raspberry pi

Testing Raspberry Pi's new Global Shutter Camera

Today Raspberry Pi launched their new Global Shutter Camera.

Global Shutter Camera showing image sensor

Outwardly it is almost identical to the 12 Megapixel High Quality Camera, and like that camera it accepts C and CS mount lenses, or most anything else with the appropriate adapter.

But flipping it over reveals a black plastic cover over the back of the board that is not present on the HQ or M12 HQ Camera:

Testing Raspberry Pi's new Debug Probe

Raspberry Pi Debug Probe Pi 4 model B and Pico W

Yesterday, in tandem with Raspberry Pi's announcement of their new $12 Debug Probe, I received one in the mail (pictured above).

The Debug Probe is powered by an RP2040, and lets you connect from USB to UART (serial) or SWD (Serial Wire Debug), perfect for debugging most embedded devices.

UART is useful to connect to a device's console when you don't have a display or other means of controlling it, and you can find UART/serial/console ports on almost any device with a processor or microcontroller.

The Rock 5 B is not a Raspberry Pi killer—yet

Rock 5 model B on desk with Raspberry Pi in background

Radxa's Rock 5 model B is an ARM single board computer that's 3x faster than a Raspberry Pi. And that's just the 8-core CPU—with PCI Express Gen 3 x4 (the Pi has Gen 2 x1), storage is 7x faster! I got over 3 GB/sec with a KIOXIA XG6 NVMe SSD.

It's still half as slow as modern ARM desktops like Apple's M1 mini, or Microsoft's Dev Kit 2023 (see my review here). But it's way faster than a Pi, it comes with 2.5 Gig Ethernet, it has two M.2 slots on board... and, well—it also starts at $150!

Using PiBenchmarks.com for SBC disk performance testing

For many years, I've maintained some scripts to do basic disk benchmarking for SBCs, to test 1M and 4K sequential and random access speeds, since those are the two most relevant tests for the Linux workloads I run on my Pis.

I've been using this script for years, and it uses fio and iozone to get the metrics I need.

And from time to time, I would test a number of microSD cards on the Pi, or run tests on NVMe SSDs on the Pi, Rock 5 model B, or other SBCs. But my results were usually geared towards a single blog post or a video project.

In 2021 James Chambers set up PiBenchmarks to move to a more community-driven testing dataset.

You can run the following command on your SBC to test the boot storage and upload results directly to PiBenchmarks.com:

Raspberry Pi's Camera Module 3 adds autofocus and new Sony sensor

Raspberry Pi just announced their new Camera Module 3, which comes in four variations (standard and wide angle, normal and NoIR for infrared use), and costs $25 for the standard versions, and $35 for wide angle.

Raspberry Pi Camera Module 3 varieties - standard, wide, and NoIR

That's a step up from the older Camera Module 2, which cost $25 and only came in a 'standard' focal length.

I posted a video reviewing the Camera Module 3 on YouTube, and you can watch it here:

Getting to 1.5 Gbps WiFi 6E on the Raspberry Pi CM4

In the pursuit of doing crazy things on a Raspberry Pi, my latest endeavor was to see if I could consistently pipe more than a gigabit per second of traffic through WiFi using a Raspberry Pi.

Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 IO Board with Intel AX210 on M.2 adapter card

In the past, I had some faltering attempts where sometimes things would work—sort-of—using WiFi 6 (802.11ax, 40 MHz bandwidth, 2x2) using an Intel AX200 M.2 card on the Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4.

Pi Cluster vs Ampere Altra Max 128-core ARM CPU

Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 and Ampere Altra Max M128-30

Sometimes life has a funny way of lining up opportunities, and one presented itself when Patrick from ServeTheHome reached out and said, "Jeff, I have an Ampere Altra Max server. You wanna come see it?"

Of course I did.

But seeing as Patrick is more than 800 miles away, I had to come up with a reason to go see it, so I pulled out my 6-node Raspberry Pi cluster—with it's 24 ARM Cortex A72 CPU cores—and decided to have a little competition.

And of course that competition is documented in a YouTube video:

You can't buy a Raspberry Pi right now

...or at least, not without a lot of patience or a fat wallet.

Scalping Prices of the Raspberry Pi on eBay

But why? And are there any signs Raspberry Pis will become available to the general public again soon?

To be clear, I'm speaking of the mainstream SBC Raspberry Pis, like the Pi 4 model B, the Compute Module 4, the Pi Zero 2 W, and even in many cases the Pi 400. The Pico and Pico W are both readily available, at least in most markets where I've looked (local shortages always exist, but typically not for months or years like with full-size Pis).

Homelab Pi Rack upgrade, just in time for AnsibleFest 2022

AnsibleFest is fast approaching, and this year it'll finally be back in person, in Chicago. Since that's a short jaunt from St. Louis, I'll be headed up to talk about my Homelab this year!

More specifically, I'll be giving a talk titled Ansible for the Homelab, and I'll walk through how I have at least part of my sprawling homelab environment automated using Ansible.

Raspberry Pi Rack Pro by UCTRONICS