I hear and see things about Raspberry Pi, Arduino (someone gave me one and I have tried a few things), and Beagle Board (and variations).

What other boards should be on this list?
Where do these boards leave off and vendor specific evaluation board begin?

How do they compare based on hardware / software resources available, application areas, and suitability for training kids or even practicing professionals who may need to learn new processors and/or embedded Linux or how to program with Real-Time Kernel?

  • No- Maybe you could make one. That would be awesome seeing there are 25+ popular ones out there :-)
    – Piotr Kula
    Aug 24, 2012 at 18:02
  • 1
    Here is a good start Would be nice if you answer your own question on that one.
    – Piotr Kula
    Aug 24, 2012 at 18:03
  • If only Google could resolve such a question. rPi Vs Arduino is not a fair call. It's like comparing a sports car vs an ATV both are great at there core job. If it the cost, then I would say if it costs more than a rPi, why bother with it. Aug 24, 2012 at 19:02
  • The Arduino doesn't compare to the Pi at all. It's not a linux computer, but has far superior I/O.
    – Alexander
    Aug 30, 2012 at 14:57

3 Answers 3


Someone already did all the hard work...



  • Though they mention it in the "others" section they are not taking the BeagleBones into account. E.g. the BeagleBone Black being only slightly more expensive than the RPi but offering a few more functionality (USB host & client for example).
    – Ghanima
    Sep 4, 2014 at 16:06

What other boards should be on this list? ... How do they compare?

There are 2 wiki pages comparing the RaspberryPi that you can sort/read/improve;

The wikis are probably better resources as they can be updated with new products like the 4k/usb3 boards that are coming out now. Generally these are the popular options:

  • Popular Ultra low power micro controller is the advantage of the arduino-micro($25). Arduino has 19 other official boards.

  • Popular Inexpensive full fledged computer(Linux, 1080p video, 35,000+ applications) is the advantage of the raspberrypi-a+($20). Raspberrypi has 3 other official boards.

  • Inexpensive USB3 speed on a full fledged computer is the advantage of the ODROID-XU3 Lite($99). ODROID has 4 other options.

  • Inexpensive 4k video is offered by ODROID-C2 ($40).

Where do these boards leave off and vendor specific evaluation board begin?

If your doing any large volume work you would use an "evaluation board" then order many chips to put on your own boards.

... suitability for training kids?

select popular open source so there will be many options for them.

There are new options every year, some of them may meet specific needs better than the products listed, but this overview should give you a general idea of what to start comparing.

  • This is a good answer, but I think microcontroller boards like the Arduino are categorically different than SoC boards like the Pi or ODROID. Apples and oranges so to speak; something from one category is mostly not comparable to, and certainly not a replacement for, something in the other.
    – goldilocks
    Sep 27, 2016 at 13:58
  • @goldilocks I agree they are different categories but there are many rpi projects that could use an Arduino but don't because they don't care about Watts and do care about $/flops and re-use for more demanding projects... I'm not aware of any SoC with a power management controller to reduce Watt usage like a mobile phone. Sep 27, 2016 at 15:08

The answer really depends on what you call "similar". If you're interested in boards capable or running Linux, Armbian download page provides a nice list of boards running Debian/Ubuntu, sorted by SoC name and manufacturer. They have great detailed photos of supported boards there. Here's one of the smallest for example:

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