Independent developers often suffer from closure manufacturers of the various components, in particular, the type of processor “system on a chip.” Not always possible to get even technical data, not to mention the internal nuances that exist in each of the chip. They are sure to please placing on the market first fully open of SoC, a startup SiFive. It is made in the form factor, fully compatible with the Arduino platform popular, but is it worth such a fee called HiFive1 only $ 59.

The distinctive feature of the new SoC is the use of open-processor RISC-V architecture. The chip, called FE310 and configured using cheaper 180-nm TSMC’s, contains a 32-bit kernel RISC-V, running at a frequency of 320 MHz. The developers claim that their child is 10 times faster and nine times more economical Intel Curie, which is also available in the form factor Arduino.

Comparison with other microcontrollers also is in favor of HiFive1: a processor mounted on the circuit board, shows the performance at the level of 1,61 DMIPs / MHz and 2,73 Coremark / MHz. Compared with a typical controller ARM Cortex-M0 FE310 shows twice as higher performance-per-watt, and in comparison with Arduino Zero card based on the chip Armel he did 11 times faster. Currently SiFive working on a 64-bit processor open, for the production of which is planned to use 28-nanometer process technology TSMC.