC
– 7x USB 3.0 Hub (1A current per socket, 2 front sockets)
– 1x 2.5″ HDD SATA bay for media storage
– 1x CSI interface for video conferences/calls
– power button and status leds on front side
– reset button on backside
– Micro-USB-B socket for power supply
– PCB connector for all remaining GPIO ports
– housing

James Hughes avatar

The Foundation will not be making such a board. But you can make one using the new module! That’s the whole point.

Mike Redrobe avatar

Yes, my mind is exploding with possibilities for different IO boards now !

I’m waiting for someone to a make a minimal size board: just power and a usb socket

Chris Evans avatar

Hi Mike. What would you want on your minimal size board?
I have a cunning plan!
Please drop me an email [email protected]

nathanael avatar

It would be interesting if someone made one that allowed 2 camera modules to be connected for stereoscopic vision.

Piotr avatar

What he wants is not doable with Broadcom SoC on Raspberry Pi. It can’t have USB3/GigE and few other things from that list. It would have to be one of low power Inte/AMD CPUs or one of latest full blown ARM SoCs.

James Hughes avatar

It may not be possible with the SoC, but you can certainly have those interfaces via USB. Just not at the higher speeds as you would be limited by the USB2.0 interface,

Renne avatar

I can live with USB 2.0 if the power output is increased to 1A per socket to supply enough power for HDDs and USB 3.0 sticks in 2.0 mode. ;)

I love the out-of-the-box XBMC with RaspBMC on my RPi B Rev. 2.0 @ 3 Watt ;)

It’s just missing a few connectors – especially high quality analogue surround audio and USB. 1000 Base-T would be great for use as a SAT>IP recording unit with H.264 transcoding via OpenMAX. ;)

James Hughes avatar

Power is down to the motherboard – so whatever you build. You can plumb the I2S directly in to a decent sounds system.

Lots of potential.

u8nc avatar

now that you’ve sorted the spec, you can make it.
off you go.

Nub avatar

Are these SO-DIMM sockets vibration-proof? I.e. can they be used for a telemetry system in a car without losing contact for a split second when driving on bumpy roads?

Solar avatar

The module has two mounting holes for additional stability. Without the use of additional bolds it depends largely on the quality of the socket clamps you use on your board. There are sockets available that have very good mechanical clamps.

eisbaer avatar

minimizing is a very interesting idea
but, i want to ask:

– if we want cascade 2 or more “raspberry pi”
… for example …

how should one raspi communicate with the next raspi,
if ethernet there is not available?

– will it be possible to boot operating system from an other source then the inbuilded memory?

– is a separate audio-out – connector on the board available?
– would it be possible to implement a sata-connector
on the board? if we have such a connect, then we can easy connect a ssd-drive and memory is no more a problem.

best regards

zinit avatar

this is cool!!!
would be really nice to see boards with slots for multiple of these modules (since they are so small, you could probably fit 128 or more into a 1u chassis and have a nice and powerful cluster.

Silas avatar

I agree that would be a brilliant idea

MoonLight avatar

That’s really tiny computer. But, it’s not as small as Intel Edison.

Liz Upton avatar

Intel have moved away with the SD card form factor for the Edison: they’re using a different chipset now, and the Edison itself is going to be larger. Worth a Google.

tom avatar

I still don’t know what it actually dose?

Samio avatar

Like a standard RPi nothing and everything

Olivier avatar

I wish I could see the day where I could build a compact cluster of Raspberry Pi…Oh wait! We can now!

More seriously, I’m giving away my idea since I’m not familliar with board development. Let’s create a board with an integrated network of some kind and multiple vertical conectors so we can connect say 10 RPi together. Then all you need is a power connector, a network connector and there you have it a compact RPi cluster

byazit avatar

I already done with 4 pi cluster. If you need help, I can help you.

Aydan avatar

I just had a rough look around on how to achieve network capability and this is what I came up with:
Use a Micrel KS8999 9 port hub IC (one port for the uplink) and individual USB-to-Ethernet ICs for each Pi module. The Hub chip is about 20$ a piece, the USB-to-ethernet start at about 3$.
Add some power supply stuff and the connectors and PCB and you’ll probably end up at around 100$ for the 8-Module baseboard.

Tim Faulkner avatar

So im guessing you have to flash Linux to the chip on the board?

Dave Hunt avatar

Super stuff. One question though, it says in the article that it’s aimed at business and “industrial” users. Does that mean that the operating temperature range of the module is going to be somewhere around -40 to 100 degrees centigrade?

Liz Upton avatar

For “industrial” we mean all kinds of things, from factory applications to components in things like vacuum cleaners. I asked James about operating temp. He says:

“Theoretically the operating temp. range is determined by the range of the component with the smallest range.

The Samsung eMMC and Samsung LPDDR2 are all rated for -25 to +80 degrees C, so the range is -25 to +80. (BCM2835 and ana SW are greater range than this, caps are -25 to +85).

However that is the max range for the silicon die – so a user would have to take into account the heat generated when in use and make sure this does not cause the temp. to exceed 80C.”

Matthew avatar

Holy Sheite! A 153 pin BGA for a part that only has 6 signal lines? What the heck?

James Hughes avatar

Er, what on earth are you talking about?

Chris Evans avatar

The eMMC chip seems to be a 153 pin BGA according to marketing info for the part the Samsung website! They don’t have the data sheet on their site for download as far as I can see:-(

James Hughes avatar

I think there is a disconnect in understanding. eMMC doesn’t use 6 lines. It uses a lot more than that as it’s directly connected to the bus.

SD card’s use 6 lines. eMMC != SD card. It’s onboard memory optimised for embedded systems. Hence the e in the eMMC.

Chris Evans avatar

The Schematic seems to show the eMMC has connections of:
D0, D1, D2, D3, SD Clock, RSTN and multiple VDD & VCC
There is also:
VDDI & CMD I can’t see were they connect to

Shaalabaz Hack avatar

Wow ! Great Job ! this what we call AWESOME :)

EverPi avatar

That is a surprise because on 1 of april, i joked posting about a new raspberry pi board, so it’s like a vision haha

Aaron avatar

Cool product! How much GPIO does it actually have?

arunmag avatar

I will miss my rca and analog audio op.

AndrewS avatar

Then simply carry on buying the regular Raspberry Pis :-)

Dave avatar

Is the footprint compatible with the AW-SoM computer modules?

Piotr avatar

Shape may be similar but the connectors have different functionality. By default COM modules aren’t compatible with each other unless intended.

William Henning avatar

Extremely useful.

I’ll get a few dev combos and thoroughly check them out :)

Well Done!


Homer L. Hazel avatar

I did not think about this when I first read the article, but now that I read through it again, I am reminded of my very first computer. It was an S-100 Bus computer. The basis was what they called a motherboard, but what was really a place to connect your power supply and was essentially a back plane for the signals to travel from one card to another. I had an 8 slot backplane and I had five or six cards that went into there.
One was a Front Panel with flashing LEDS and switches.
One was the Z-80 CPU card.
One was the RAM card – I had a whopping 64K (yes kilo) of RAM.
One was an I/O card which I connected to my TV-Typewriter.
One was the Floppy controller card. I had 1 8″ floppy and 2 5 1/4 inch floppies.
One was a real-time clock. It used a whole wire wrap board but something that took only about 1 square inches.

I wonder if we might see something like that with this new Raspberry Pi Compute Module.

Probably not. Electronics have shrunk considerably since the mid 1970’s.

I think this is a good design. I just wish it were sold in single unit lots. I do not really need 100 and I would buy at least one to say I had one.

byazit avatar

I am totally agree with you. I feel the same way, we are getting very basic and small system that can be fit into small integration. So why not a small pi than RAM slot with mother?I thought next pi will be like.
– Duel core
– More ram(maybe)
– wifi module
– on board MMC
– more gpio (new has)
Anyway, keep develop and hope we will see something more small and powerful.

James Hughes avatar

You will be able to buy singly (eventually).

u8nc avatar

I understand a lot of the work you ( and a few hoers ) have done is purely voluntary.

