Raspberry Pi 2 with quad-core CPU and 1GB RAM for $35

Let's start the party and burn the couches, the all new Raspberry Pi 2 is now on sale for $35. Three years after the Raspberry Pi model B was launched in 2012, the Raspberry Pi foundation announced today that the release of highly anticipated next version of the credit card nano PC. The new Raspberry Pi board can be purchased from Element14 and RS Components. The new RPi board be called Raspberry Pi 2 Model B, indicating that there may be a model A at some point in future. [Read: 7 Raspberry Pi accessories to build a XBMC media center]

The All New Raspberry Pi 2 - Quad Core Cpu And 1 Gb Ram For $35
The All New Raspberry Pi 2 - Quad Core Cpu And 1 Gb Ram For $35

Raspberry Pi 2 Specs

The next Raspberry Pi, named Raspberry Pi 2 (I cannot believe some people still call it Raspberry Pie :-p) will sport:

  • 900MHz quad-core ARM Cortex-A7 CPU (~6x performance)
  • 1GB LPDDR2 SDRAM (2x memory)
  • Complete compatibility with Raspberry Pi 1

The BCM2835 chip from Raspberry Pi B model has been replaced with Broadcom BCM2836 chip with 900MHz quad-core ARM Cortex-A7 complex. To enable best possible compatibility and less painful transition to the Raspberry Pi Model 2, everything else has been kept the same compared to Raspberry Pi Model B+. That means the new Raspberry Pi model will have 4 USB ports as well.

Build a Low-Cost Raspberry Pi Media CenterPrice
Raspberry Pi 4B Starter Kit with case, power adapter, and heat sinks~$82.00
Sandisk Ultra 32GB Micro SDHC UHS-I Card 98 MB/s~$8.00
SANOXY Wireless USB PC Remote Control Mouse for PC~$8.00

The new RPi 2 will have 6 times the CPU performance and twice the RAM, cost the same $35, but will have same form factor as the Raspberry Pi 1 model B+ and can still run from a 5V micro-USB power adapter. With this configuration, Kodi experience on Raspberry Pi should improve drastically. [Read: Raspberry Pi vs Amazon Fire TV for Kodi media center]

Windows 10 on Raspberry Pi II

For Windows enthusiasts, here is a great show of support from Microsoft: not only will you be able to install Windows 10 on Rapsberry Pi 2 but you can get a Raspberry Pi 2-compatible version of Window 10 free of charge through the Maker community Windows Developer Program for IoT.

Raspberry Pi Ii Model B
Raspberry Pi 2 Model B

Other Key Points

  • Raspberry Pi 1 revision A, B and B+ will not be discontinued
  • Raspberry Pi 2 model A may be released at a later date
  • BCM2836-based Compute Module will introduced soon
  • Raspberry Pi 2 will have VideoCore 3D graphics core for ARM-based SoCs
  • No clear answer on whether Windows 10 for RPi 2 will be a full version

To install operating system on Raspberry Pi 2 you will need updated NOOBS or Raspbian image. Head over the the Raspberry Pi downloads page and get them. In the downloads page you will also find a Snappy Ubuntu Core image (currently alpha 2). As for other media center operating systems such as OpenELEC, OSMC, Raspbmc, or XBian, we will have to wait a little bit for the updates to come through. But rest assured, they will be here soon, thanks to little no compatibility issues between Raspberry Pi 1 and 2. [Read: The Ultimate Guide to Raspberry Pi OpenELEC Media Center Setup]

Go ahead and purchase the all new Raspberry Pi 2 and upgrade your media center.

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Anand is a self-learned computer enthusiast, hopeless tinkerer (if it ain't broke, fix it), a part-time blogger, and a Scientist during the day. He has been blogging since 2010 on Linux, Ubuntu, Home/Media/File Servers, Smart Home Automation, and related HOW-TOs.