Raspberry Foundation updates Pi Compute Module with 3+

Raspberry Foundation updates Pi Compute Module with 3+

The Raspberry Pi Foundation has launched an updated version of their Compute Module, moving the CM3 to the CM3+ standard. Their blog announced the new upgraded versions (Compute Module 3+ on sale now from $25)

The SO-DIMM sized Compute Module provides a processor, storage and memory on the card. The Compute Module gets I/O via the SO-DIMM connector. There are no USB, Ethernet, camera or display connectors on board. You provide external connections by either a carrier module or the device into which the module will plug (such as an NEC display)

The new CM3+ updates the processor on the blade to the Broadcom BCM2837B0 used in the Raspberry Pi 3B+. It also increases the range of options for the on module eMMC storage.  The choices now cover 8Gb, 16Gb and 32Gb eMMC, as well as the CM3+ Lite, which uses off-module storage. The change in processor brings a small increase in the height of the module, but in practice, this will make no difference to most users. The improved processor also has a built-in metal heatsink, leading to more consistent performance. The heatsink helps keep the module functioning for longer before the processor throttles down at the 80ºC limit. The Compute Module limits the Broadcom processor 1.2Ghz as the SO-DIMM connector cannot absorb sufficient power. If you require performance, the Pi Model 3A+ or 3B+ are the best options.

Priced at the same levels as the current CM3/Lite and CM3/4GB ($25USD and $30USD respectively) the CM3+/Lite and CM3+/8Gb modules are available now. The newer higher capacity eMMC modules are correspondingly more expensive, with a $5 increment for each step in eMMC capacity. You’ll still need a board to provide the IO, and the CM3IO remains available.

Previous versions of the Compute Module are relegated to “not recommended for new designs” status. The old modules are still available, but the new projects should use the new modules by preference.

John Dixon

John Dixon is the Principal Consultant of thirteen-ten nanometre networks Ltd, based in Wiltshire, United Kingdom. He has a wide range of experience, (including, but not limited to) operating, designing and optimizing systems and networks for customers from global to domestic in scale. He has worked with many international brands to implement both data centres and wide-area networks across a range of industries. He is currently supporting a major SD-WAN vendor on the implementation of an environment supporting a major global fast-food chain.

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