I hope the income stream from this product enables the foundation to voluntarily reward you for your contribution

u8nc avatar

hoers = others

Thijs avatar

You as in raspberry pi foundation started the raspberry pi crazy very good. First make something everybody likes, tries, understands and is supported. Then carry on with the more advanced understanding of prototyping, Like: reading more difficult schematics, drawing your own schematics and building your own raspberry pi i/o board with it’s own demands. Carry on you have my respect as hobbyist

cae2100 avatar

This is perfect for my idea to create a laptop/netbook with the raspberry pi! create a simple 15.4 inch screen laptop with raspberry pi at it’s core, built in usb hub to power everything, and just take the rpi and everything with you!

Richard Sierakowski avatar

This is definitely a very innovative development and will hopefully address the issues raised by the embedded community.

It should bring in a new revenue stream for the Foundation. Nice work.


Silas avatar

What language do you program it in?

Piotr avatar

It’s a Raspberry Pi, just different form, so languages and APIs do not differ (+ extra GPIO)

silas avatar

Thank you!
Do you know how you put the OS on the compute module once booted via USB?

Noah Rosamilia avatar

Is adafruit going to carry these?

John avatar

I like the board however I wish it had the Ethernet chip so only the connector would have to be added. The problem with an external chip is that it’s a ball grid aray which is hard to install.

Aldrin avatar

So will there be an enterprise system like HP Moonshot server? Where I can plugin dozens of Pi to a motherboard that will host VDI and enterprise computing. I will be happy to try it out.

Torsten Jaekel avatar

Not a real step forward, just to compete with solutions already there.
For instance: I have such a DIMM module, also needing a motherboard. But it comes in addition to the ARM SoC also with a large FPGA. More flexible, more powerful, more interfaces on motherboard.
Example: XynergyXS

Is the DIMM module compatible with other similar modules? I do not guess. Where is the benefit to go with such a solution? Similar solutions allow to use different types of DIMM modules with SoC on it.

The small benefit I see: the flash device. The SD card was quite flaky and not very reliable. Question would be: how can the flash device be programmed, assuming just through the RPi which has to stay alive (protected bootloader).
It is more costly, less flexible (think about to reuse existing extension boards)

Are there additional features on the motherboard such as:
micro-SD card, bluetooth, WiFi, CAN, POE and dedicated I2S or SPI headers? The pictures does not let me assume.

It it the same, “old” RPi SoC or a new one (quad core)?
Is the VC4 (graphic engine) open now to be used by customers?
Where is the benefit to make it larger with the motherboard?

Piotr avatar

It’s just for those that want to offer something complex that can be run with RPi – like multiple sensors and automatics for a robot or home automation etc.

In general SODIMM sized COMs aren’t compatible with each other unless intended be :)

Patrick avatar

Another solution would be to use an FPGA with integrated ARM Dual-Core CPU like the Xilinx Zynq or the Altera Cylcone V SoC instead of two separate chips. They merge the best from both worlds – and there are also SO-DIMM modules available, e.g. the Mars ZX3 from Enclustra: http://www.enclustra.com/en/products/system-on-chip-modules/mars-zx3
Add the Mars PM3 base board and you have a nice development platform:

Pat avatar

Compute module so does that mean it will connect to the raspberry pi B model? sorry for asking im new to the whole raspberry pi world

Piotr avatar

No, it’s a Raspberry Pi that will be able to connect to baseboards designed by other companies and developers.

Yahs avatar

Think about tablets with this piece inside. You could upgrade the tablet when a new and faster Pi is released.

msxbas avatar

I like the new (possibilities of the) C model but only if the B model stays available.
So some wheels do not have to be invented twice, some wheels are good enough with model B (or A)…

James Hughes avatar

This is an addition to the Raspi A and B, it doesn’t replace either of them. The A/B is still the major product from the Foundation – this is just for embedded/industrial uses rather than education. But the income stream from it WILL be ploughed back in to education.

tjeerd avatar

It reminds me of the TRAM modules built with Transputer chips. this Compute Module can give us cheap and efficient massive parallelism, but now with more standards based components? Who wants to join me in a project trying this out?

Mark avatar

Funnily enough I was thinking Transputers & TRAM modules myself when I first saw this… I’m contemplating a module or motherboard that allows these modules to be easily connected together much like an array of transputers was able to be connected together via it’s network of dedicated inter processor links. In this case these links would probably have to be USB or Ethernet. Unfortunately, only having one USB port limits the overall inter-processor bandwidth somewhat but it’s still feels do-able… Generally though, I think the posibilities are endless – hats off to the Raspberry Pi guys for coming up with this!

tjeerd avatar

I suggest Ethernet, especially when the backplane can support switching. The setup would be like the work done here, but then built somewhat more efficient using a backplane instead of all the cables. Programming it would be the major concern, I think.

tjeerd avatar

Sorry, I need to come back on that one. This board only supports the BCM2835 and a flash memory card. No Ethernet there so I do not think there is Ethernet on the pinout. There is only USB, UART or SPI to communicate with. That complicates it a little.

Mark avatar

When I mentioned ethernet I made the assumption that whis would be via the usual LAN9512 USB-10/100 Ethernet bridge.

But… thinking along the USB solution lines – it could be possible to create a shared memory function over USB with (say) four USB ports allowing four Raspberry Pi Compute modules to communicate via a shared memory array. And there’s no real limit on how big that memory module can be… Just a thought… You could also use SPI and / or simple RX/TX for lower bandwidth inter-module communications – depending on requirements.

Enzo avatar

I don’t like BGA chips.
I hate RPI for this.

James Hughes avatar

I considered not letting this post through since it is somewhat lacking in, well, you can see.

But then realised the poster has COMPLETELY misunderstood, so needs some help. And we like to help here, despite the way the post is phrased.

One the the major points about this compute module is that it’s NOT a BGA connector. It’s on an easy to buy and use SODIMM connector. No BGA at all if you consider it as a monolithic unit. The other major related point is that you cannot buy the Bcm2835 in small quantities. Well, you can now – on this compute board! Two birds with one stone! Hurrah!

tcp2010 avatar

where’s the ethernet-port?!

James Hughes avatar

It doesn’t have one. It’s designed to be plugged in to a motherboard that will supply whatever peripherals are required for the particular use case. Lots of industrial/embedded applications may not need an ethernet port…

tcp2010 avatar

mh.. but it makes more sense to have an ethernet-port in an embedded application than an hdmi port

MR WEBB avatar

There has never been an Ethernet Port attached to the BCM2835 SoC, it is on the USB Bus and uses a LAN9512 Chipset on the Model B to offer a RJ45 Port. So in effect it is no different than using a USB RJ45 Dongle


Solar avatar

I agree ethernet is very often required, but since the USB to ethernet chip (LAN9512) adds extra cost and complexity to the module, leaving it out starts to make sense to me. Only the USB data lines are available, hooking it up to the LAN9512 gives you ethernet and 2 USB channels. It makes sense because you only need the differential USB signal and can split it up in the required functionality on your application specific mother board.

James Hughes avatar

The CM doesn’t have any connectors on it at all. It’s basically a Model A without the connectors.

You need to add peripherals either via GPIO’s or USB, in the same way it is done on the primary models.

The SoC itself doesn’t have ethernet so you have to add it via USB.

Mark avatar

One thing worth noting here is that not everyone needs or uses ‘wired’ ethernet. Wireless ethernet is very easily added to anything with USB with a USB-WiFi ‘dongle’ and wifi is becoming more and more popular.

There could be several options for a base-board here:

1) Put a LAN9512 down to get wired ethernet plus two USB channels;
2) Just use a single USB channel with single connector if that’s all that the application required;
3) Put down your own USB hub on the baseboard and get as many USB ports as you need, including a LAN9512 & ethernet socket if needed;
4) Put USB straight into your own application, say an FPGA with USB port or one of the countless other USB I.Cs available – no socket required which helps keeps the cost down.

