balenaFin: a board for fleet owners

A host OS tailored for containers, designed for reliability, proven in production.
Buy balenaFin V1.0
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Why balenaFin?

We designed the balenaFin to reduce the friction that fleet owners face while building, deploying and scaling large fleets of connected devices. We’ve been working with our community and customers on thousands of use cases over the past few years, and it has become clear that scaling hardware is a problem.

The balenaFin is a Raspberry Pi Compute Module carrier board that can run all the software that the Raspberry Pi can run, but hardened for deployment in the field. Even better, it’s open source.
Read more on our blog post
Built around the Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3/3+ Lite, a tried-and-true processor with a robust developer ecosystem.
On-board 8/16/32/64 GB industrial eMMC is more reliable than SD cards
6 to 24V range (5V @2.5A via HAT) with barrel jack and phoenix connector. PoE compatible via HAT.
Dual-band WiFi, Bluetooth, mini PCIe for cellular modems and peripherals, and a SIM card slot
Embedded 32-bit ARM M4 co-processor allows maximum power efficiency and real-time computing
Multiple interfaces to fit any use case: Raspberry Pi HAT compatible, HDMI, MIPI, I2C, SPI, UART and GPIO

Want to get more technical details?

See datasheet

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the differences and new features in balenaFin v1.1?

For the break down of everything that changed and everything that's new, take a look at our blog post announcing balenaFin v1.1. Rest assured the new hardware revision is backward compatible with the previous v1.0 version.

Do I have to use balenaOS or balenaCloud?

No! Any recent OS distribution (2018+) for the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B should be compatible with the balenaFin. This includes Raspbian and balenaOS 2.x targeting the “balenaFin” device-type.

Is balenaFin compatible with standard Raspbian or derivatives?

Yes. In order to fully support all peripherals (WiFi+Bluetooth, RTC, RGB LED, mPCIe airplane mode switch, DSI and CSI connectors) it's required that you enable the balenaFin device tree overlay (dtoverlay=balena-fin in config.txt).

Is balenaFin HAT compliant?

Yes, balenaFin is designed to meet the hardware specifications for Raspberry Pi HATs, and so any HAT that meets this specification is supported, alongside power via the HAT/GPIO interface (5V @ 2.5A).

Can I deploy balenaFin in my Raspberry Pi 3 balenaCloud fleet?

Yes, we support mixed device types within a fleet, provided they share the same architecture - read more.

Does the RTC always run on battery?

No. The real-time clock (RTC) only runs on its battery when the device is powered off. This means that the lifetime of the battery is greatly extended.

How can I power balenaFin?

You can power balenaFin from the DC 5.5/2.1mm barrel jack connector or the 2 position phoenix connector with any input voltage between 6 and 24V with at least 12.5W (12V @ 1A, for example). You can also power balenaFin from the 5V HAT pins with 5V @ 2.5A.

What do I need to get up and running?

The minimum requirements to be able to use balenaFin are a Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3/3+ Lite (CM3L/CM3+L) and a 6-24V PSU. These are included in the balenaFin Developer Kit, as seen here.

Is balenaFin compatible with any Compute Module?

The balenaFin supports the Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3 and 3+ Lite​ (CM3L/CM3+L).

BalenaFin doesn’t quite work for my use case. Do you offer customizations?

We offer the option to depopulate the board of certain components that don’t fit for a particular use case, given a minimum order quantity. We don't currently have the ability to take custom hardware modifications or to add components. Please contact us at and let us know your requirements to learn more.

How long will balenaFin be supported and available?

The availability of the balenaFin boards compatible with those sold today was guaranteed until 2024. On February 1st 2023 we made the decision to cease manufacturing the balenaFin due to production and supply chain challenges, the balenaFin design files have been released to the public and will be available indefinitely.