Review of Beaglebone Black

Table of contents

RoadTest: Beaglebone Black

Author: knuckle73

Creation date:

Evaluation Type: Independent Products

Did you receive all parts the manufacturer stated would be included in the package?: True

What other parts do you consider comparable to this product?: AM335x Starter Kit AM3359 Industrial Communications Engine (ICE) AM3359 Industrial Development Kit (IDK) BeagleBone Development Board BeagleBoard-xM Development Board

What were the biggest problems encountered?: I was unable to get anything to work with the BBB connected via USB. It attached as a storage device fine, but all the files read as 0 KB.

Detailed Review:


   I would like to begin by thanking Christian Defeo and all the folks at Element14 for providing this opportunity. My background is based strictly on being a hobbyist and tinkerer. I consider myself a novice, especially in embedded systems, and hope that this perspective serves well in the functional discover and review of the Beaglebone Black.

In the Box / First Impressions:

   The Beaglebone Black comes with the board USB cable and a quick start guide. My initial outtake with the Beaglebone Black’s 1000 MHz processor speed, 512 MB of onboard memory, and available I/O make it a powerful development board to have in your arsenal; especially with its compact (altoids) size and $45 USD price tag.


Introduction video to follow -

Specifications and Comparisons:


- From Curtico Official Beaglebone Black wiki.

The listed devices below use the same processor, which I thought would be a better comparison. I provided a link for TI’s Sitara processor, and listed the development boards and prices.

    • BEAGLEBN - $89 BeagleBone Development Board
    • BEAGLEXM - $149 BeagleBoard-xM Development Board


Versatility and Usage:


The availability of distributions such as the included Ångström Linux, and available Ubuntu, and Android, as well as the include Cloud9 IDE on Node.js with the BoneScript library,makes for an out of the box and go solution.

  In the short time I have had the BBB my initial ideas have evolved over what I originally had planned for it. I still plan to have it as the nerve system of my 3D printer, but how it will function and interact, well the ideas just keep coming.

  The available programming languages such as Python, C/C++, and JScript provide a variety of ways  to interact with the BBB’s resources

  Some of my research for information sources has yielded some promising results and helped me immensely.I have listed and linked them below.


     Home site -


      wiki -

     Youtube - Derek Molloy  - Has some nice Python examples and a library just for the Beaglebone or Beaglebone Black

     You have to include - No Brainer...

     C'mon just Google it....

Videos of someexperiments to follow -


  As a novice I am completely enthused over the possibilities with the BBB, and can say I am looking forward to creating something great. Although I have read post about peoples concerns over the lack of resources available, I feel that what is out there is a great start and can only say that the more we create and share with it the more resources there will be.

Parents Comment
  • I connected up to my network and was able to access the web pages without issue,but did not yet resolve the issue with the usb. I did not upgrade the image on it as it was the latest already, but I may do that after some additional experimentation just to bring it back to a factory state before I dedicate it to a major project.

    Thanks for the link, I had just bought Polulu stepper drivers, shortly after receiving the BBB and plan to experiment and attach a video to my review.

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