By doing it this way, the cost of the module has been kept as low as possible while leaving the more detailed design up to the application design. Great thinking R’Pi! I see a ***lot*** of designs for carrier boards coming along very soon!

Dean Dobson avatar

Seems there are still limited options for display connection. It seems for embedded devices that drive a pretty standard and cheap mid sized TFT panel with 18 or 24 pin RGB connections are not catered for with this Broadcom chip (unless I’m mis-reading the spec wrong). DSI is complex for low volume solutions and HDMI mostly inappropriate (expensive / overkill) for embedded.

Anyone got any ideas about how to connect a garden variety $20 4.3″ TFT RGB panel to this?

gert avatar

You can do that using the GPIO bus in DPI mode. But that means you quickly use up the GPIO pins as it is requires lots of them(I think ~30) of the 46 pins.

Dean Dobson avatar

There are enough GPIO lines, however it seems you would need to write a DPI driver so still a lot of work but in theory easier than DSI (would be nice if the upcoming pi DSI display was available in smaller sizes).

Orange68 avatar

Have a look here – http://www.harbaum.org/till/dvi2par/index.shtml

I agree with your comments though, lack of a parallel RGB LCD interface is pretty much a deal breaker for me. Still, I sincerely applaud the Raspberry Pi Foundation and the work they do to spur innovation and affordable access to technology. You never know, maybe as a result of this product another player in this market will design a similar module at a competitive price point that does have the RGB interface. Unfortunately most of them out there now are min 1K quantity and up to get a decent price.

Eric avatar

From what I understand this new device has 512mb RAM as does the model B. Is it reasonable to expect that the model A will soon ship with 512mb in order to synchronize the product line? I can’t imagine this would increase the power consumption of the model A by a significant amount, however, it would help prevent frustration when designing software and course projects to be used on both systems.

James Hughes avatar

It would make the A too expensive I’m afraid – it’s all down to cost, not power consumption.

MR WEBB avatar

To mis-quote “a Pi for all seasons” !

This is a really great way to fulfill the needs of developers who have taken the Pi in an unexpected direction of usage, hats off to the RPF for finding another revenue stream which will help future funding.

On a very sad, note despite numerous posts to the contrary, people still expect a ARMv7 SoC and diss the RPF not offering this product.

The BCM2835 has been around for many years and look forward to it still being usable in 2020.

Bert avatar

Whoa. Talk about slamming on the brakes, which is what I just did. (Screeching tires Hollywood-style come to mind)

I’m designing an industrial product literally right now. My schematic capture is on my screen to the right from this box. We did the proof-of-concept with RPis. But as the RPi integrates poorly, not to mention clumsily, we – reluctantly – started putting together our own SoC system. Lots of complexity and risk we really don’t need right now.

Now this changes everything. Our SW guys want it. Our HW guys want it. The business guys want it. Unfortunately we heavily skew male here, so I don’t know what any ladies would say.

In other words: I need it now. Now! NOW!

And although we usually are really polite and patient around these quarters, things suddenly became here today a cage of starving lions being teased with a 50-pound lump of dripping meat dangling overhead just an inch beyond our reach.

I cannot help wondering who we would have to kidnap to get hold of that sample used to take the pictures? :)

Please. Make it available as soon as possible. Without requiring the assistance of Sicilian “consultants” :)

Chris Evans avatar

Bert: Please drop me an email. WE are working on a variety of motherboards for the compute and would be interested to know your requirements.
[email protected]

Stu avatar

I see how it can be of use to those building the RPi into their own projects, but this concept could also be used to stack thousands of RPis into a space the size of a server rack for some serious parallel computing power.
However I’m not sure making the connector a push-down-parallel-to-mainboard type is going to help that possibility, surely stacked together like desktop PC RAM at 90 degrees would be a better way?

MR WEBB avatar

I am sure some enterprising company has made suitable sockets to achieve a 90° fitment.

Don2325 avatar

How about using the module to build a Pi based supercomputer?

Jack Vanatta avatar

The last sentence in the post answered my question.

Steve avatar

A custom expansion board (needed for even a low volume commercial project) is still going to be a 4 layer job – this isnt laser printer PCBs in the back bedroom stuff. Roku aren’t going to be buying these by the million for their products – but smaller companies will love them in the 100s and lowe 1000s. What is needed is to make the journey to finished product – via a custom I/O board – as simple as possible. How about:

1) A register of people/ companies who can help design ‘my product PCB with connectors x,y and z, dimensions a,b’
2) A dedicated area (on the forums?) where people can similarly contribute, anonymously if needed?
3) Some support on the third party bits (machines enclosures, CE marking etc) that will get these boards in products to market.

If you are going to take market share off the existing (overpriced!) ‘controller in a box’ people, this is what I believe you need.

I have a product, already in use in the field, using standard Pi boards (and yes I do have sleepless SD card based nightmares!)… we don’t have PCB design skills in house, but would be happy to pay to get a board done to build volume in what we are doing – TODAY please :-)

Marius avatar

I can help with the schematic and PCB layout for the expansion board.
I’m curious what type of SD card nightmares you’re having and if they can be resolved by moving some system folders into RAM?

Chris Evans avatar

Steve and Marius: Please drop me an email. We are working on a variety of motherboards for the Compute Module and would be interested to know your requirements.
[email protected]

Helmut avatar

Wow! How many UARTs can be realized with the module?

AndrewS avatar

According to the peripherals datasheet, the BCM2835 only has two UARTs.
You could obviously have a lot more using standard GPIO pins if you were willing to bit-bang them in software at a much lower data rate.

AndrewS avatar

…or you could add a whole bunch of USB->UART adapters (e.g. http://www.ftdichip.com/Products/Cables/USBTTLSerial.htm or http://www.ftdichip.com/Products/Modules/USBRSxxx.htm ) to the USB bus ;)

Herbert avatar

Kabooom! It’s so awesome :-) I can’t get enough from you guys!

Chris avatar

Looks fantastic – especially the fact that the I/O board has two camera inputs… One slight… gripe? request? preference? – the I/O board _needs_ an ethernet connector, or at least space for a network connector and associated electronics to be connected – even if tit comes as a can-be-added-later module.

It’s probably too late to add it to this build, but please consider it for any revision…

MR WEBB avatar

Ethernet was discussed a few posts back..

The I/O board is just for reference so developers can design their own boards, so no good asking the RPF to add anything now or in the future.

bitbite123 avatar

Ethernet is connected via USB on the original Raspi. No native ethernet support on the SoC. So it’s quite the same if you plug in an USBtoEthernet-adapter into the IO’s USB Port…

Chris avatar


giovanni grisotti avatar

hi to all,
someone did know when this item will be in the sell points.

really a good idea this board !!

Supra avatar

Any news about 32Gbyte eMMC Flash SODIMM device?

James Hughes avatar

What 32Gbyte eMMC flash SODIMM device?

Raspi Lover avatar

When is the Raspi Compute Module being released. Me want bad!!!

James Hughes avatar

It’s in the article….

Raspi Lover avatar

talking about the module only package

MR WEBB avatar

It is in the Blog

Raspi Lover avatar

Where in the blog???

James Hughes avatar

About three paragraphs from the end, in this blog post.


Not difficult to find…..

MR WEBB avatar

“”These kits will be available from RS and element14 some time in June. Shortly after that the Compute Module will be available to buy separately,””

Seems perfectly plain to me…..

Ro Ab avatar

I think they should make different sizes of the module so that people could have maybe, 8gb or 16gb. There should also be a way to connect the two RAMs together so you could have a 1024mb ram.

Supra avatar

Yeah!. That what i’, trying to tell James Hughes:
“Any news about 32Gbyte eMMC Flash SODIMM device?”

James Hughes avatar

Because it technically impossible to add more that 1GB RAM (and in fact there are no packages greater than 512 available), as has been stated a considerable number of times.

Also, RAM != eMMC.

winter avatar

I want to know why on this board we do not have a option to add a extra of upgrade memory. I love the PI and how it looks but if you can add a extra memory bay this will give users upgrade feats over time.

just think if we could stick a 8GB DDR2 or DDR3 in the pi and have it running. now this can be a upgrade you don’t even need 8GB u can just use a stick of old ram laying around. i have a few 4GB DDR2 / DDR3 just sticking around.

