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Hardware Raspberry Pi review

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by brumgrunt, 16 Apr 2012.

  1. ssj12

    ssj12 Member

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    since i am a novice at this sort of thing, how is this powered?
     
  2. badders

    badders Neuken in de Keuken

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    Yes, they stood a glass of water next to it.
     
  3. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    It has a microUSB port. Just plug any old tablet or phone charger in and you're away - or use a powered USB hub. The whole thing runs on 5V 700mA, or 5V 500mA for the Model A (the Ethernet circuitry and integrated USB hub account for the extra 200mA.)

    Well, I say 'any old charger,' but I found that it didn't like the charger for my HP TouchPad - which is odd, 'cos it's a 5V 2A model. Swapped it out for a 5V 1A I had lying around and all was well. Still haven't figured that one out...
     
  4. MiNiMaL_FuSS

    MiNiMaL_FuSS ƬӇЄƦЄ ƁЄ ƇƠƜƧ ӇЄƦЄ.

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    This.

    Happy to be proven wrong?
     
  5. Guinevere

    Guinevere Mega Mom

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    And is also a bit stuck in the past. Adobe have stated they will never again bring Flash to any new platforms and are basically on housekeeping duties for their existing releases.

    Flash is now unnecessary, and it's just a matter of time before the HTML 5 toolchains catch up fully.
     
  6. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    If you're anxious to get your hands on a Pi, Farnell has just re-opened pre-orders at just shy of £30 - and it's throwing a free T-shirt into the mix.

    http://t.co/wI4624lm
     
  7. murkle

    murkle New Member

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    Java works fine for me:
    sudo apt-get install openjdk-6-jre
     
  8. Blackshark

    Blackshark New Member

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    If you look at all the major NAS developers, gigabit (with actual proper gigabit 100MB/s speed) requires a huge amount more than most ARM processors can provide. However the RPi will provide enough bang to get you 10MB/s maybe top out the USB connection.

    Thanks BT for the review.
     
  9. TheKrumpet

    TheKrumpet Once more, into the breach!

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    I'm pretty sure that this was regarding mobile devices; do you have any evidence that the same is happening for desktop PCs?

    Also, Flash isn't unnecessary, it's just now part of the Adobe AIR suite. It didn't die, it evolved.
     
  10. Cupboard

    Cupboard I'm not a modder.

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    2 bay NAS with bit torrent: £45 (Zyxel from DABs, or you can have a D Link from scan for £50 which is what I have).

    Raspberry Pi: £30, hard disk enclosure: £10. Total is £40 for one disk or £50 for two ignoring the cost of powering the Pi.

    Cost difference is negligible, one is much neater than the other and doesn't require messing around.

    Am I still going to buy a Pi? Yes, probably two, but getting one just for NAS purposes seems silly to me unless you want it to do something a bit different.
     
  11. dark_avenger

    dark_avenger Well-Known Member

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    They have come down a bit since last time I looked then it seems.

    Only advantage of using a Pi over a normal NAS is being able to run anything you like.

    SABnzbd, Sickbeard and Couchpotato are all Python based so shouldn't be an issue to run on the Pi
     
  12. GuilleAcoustic

    GuilleAcoustic Ook ? Ook !

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    I really see the pi as a replacement for lightweight client in university. It's cheaper and more powerfull.

    It's also a nice solution for compiter initiation at school.
     
  13. Dave Lister

    Dave Lister Member

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    I'm wondering if I can hook up one to my cars dashboard dvd player and then plug a gps unit in to it and load on a load of music vids. I'm guessing it will be near impossible to get the touchscreen to control it though :(
     
  14. Byron C

    Byron C *psst!* This guy is a loser!

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    Fantastic review, even though I needed no review to conclude that I will be buying one (or rather several) of these!

    It is worth pointing out that while an awful lot has been done with the software, it will take a little time for the RasPi-specific optimisations to mature. Given the interest in this board though, I don't think you'll have to wait too long - especially with the upcoming educational release. It's also worth mentioning that an Arch distribution has just been posted on the Raspberry Pi website.

    I suspect that much of the interest in the RasPi around these parts will be in running it as a headless server of some kind - be it NAS, DLNA, http, etc. In these cases you don't need a GUI, and you'll likely get much better performance.

