Story 2015-12-01 W9ZP New Raspberry Pi Zero: the $5 computer

New Raspberry Pi Zero: the $5 computer

in hardware on (#W9ZP)
story imageThe original Raspberry Pi Model B and its successors put a programmable computer within reach of anyone with $20-35 to spend. Today, I’m pleased to announce the immediate availability of Raspberry Pi Zero, made in Wales and priced at just $5. Zero is a full-fledged member of the Raspberry Pi family, featuring:

A Broadcom BCM2835 application processor 1GHz ARM11 core (40% faster than Raspberry Pi 1)
A micro-SD card slot
A mini-HDMI socket for 1080p60 video output
Micro-USB sockets for data and power
An unpopulated 40-pin GPIO header Identical pinout to Model A+/B+/2B
An unpopulated composite video header
Our smallest ever form factor, at 65mm x 30mm x 5mm

Raspberry Pi Zero runs Raspbian and all your favourite applications, including Scratch, Minecraft and Sonic Pi. It is available today in the UK from The Pi Hut and Pimoroni, and in the US from Adafruit and in-store at your local branch of Micro Center. We’ve built several tens of thousands of units so far, and are building more, but we expect demand to outstrip supply for the next little while.

You'll need a mini-HDMI and a micro-USB adapter/cable

Happy hacking!
Reply 11 comments

Honestly... (Score: 1, Informative)

by Anonymous Coward on 2015-12-01 19:46 (#WB0C) seems like the C.H.I.P. is a much better buy.

Re: Honestly... (Score: 3, Informative)

by on 2015-12-01 20:23 (#WB4E)

The lack of HDMI and SD seems like a big oversight, while being twice the price. WiFi is a nice addition, if you need it for your project, and don't need HDMI or SD.

Re: Honestly... (Score: 1)

by on 2015-12-08 13:57 (#X1CH)

Not using SD is hardly a fault. It uses built-in eMMC flash, just like every cellphone and tablet.

HDMI on something like this would be just brain dead. You debug something like this over a serial wire. I always thought micro HDMI on the Beaglebone was a crazy waste. Thankfully they have corrected that on the Beaglebone Green. In the case of something as powerful as the Beaglebone, you just run SSH over ethernet for debugging, and it has a header to attach an FTDI cable if you want to go lower than that.

If you want HDMI for some project, you just use a Raspberry Pi 2 B. That one is already almost free, and not much bigger.

Re: Honestly... (Score: 1)

by on 2015-12-08 19:54 (#X2J3)

Not using SD is hardly a fault.
It is if you want more than those 4GB of storage... or to easily exchange files.
HDMI on something like this would be just brain dead. You debug something like this over a serial wire.
These are high-end devices, which are quite capable of decoding HD video, and that's been a very common use of RPi hardware. You may not be interested in that use, but clearly many people are. If everything but a serial port is unnecessary, why does CHIP include composite video output?

Wow (Score: 1)

by on 2015-12-02 04:51 (#WC6M)

I continue to be amazed at the race to the bottom. I know I can get a microprocessor for dozens of cents in quantity of 1, and have been for some time, but a fully built computer with a fast, fairly popular processor architecture (sans case, monitor, "hard drive," etc.) for $5 is something wholly different. Yay technology I guess.

Re: Wow (Score: 0)

by Anonymous Coward on 2015-12-04 00:27 (#WK1W)

At least it's not just a race to the bottom in wages, any more.

The school I am teaching in is considering getting Raspberry Pi (Score: 1)

by on 2015-12-03 06:14 (#WG1V)

The school I am teaching in is considering getting Raspberry Pi computers. As programming will get bundled into all school subjects, there is a need for small programmable computers with GPIO in order to boost the pupils creativity.

I am going to suggest to get Raspberry Pi 2 B for development of a product. Once the development is ready, one can make it into a ready product by replacing Pi 2 B with Pi Zero, and it is something cheap enough that the pupils could even get it home.

For example, if one wants to make an "extension cord" with a box turning on and off the current when you clap your hands, the Pi Zero would get mounted inside of that box, making the product cheaper. The development itself would be on a Pi 2 B as it is strong enough to keep both an IDE and a browser open for reading documentation, allowing the pupil to do the whole development directly on a real Pi.

Re: The school I am teaching in is considering getting Raspberry Pi (Score: 1)

by on 2015-12-08 14:37 (#X1GT)

Just keep in mind that the 2 B is armv7 while the zero is only armv6

Can't compete with Chinese tablet (Score: 0)

by Anonymous Coward on 2015-12-04 15:06 (#WN37)

While I'm sure that these things have their use cases, I don't think they make much sense for most of my projects. When you add the power supply, the display, touchscreen, storage, wi-fi and a custom case your cost comes out already greater than a $50 Chinese tablet, which also has battery backup to boot.

These tablets also come with all the necessary drivers. You just wipe out the Android and install a minimal Linux userland. GPIO is quite easy to do with $5 worth of parts. Install some tinyusb on an atmega and you're done. This type of GPIO is much better in fact. You can do bit banging or real time control all you like without being worried about the general purpose OS scheduling you out. Plus, with the USB or serial interface you can test the electronicky parts using a regular desktop and then build the control tablet when you get it right.

I used to tinker with bananas and raspberries, now I don't really bother. This new part may come handy though, due to its size. If you don't need many peripherals and need to fit in a small space, it could be useful.

What would you guys use it for?

Re: Can't compete with Chinese tablet (Score: 1)

by on 2015-12-08 14:01 (#X1D0)

Is your Chinese tablet 65x30mm? No? Then stop comparing apples to oranges.

not a robot (Score: 0)

by Anonymous Coward on 2015-12-06 03:36 (#WSKA)

i just want something 100% open hardware and software.

is that too much to ask?