Many problems with HDMI / micro USB / USB ports on my M3?

Hello everyone.

My M3 is defective?

My M3 is unstable in various configurations with or without HDMI converter (three models) and more power suply in 5 V — 1 A, 2 A, 2.1 A, 2.4 A, and the use direct USB ports for mouse and keyboard or Hub self-powered …

The M3 starts with difficulty or not at all!

Regular restart while under Android / Ubuntu Mate 15.10 / 16.04 on NAND or micro SD 8 or 16GB Cat 10 ???

Power management of the USB / HDMI / micro USB port for power, seem to be a problem ???

Tutorial in progress !

thank you in advance for your help.

(Sorry for my English !)

Hello I’ve had similar experiences and they all have explanations. Even in open air BPI cannot run without heat sink or fan. Default there is no control for processor speed. It will try to run at 1,8 GHz until it gets too warm and then one by on multiple core’s are shut down and that gives the experience of instability. Do not update any of the img’s provided by sinovoip. That can seriously mess up your device. HDMI and desktop usage is something that will definitely make your BPI-M3 go hot. Not to recommend without fan for cooling. Some early devices came with two micro USB connectors. They suck big times and probably won’t allow you to do what you want to do. The later ones come with a better DC plug - much better solution. Between the sd card reader and the data connector there’s a little circuit that shuffles the data. It has a speed limit of about ~22GB/second. So the fastest media for read/write is your USB connector and with any standard external hdd housing your maximum speed will reach some +50GB/s. No need to invest in ssd or a fancy 3.0 housing speed limit is fixed by BPI-M3. Anything like this will of course put a load to the BPI-M3 and make it hot, and - it will shut down cores. Personally I gave up, but I’ve read more detailed reports that indicate if you build you own is and control the processor speed down to 1GHz the optimal functionality with be reached ando you can avoid having your cores shut down. There’s one person that shared his build that will allow your device to operate at a lower than average performance but at least without serious failures. Look for tkaiser at and search for quick relieved of Banana PI M3. Don’t let this discourage you but the device you’ve purchased is not a Banana PI. It’s a totally different product produced by another company that have taken over the rights for the brand “Banana PI”. They are struggling really hard and are repeatedly failing most likely because of inexperience. Maybe they will learn in the future and produce a BPI-M4 that actually works, but who knows what the future holds?

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Thank’s for your response.

My tutorial is here :

I detail the problem in part "13- Les ports USB/HDMI et l’alimentation du M3, with what works and what doesn’t work with the M3 !"

sorry, tutorial in french langage !

It is true, that the M3 is very hot even with a thermal cooler …

My M3 work properly with (almost always) :

   - 5 V 1A or 2A + HUB Powered (+Keyboard and mousse) + Monitor 19" VGA+ converter HDMI/VGA.


   - 5 V 2.4A or 2A + Hub powered (+keyboard and mouse) + TV HDMI direct link. No Switch HDMI.

It’s very strenge !

I’ll move to another distribution to see if it works better!

Thank’s for your reply.:joy:

I hope you’ve moved on but just to mention… Using the HDMI port for visual use I extremely power comsuming=heat generating. Even running the bpi-m3 headless (no desktop) makes it hot enough to turn all remaining core’s off. Very unstable and not a distribution related issue. This is a generic Issue with the design of the processor fitted to the bpi-m3. It’s framework is built to regulate heat by regulating the temperature by turning off cores. Leaving it up to any hardware designer to build a device with proper cooling. Unfortunately those of us looking for a capable single board computer with performance does not look for one with built on heat sinks and fans. If so we would buy a proper computer. So to sum things up - the “by the specs slower and cheaper” board are in practise much faster because we don’t want a fan consuming power and generate noise. So if you add “down clocking” in your own tweak of os and at a minimum a heatsink you will find a board at half the performance of a raspberry at more than twice the price. Make your own math but there are also many more stimulating projects and ready built solutions there so - why spend the time? My bpi-m3 is resting on a shelf as a reminder of my performance hungry ego that took a toll. Read forums first before you spend money, and you will avoid smart ass’es that don’t hesitate to say - I told you so! Best regards, // I told you so…


I totally agree.

