Category Archives: Reviews

Review: Pimoroni/Cyntech Pibrella

There is no shortage of clip-on boards designed for the Raspberry Pi, almost all designed to make the tiny computer’s GPIO pins more accessible in order to ease the connection of devices to it, particularly ones that operate at voltages that are not Pi friendly.

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Review: Pi-Supply Pi-Crust

I came across Pi-Supply’s Pi-Crust add-on board quite by chance, but it immediately caught my eye as quite possibly the most useful add-on for the Raspberry Pi there is. Having ordered one, received it and soldered all the parts together, I’m no longer sure that it is.

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Review: the Fuze, a Raspberry Pi keyboard case and electronics kit

Back in the day of the board computers of the late 1970s – your Scrumpi, your Nascom 1, your UK-101 et al – it was customary to build a case for it out of wood. If you were a better equipped ‘constructor’ – what we used to call ‘makers’ in those far distant days – you’d build a box out of metal.

The Fuze looks like an old-style home micro case.
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Raspberry Pi Case Review 2: Cyntech and ModMyPi

A little while ago, I tried a pair of the early Raspberry Pi cases. Desiring a change, I fetched myself two more, one from British online retailer ModMyPi, the other from UK electronics firm Cyntech, which also worked with Pi specialist Pimoroni on the Pi Hub, reviewed here.

ModMyPi and Cyntech cases
The ModMyPi and Cyntech Raspberry Pi cases
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Review: the Pimoroni Pi Hub

Raspberry Pi accessory specialist Pimoroni reckons it has the answer to one of the tiny ARM-based computer’s signal limitations: too few USB ports for all the add-ons you might want to hook up to it at any one time.

Pimoroni's Pi Hub
Pimoroni’s Pi Hub: logo-tastic
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Review: the Pimoroni PiGlow

Pimoroni is without doubt one of the most colourful companies to have come to market in support of the growing community of Raspberry Pi fans. The firm shot to fame last year when it released Pibow, one of the first cases for the Pi.

Pimoroni Piglow
Let there be light: Pimoroni’s Piglow
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Review: the Ciseco Pi-Lite

Not so long ago, a hardware hacker called Jimmie Rodgers decided to solder 126 LEDs onto a small board that could be plugged into the Arduino microcontroller kit. He dubbed it the LoL Shield: ‘LoL’ for ‘lots of LEDs’, and ‘shield’ because that’s that’s what Arduino add-ons are called.

Ciseco Pi-Lite
Ciseco’s Pi-Lite hooked up to my Raspberry Pi
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Retro Review: Thorn EMI Liberator (1985)

In November 2012, I wrote and published the definitive history of the Thorn EMI Liberator, the first British laptop computer, over at The Register. I’d never even heard of the machine when I first saw a picture of it. I spotted the snap while researching the story of the Dragon 32 – some of the Dragon engineers went on to develop the Liberator after Dragon Data, by then a subsidiary of electrical industry giant GEC, was closed down.

Thorn EMI Liberator
The Liberator in action
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Review: Pibow and SB Components Raspberry Pi Cases

I bought a case for my Pi very early on. It seemed sensible: I don’t keep the Pi permanently plugged in, so it’ll always get plenty of handling – not something you want to subject on a naked board to. I got a cheap one – the SB Components case, covered below – but have since begun to wonder whether I needed something better: a case that’s most suited to regular opening and closing while I slip on and off various GPIO add-ons.

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Review: Raspberry Pi beginners’ books

Over at The Register, you can read my round up of five of the latest Raspberry Pi books:

  • The Raspberry Pi User Guide by Eben Upton and Gareth Halfacree
  • Getting Started with the Raspberry Pi by Matt Richardson and Shawn Wallace
  • Raspberry Pi in Easy Steps by Mike McGrath
  • Raspberry Pi for Dummies by Sean McManus and Mike Cook
  • Haynes’ Raspberry Pi Owners’ Workshop Manual by Gray Girling
Wiley’s Pi User Guide: version 2.0 and version 1.0
Wiley’s Pi User Guide: version 2.0 and version 1.0
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