So, the Pi 4 has just been released. It's an immense upgrade over the 3/3+
- Broadcom BCM2711, Quad core Cortex-A72 (ARM v8) 64-bit SoC @ 1.5GHz
- 1GB, 2GB or 4GB LPDDR4-2400 SDRAM (depending on model)
- 2.4 GHz and 5.0 GHz IEEE 802.11ac wireless, Bluetooth 5.0, BLE
- Gigabit Ethernet
- 2 USB 3.0 ports; 2 USB 2.0 ports.
- Raspberry Pi standard 40 pin GPIO header (fully backwards compatible with previous boards)
- 2 × micro-HDMI ports (up to 4kp60 supported)
- 2-lane MIPI DSI display port
- 2-lane MIPI CSI camera port
- 4-pole stereo audio and composite video port
- H.265 (4kp60 decode), H264 (1080p60 decode, 1080p30 encode)
- OpenGL ES 3.0 graphics
- Micro-SD card slot for loading operating system and data storage
- 5V DC via USB-C connector (minimum 3A*)
- 5V DC via GPIO header (minimum 3A*)
- Power over Ethernet (PoE) enabled (requires separate PoE HAT)
- Operating temperature: 0 – 50 degrees C ambient
From this link:
The Ethernet controller on the main SoC is connected to an external Broadcom PHY over a dedicated RGMII link, providing full throughput. USB is provided via an external VLI controller, connected over a single PCI Express Gen 2 lane, and providing a total of 4Gbps of bandwidth, shared between the four ports.
All of the bottlenecks that made the 3/3+ a bad idea for router/NAS/etc usage are gone. No more shared LAN/USB bus, no more hamstrung LAN throughput. Lovely.
We now have a completely capable gigabit LAN port out of the box and two USB3 ports that could each use a gigabit LAN USB adapter... That's three ports right off the bat, and we're not even considering a vlan capable switch yet. Plenty of storage thanks to the microSD card and the remaining USB2 ports, plenty of RAM (and we're no longer limited to only 1GB, too). A72 running in AArch64 mode also supports AES acceleration, so it should do OpenVPN/wireguard at high speeds without issues.
I believe this little beast could be a pretty serious router with OpenWRT. I mean, quad A72 @ 1.5GHz puts any IPQ hardware to shame on the brute force aspect of it... it should have no issues with most home connections, neither doing gigabit speeds without any offloading tricks... It could also be a pretty good NAS, too. It's not too power hungry either.
What do you think? Assuming it gets supported in the future as the previous RPIs did, I think this is the perfect upgrade for any of us stuck with puny, weak single core MIPS hardware. Say, Archer C7 and the like. Such devices could now make for great APs while doing all the heavy lifting on the RPI4.
At $35 for the 1GB model, it won't break the bank either.
The only thing that bothers me is the possibility of the SD card getting corrupted due to a power cut/brownout/bad shutdown, but oh well. That's not much of a downside considering the rest...