AllWinner T3 p1 Processor for Android headunits

The Allwinner T3 processor is a Quad-Core processor found in some lower-end Android headunit and targeted to run the Android 4.4/6.0 system. Virtually identical to the Allwinner T3p3, the T3p1 is treated in performance terms as the same device.

T3 Processor Answers

Is the T3 a good processor for an Android Headunit?

No. The T3 processor is not considered a good processor for an Android headunit. The T3 and T3p1 have limited processing power, which is unsuitable for an Android headunit.

Is the AllWinner T3 p1 a fast processor?

No. The T3 p1 is a slow processor unsuitable for running an Android headunit.

Is the T3 a quad-core?

Yes. The T3 and T3p1 are quad-core processors.

Can I add more RAM to my T3p1 android head unit?

Can the AllWinner T3p1 have more than 2 GB RAM?

No. The T3p1 is only supplied with a maximum of 2 GB RAM

4 Cores

The AllWInner T3 has only 4 Cortex-A7 processing cores clocked at around 1.2 GHz.

Based on the ARM Cortex-A7 with a tiny 512 kB of L2 cache, it only supports 32-bit operations.

The four 32-bit cores of the T3 will run with a maximum of 2 GB RAM

SatNav

The low-end 4-core T3p1 processor was designed for integration into devices like a satnav. Not cut out for running an Android headunit, these old 4 cores struggle to provide the headunits with enough processing power. Coupled with the limiting 32-bit architecture, the maximum RAM the T3 can use is a low 2 GB. This is a very limiting factor by itself, but with the low cores, clock rate, and 32-bit limits, this is one poor chip for an Android headunit.

AllWinner T3 processor block diagram

Allwinner T3 p1 Processor
The block diagram of the Allwinner T3 p1 confirms the limiting 32-bit memory access.
A tiny 512Kb L2 cache and the ARM NEON SIMD co-processor won’t compensate for the minimal 4 cores and low clock speed.

GPU

The GPU – Graphical Processing Unit integrated as part of the T3 SoC is the Mali 400MP2
The Mali400MP2 Supports OpenGL ES 2.0/OpenVG 1.1 standard.

Notable is the HDMI-OUT feature. Not all boards will support HDMI-OUT, but it is a useful modern feature surpassing the CVBS_OUT. While CVBS_OUT is compatible with many devices, they are becoming more difficult to find. All new televisions and displays are HDMI compatible; this feature is a bonus.

Supports double screen with different display – one Android screen and something different on the HDMI display? Well, the SoC has the capability for two different displays.

2 GB RAM

The most RAM the T3 can connect to is only 2 GB.

The maximum DDR clock rate for the RAM is up to a very slow 580 MHz

PIMC

The PIMC (Power Management IC) is a AXP221s. This is the clue that the Allwinner T3 is designed for handheld or battery-operated devices, like SatNav. A true Android headunit processor would not need to use silicon space on unwanted PMICs.

Hacked Android 7

The target version of Android for the Allwinner T3 is Android 4.4/6.0

With the limiting resources the T3 p1 SoC can provide the Android environment, some features must be dropped. It is probably running a hacked Android 6 or a fake Android 7. Unfortunately, it won’t be the full version of Android 7,8, 9, or 10 because there is insufficient processing ability to perform it all.

Overall

Quad-Core by name and Quad-Core by nature. Reminiscent of the 4 core 8227L_Demo that is still doing the rounds. Not enough RAM in the T3 headunits and insufficient processing cores, all clocked at a very slow rate, make for a disappointing experience for an Android headunit. Don’t let the HDMI output sway the decision. There are other, much better, more modern Android headunits with HDMI out ports fitted.

Pie-Man
Pie-Man
Android guy who loves his android head units as much as he loves his cherry pie.

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