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we will hand-assemble (incl PCBA) a very small number of MNT Reform 2 beta laptops with full aluminum body in January 2020 outside of the campaign. Price 1500 EUR. If you're interested: lukas@mntre.com

@josealberto4444 there is one mandatory blob at the beginning of the boot process, but it’s not ARM software. it runs in the memory controller PHY to do a part of the DDR4 training.

@mntmn Thanks for the detailed explanation. 😊 Just out of curiosity, are you working on deblobbing it? Or do you have any plans for doing it in the future?

Anyway, I think the project is fantastic. I'm not sure if I'll buy one of them, but I'm 100% sure I'll financially support the project as much as I can if there is a way. I wish all mainstream computers were as free as this one and with the same quality. Good luck!

@josealberto4444 thank you! yes, i have a theory for how the DDR blob could be worked around, but don’t have a working implementation yet.

@mntmn LiOn isn't explosive. No commercial batteries use Lithium electrodes, which produce explosive hydrogen gas. Thermal runaway on LiOn batteries creates a torch, not an explosion.

If your battery is shielded from perforation and you're not building it with cell walls thin and fragile you'd probably be fine.

This marketing piece just tells me "the battery life is gonna suck because we chose an inferior chemistry with lower energy density designed for a completely different application"

@feld thanks for the feedback! LiFePO4 has a bunch of other nice properties, too: charge cycles, available current, doesn’t get hot (no thermal tracking while charging necessary), more environmentally friendly. also battery life is not sucking at all. calling it inferior is misleading and one-dimensional.

@mntmn so any hints when this is gonna released officially?

@Sujee i hope to launch the crowd supply campaign in january. i’m waiting for feedback on texts etc from them.

@mntmn oh dude, i'm so excited for this.

@mntmn so I take it not all of them will have aluminum bodies? Or some assembly will be required? This interests me! I'll send an email with my questions too if you prefer that.

@mntmn any plans on adding firmware capabilities to your board to do drop-in upgrades to RISC-V SoMs?

@s31bz hmm, what firmware are you thinking about? there shouldn’t really be any hard dependenciea between type of SOM/SOC and the board’s microcontroller and input devices. the MCU talks UART or SPI and input devices are USB. the SOM needs to be able to output DSI@1920x1080 or eDP. alternatively a display adapter IC could be included in a SOM.

@mntmn oh I didn't know that! Thanks for letting me know. So nothing stopping any of us from getting a RISC-V SoM working sweet.
I'm not overly knowledgeable about programming or engineering these days, but I appreciate all this work you guys have put into this for a legitimate libre laptop for the rest of us. I'll have to get back into it and see how I could get any upcoming SiFive som installed

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