This is a disaster M3!

My next tutorial on the subject on my website

“Banana Pi M3, c’est un vrai désastre, instable et non finalisé, c’est toute la conception qui est à revoir ! Mais, j’ai des solutions pour vous aider…”

English translation attempt “Banana Pi M3 is a disaster, unstable and not finalized, the whole design is again! But I have solutions to help …”

I added a big PC fan and radiator Aluminuim height, but instability remains almost the same except that it hardly heats! …

My question ; Will change the micro USB connector in Jack DC-IN is the solution ???

This is even a requirement if you improve heat dissipation with heatsinks and/or fans since if A83T stays more cool the consumption raises since throttling latter happens and then you run in undervoltage/undercurrent problems way more early/easy.

The problem is known since ages, we told the vendor already multiple times that it’s moronic to replace the sane barrel jack they used on pre-production samples with Micro USB on the first production batch but they never listen to their users or accept well known facts.

Look at here and in the gallery below.

Thank you for your reply,

I will test it with a Jack DC-IN.

But my conclusion on the M3 is that it is not reliable for projects.

Many subject posted on the forum talking about this issue, it should have been grouped into one for clarity!

I tested and created a lot of tutorials on the nano-computers, but this is a disaster! …

Well, the most annoying design flaw is the totally inappropriate DC-IN connector: BPI-M3 with R58,H8,A83T chip on board .so cool

At least they changed that on the most recent production batch. So people who buy this board now or in a few months aren’t affected by problem N° 1. But unfortunately most people don’t understand the relationship between consumption, cable/connector resistance, voltage drops and (improved) heat dissipation. With an original BPi M3 using the crappy Micro USB DC-IN connector applying a heatsink or even heatsink+fan is absolutely counterproductive since this will decrease stability even further since undervoltage/undercurrent situations happen more often/early.

And unfortunately this board has so many other design flaws combined with non existing support, crappy OS images and no real community that it’s really hard to do something useful with it.

Test with Jack DC-IN connector. (With a 2.4A power supply 5V)

The HDMI port work better and the M3 start properly, even with a converter HDMI / VGA. If the M3 is operating, it is possible to connect a HDD USB 2.5 or USB HUB … OK in this situation!

But as always, it is not enough, because if I start t M3 and I plug non-powered elements on other ports, the same BIG BAZAR! Example with a simple USB HUB … The M3 does not start!

I throw in the towel (je jette l’éponge ! en Français) and go to something else, for example with a development platform that works, it will change me!

I hope one day I can test a Banana Pi more stable and more successful!

Yes, different problem but also known since ages. I wrote this BPi M3 review back in Dec 2015 (since then the vendor knows that’s somethings’s wrong but countless complaints here in the forums didn’t change anything for months):

One final word regarding power: It seems currently something’s wrong with power initialisation in the early boot stages (u-boot). With a connected bus-powered USB disk the board won’t start or immediately shut down when the disk is connected within the first 10 seconds

It might be possible that they fixed it a few months later with this commit:

In case you’re not running an OS image with their latest updates (both u-boot and kernel!) it might be that you’re here just plagued by a simple software bug :wink:

Use the original Banana Pi (based on A20). This one works really great. The crappy boards started with M2, reason for this is pretty simple but if I write it @sinovoip just deletes the sentence or post. :slight_smile:

Final note to use the M3: If you want to continue working on this development platform, it will add a powered HDMI Switch and USB HUB Powered … It is in this configuration that my M3 works almost perfectly.

But this is not a nano-computer, with all power adapters and converters …

tkaiser thank you for your comments and information.

I tested the Banana Pi, it was other things: Full of tutorials here: … but only in French