Raspberry Pi vs BeagleBone Black
May 1, 2013
Posting a forum topic after a long time. This topic is to get an unbiased opinion on what to choose between a BeagleBone Black and a Raspberry Pi. As I was away, I don't know if such a forum has been made before and would like you to post links to it if it has been made.
The question simply is as follows- which is a better board to buy for development- A Raspberry Pi (RPI) or a BeagleBone Black (BBB). For me (and all other Indians), both the boards are provided via Element14, and there is very negligible difference in price (BBB is cheaper than RPI however, that may be a way for them to sell off their boards with older processors which they mention in the Manual). Hence, at first glance, BBB looks like a better option. But, I'd like a review from the community and as both the RPI and BBB communities will be biased towards their respective boards, I though asking here will be a better option. Which one is better in your opinion and why?
Datasheet and Technical Manual for BBB-
Datasheet and Technical Manual for RPI- Please give me links.
Some points of difference I've noticed so far (will be updated)-
- BBB has a better processor as compared to the RPI. After the initial stock is cleared (which come with Rev2 of the old BeagleBone's processor), a new processor will be used which will have a clock speed at 1GHz (manual says 800MHz). It will be better than RPI outright (700MHz if I'm correct). I'm not comparing overclocked frequencies as we are still unsure about what the BBB can overclock to.
- From unreliable sources, I've heard that the RPI has better video processing capabilities than the BBB as its processor was made so.
- Both RPI and BBB have 512MB RAM. However, RPI has the older SDRAM while BBB has newer DDR3 RAM (606 MHz). So increase in speed is what should be expected.
- BBB comes with 2GB of internal memory via eMMC. Not present in RPI.
- As Maxhirez and Mogul have mentioned, the RPI community is very large. The BBB community is just about starting to grow, and it will take ages before it comes up to the status of the RPI community. There's lot more help to look to when you consider getting an RPI up and running and getting a BBB up and running. However, I'd like to mention that the amount of documentation available for BBB is certainly large but requires experts to read and understand it, certainly not noob friendly.
- BBB has ARM7 while RPI has ARM6. So BBB can run any ARM OS straight off while for RPI, it has to be squeezed. Only RPI supported distros run on it.
- RPI has extra connectors for Video and Audio. BBB can process video (and maybe audio, doubted) through its HDMI, but it doesn't have the extra connectors for lower end devices like RPI does.
- BBB has many more GPIO pins than the RPI.
- RPI has 2 USB ports while BBB has 1 USB port and 1 Mini USB client port (not supported yet, but there are people working on making this as a second USB Host port).
- Both use similar power sources and similar Ethernet ports.
- Both boards give 3.3V output on the GPIO pins.
So, what do you guys make out of it?