I really don’t know if that idea is possible just a great idea and would love to see if it could be done.
like really how much can a extra memory slot cost.

great stuff :) i hope to get one , one day :)

MR WEBB avatar

The Raspberry Pi is based around a BCM2835 SoC and uses a POP 256 or 512 memory module. What you desire is not feasible, period.

SiriusHardware avatar

Sigh. Some time ago I was practically burned at the stake when I suggested that it would be nice to see the Pi redesigned into ‘a long, thin shape with all the connections down the same edge’ to make it easier for hobbyists and industrial users to put it into an application – specific enclosure.

Anyway – good work!

anon avatar

But I want a RPi I can plug into my PC’s expansion slots.

Don’t ask me why because I don’t know. I just want one.


Jon avatar

I like the module approach. Now that the Pi is made up of two parts, hardware development can progress on each in parallel with potential upgrading in the future perhaps?
What would be good to see in the future is

A. a compute module with integrated miniSD card reader;
B. a compute module IO board which houses an ethernet port;

This way it could still be used as a mini-headless-PC. MiniSD card offers a very practical way of dealing with a Pi’s OS and data keeping it tiny and neat as it has been. A memory bump would be a good-to-have these days too, especially due a new Java embedded version being release which a quite a large memory footprint.

By the looks of it this version is target more towards engineers wanting to interface with hardware, which is still cool.

Keep up the good work Upton & Co! :D Can’t wait to see more! :D

Joey avatar

Did the Raspberry foundation give up on making the Pi more available for third world countries? I see a lot of work going into performance, better graphics with the VideoCore IV, Wolfson Audio Card etc which I’m all for because I believe it’s the petri dish for the future awesome little device. But how about making pi more accessible to third world countries?

I’m from Kenya and the cheapest computer one can possibly get will run you well over $350. I thought about reselling the Pi in my country as a cheap option computer, complete with Khan On A Stick, LibreOffice and many other basic student open source software. When I put the $25 computer together, it ran well over $80. With all the basic USB peripherals the Pi needs, on a 7 port Amazonbasics was full! WiFi, Keyboard, Mouse, 3G module(limited access to cable in Kenya, much better 3g connection), bluetooth, USB sound and the PI’s own power. And did I mention that this $25 computer needed a $20 powered USB hub to run properly? Then the complexity, 3 devices(pi, usb hub full pf peripherals, and the 3g module) and the wires everywhere alarmed me that the PI was not really meant to be a computer.

How about this for an idea.

Something Raspberry Pi Compute Module plugs in that turns it into a full computer with all the necessary components on board. All Raspberry Pi’s could use on-board WiFi and if possible Wifi Direct, Bluetooth for wireless keyboard Mice, Quality sound and about 4 powered USB ports, vga, RCA, HDMI output and 4A power supply. For my case also a 3g/4g module. And keep it under $40? A $70 dollar mini computer that’s ready to go?

With all these geniuses tinkering with the Pi, can someone come to the rescue?

Is it even feasible?

Chris Evans avatar

Hardware feasible yes, to almost all points I think, but cost feasible nt.
If price is important why do you want to use a bluetooth keyboard? They cost about 6 times the price of a USB one at trade prices.

Supra avatar

@Chris Evans
Don’t you understand what is bluetooth. Too much cables piled around my desk.

James Hughes avatar

I think Chris knows exactly what Bluetooth is – more expensive. So is the OP willing to pay lots of extra money for fewer cables, when they specifically want as cheap as possible?

Joey avatar

I probably should have left out the Bluetooth part because the the two replies seem to ignore the part where I included the 4 USB ports, then knock the idea for not being cost feasible based on the price of Bluetooth keyboards alone. I think Bluetooth keyboard it’s a nice thing to have, but you don’t have to use it.

Joey avatar

You don’t have to use Bluetooth keyboard, that’s why I included the 4 USB ports. Why is not cost feasible again?

cae2100 avatar

There was a discussion a while back that I remember people asking for wifi and bluetooth being added into the raspberry pi A/B/C, but they explained there that it was possible to do, but due to the liscensing costs, FCC costs, extra parts, etc, it would cost much more than most people were willing to really pay and would have killed the 35 dollar limit that they were going for.

Even now, the liscensing and fees pertaining to including wifi and various wireless mediums are far too expensive and too much of a headache to really bother with when people can just plug a cheap usb module in.

Joey avatar

Thank you for clarification!

iztoogood avatar

Is their a way to have a pcmcia board ? … to boot laptop on Pi Compute Module or to vnc from the “host” and things like that …

mark avatar

Has any progress been made with the LCD connector on the classic Pi ? Will that interface be available here too ?

Liz Upton avatar

The announcement may have got buried, but we’re going to be launching a capacitive touch HDMI screen to go with that connector soon: watch this space!

mark avatar

I was looking a bit on the site for more info about the connector implementation. Didn’t find anything on web search either. I there a link for more info ?

Supra avatar

@James Adams
Is new Compute Module(CM) and IO board made in UK? -:)

James Hughes avatar


zoel avatar

good job……I hope it will cheap and easy to upgrade raspberry pi processor and memory module ;-) for next time

MR WEBB avatar

The CPU is a SoC with the PoP Memory Module on top so not upgradable. If the SoC was changed it would not be a Pi..

It is what it is……….

Supra avatar

@James Hughes
I was looking at photo and doesn’t come with 10 pins socket.
And i was looking at video that come with 10 pins socket.
But how comes!!!!!! (-:
Do you have certified that everything is comes with or not?

James Hughes avatar

Sorry, really not sure what you are talking about.

10 pin socket?

MR WEBB avatar

It would seem that the Video is showing a pre-release board

Enigma avatar

Do you know project Fairywren – mother board for standard Raspberry Pi?
I thing mainboard in standard PC format for Raspberry Pi Compute Module would be welcomed.

Martin avatar

This would be quite ideal for my current useless sideproject..
(You know, the kind of project you do in CS classes that cover stuff you learned a decade ago).
It is kind of a crossover between a media player and general tinkering tool for nerds.
Planned interfaces include 2*Ethernet, USB, WLAN, bluetooth, some general purpose ISM band radios.
At the moment i am designing around a Carambola 2, but that just doesn’t have IO for everything i’d like (And not enough RAM for many applications).

Arcko avatar


Alexandre Bensi avatar

I wonder if some of these new lines of GPIO support EINT (set edge triggering to rising, falling, or both to poll GPIO). Currently when I need interrupt support (to not load CPU) I go to A10 ARM v7 with my kernel module for sample.

Great module :) Congratulations!

Gert avatar

AFAIK it has rising or falling edge interrupt. Don’t think it has both.

Wilkie Liu avatar

There will be lots of Raspberry Pi compatible mother board on the market.
So, it would be exciting if this ‘Raspberry Pi compatible DDR2 SODIMM connector’ becomes a standard core/mother interface for other core boards with more powerful SoC.

MR WEBB avatar

SODIMM connector is standard, the pin-out is specific to the BCM2835 SoC, you idea is pi in the sky !

Wilkie Liu avatar

Yes, the pin-out is specific to the BCM2835 SoC. But there should be a cerntain commom set of pin-out, such as power supply, uart, i2c, usb, hdmi and gpio.

MR WEBB avatar

Dreams are powerful emotions !

James Hughes avatar

Actually, it is possible to make CM compatible devices with other SoC’s on. Some pins won’t be useful depending on the SoC, but there should be enough commonality to have different SoC’s (In fact, I working on a project that relies on this!)

Chris Evans avatar

Thanks for such a brilliant design, I’ve been waking this week up at 5a.m. or earlier thinking up I/O board designs!
“The Compute Module IO Board is a simple, open-source breakout board”
Will you be making the IO Board design available in an editable format?
If yes, what format: Eagle, DesignSpark…?
and if yes any idea when?
I don’t want to spend most of next week replicating your work if I don’t need to!

