Hi everybody, I have finally managed to get, or arrange, enough supply of parts to make another batch of the Mini-ITX Ironclad Plus, this time with the stellar addition of the Internal Mt32-Pi Hat, something i thought was not possible when i started in this, now it is a reality. It was not easy to get to this stage, the semiconductor crisis has not finished and i would say it got even worse in the last months after the war in Ukraine, gas prices (and shipping prices) skyrocketing, China’s lockdowns, etc, some ICs, specially the main microcontroller, went out of stock and you could only get them at 10X scalping prices, crazy circumstances indeed.
So… go to the shop section and pre-order now! 😉
As always every purchaser has his unit assured and shipping is done in order of purchase. For this new batch the expected date when the shipments will start is September 2022, and the available quantity is a bit more conservative compared with the previous batch as i could not get that many parts and i want to overcome the accumulated delay. I hope this time there is no alien invasion, zombie holocaust, meteor impact, or anything like that, but who knows seeing what has been happening during the last two years ;p
Please, bear in mind that despite the small SMD components soldering is being outsourced, the rest is soldered and assembled by myself, there is also the testing process, packaging, shipping, payment issues, customer support, parts sourcing, negotiations, shipping issues, customs imports offices requesting documentation constantly and kidnapping my big incoming parts packages, etc, and i am alone with all that as a hobbyist, and then there are the other aspects of life being a single father… This is what i have chosen to do, and i love it, I promise to keep you informed and updated through the panel that i put a few months ago on the front page about in which status the batches are with an updated percent of how shipping is going in each case. My maximum priority is getting the products built and shipped to their purchasers, so receiving literaly hundreds of messages asking for individual information about their orders, some even well before the estimated dates, do not help and some times answering all of them individually delays other stages of the process, I love you all and i am overwhelmed by so much love and support i receive from you, every message reflects the interest and desire to have the Mini-ITX Ironclad Plus in your hands and i cannot explain with words how happy that makes me feel and in which magnitude i am thankful to you, it is just that unfortunately time is finite and sometimes i have to prioritize, so please, before writing check if the answer cannot be answered looking at the panel on the website, of course I will be checking the e-mail and other contact methods.
In my recent experience contacting me via Twitter private message is growing as the preferred method as it is more immediate and i am finally getting used to it with all that approving system (never had Twitter before this), and e-mail is the second preferred for more complex stuff, i cannot guarantee i will answer mentions or pm in other social networks, i keep an eye on them sometimes but in rush moments, like this one where i am buried in boards, wires, and chips, i simply recognize that cannot keep track of all of them.
Previous batches status and roadmap:
Batch 2 is about to be completed in a matter of days, batch 3 shipping starts immediately after with no pause in between and i expect it to be fully shipped in July, by that time i should have all the parts for the 4th batch ready in my hands and spend a sweet August soldering/assembling stuff and expanding the manuals while the rest enjoy their well deserved “caipirinhas” ;p so i should be ahead with the work when September comes. All that while sourcing parts for a possible future next batch (hopefully) or have stock available for future purchasers. I like to be transparent to all of you and that is my, hopefully foolproof, plan.
Well that was a long post, but i think it was necessary after looking so missing in action, now it is time to celebrate, enjoy the newly published cores for our loved MiSTer FPGA, and for me it is time to get back to work.
Thank you everybody!