Often my OpenELEC Raspberry Pi would get stuck at pre-boot. The culprit turned out to be a faulty SD card connector. Unclipping the connector pins (as suggested in the elaborate diagnostic wiki on eLinux.org) and soldering on an alternate low-profile SD card adapter (that I ordered from crazypi.com) fixed it.
Simply looking at the board – the entire layout looks cleaner, ports better arranged and finally a sturdier SD card slot!
- Lower base power consumption translating to more stability
- Audio noise and distortion reduced
- USB current back feed noise reduced
- USB hot plug current rush-in issue resolved
Beyond just the physical aspects of it, I replaced my old Model B for “stability” reasons. The biggest improvement on this board (IMHO) is power management. Ditching the linear regulator not just freed up an extra 500mA but also managed to prevent the Pi from getting reset every time certain USB devices were plugged in or out – the USB hotplug rush-in current issue is reduced to a minimum. For me this turned out to be super useful as I could now easily plug in WiFi and Bluetooth adapters without worrying.
The low-noise power supply for the audio circuit has done wonders to sound quality. Previously (in Model B) I was constantly disturbed by erroneous noises on the analogue audio output port. This had literally made it impossible to play audio at high volume. Noises caused by current backfeed from USB devices has totally vanished as well. Finally!
Surprisingly, the cleaner board and better power management causes this model to run at a slightly lower temperature and as such is more stable under over-clocked configurations.
Finally, the ability to increase the limiting current drawn from USB ports to 1.2A ensured that I can safely ditch my USB hub. Not that USB hubs are not needed for high-drain USB devices, but that my specific requirement was satisfied by the extra 600 mA!
In case you are wondering which is the best power supply adapter for Raspberry Pi, after much trial and testing, I have stumbled upon Sony CP-AD2 – a very stable 2.1A power supply with very good build quality.
Overall a great upgrade and a beautifully designed single-board computer. If you are using raspberry Pi as a media centre device and facing stability issues, the upgrade is likely to solve most of it.