New Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+

The main new features and a brief review of the product

First of all, just have a look at this new model in the picture below (kindly taken from the raspberrypi.org release article). Looks familiar, isn’t it?

Raspberry Pi Model B+

Now, let’s look directly at the hardware and understand what are the main features, the difference from the previous RPi 3 and what benefits the users are going to get, using this new model!

New Features

As mentioned earlier, this is the first company’s 64-bit product. And it seems that RPi 3 B+ has a networking bias due to the connectivity which gained pretty much attention in this new product version. Thus, the main technical peculiarities of this product are:

  • CPU: Cortex-A53 1.4GHz Quad-Core ARM (there are also versions with the processors of 2.4GHz and 5GHz)
  • LAN: Wireless, dual-band 802.11ac
  • Bluetooth 4.2 (also wireless)
  • Ethernet: Gigabit USB 2.0
  • Power-over-Ethernet
  • PXE network and USB mass-storage booting
  • Cooler

It’s worth noting, that CPU has become a little bit faster (+ 200MHz). The product is built upon BCM2837B0 Broadcom processor, which includes power integrity optimizations and a heat spreader. This feature has become especially valuable since the last news, which annonced adopting the Raspberry Pi devices for artificial intelligence (see the article on Electronics Lab).

Speaking about the Dual-band wireless LAN and Bluetooth, they are provided by the Cypress CYW43455 chip, connected to a Proant PCB antenna (just like it was used for Raspberry Pi Zero W). This gives the company an opportunity to certify the board as a radio module, meeting the FCC regulations.

The updated LAN7515 (comparing to LAN951x, used in previous models) supports Gigabit Ethernet now and significantly increases the wired and wireless network throughput.

The implementation of “magjack” now brings the relevant signals to a new 4-pin header. Also, the launch of a new PoE HAT for generating the power from the 48V PoE supply will be shortly announced as well!

Raspberry Pi Model B plus' new pins

Despite the Raspberry Pi products gained PXE Ethernet boot for the very first time, it surprisingly works really great! As the Raspberry Pi’s technicians confess via their own blog post, there were a lot of bugs and compatibility issues uncovered during the test period. And all of them were completely fixed. This proves a great polishing of the product before the official release.

Power Efficiency and Cooling

Obviously, due to all the improvements mentioned above, Raspberry Pi 3 B+ increased the level of power consumption. And with that, the hardware has gained better peak and longer-duration sustained performance. To achieve this, the Raspberry Pi engineers improved the power integrity and accuracy of their new MaxLinear MxL7704 power management integrated circuits.

With the temperature accending 70°C the smart thermal management technologies are implemented to decrease the core voltage so that the next 80°C thermal throttle becomes longer reachable in time. With that improvement, Raspberry Pi 3 B+ can run faster at a lower level of temperatures. This is clearly displayed in the graph below (which has been borrowed from the Raspberry Pi Foundation blog post).

Raspberry Pi Sysbench CPU test

And by the way, to cope with the increasing temperatures of a new model, by adding the board its own small cooler, which is quite convenient.

Final notes

The new model of Raspberry Pi, which has been recently released, is not that big technological “jump” from its predecessor, but still offers great features to make RPi 3 B+ worth purchasing. Among them, there are improvements which have been really liked by the community such as better performance, increased Ethernet throughput and smarter thermal management. In addition, all this is for the price of the previous model and it makes the deal even more attractive!

Also, a larger field for doing different projects on RPi appears now and thus, the demand for Raspberry Pi software tends to grow as well. With the new Raspberry Pi features, makers and developers may widen the range of software they use on Raspberry. And ExaGear Desktop can help them to bring the necessary applications to this ARM-based device.

We’ve got a lot of use cases when ExaGear helps to make up a Plex media center or manage music with Spotify on Raspberry Pi. The cases of running Teamspeak and Teamviewer on Raspbian or creating a MetaTrader bot for automatic Forex trading on Raspberry Pi and many others.

Moreover, with ExaGear Desktop, you can run almost any x86 app on any Raspberry Pi models as well as on the new Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+.

Learn more about ExaGear Desktop

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ExaGear is registered trademark of Eltechs, Inc. Raspberry Pi is a trademark of the Raspberry Pi Foundation. Other trademarks and product names are the property of their respective owners.

  • Stefan Koryciński

    > CPU: Cortex-A53 1.4GHz Quad-Core ARM (there are also versions with the processors of 2.4GHz and 5GHz)

    Please correct this.

    • gergely kovacs nanoprog

      i think that curly bracket was regarding the wifi specs

  • Neil Tsakatsa

    Just skip the new RPi because I don’t see the reason to upgrade. Not so much fantastic new thing here !