MR WEBB avatar

Chris there is a post in the forum covering what you asked


Nick Zhang avatar

I just wonder, if people are going to make their own PCB, why not simply make one with the RPi in them? The layout of RPi is open-sourced and is available, isn’t it?

MR WEBB avatar

Where would you source the BCM2835 SoC ??

Supra avatar

Does compute module comes with option for csi and dsi(zif connection socket) or just used for gpio pins?

James Hughes avatar

Please read the article! All SoC outputs are linked to the SODIMM connector, so two CSI-2 ports, DSI, SD card, USB, plus ALL the GPIO.

Darkstar avatar

Too bad they didn’t settle with a decent standard for the module. A module for the “improv” (http://makeplaylive.com/) would have been awesome…

James Hughes avatar

It does use a standard, the Raspi Pi compute module one.

Actually, I don’t think there are ANY official standards for this sort of device.

Darkstar avatar

There are, in addition to the one I posted, Wikipedia has a list of some others:
Examples are ETX, CoreExpress, COM Express, UTX, etc.

These are just examples, and I’m sure there are various reasons why they were not chosen (too expensive, no public specs available, connectors hard to source, etc.) but having another competing standard doesn’t really help much. I’d be interested in the reason why improv wasn’t chosen, it looks like it could be a good standard for interoperability between CPU modules and carrier boards

James Hughes avatar

Would be interesting to know is any of those standards support twin CSI-2 cameras, DSI displays etc. The CM pinout was designed around the SoC, rather than having to shoehorn the SoC into another format, which may well have been impossible givent eh requirements to support all the SoC features. Otherwise it would have been a pointless exercise – the aim is to get the SoC in to the embedded market, where previously it has penetration only as part of a Raspi itself.

AndrewS avatar

Reading into it, “improv” itself isn’t a standard, but just an implementation of the EOMA68 standard which it’d be impossible for the compute module to implement without adding a whole bunch of extra components (it lists RGB/TTL as a requirement, which the BCM2835 doesn’t offer), and adding a whole bunch of extra components would defeat the whole purpose of the low-cost compute module. EOMA68 also has only 8 GPIO pins…

AndrewS avatar

Sorry, missed the closing bold tag!

Predrag avatar

Great job guys! Great job!
Exactly what I was planing to use in my project.
Beautiful timing :)

mob-i-l avatar

I think a Raspberry Pi with only a header would be a great idea also for schools. Then you would have all connectors on another board connected to the header on the Pi. The advantage of this is that the processor board will be cheaper, since the connectors for HDMI, composite video, USB, stereo sound etc cost. Now if the Pi-processor is destroyed in an experiment using e.g. LEDs, you only have to buy a new processor board, but can use the old connector-board with it. Is it possible to change the eMMC separately? If not, I do think it’s a mistake to have the eMMC (SD card) soldered on since it can break due to faulty software and then you need to recycle also the CPU and RAM. Also, I need at least 8GB Flash for Raspbian and applications and this Flash-memory need will probably increase in the future.

Roland avatar

Industrial Pi!
Very good news. I’ll be buying!
Another cool thing with the industrial use is that Raspberry Pi now will be available for at least the next 10-15 years.

Richard-tx avatar

This thread is most educational in many ways.

The idea behind the RCM and CMIO seems like a good one.

The only thing on my very short wish list is an ethernet port. I suppose that third party I-O board makers will add that functionality. In the meantime a USB->Ethernet adapter should work.

I suppose it could be said that this is Rpi’s answer to the BBB with it’s 65 GPIOs.

bulldozer avatar

will the pi module be getting 4gb of ram or does 4gb pop lpddr2 mean something different, just woundering.

Chris Evans avatar

The “4gb pop lpddr2” is Giga Bit so 512MB
the eMMC is 4GB (Giga Byte)

Apparently the BCM2835 can technically have a maximum 1GB pop but no such chip is yet available.

Martin avatar

The reason there is no Ethernet is the BCM2835 does not support, a few posts back this was explained…..

Xiaolin avatar

Is it possible to put it on a laptop with ddr 2 slot and boot the laptop to Raspberry Pi?

Roland avatar

The last 2 lines of the article you’ve been reading say:

*But don’t go plugging the Compute Module into your laptop – the pins assignments aren’t even remotely the same!

Roland avatar

Even if the pin assignment would be the same your idea is not possible. You’re not getting how a computer works. Read up on it to get a better idea about that. Google is your friend.

Paul avatar

I’ve been thinking of doing a BrewPi setup with the RPi-B, anyone know if a PCB will be designed to streamline this with the compute? Possibly including a microprocessor to be a “failsafe” if the Pi should crash, the program continues to run at last setting, thus not ruining the Beer in temp controlled fermentation.

Sorry if I am throwing incorrect terms out there I’m still learning and only dabbling in the idea for fermentation control and data logging, without great power consumption like a PC.

awaaas avatar

I’ve found a websong tablet that via WM8650 so-dimm module just like this.

Here’s some pictures:

awaaas avatar

*that have

RM avatar

If I want to add a SD slot and have it boot from that in place of the eMMC, do I just keep EMMC_DISABLE_N = LOW and route SD pins into the 6 SD data lines?

narf03 avatar

How good is the eMMC against corruption ? I mean will it corrupt if power is cut while its reading/writing data and will it fix itself after a corruption ?

How much total bandwidth we can expect from the USB ports ? 480mb/s ? Shared with eMMC ?

Is it possible to make the eMMC read-only and only writing data to other media(to prevent system corruption) ? like USB/HDD ?

Can all DSI(s) & HDMI & composite working at the same time ? Or what is the limits ?

I am a software engineer, so please tell me is it easy/difficult for a hardware engineer to design our own IO board with RJ45 ? Where is the MAC address from ?

Thank you very much.

Matt avatar

This new product looks very exciting! But i’d be interested to know why the cost is still roughly the same as the original Raspberry Pis, when so many components have been removed?

It’s great that this adds flexibility for a business user to create their own PCB, but surely the point is that they can then keep costs down by only adding the peripherals they need? If it is just that the connectors for the model B version only amount to $5, then fair enough, but I would have thought more than that would be saved by the amount of stripping back that has been done.

Regardless, Keep up the good work!!

Liz Upton avatar

Did you miss the bit about the on-board Flash and the extra RAM?

James Hughes avatar

It’s also a 8 layer PCB which costs quite a bit.

Matt avatar

Ah apologies, I guess I did. That and the extra layers makes sense, thanks!

Ben Groombridge avatar

I would like a board that can have 2 of the modules on it.

Martin avatar

The I/O Board is a reference design, there is nothing to stop you designing or have designed a custom board, will eagerly await your product !

Maxthon Chan avatar

Just a little idea, is it possible to provide a Pi-style 26-pin header with identical pinout on the IO board? That will make project migrating way easier.

Martin avatar

If you want, design a custom I/O Board, the RPF one is a reference design…..

Martinho Rodrigues Monteiro avatar

Good Night.
I believe that mentors the project, should consider having different versions of the module. For example depending on the use of IP, it would be interesting to have versions with 4Gbyte eMMC, 8Gbyte eMMC and out there. I personally eagerly awaiting a version of 1GB RAM for PI.

Martin avatar

1GB PoP Memory Module is not available, period !

James Hughes avatar

Very unlikely to be different models – just too expensive to develop and sell. Hence the current choice, decent amount of RAM decent amount of flash. The rest is up to the board it attaches too.

Damien avatar

Wow interesting, but they haven’t a Ethernet port ?

Martin avatar

If you read previous responses, Ethernet Port has been discussed, which will answer you question.

Heinz Doerr avatar

Wonderful but quite useless w/o a standard lan connector

Martin avatar

The BCM2835 SoC does not have Ethernet Connection, the Pi Model B uses a USB-Ethernet Module, therefore anyone who manufacturers a I/O Board can add one if needed.

Bo avatar

when will the eagle files for the io board be released?

there are 398 comments and sorry but i dont want to look through them all to find a link

James Hughes avatar

No date announced yet.

