EtcherPro progress updates

Any updates about the Etcher Pro? :slight_smile:

Despite the unsettling situation with COVID-19, we keep working towards releasing EtcherPro as soon as possible. We are somewhat affected on the hardware side since the shipment of physical products has noticeably slowed down and therefore the hardware prototyping process. However, we are a distributed team, so working from home is not new to us :blush:

  • With our current setup, we are limited to about 600MB/s data throughput. Our goal is 720MB/s and we are slightly modifying the USB hubs architecture to achieve that

  • After a few months of trouble, we ended up using a combination of a MIPI screen and an i2C touchpanel

  • We successfully passed the device safety pre-compliance

  • There is still a lot of work on the OS side to optimise the performance of the board

  • iMX8 tends to overheat a lot. An active fan heatsink can take care of that but as a b-plan, we are looking for a sufficient passive solution to increase reliability

  • We recently got a new space in Athens to set up and run our assembly line

  • Finally, you can enjoy a demo video of EtcherPro using 1 source drive to flash an image to 3 target drives at an average speed of 76.7MB/s

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cc @bversluijs ^

Any new news? I need to order a small duplicator now and potentially a larger a little in the future.

Ditto need yesterday

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EtcherPro progress update:

  • We decided to add an extra PCIe USB hub to increase the bandwidth and increase the average writing speed 10-20%
  • We are facing an issue with the PCIe USB hub recognition but we are positive it will be resolved soon. Fingers crossed this one is the last issue that holds us back from production
  • We managed to heavily improve the thermal performance of the device by adding a simple fan blower
  • The OS is also heavily optimised and the device works flawlessly during our tests
  • We are considering releasing some beta devices for selected users to test but this is not confirmed yet
  • The assembly line in Athens is under construction and will be ready in a few weeks
  • The ultimate goal is to open preorders in September and start shipping devices before the end of the year
  • During the extensive testing of EtcherPro we managed to detect and improve numerous issues and add new features on Etcher that are already released in the latest versions. We’ll be adding more as we go
  • Below you can enjoy a photo from the latest shooting of the special edition EtcherPro in metallic grey

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cc @jalex @rlachance

Just wanted to let everyone know that we are still busy behind the scenes getting EtcherPro ready, and provide a little progress update and some pictures and video to show you what we have been up to…

  • The case design is finalized and we have placed an order for the first production batch as well as the limited edition batch of 50 units.
  • The electronics design is mostly finished, however there are some small updates that need to be made in order to improve EMC compliance (more on that below). We have ordered some of the long lead time components from the BoM, in order to shorten the lead time of production once design is finalised.
  • Orders have been placed and are starting to arrive for things such as the power supplies, touch screens, fasteners and other items needed for the assembly in Athens.
  • We have been doing lots of pre-compliance testing and identified some issues in the design causing some EMC spikes that would cause issues. We have identified various ways to fix these and have re-designed the boards to incorporate these updates. Shortly we will have prototypes of the new electronics ready to be tested and once these pass the pre-compliance checks we will then take them to the “official” certification tests. This should be finished before the end of 2020, and we are currently waiting for this to be completed before launching pre-orders so that we have a more definite shipping timeline.
  • The packaging design has been finalised and we have already received the first production batch of packaging (see photos below)
  • The production line is starting to take shape nicely in Athens and is mostly ready to begin assembly when parts arrive - we will obviously need to optimise this setup as we progress to full manufacture.
  • We are in the process of sorting distribution setup in Athens - both direct and through resellers / distributors to make sure we can get EtcherPro to your doors quickly and safely.
  • We are preparing the shop system and processes for beginning to take pre-orders…we hope to be able to start taking pre-orders before the end of 2020 if possible, but this is still TBC at this time.

EtcherPro packaging box

EtcherPro inside packaging box

EtcherPro flashing demo

EDIT: fixed video link!

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I knew there was one thing I forgot - for those of you who, like me, have a geeky obsession with anechoic chambers and things like that - here are some neat pictures of the EtcherPro undergoing some compliance testing…

EtcherPro Radiated Emissions Test - Front View

EtcherPro Radiated Emissions Test - Rear View

EtcherPro Conducted Emissions Test

EtcherPro Radiated Emissions Test

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Fantastic seeing this getting ready for production. I have been waiting for it since the first time using Etcher years ago

@hdtechk thanks for joining the forum! Good to have you here :slight_smile:

Glad to hear you have been pleased with the experience with Etcher and are looking forward to EtcherPro. If you don’t mind me asking, what do you plan to use the EtcherPro for?

Mostly plan on personal use for EtcherPro. But also to help make it easier installing software update on flash drive for my co workers. We update all vehicles that come in our shop. Most of them don’t understand what root directory means. When manufacturer comes out with new images every few months. Lots easier for me to make one and copy it for them.

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Can’t wait for the pre-order system to go live. Want/Need asap !
Hope to be first in line :slight_smile:

btw - how long until actual delivery after “pre-order”

We aim to open the pre-order system in January.

It should be about 3 to 4 months after pre-order until we ship, but we are currently in the process of finalizing all of the lead times etc so we will have a better idea of that when we launch the pre-order system.

Sounds like an interesting use case, and glad to hear that we will be able to simplify your processes with EtcherPro :slight_smile:

Thanks.

image001.jpg

Further to the previous update above, we are excited to announce that we now have a confirmed date for launching pre-orders - Tuesday 5th Jan 2021 at 9am UTC.

The pre-orders will be through our web store and the details will be as follows:

  • Full price - $990 + shipping and any applicable taxes / EU VAT.
  • Pre-order deposit - $50 + any applicable taxes / EU VAT (this deposit amount will be removed from the final payment amount).
  • The special edition metallic grey version will be limited to 1 unit per customer. The standard blue unit will be limited initially during the pre-order to 10 per customer until we have a better idea on demand and production pipelining.
  • We will have a limited number (50) of special edition metallic grey units available. These will be the first units to ship and will likely be around 2 months before the standard production blue units.
  • Initially we will definitely be shipping to Europe, USA, Canada, Aus and NZ. We aim to add more areas as we move forward and will launch with worldwide shipping if possible.
  • The product will have worldwide adapters compatible with EU, UK, USA and AUS plug types. We will include the Ethernet and power cables required for daisy chaining devices.
  • We aim to ship the first units around 3 months after the pre-order begins. Units will be shipped on a first-come first-served basis. We will send a payment request when your device is ready to ship.
  • We will provide regular updates during the process to keep you informed of how production is progressing.

For those of you arriving at this page who haven’t heard of EtcherPro before, or those of you who have but want to know more - the key features remain unchanged - provision up to 16 IoT devices, SD cards or USB drives at once with a single EtcherPro, daisy chain multiple EtcherPro units to provision up to 160 at once, 50MB/sec write speed. Like the SD duplicators and USB duplicators you know, only better :slight_smile:

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Is there a limit on how many units one can pre-order?

@Jazzagi aha - very good question.

Yes - the special edition metallic grey versions will be limited to 1 unit per customer (with a total of 50 available). The standard blue unit will be limited initially during the pre-order to 10 per customer until we have a better idea on demand and production pipelining.

I will edit the above post to reflect this :slight_smile:

Fantastic! Can we pre-order?