StarFive Officially Releases the VisionFive V1 SBC

By Abhishek Jadhav

Freelance Tech Writer

December 09, 2021


StarFive Officially Releases the VisionFive V1 SBC
Photo Courtesy of StarFive

There was a lot of hype around the original BeagleBoard Foundation’s BeagleV StarFive RISC-V SBC that did not make it to mass production. StarFive knew the need to design a replacement board was inevitable. With many of the features from BeagleV, the RISC-V chipmaker released the VisionFive V1 single board computer featuring the StarFive JH7100 vision SoC. 

More excitingly, the onboard SoC comes with vision DSP Tensilica-VP6 for computing vision, a Tensilica-VP6 vision processing unit (VPU), an NVIDIA Deep Learning Accelerator (NVDLA), and a neural network engine. This makes the VisionFive V1 one of the most powerful single board computers at an affordable price in the RISC-V market. 

VisionFive V1 single-board computer is claimed to be the world's first generation of affordable RISC-V boards designed to run Linux. With the powerful SoC onboard designed for heavy workload machine learning and artificial intelligence applications. The SoC comes with a 4K-ready VPU, but lacks a 3D GPU, a future edition of the boards is expected to feature this. 

Specifications of VisionFive V1 Single-Board Computer

JH7100 System-on-Chip, Image Credit: StarFive Slide Deck

The following specifications for the VisionFive V1 SBC confirmed by StarFive are:

  • SoC: JH7100 System-on-Chip with SiFive’s U74 Dual-Core 64-bit RV64GFC ISA clock at 1.5 GHz clock frequency
  • Memory: 8GB LPDDR4 which is divided into 2 x 4GB LPDDR4-2800MHz SDRAM
  • Storage: MicroSD Card slot
  • Wireless Connectivity: Bluetooth 4.2, BLE, 2.4Ghz IEEE 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi
  • Interfaces: 
  • Video: HDMI 1.4
  • Display: MIPI DSI display port
  • Camera: MIPI CSI 
  • Audio: 4-pole stereo audio or HDMI
  • USB: 4x USB 3.0 ports, USB-C connector
  • IOs: 40-pin GPIO header
  • Power: 5V DC via USB-C connector or GPIO header
  • Software compatibility: U-Boot Bootloader, GRUB2 Bootloader, Linux Kernel, OpenEuler, Fedora, OpenSBI Firmware
  • Operating System: Linux
  • Dimensions: 100mm x 72mm

What can you do with VisionFive V1?

Of course, with all the Neural Network Engine, NVLDA Engine and DSP, the board is a powerful piece of hardware for human-machine interface, smart home tech, surveillance, NAS, and even multimedia applications. The board comes with H.264/H.265 video decoder supporting up to 4Kp60 and dual-stream decoding up to 4Kp30 making it one of the most affordable choices for live streaming multimedia implementations.

VisionFive V1 SBC Usecase, Image Credit: StarFive Slide Deck

Availability and Future of the VisionFive V1 SBC

The chipmaker has already revealed the plans for the next version of the VisionFive single-board computer that is expected to feature the next-generation JH7110 SoC. According to Guenther Gassner, the new version of the SoC will come with 4x U74 cores and add PCIe and GPU. Additionally, the community can expect a few more upgrades in the peripherals with the addition of CAN, TDM, 2xGMAC, and 2x PCIe 2.0 interface, HDMI 2.0 display output. 

Note: BeagleV is the brand of BeagleBoard Foundation for RISC-V-based boards, and is not a specific board. Drew Fustini has cleared the rumors about adding two more RISC-V-based boards under the hood of BeagleV in the Embedded World 2022. 

If the board interests you, head to the registration form:

Abhishek Jadhav is an engineering student, freelance tech writer, RISC-V Ambassador, and leader of the Open Hardware Developer Community.

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