Bo avatar


Why not release as is now and then update files as things comes along?

James Hughes avatar

Simply not ready for release yet.

Mohit avatar

When the eagles (KiCAD or for any other opensource PCB design software) will be released

Bo avatar

seems fine to me, but what do i know

James Hughes avatar

I mean the schematics are not ready for release yet, rather than the module itself – although there are a couple of final things that need sorting out on that too.

Bertus avatar


Would it be possible to get some SoDimm part numbers for suppliers like DigiKey or Element14?

Want to get started with a few designs… :)

I had a look at Part number : 1677307 @ Element14

mrpi64 avatar

This is brilliant! You should create a kind of removable SoC, so that you can replace it with more powerful alternatives. Also, maybe a 1GB RAM option – my Pi has run out of memory on numerous occasions.

Frederick avatar

You have obviously skipped a whole page of reading posts, beceuse what you want is not going to happen. There are other products at a far higher price and less community support which will have the features you crave / want / desire

James Hughes avatar

You really don’t need more than 512 in embedded applications, and in effect, this board IS just a SoC (with a couple of bit added on).

Of course, it is possible to have a ball grid array socket for SoC’s like this. They cost about £1000 each….so a bit out of the normal Raspi price range! And of course, all SoC have different pin outs.

What this CM board does is put the SoC on a standard PCB.

Frederick avatar

Having been away and come back, by the time I got to the bottom of the the posts it would appear that the essence of the Blog has been lost. Apologies if regurgitating.

The Module is basically a BCM8235 SoC (this is the same as the A & B Pi’s and Broadcom do not manufacturer an equivelent ARMv6 SoC) with 512MB PoP Memory (at this presnt time a 1GB Memory is ‘feasible’ but not available commercially) and a 4GB eMMC Memory Chip. The BUS is bought out to a standard DDR2 SoDIMM edge connector

Therefore apart from adding a different capacity eMMC it is what it is. Therefore please just accept it is what it is !

The I/O Board is a Reference Design (I am sure time spent Googling would illicit what that means) for developers and not intended as a Consumer Product. Developers will manufacture I/O Boards so eventually a plethora of choices will be available as Consumer Products.

Please will people stop posting wants, after 2 years of Raspberry Pi’ing it is getting tedious………….

Steve Ligett avatar

I have long applauded that you (the Foundation) have not come out with models D thru W just to fulfill every person’s wishes (“I want a Pi with XYZ on it”) and long appreciated that you’ve suffered myriad criticisms for all you have left out or put into the models A and B. Now with the compute module, everyone can build “exactly” what they want.

I am a bit baffled by the number of criticisms that this single component does not include exactly what everyone wants already. It’s *one* ingredient, people. Add what you want to it. If it’s not what you want, use something else.

clive avatar

Thanks Steve — we love it when people get it! :D

willX avatar

Is anybody know where is the network of this industrial board?
As we know, whithout the RJ45 the application in industry will be limited .if the rj45 dispear ,I think the former is better.

James Hughes avatar

The compute module only has the SoC and memory on board. It is expected that the networking will be provided by the base board on which it is mounted, if networking is required.

Carlo avatar

I need this NOW!!! Please please please ….

Derek avatar

Ah, the audiophile applications that are possible! No extraneous components, options for embedded DACs on the base board, properly implemented I2S to the DAC, Femto clocks on the base board, high quality connectors, linear power supplies…..

Way to go, Foundation.

CongoleseGeek avatar

Gotta say this in my father tongue: ‘J’adore le Raspberry Pi’…..
Where I work here in South Africa, I’m the only guy that cares and knows about the Raspberry Pi, and this News, i mean this Awesome Good News on this post right here, will make my Geek Cred go up by an order of magnitude…. Now all i’ve got to do is go through the schematic reference designs, understand them… Then fire up my Electronic Design Tool, set up a new PCB project, lay down all other stuff that I know I’ll need…and then i’ll leave my laptop ON with this PCB Project window open until Jully or August when I get that ‘little nice thing’. It might even take longer before it reaches here…. But, it’ll be fine, i’ll be busy braging about my new design in the meantime :-)
And next year when I go back to Uni to upgrade my Diploma to a Degree, i’ll get a distinction for my final project…. I know it, i know
Thanks a lot, the RPF

bigK avatar

Hmm, RPi/followers seem to have overlooked the fact that the Gumstix line was doing this 10 years ago…..albeit at a more expensive cost.

Woulda been nice to at least mention that you’re copying from someone else’s idea rather than promoting it as if this was someone at RPi Foundations own brilliant idea.

Rod avatar

You cannot mention you’re copying when you aren’t. Such projects are in the air for years now, as Arduino or others. Noone copies, everyone profits.

Billy Ebullient avatar

I agree, it’s a disgrace! I built my own garage last year but then realised I’d overlooked the fact that Bellway had been making these suckers for years. They cost a lot more than my garage and had different features but I was so embarrassed at copying that I knocked it down.

Recently I made a robot. It was a lovely robot and fantastic value but you can imagine how I felt when I found out that Capek had invented robots in 1920 … albeit at a more expensive cost? I don’t think you can. I’m ashamed that I blatantly copied his idea and so you should be, Raspberry Pi Foundations so called brilliant people.

Michael Morris avatar

Or build a PCB that can hold 10 compute modules. :)

Bill Otto avatar

The Compute Module is great idea, and I applaude your endeavours to introduce the RPi to the industrial app world.

However, I have a suggestion — to go even lower on the RPi cost, what if you did a partial build of the “standard” RPi Model A (and/or Model B) board(s) without the various connectors mounted on the board (except keep the P1/GPIO, S1/Power, and S8/SD Card connectors still mounted).

The board(s) would go through a subset of the normal production steps (leaving off components), but add a step of applying no-solder zones to all the thru-hole connections (like you currently do with P2, P3, P5, & P6 thru-holes). [To save even more cost, you could also leave off the other components, that are only needed for the unused connectors.] Then the end user could mount only the connectors [and other missing components] he needed for his application, and at his expense.

Result: An even lower cost “industrial” RPi Model X (I’m guessing at least $5-$8 less than the “standard” Model A/B prices) — made on the same production lines as the “standard” RPi’s. Software development could be done with a “standard” RPi, and any add-on GPIO boards could still be utilized.

Tell me what you think?

James Hughes avatar

Too expensive to make random changes to a production line, and also have the added costs of the sales channel having to cope with it. Would make the Model A Minus even more expensive than the Model A. It almost always cheaper to have complete product rather than kit product.

Bill Otto avatar

I’m not suggesting a “kit product” with the unmounted, loose parts in a bag as part of “the kit”. I’m suggesting selling a complete board with many parts left off to reduce the cost. Then the end customer could choose to solder these parts on or not, at his added expense (and understanding he voids his warranty when he does).

In my experience of having many production PC boards made, it usually just requires a one-time setup change (to leave components off / add no-solder zones) to an existing production line sequence. Depending on the volume of “special” boards to be purchased, our PCB house usually waives the one-time engineering charges for such a change. Net result — a new board that costs $CostOfRemovedComponents less.

And concerning the Sales Channel, adding 1 or 2 new part numbers to a product line, that is already selling well, might actually increase total sales.

Talk it over with your production/sales people, I believe you will be pleasantly surprised!

Liz Upton avatar

Have a stroll through comments on other articles here (especially around the time we were launching back in 2012) or the forums and do a bit of a search – you’ll see why our production/sales people really *don’t* think that’s a workable idea.

Peter Hinch avatar

This promises to be a brilliant piece of kit, and will doubtless prompt the development of a wide variety of CM-based boards designed for amateurs and for prototyping. Their level of ease of use and knowledge required will range from “plug in and go” to, perhaps, a level akin to the Arduino. On the other hand applying the CM itself evidently requires the level of knowledge of a professional electronics design engineer. Alas there are those who don’t seem to have grasped this.

Reading some (albeit a minority) of the questions posted in this forum I fear for your support guys. There are going to be people buying a bare CM without the first idea of how actually to apply it. The skill of designing a four layer PCB with controlled impedance lines will be way beyond their capabilities. Sadly some people who know little don’t appreciate how little they know.

