I was keeping an eye on the RS and Farnell sites on Monday morning because I’d heard a ‘reliable whisper’ that the model A was launching this week. I didn’t know what day, but I figured it might be Monday. No sign of anything early morning, but then I forgot and didn’t see Liz’s announcement on the Pi blog until a couple of hours after they went live. By that time, RS was showing back order, but Farnell had stock levels of ~1800, so I snagged one. I got a “shipped” email about 3 hours later and, just for fun, checked stock levels again. ~1000 this time. So, not quite the mayhem of a year ago, but healthy sales nevertheless.
I was going to buy another Pi anyway after damaging the spi ports on one of my Rev 1 Pis last week, but I held back after hearing that the model A was imminent. Might as well have one of those instead. It’s just as good for GPIO stuff and I can set it up on wireless or use my USB-RS232 tty terminal adaptor to login. Of course, there’s always the good-old keyboard and monitor approach as well. :)
So what’s it like then?
It’s a lot like a Rev 2 model B, but without the network socket and chip and only one USB port and the same 256 Mb RAM as the original model A. First impression on handling is that it feels a lot lighter. I weighed a model A and a model B. Model B weighs 41g, model A weighs 31g. That will please those who are going to put them in balloons, planes and ‘copters. “Raspberry Pi model A, the one ounce computer” (nearly).
I’m not sure what the blue splodge is on my CE mark, but I’m going to attack it with some meths and a cotton bud. ;) (It was ink or dye and came off very easily with meths, leaving no trace.)
Here are some photos (click to enlarge)…
I’m glad it has the eight P5 header holes nice and empty of solder so I can try out the extra ports.
Where else can you get a UK made, brand new linux computer for £20 delivered?
Here’s a short video tour
It works too
I just swapped out the SD card, wifi dongle HDMI lead and ribbon cable from another pi and fired up the model A. It worked just as it should do.
cat /proc/cpuinfo reports revision number of 0008