The Raspberry Pi 3 Model B has been an amazing device used by millions worldwide from commercial application to Kodi builds.

For the home user wanting to use Kodi, Plex, or just run an ultra-low powered server the processing power and more importantly, the ethernet speeds have been an issue.

Some of these issues have been resolved with the announcement of the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ which bumps up the CPU to a 1.4GHz 64-bit quad-core ARM Cortex-A53 and increases the ethernet speed to 300Mbps. It is not gigabit, but it should peak at 37.5MB/s so is more than enough to handle any 1080P file, and quite possibly the CPU should handle 4K media playback.

The full specification includes:

  • A 1.4GHz 64-bit quad-core ARM Cortex-A53 CPU
  • Dual-band 802.11ac wireless LAN and Bluetooth 4.2
  • Faster 300mbps Ethernet (Gigabit Ethernet over USB 2.0)
  • Power-over-Ethernet support (with separate PoE HAT)
  • Improved PXE network and USB mass-storage booting
  • Improved thermal management

The new product is built around BCM2837B0, an updated version of the 64-bit Broadcom application processor used in Raspberry Pi 3B, which incorporates power integrity optimisations, and a heat spreader (that’s the shiny metal bit you can see in the photos). Together these allow us to reach higher clock frequencies (or to run at lower voltages to reduce power consumption), and to more accurately monitor and control the temperature of the chip.

Dual-band wireless LAN and Bluetooth are provided by the Cypress CYW43455 “combo” chip, connected to a Proant PCB antenna similar to the one used on Raspberry Pi Zero W. Compared to its predecessor, Raspberry Pi 3B+ delivers somewhat better performance in the 2.4GHz band, and far better performance in the 5GHz band

What is most impressive is that the new Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ will retail for the same price as the old model of just £35. It is available immediately.

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