Who wants pi? The Raspberry Pi has made quite a splash since it was first announced. The credit-card sized computer is capable of many of the things that your desktop PC does, like spreadsheets, word-processing and games. It also plays high-definition video. It can run several flavors of Linux and is being used to teach kids all over the world how to program... Oh yeah, and it does all that for under $50.
The secret sauce that makes this computer so small and powerful is the Broadcom BCM2835, a System-on-Chip that contains an ARM1176JZFS with floating point, running at 700MHz, and a Videocore 4 GPU. The GPU provides Open GL ES 2.0, hardware-accelerated OpenVG, and 1080p30 H.264 high-profile decode and is capable of 1Gpixel/s, 1.5Gtexel/s or 24 GFLOPs of general purpose compute. What's that all mean? It means that if you plug the Raspberry Pi into your HDTV, you could watch BluRay quality video, using H.264 at 40MBits/s.
But wait, there's more. The new Model B+ also has a 10/100 Ethernet port so you can surf the web (or serve web pages) from right there on the Pi. The system volume no longer lives on an SD card but instead a microSD card, so it's even easier to prepare, run and debug several different operating systems on the same hardware. This means no more large SD cards and no more deceptively difficult to handle adapters. Even better, this bundle actually includes an 8GB microSD card so you won't have to buy one separately! Most Linux distributions for the Pi will happily live on a 2GB microSD card but larger cards are supported.
The Model B+'s FOUR built-in USB ports provide enough connectivity for a mouse, keyboard, or anything else that you feel the RPi needs, but if you want to add even more you can still use a USB hub. It is recommended that you use a powered hub so as not to overtax the on-board voltage regulator. Powering the Raspberry Pi is easy, just plug any USB power supply into the micro-USB port. There's no power button so the Pi will begin to boot as soon as power is applied, to turn it off simply remove power. The four built-in USB ports can even output up to 1.2A enabling you to connect more power hungry USB devices (This does require a 2Amp micro USB Power Supply).
On top of all that, the low-level peripherals on the Pi make it great for hardware hacking. The 0.1" spaced 40-pin GPIO header on the Pi gives you access to 26 GPIO, UART, I2C, SPI as well as 3.3 and 5V sources. The first 26 pins are identical to the Model B to provide 100% backward compatibility for your projects.
Note: This Raspberry Pi bundle DOES include the 8GB NOOBS microSD card, but not a power cable.
If a board needs code or communicates somehow, you're going to need to know how to program or interface with it. The programming skill is all about communication and code.
Skill Level: Competent - The toolchain for programming is a bit more complex and will examples may not be explicitly provided for you. You will be required to have a fundamental knowledge of programming and be required to provide your own code. You may need to modify existing libraries or code to work with your specific hardware. Sensor and hardware interfaces will be SPI or I2C.
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If it requires power, you need to know how much, what all the pins do, and how to hook it up. You may need to reference datasheets, schematics, and know the ins and outs of electronics.
Skill Level: Rookie - You may be required to know a bit more about the component, such as orientation, or how to hook it up, in addition to power requirements. You will need to understand polarized components.
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Based on 10 ratings:
1 of 1 found this helpful:
This thing is very slick. I have it running Raspbian from the NOOBs micro SD. It was very easy to get up and running. I'm using a wireless keyboard and wifi adapter. I have also putty'd into it with my regular win PC to run python scripts. I also am using the wedge B+ with it (I would highly recommend using the wedge B+). I'm just getting started, but having a lot of fun!!
1 of 1 found this helpful:
I recommend getting the B+ 8GB bundle because it's essentially a plug and play process for installing Raspian on the Pi.
The 8GB card contains the Raspian install programs. All you have to do is plug card in, and poweru p. The install process starts for you. No need to go out to the NOOBS site on raspberrypi.org to download anything.
Small, cheap, Raspbian out of the box - a great deal. And with serial and I2C ports exposed, easy to expand.
I'm using this with NOOBS, a wireless keyboard/mouse, and a 65 inch Sharp TV. Nice! Very nice!
beware of the extra taxes when ordering from europe
Great product, nice improvement from the model B.
I bought the Rpi b+ so that I could write an AI to it in Rpi native language, python, and interface it to the robotic platform. The added IO pins make it less challenging to connect peperipherals. I assumed I would have fun with this thing. I under valued it before I got my hands on it. This thing, although slow, is an amazing fit for my project on a budget.
He loves it. He's very impressed.
Really good improvements to the platform.
Excellent job!! Thanks
The Pi powered on and gave me the menu of operating systems as it should. I chose Raspian OS. All was fine until I chose US English and things went south. I have reloaded the operating system from the Raspberry Pi web site. Waiting for time to get back to it and see how it goes. Other than that, very powerful unit for the size and price. My buddies who purchased the model A were jealous at the added features on the B+
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Just a quick warning to future customers of this product. While the first 26 pins of the 40pin GPIO connector may be signal compatible with add-ons designed for previous R-Pi models, it may not be physically compatible.
This is because most cables on the market sold to fit this connector are IDC (Insulation Displacement Connector) connectors. Nothing wrong with that, ribbon cable IDC connectors are inexpensive to procure and fast to assemble. But, because of how most ribbon cable IDC connectors are made, the sides are too wide to fit between 0.1" spaced header pins (there are clips there that hold the connector together). Some are wider than others. Because of the extra width of the 26pin connectors when trying to attach them to a 40pin header pins 27 and 28 will either be bent to the side and the connector may or may not be able to completely seat, or one should just throw away the ability to use the ID EEPROM with future connections and just clip pins 27 and 28.
If the 40pin connector was 42 pins with 27 and 28 already removed this wouldn't be an issue, but that is much more expensive to custom modify headers like that.
PCB modules should be fine as long as the boards don't interfere with the new placement of tall components.
I just got this kit yesterday. It is awesome. I was able to set up with NOOBS in 10 minutes. Plus, the GPiO connector gives you more pin out than an Arduino.
Question - Does the microSD card programmed with a distro or is it empty?
Yes, it does come with NOOBS (which has a few distros on it), check out the description of the SD card which we sell separately.
You guys at sparkfun ever heard of Kano: kano.me You could supply them with parts or support them.
what is the class of the microSD card?
It appears to be class 6
SDHC, right on the card.