How do I choose the right nano computer?

Posted by Pierre Verkest on June 30, 2016

Thanks to the Open-source hardware movement, last few years there are a lot of nano computer that was created and sold to the general public. So know we have to choose whare fit our requirements!!

You can have a look to this comparator that give a good an idea of the large choice offer to you.

Here I’m gonna explain how I choose it for the Quadcopter fleet project.

First I’ve listed my requirement that would fit my needs, I would like my quadcopter to be able to:

  • communicate with each other, as I expect to fly indoor wifi capability appear a good starting point
  • The weight should be very low as I expect to make it fly at some time
  • The board should be evolutive in the sense that I could add sensors
  • Make sure at least someone already managed to have this board fly on the same kind of UAV, Vincent Jaunet has shared his quadcopter project based on a Raspberry Pi, a lot of projects are detailed on the instructables web site
  • Consider the community and support I can fiund over the internet
  • Performances consideration: I guess a lot of thing will run to make it fly.
  • Low battery consumption, many of those boards are based on ARM processors so that won’t be the matter! It also depends on how many features there are on it but I expect that we could disable some through the software.
  • Based on Open-source hardware

I’ve chosen to start with the Raspberry Pi 3 which embrace most of my criteria, it probably lack in term of performance over the Orange Pi Plus 2 but the first is cheaper to start with, smaller and lighter to embed in a quadcopter!

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