Is it a good idea to buy a board or wait until next revision?


(chris hulbert) #1

Hi all, considering buying a board and using it to learn Rust development.
I was about to purchase but noticed the board came out in late 2016. It’s now almost late 2018 and i’m considering if it’s worth holding out until the next revision comes out, given that SiFive is a startup company and i assume have made leaps and bounds of progress in such a long time?
Does anyone know if there are plans to release a new board at some point in the not too distant future?
I notice that a year after the HiFive came out, the ‘Unleashed’ board was released. Is there some sort of yearly release cadence that the company is working to?

Thanks a lot, have a great week all :slight_smile:


(Bruce Hoult) #2

The HiFive1 board still does a good job of being representative of the E31 core sold today for prototype and evaluation purposes. I’d say the only major new feature is being able to partition the icache into part cache and part instruction scratchpad. That’s handy, but not vital unless you’re pushing the limits of the data scratchpad (just copy critical code into there instead).

The Arduino Uno form-factor isn’t going anywhere. It’s still I think the fastest Uno-style board on the market. There’s nothing really pressing that needs to change with it, especially as it’s an evaluation and technology demonstration board not a product.


(chris hulbert) #3

Thanks for getting back to me :slight_smile:
I see your point about ‘nothing needs to change’ - totally understand, eg the arduinos themselves have not needed any change for quite a while. Having said that, surely SiFive has been busy developing something amazing in the ~2 years since releasing the HiFive?
I guess what i’m getting at, is: Is SiFive planning on releasing anything new around the corner? Or is it one of those companies like Apple who ‘play their cards close to the chest’ ?


(Bruce Hoult) #4

Sure! The E31 has been joined by a whole family of bigger and smaller standard cores: E20, E21, E24, E34, E51, E54, U54. Plus the ability to customise them.

Have a poke around at https://scs.sifive.com/core-designer/


(chris hulbert) #5

Thanks so much, that explains what’s been going on :slight_smile:


(Bruce Hoult) #6

It’s just been announced on the CrowdSupply page that a refresh of the HiFive1 is coming in the New Year.