Mark Crilly avatar

I am quite excited about the new pi, but would love an option to buy less than 5 units before committing to a bulk purchase when I’m still tinkering with ideas for the io board.

Liz Upton avatar

I’m pretty sure someone in the forums here will end up organising a bulk order to be split between a bunch of people, if I know the forums here at all – it’s worth heading over and having a look.

PhilippeL avatar

I’m interrsting to buy some also and share a bulk!!!
Let me know how and when possible…
What about price for a bulk?
Thanks ;-)

Vault NW avatar

I still got my old pi with roms installed on it :)

Stéphane David avatar

The module has two mounting holes for additional stability and we need to add these holes on our carrier board.
Do you have a mechanical drawing for the compute module ?

conrad goodwin avatar

I just bought my first rpi, (model B), and have to learn how to use it, but I appreciate the rpf’s effort- it’s made available the computer I’ve wanted for years: I’m almost surprised by thinking about the myriad possibilities of a Debian computer with real-world outputs!

The new pi-on-module fits in an altoids tin, no?

James Hughes avatar

Well, the compute modules is pretty small, but you need to have an IO board of some description to plug it in to, which will make it larger. How much larger depends on what you design on to your board.

Leen avatar

We are proud to have launched a first Kickstarter project based on new Raspberry Pi Compute Module. We have created our own carrier-board, which has 4 full USB, Ehternet, HDMI, audio and GPIO connecters. Take a look at http://dock2office.com/raspberry-pi/

Robert avatar

would the foundation go one step further and sell fuse blown chip on chip bcm + DDR ? The raspberry eye, a 1 inch cube with a camera, connections, power and usb only. (usb boot) it could be done.

gert avatar

As with all these idea they are do-able but unless there is sufficient volume, it is not commercial viable. The costs are much higher then most people estimate.

AndrewS avatar


I believe that manufacturing at this size requires even more specialized technology than the current Pi models need, which pushes up the prices significantly.

Nuno avatar

I see we can connect 2 cameras, but in the I/O expansion can we connect more, i would like to have 6 cameras connected?

gert avatar

Not directly to the BCM2835 device. It has only two CSI (Camera) interfaces. You could add USB cameras but I assume that is not what you are asking for.

Bryan avatar

Yes, you can connect 6 cameras. Build a base board with 3 compute modules mounted on it. Add a USB->Ethernet on each one, and a 4 port ethernet hub chip to link them all together.

Charlie avatar

I see in the documentation that the module can be booted over USB. I am designing a unit to use this module and I want to include a USB Hub on board. Anyone know if the USB boot can work through a hub?

Thanks on advance,


Thomas avatar

Are you saying you can get 100 of these for 30 dollars!?!
If so you should make a board that will have slots for 100 of them along with all the other jacks on a regular Raspberry Pi (Power [a lot of it], USB, ethernet etc.), So a super Pi could be made with them that works just like a regulur Raspberry Pi.

Liz Upton avatar


Thomas avatar

My mistake. I thought you got 100 for 30 dollars when it’s 100 for 30 dollars each.

Charlie avatar

I am looking at the COM module and I see a ‘RUN’ signal; is that an input or an output?

Also, I don’t see a ‘RESET’ pin. How do you ensure that the unit does not start until the power regulators have reached a stable voltage? Is that perhaps the use of “RUN”?

Thanks in advance,


gert avatar

Run is the equivalent of reset_n. (Active low reset == active high run)

Pavel avatar

Where can I make pre-order of first sample?
What about working temperature? I will be classic range or extended? thanks!

Stephen Downward avatar

I’d love to see a tutorial for making a basic board! :D

I could manage without one, but I can imagine other people might need some help soldering the SODIMM socket!

Steve ZA avatar

Like all the others slavishly waiting, I’m busy whiling away the time designing some goodies I just couldn’t crowbar the RPi into …. No matter how hard I tried there was always a bit sticking out …. On that point we know how long it is, how wide it is but can you tell us how thick it is? Or more like what is the highest component on the bottom side of the CM ….. Yip trying to work out the highest component that I can squeeze under an installed CM using a 6.5mm or 8mm stacking height DIMM connector ….. when you got to squeeze you have to squeeze :)

Steve ZA avatar

oops …. answered myself … * blush *

missed this VERY informative page ..


Tx … Steve ZA (in disguise)

Warren avatar

Love this board and it’s potential.
Would be interested to know more about the DISP0/1 outputs, hoping they are not without support like the DSI… Can’t wait for more specs and availability.

Zurab Tutberidze avatar

Is it possible to make some customization on SODIMM? if so then we will buy about 100K items.

PhilippeL avatar

Yet clustering Project with SODIMM rack?

apriadi avatar

its nearly June..

will this thing kills the model B?

Ben Nuttall avatar

No. This is for industrial customers embedding the Pi in a product. The Model A and B are for educational and general use and will remain to be the device of choice for normal use.

Will avatar

Does the I/O board have an SD card port for memory expansion?

AndrewS avatar

Nope, looking at the schematics the BCM2835 only has one SD interface – on the Model B it’s connected to the SD card slot, but on the compute module it’s connected (solely) to the eMMC chip.
So I guess any additional storage will have to be added via USB (e.g. a cheap USB flash drive or USB HDD).

Rocky avatar

I’m still trying to wrap my head around what the advantages are to using raspberry pi to an engineer or ‘maker’ …. given I’m not really either. Are there advantages? Or at its core, is the value in providing or eventually providing access to the wonders of commuters at a ridiculously awesome price? Like, say I were an electric motor engineer… I have an electric skateboard but its outdated and its converter that smoothly regulates speed and converts the energy for the motor to use and connects via SUPER shitty bluetooth to a remote has a board in it. I’ve been told its set for lead acid batteries and that integrating anything with lithium ion batteries is as dangerous process but the motor is so rugged and simple. But from what I was told, whatever chip in there currently or board, can’t even handle lithium ion integration. So would someone mind comparing what might be in my skatebaord, given the above, to a raspberry pi compute model IO board? Which might be better or are they even comparable? Would a real electric engineer see value in using pi?

Also, its mentioned that you can connect multiple boards or chips to great more powerful and capable things… and I know you can add components but what’s the range? What if I want to add 2 MIDI ports… or 200? or 2 line-ins for audio…. or 100!…. and Am I right in thinking there’s awesome potential to use Raspberry PI for specific apps or software but only a single one? Like if all I need to do is run something that can run a VST like guitar rig, or massive or any fairly small Native-instrument software instrument, Pi would be awesome right? Like my monitor could power on and literally do and show one thing… the software instrument, and the card could have a MIDI in/MIDI out access.

Sorry… many questions. How powerful is Pi! How adaptable is it. Could is be used in a remote control car? in an instrument? Just trying to get a sense if this is Hardware’s version of hacking or if Pi is significant in the APParent maker movement movement… like that ;)

James Hughes avatar

All these questions have been asked over and over, so there is a lot of information out there. I’d suggest Google, and a trawl round places like the MagPi, and the forums here.

Henry O'Keeffe avatar

The answers to your last 4 questions in order, are not very, very, yes and yes.

Habadeer avatar

I am a real electrical engineer (the industrial automation variety) and I actually use the Raspberry PI to get things done. Specifically we use it to simulate a rather large piece of computer controlled equipment in the Oil and Gas industry called a Prover which is used to “prove” the flow of oil products down a pipe. A real prover accepts commands from a computer controller and sends feedback to the computer controller so that meter factors can be calculated. We use the Raspberry PI to simulate the prover when testing the computer controller on our desks before deploying the controller to the field. Since the Raspberry PI is so inexpensive and flexible and can simulate both the frequency of a flow meter and the pulsing of the prover it has been a great addition to our collection of in-house tools.

I am sure there will be other uses in the near future. It only needs to be imagined. Thanks to the Raspberry PI project team! You guys rock!