    Gigabit ethernet came up an awful lot in the "want to have" debates around the Pi. The reason that they chose not to include it was that the controllers would have added to the cost massively. The USB controller they currently use has ethernet support built in, which is why we've even got ethernet in the first place.

    The foundation is way ahead of you - take a look at the Gertboard... :)

    Officially, the power requirements are 700mA. However from what I've read on the official forums, few of the alpha/beta boards are actually using more than 500mA under normal usage. Probably a smart idea to have an adapter that can supply at least 700mA, especially if you're loading the USB bus, but it'll be interesting to see what the power usage in a real-world scenario actually is - especially if it's running headless with no KB/mouse connected.

    It's perfectly possible - touch screen control in Linux has been possible for a while. My O2 joggler can run a standard Linux distro and has built-in touchscreen control. It basically emulates a big mouse. Though if there are no kernel modules or drivers already available for the touchscreen you want to use, you'll likely have to port/compile them yourself for the ARM architecture.

    Actually if you want a ready-to-go touchscreen media machine that's available now, the O2 Joggler (the ba***rd love-child of a tablet & photo frame) is well worth a look. You can only get them second-hand, but they go for around £50-£60 on eBay and feature:

    Full x86 Atom chip
    512MB RAM
    720p (and possibly 1080p) decoding
    1GB built in storage (but can boot from USB with no hacks)
    Built-in 7" capacitive (but not multi-touch) screen
    Heavily customised/optimised stock OS
    Several Linux distros, all of which include an optimised version of XBMC
    WinXP build (though WinXP is not a pleasant experience when running from a Flash drive)
    Android distros, including Ice Cream Sandwich (although it's x86 Android, so some more advanced stuff - like Flash - will not run)


    Not to slight the Raspberry Pi in any way, but if you were to rip a Joggler from it's casing - and provide an alterative heatsink for the chip, which shouldn't be a challenge for a bit-tech reader ;) - you could probably be up and running far quicker than using a Pi.
     
  15. Dave Lister

    Dave Lister Member

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    The Joggler looks like a bargain but I already have my trusty HP touchpad. My in car dvd is one of the motorised dash mounted ones but due to it's high cost I don't think it was ever that popular, so finding modules or drivers would probably be near impossible. It's sad really because it is a lovely crisp screen but its limited to dvd's or an analogue video signal (RCA or 3.5mm jack). Back when I had a nokia n95 I used to be able to hook that into it so I had my phone screen displayed on it, but phone companies don't seem to do that anymore :(

    Anyway I'll keep an eye on the development of the PI and keep my fingers crossed that one day I can put one in my car.
     
  16. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    It's hard to measure, tho': the power draw is so low that you end up measuring the USB power adapter more than the device the adapter's powering... There's also no on-board ACPI to get measurements from (or, if there is, I haven't figured out how to talk to it.)

    Hooking it up to my Maplin-branded pile-of-crap Kill-a-watt equivalent gives me a reading of 3W, but the fact that the figure doesn't change under load suggests that I'm hitting the lower levels of its capabilities. By contrast, the SheevaPlug mentioned in the article hits about 5W under load on the same device.
     
  17. Landy_Ed

    Landy_Ed Combat Novice

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    Any notion of sound quality & audio latency?
     
  18. Byron C

    Byron C *psst!* This guy is a loser!

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    Ah, I misunderstood; I guess you're talking about using the in-car system as a screen for the Pi, rather than mounting a custom-fitted screen & computer assembly into the dash... The Pi does have an analogue video connection, but control would indeed be an issue without a touchscreen, or some form of joystick/remote.

    You could indeed be hitting the floor of the measurement of the watt-o-meter. At the full stated 700mA load, it should read around 3.5W; if it's only drawing 3W, that suggests a current consumption of 600mA - but, as you say, the true value could be even lower - I have seen reports of as little as 1W idle (200mA drain).
     
  19. steveo_mcg

    steveo_mcg New Member

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    You'll need to put a proper multi-meter in line with the DC end of the power supply. Hack open a usb cable and connect the mA reading in series with the the +5v line.
     
  20. Gareth Halfacree

    Gareth Halfacree WIIGII! Staff Administrator Super Moderator Moderator

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    Given that trying to play sound at the moment results in a kernel oops, I'd say "low." Updated ALSA drivers are due soon, and others have had more luck with other distros.
     
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