New Features in Raspberry Pi 4: Raspberry Pi, the learning computing kit, became a standard in low-cost Single Board Computing (SBC). Since the launch, Raspberry Pi has been powering everything from robots, smart home devices, and even digital kiosks. The new Raspberry Pi 4 takes Pi to another level. Its performance is that’s good enough to use as a desktop P.C. with the ability to output video at 4K 60 Hz resolution or use with dual monitors. Hence it can be used for more complex applications.
The most important new features are :
- a) the faster processor and GPU.
- b) the faster RAM.
- c) the addition of USB 3 ports.
- d) Dual micro HDMI ports and
- e) Support for 4K HDMI output.
On-board Ethernet port run like a real Gigabit connection with 125 MBps. The microSD card slot is also 2X as fast, offering a theoretical maximum speed of 50 MBps versus 25 MBps on the 3B+.
Because the new processor needs more power, the Raspberry Pi 4 B charges over USB Type-C unlike micro USB used by its predecessors. It also requires a newer power adapter that can deliver at least three amps of power and 5 volts. USB Type-C connectors are useful as they are reversible and more comfortable to plug in.
New CPU & Memory
The Raspberry Pi 4 has similar dimensions and design to all previous models. However, it is an all-new platform, powered by a new processor from Broadcom BCM2711B0. Since the first Pi launch in 2012, all Pis have used 40nm SoCs. BCM2711B0 is a new chip based on a 28nm process. It uses ARM Cortex-A72 instead of the older Cortex-A53 microarchitecture. The BCM2711B0 chip has four cores and is clocked at 1.5 GHz. The ARM Cortex-A72 processors are significantly faster and use more power than their A53-powered ancestors.
The RAM is also a bit quicker. Pi 3B+ had 1GB of DDR2 RAM. On the Pi 4 B, it goes up to 4GB of DDR4 RAM. In addition to the increased bandwidth, the additional memory option is a huge deal, particularly for web surfing.
New Video Processor – GPU
The GPU got a nice performance boost too. GPU moves from a Broadcom VideoCore IV that operated at a clock speed of 400 MHz to a VideoCore VI that operates at 500 MHz. The new GPU allows it to output to a display at up to 4K resolution with a refresh rate of 60 fps or to support dual monitors at up to 4K resolutions with a refresh rate of 30 Hz.
Storage is critical, no matter how fast are your processor, RAM, and GPU. If your storage is slow in an SBC, everyday tasks like opening apps and files will be slow. Raspberry Pi 4 B’s primary storage device is its microSD card reader. MicroSD is convenient but a bit constrained. The Raspberry Pi 4 B has a top transfer rate of 50 MBps, and that is double the speed of the card reader on the 3 B+.
A speedy USB drive or an external SSD can get you a far better storage performance out of the Raspberry Pi 4 B. Also the Pi 4 B comes with USB 3 ports of speed at 625 MBps.
The great thing on any Raspberry Pi is the GPIO (General Input / Output) at 40 pins. The pin count and pin layout remain unchanged from all the prior models. Hence any “hats,” sensors or LED screens that were made to attach to a Pi 2 or 3 will be compatible.
The Raspberry Pi 4 supports 802.11ac Wi-Fi as its predecessor. However, it has Bluetooth 5.0 support, an improvement over the Bluetooth 4 on prior models. The Ethernet port now has more bandwidth, that allows it to offer a full gigabit throughput while previous models could only achieve about 330 megabits.
Power and Heat
Pi 4 has A more power-hungry processor and the need for at least a 5-volt, 3-amp power adapter. Hence it is be expected to consume more power than its predecessors. Under load, that power number jumps to 7.6 watts, but that’s still only 19 percent more juice than its direct predecessor.
A.I. and Machine Learning
The most compelling new use case for the Raspberry Pi 4 is for A.I. & machine learning. With the earlier Pis, you could use a camera to do simple object detection at low frame rates. However, the added performance and I/O from this new model should open up a whole new world of use cases.
With an optimized A.I. framework, Pi 4 should be able to do real-time facial and object recognition. Moreover, because it has USB 3, an A.I. accelerator like the Google TPU USB dongle will have much more bandwidth to send data back to the SoC.
New Features in Raspberry Pi 4: The Raspberry Pi 4 represents a significant improvement, not only for the Raspberry Pi but for single-board computing. For the first time, it is realistic to use your Pi as a secondary P.C. However, the more substantial real benefit will come not from folks who use Raspberry Pi 4s instead of x86 P.C. Also from all ll the innovators who harness the system’s enhanced performance, I/O and graphics to create new IOT devices, media servers, and robots.
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