Delon avatar


pawel avatar

When we can buy it ? it is June already

TheDude avatar

SERIOUSLY!!!! I’ve been following this damn thing for too long. THIS IS WHAT I’VE BEEN WANTING IN THE PI SINCE… SINCE… SINCE A LONG TIME AGO! BAAAAAA I WANT THIS SOOOOO BADLY!!! please someone, something, some-any-what-have-yous give us a sign. I CAN’T TAKE THE WAITING!!

This thing will put the beaglebone Black to shame aaaAAAAHHH I WANT IT NOW!

Steve avatar

While having an SO-DIMM System-on-a-Module is certainly not new, the new Pi will probably be the leader in cost for sure.

It’s primarily intended for small/midize industrial/commericial users who are happy to design their own breakout board with exactly what they need, while avoiding the issues of ordering the SoC in thousands and doing complicated layouts (like DDR memory).

It’s also intended for hobbyists and perhaps entrepreneurs (like myself) which I think is just as important (and the logical extension to) the primary education objective. This group of people are capable of designing their own PCB which are available quit affordably in small volumes now.

They problem is the board assembly. It doesn’t matter how simply my application is in terms of peripherals, you can’t really solder the SO-DIMM connector by hand, and getting an assembly house just to solder that one connector for you makes the cost become prohibitive immediately. This means if you need a custom I/O board, you’re still locked out the game simply because of the connection choice.

The idea is fantastic but I’m sure there are tons of people out there who don’t need ALL those GPIO and would have been happy if even a handful were available on some lower density connector that can be hand soldered thus making it viable for prototyping.

Because of the SO-DIMM connector, the assembly costs only become viable when you’re dealing with hundreds of boards which doesn’t help at the prototyping stage.

Perhaps the Foundation can make another bare-bones breakout board that is the SO-DIMM connector and just a rows of 0.1″ holes?

James Hughes avatar

It really not *intended* for hobbiests but I am sure many will use them. As for industrial uses, it’s actually not that expensive to have a board made up that has the SODIMMM connector on. Would be cheaper than DIY.

Or prototype on a Model A or B then get the SODIMMM board made up.

AndrewS avatar

“even a handful were available on some lower density connector”

http://www.raspberrypi.org/product/model-b/ :)

“Perhaps the Foundation can make another bare-bones breakout board that is the SO-DIMM connector and just a rows of 0.1″ holes?”

I believe that’s effectively what the Compute Module IO Board is designed for?

Steve avatar

As people have pointed out in the comments above, the Pi A and B are difficult to use in an embedded application because the unneeded connectors get in the way.

The Compute Module IO board does nothing to solve this, all the unneeded connectors are still in the way.

@James, yes, as I mentioned in m original post, this is great for *industrial* uses where you are dealing with hundreds of boards. No question there.

My point was it’s not useful for
1) Hobbyists, because you can’t get a SODIMM connector installed cheaply for very small volumes. JAMES ack’d its not intended for hobbyists.

2) Entrepreneurs, because you can’t get a SODIMM connector installed cheaply for very small (prototyping) volumes.

If a small (or single volume) connection method were available it would be ideal for hobbyists and entrepreneurs.

A lot of the marketing keeps hinting at these but with a SO-DIMM connector, let’s be frank. It’s for companies that can afford very high assembly costs or are running hundreds of boards.

AndrewS avatar

Perhaps a 3rd party company will produce a SODIMM -> hobbyist form-factor expansion board?

Which seems quite likely, given add-ons like
for the existing Pi models.

Steve avatar

Hope so! But I would have preferred my dollars go to the Foundation if possible.

NLS avatar

So this (along with the I/O board) is a complete Model B board?

Any pluses or minuses to choose one over the other?

AndrewS avatar

Model B is smaller (than IO board)
Model B is cheaper (than compute module paired with IO board)
Model B comes with Ethernet
Model B has considerably fewer GPIO pins ;)

AndrewS avatar

Model B has removable SD card
Model B has one CSI camera connector and one DSI display connector – IO Board has two of each

Bjoern avatar

Yes, the Raspberry Pi is a nice Board for a nice Price, but:
The ARM is very slow, you could get much faster multicore CPUs on other Boards for a better Performance/ Cost-Ratio.
For multinode Systems you are far better off with higher Performance Systems per Node, the RasPi would be nice to test and demonstrate something, but not very useful in a commercial context.
Software Support is not very good due to the old ARM-Core and the Support in the “Vanilla” Kernel is not the best. (Still…)
So this Module will be a nice thing for Controlling Appliances (Boiler, HVAC, Refrigerator…) or likely things. But there needs to be a better Software Support, some things in e.g. the Raspbian – Kernel are quite crumpy.

James Hughes avatar

Wrong on many/all counts – you clearly do not work in the embedded device arena or know much about the device.

The Raspbian distro and the kernel it comes with is very robust. I’ve heard people say it’s much better and more solid than the other SBC boards out there running newer ARM’s It also has a lot of work being done on it, since there is a very large user base.

The 700Mhz ARM is actually quite powerful for an embedded device – they are usually much less capable. And the twin DSI ports are a real bonus, along with fast (accelerated) graphics that makes it an ideal fit for any embedded apps which need a GUI.

You really don’t need multinode systems in embedded devices, so not sure why you bring that up. Performance really isn’t that important for most embedded or industrial applications.

Bjoern avatar

I´m talking about those People who are fantasizing about building home servers (or multi node Systems) with the Module.
(see top entries in this Discussion)
In the embedded world the module is very handy and even powerful enough for most applications.
About the DSI ports:
Is there any Documentation/ Code available yet which allows you to use the Ports? Because SPI could need some DMA or performance patching as it is painfully slow. (At least in relative Terms.)

James Hughes avatar

The Foundation will be releasing some LCD screen that attach to the DSI2 ports very soon, all run from GPU so no performance impact on the ARM. I believe they are also trying to get the HW information released so people can use their own screens.

As for people wanting to make multi node devices, it’s well known that the device is not cost effective for this (price performance ratio is too high compared with a desktop)- that’s been stated since before release of the A or B! But, it does make for a very cheap multi node educational device.

Kevin Diffily avatar

Are the schematics of the Pi A&B board open source so anyone can create and sell their own circuit boards?

Nickolai Leschov avatar

Would it be hard to create a DIMM module that can be sensibly used in existing systems suited for this type of memory?

Mina avatar

the DIY and maker community with this can go even smaller in their home made devices.

Personally I like the idea of building a board for this to turn it into a router, providing a full operating system with more resources, so it can route better, and provide select service right on the device itself. Also I’m trying to imagine the clustering potential for this or for that matter why not have a ultra small router that’s also a small computing cluster.

Personally something I would love to see is an adaptor that would let me slot this in a PCI or PCI-E slot and some drivers for it that lets me share my PC’s resources(Hard disk and Ram) with this and allows remote desktop to talk with it. could have a system within my system running different kinds of tasks, perhaps maybe a custom Anti-Virus that’s isolated from the rest of the system.

If such an adaptor comes out for it I wanna know about it, put a little PC in my PC!

John Downing avatar

I just ordered my first pi and it should be in tomorrow! I can see a serious obsession rearing its ugly head!

I was a young engineer when the Intel 4004 was introduced and I saw that the trade would never be the same. This platform proudly carries on the disruptive nature!

Asher avatar

Hi, when will the compute module (not as part of a Dev kit) will be available ?

Salman Ravoof avatar

When will the compute module be available for general users worldwide? I stay in India and it’s hard to get hands on one.

Nigel Warburton avatar

Hi, is there any news as to when we can expect shipments of the compute board please (inc cost). Separately interested if anyone knows and / or is starting a compute factory, i.e. help design PCB and manufacture. I do not currently have a supplier for this and would need one. Thanks

alston avatar

Awesome!! That’s what I’m looking for!!!! Can you release a version of IO board which has only a USB and power adapter, it could be very helpful if I want to make it into production.

James Hughes avatar

As far as I know there are no plans to do anything except the current IO board – its down to the individual user of the CM to do their own baseboards.

That said, that sort of board would be popular so I expect a third party is likely to do one eventually.

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