PineCube, A Possible Choice In Open IP Cameras

Source: Hackaday PineCube, A Possible Choice In Open IP Cameras

You Would Be Better Served With Pi

The PineCube networked camera sounds like a great deal at $29.99, a 5 MP camera module with 100 Mbit Ethernet and WiFi on a single board that can be powered by an optional battery pack, PoE, or MicroUSB, with a nice optional enclosure that you can house it in.  The hardware onboard includes a Cortex A7 based S3 SoC, an OV5640 sensor, 128MB of RAM and even a speaker, with support for Video4Linux to set up the IP camera however you would like.

Unfortunately, from the details provided by Hackaday the PineCube is not quite as capable as it sounds and the enclosure is not available to order and until very recently, could not even be printed out due to a lack of STL files.  The 5MP OV5640 sensor has been end of life for quite some time now, and while that does mean Linux support is comprehensive, replacements are scarce and there are many better sensors out there at a similar price.  As well, there is currently no hardware encoding support and the RAM is often filled to the point of freezing the PineBox during resource updates over HTTP or when trying to add extra layers to it’s basic operations.

If you are looking for something similar but more powerful, combining a Raspberry Pi Zero W and  V2 camera will cost you less than $50 and will give you a much better sensor, attached to a more powerful SoC; without giving up any compatibility.  Check out the full review here.

Unfortunately, my experiences were anything but positive. After spending many hours with the PineCube, I’m not able to recommend it for those seeking an IP camera. There are many reasons for this, which I’ll try to explain in this article.

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About The Author

Jeremy Hellstrom

Call it,, or PC Perspective, Jeremy has been hanging out and then working with the gang here for years. Apart from the front page you might find him on the BOINC Forums or possibly the Fraggin' Frogs if he has the time.

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