Jan 312017
How to use external antenna on Wemos D1 mini pro - surface mount rework video

In my previous blog post I showed how I used several Wemos D1 mini to make a network of wireless temperature sensors around RasPiTV HQ. These litle boards are based on the ESP8266 microcontroller with built-in WiFi. There is a Pro version available too. One of its main benefits is that you can attach an external WiFi antenna for greater range. This is an optional feature, and it does require some delicate surgery to reroute the antenna signal from the built-in ceramic antenna, to the external socket. It’s not especially difficult once you know what […more…]

Jan 262017
Wireless Remote Sensing with Wemos D1 mini, Arduino IDE, Raspberry Pi and lighttpd web server

For a long time now I’ve wanted wireless temperature sensors scattered around the house and garden reporting their temperatures regularly to a central server. It’s not something I really need, but something nice to have. I’d originally planned to do it with a RasPiO Duino or Arduino nano and inexpensive NRF24L01 radio boards. Albert @winkleink Hickey, a friend of mine, who also runs the Egham Jam put me onto these when he did his buttonflash game. Albert has a useful hobby of trawling ebay for bargain-basement electronics. A few weeks ago he showed me the […more…]

Dec 072016
RasPiO Portsplus Picademy - NEW product.

If you’ve been hanging around the RasPi.TV blog for a while you’ll have heard of the RasPiO Portsplus board. It’s a little PCB with the Pi’s GPIO port numbers on that you can use to avoid counting pins when wiring up your GPIO projects. A few months ago I was visiting Pi Towers. Ben Nuttall mentioned that they use the Portsplus at Picademy, but sometimes people put them on the wrong way up and it causes confusion. The original Portsplus has GPIO port numbers one one side and pin numbers on the other side. It […more…]

Jul 212016
RasPiO GPIO Zero Ruler

You may remember this time last year I KickStarted a 6-inch ruler with the most important RPi.GPIO code on it. I’ve been using it myself an awful lot in the last year when coding. So it won’t surprise you to learn that I’m now doing another one for GPIO Zero. Since GPIO Zero is about the easiest way imaginable to get into Python GPIO tinkering, I think this will be really helpful for people. I’ve already been using the prototypes and find them an extremely helpful reference. Here’s what it looks like… It’s twice as […more…]

Jul 082016
Mailbag July 2016 overview of PaPirus Zero, Displayotron Hat, Wombat board, PiOT relay board, PiUPS+, Motozero, Zeroview

This time last year I did a “mailbag” video which was well received. So, with the review box filling up, I thought I’d do another. This time I’m covering seven products. I was going to do a G+ poll so you can tell me which one is the most interesting to you, but their surveys are limited to 5 options and I need 7. So I’ve chosen to use a different survey mechanism. I hope it works out. There’s a list of products with links beneath the video and poll. Since this is mostly a […more…]

Jun 162016
Make A Full HD 15.6 inch Screen for $32 for your Raspberry Pi, DSLR or Video Camera

My Dell Studio 1557 laptop died some time back in early 2014. It started conking out a few months earlier, but I managed to “heat-gun” the GPU into submission and it worked for a few more months. My wife had an identical machine, bought at the same time, which lasted a year longer. So we had these two dead Dells with lovely, flawless 15.6 inch full HD, low-power screens in the loft, waiting to be targeted for termination. I’d wondered for a while about getting a driver board and seeing if I could re-use them. […more…]

May 242016
RasPiO Analog Zero - an 8-channel zero-sized board for Raspberry Pi

Exciting news today. I’ve just launched a new KickStarter project for a Pi Zero sized analog board. I’ve called it the RasPiO Analog Zero. It works with GPIO Zero and is very easy to use. Here’s what it looks like… …and here’s the KickStarter video showing some of the things you could use it for… If you like the look of it, please come and back us on KickStarter.

Apr 152016
Central Heating Furnace Monitoring and Control with RasPiO Duino and Raspberry Pi

We went to Poland for the Easter holiday. When we got there the house was really cold (6°C), having been vacant for several months. We’ve got a fairly substantial solid-fuel furnace in the basement and a large room full of coal to burn. We have a gas boiler too, but we want to get rid of the coal to repurpose the space it occupies. Burning it is the most logical solution, but it involves some work. But I’ve tried to make it a bit more fun. The furnace is an interesting beast. It’s taken me […more…]

Mar 032016
How Much Power Does Raspberry Pi3B Use? How Fast Is It Compared To Pi2B?

The Raspberry Pi 3, launched this week, is more powerful than the Pi2. It also requires a bit more electrical power if you’re going to be hammering those four A53 CPU cores. How much more? The recommended PSU is 5.1V, 2.5A, which is 0.5A higher than for previous Pis. That doesn’t mean the Pi itself needs that much, but with four USB ports onboard, the PSU has to cater for power-hungry USB devices as well. I usually publish some power measurements each time a new Pi is released. But this time I learnt something new […more…]

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Feb 032016
Using MCP3008 to measure temperature with GPIO Zero and RasPiO Pro Hat

In the previous article I showed you the GPIO Zero Experimenter’s Kit I put together to go with the RasPiO® Pro Hat. Today I’m going to give a quick overview of how to use the MCP3008 analogue to digital converter to read the TMP-36 temperature sensor. This gives us a temperature reading (in °C) that we can use to make “decisions” in our Python program. In our case, we’re going to switch on a red LED when the temperature is 24 °C or greater. But there are all sorts of other things you could do, […more…]