BeagleV-Ahead is purported to come in the same form factor as the BeagleBone Black, but it does not look like it does

Quoting the very first sentence in the description paragraph at «BeagleV®-Ahead is an open-source RISC-V single board computer (SBC) in the form factor of BeagleBone Black […]». I purchased a BeagleV-Ahead and a plastic enclosure designed for the BeagleBone Black. The board does not fit the enclosure. It is roughly half an inch longer. Correct me if I am wrong, but I think that something that comes in the form factor of another thing is an object that has the same size and shape of a different thing.

Yeah, your correct, the BeagleV-Ahead with it’s newer surface mount headers, allowing us to route dsi/csi0/csi1 broke the BBB dimensions… The whole pattern does at-least match. The connector usb/ethernet/power has been broken before…


As far as I can tell, no enclosure specifically catered to the BeagleV-Ahead is sold at the moment - someone else might buy a BeagleBone Black enclosure based on this information. I issued an RMA to Farnell for the enclosure for which I have no use in the hope that I can send it back for a refund, but it is not their fault nor mine. I think this information should be corrected.

I updated the wording to

BeagleV®-Ahead is an open-source RISC-V single board computer (SBC) with BeagleBone Black cape header pins allowing you to stack your favorite BeagleBone cape on top to expand it’s capability. Featuring a powerful quad-core RISC-V processor, BeagleV®-Ahead is designed as an affordable RISC-V enabled pocket-size computer for anybody who want’s to dive deep into the new RISC-V ISA.

I think what really needs to go here is information about how powerful the SoC is and why is the best provider of boards for this SoC: commitment to long-term availability, open source, public issue tracking, upstreaming support efforts, etc. Please chime in on what is most attractive about this board.

Yes, it is a bit wider than BeagleBone Black and I think someone got a bit zealous because it appears about the same form-factor, which was a design goal, but adding all the extra connectors and needs for routing space to provide 3.3V compatibility drove it to use SMT connectors, rather than through-hole. Still, being close to the same size and being able to use existing cape designs is a nice feature.

Other thoughts on features that should be highlighted?

Can it really use existing capes?

The only things which seem to work between families are the ones that only use GPIOs–and even those get scrambled up. Anything which uses PRU, CAN, SPI, I2C, McASP, etc. all seems to break when you move from the BBB to anything else (even the old BBB-AI).

The Beaglebones really need to ditch those .100 headers. They’re expensive. The signal integrity sucks. Routing them is a PITA. The number of pins is lower than if you use something like an SO-DIMM or dual M.2 connectors. And, as you folks discovered, you MUST use through hole or you can’t hold the dimensions.

Ship with a carrier board if you must have those connectors. It would also let you punt all 20 of those level shifters (good grief) to the carrier board.

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@buzmeg ,

Yes. I tested the Relay and Load Capes w/ this SBC. They work b/c of some DTS files available from the .org.