Apr 282016
New and old Raspberry Pi Camera comparison shots (1.3, 2.1 & NOIR)

I thought it would be fun to run the same tests on the new Pi cameras that I did on the original one back in May 2013. Unfortunately my first Pi camera 2.1 was faulty so I had to wait an extra day before I could do it. (It’s the first time out of about 50 Raspberry Pi products that I have ever had a faulty one.) But now here are the results. I’ve compared both 2.1 cameras with both 1.3 Raspberry Pi cameras. Methodology I shot the scene out of an open window, trying […more…]

Apr 252016
New 8 Megapixel Raspberry Pi camera 2.1 launches

The new 8 Megapixel Raspberry Pi camera is released today. It’s fully backward compatible with all camera-enabled Raspberry Pis produced to-date. It uses a SONY IMX219 sensor capable of 3280 x 2464 pixel stills. It’s mechanically almost identical to the previous camera model (V1.3) except for rounded corners on the PCB – and there’s no red LED on the front. There’s also a NOIR version being released at the same time. They both support 1080p30, 720p60 and 640x480p90 video. Here’s a video overview… Specifications Lens: Fixed focus Megapixels: 8 megapixel native resolution sensor Camera Resolution: […more…]

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 102016
Is KickStarter Dead Yet? Pros and Cons of Crowdfunding

Last summer I wrote a blog post that, at the time, I didn’t publish. I showed it to Mike @recantha Horne and we both agreed its natural tone would come across better as a talk, not a blog post. Last weekend I had a chance to deliver this talk at the Raspberry Pi Birthday Weekend in Cambridge. I managed to get an audio recording (thanks to @AndyBateyPi) to which I have synchronised my slides in the video below (26 minutes including questions). Enjoy… Also Available As Text If you prefer the (slightly fuller) original written […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 292016
Raspberry Pi 3 model B launches today - 64-bit quad A53 1.2 GHz BCM2837

Raspberry Pi 3 model B launch is today’s big news. The new Pi sports a 64-bit quad-core ARM Cortex A53 CPU with VideoCore IV GPU packaged into the new BCM2837 chip. This 1.2GHz CPU offers ~50% speed improvement over the Pi 2’s BCM2836. Video Overview Pretty much all the information and impressions I have of the Raspberry Pi 3 model B are in this short video… …but if you prefer to read, it’s all here too… Now With Built-in WiFi & Bluetooth The other major news is that the Raspberry Pi 3B now has built-in […more…]

Jan 282016
GPIO Zero Experimenter's Kit and RasPiO Pro Hat

On Tuesday I had a funny thing happen. I was testing an analogue to digital converter (ADC) chip – the MCP3008 – to see how well it worked on the RasPiO® Pro Hat. I had it all wired up, and powered up the Pi, typed a few lines of GPIO Zero code, and… It worked, but not quite how I thought it should. Instead of giving a value of 1.0 for 3V3 and 0 for 0V it was giving 0.67 for 3V3. I left it running and went for lunch. During lunch the ‘lights went […more…]

Jan 152016
RasPiO Pro Hat  - Putting Pi Ports in Perfect Positions for Productive Play

Today I launched the RasPiO Pro Hat on Kickstarter. It’s a Raspberry Pi Hat for GPIO tinkering (it goes perfectly with GPIO Zero). It arranges the GPIO ports in numerical order around a mini-breadboard, which, to my knowledge, has not been done before. It also replaces the RasPiO Breakout Pro (now end of life) because it protects all the ports from over-current and over/under-voltage as well. It should prove a very useful board for GPIO tinkering and education. Have a look at the video and pop on over to the RasPiO Pro Hat campaign page […more…]

Dec 022015
Ethernet On Pi Zero - How To Put An Ethernet Port On Your Pi

The Pi Zero attracted a huge amount of attention, which is great for the educational mission of the Raspberry Pi Foundation. Whenever a new product is released, people air their opinions in the forums on what they would have liked it to have. One of the most common “I wish it had”s was an ethernet port. There are reasons why ethernet was not included. The two most obvious ones are cost and board size (it would have almost doubled the size of the Zero) So What’s To Be Done If You Need Ethernet? Well the […more…]