Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ First Impressions

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I have always been curious about the tiny computer called Raspberry Pi but I didn’t have the time or opportunity to buy one until now. I got the latest version (Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+) along with bundled accessories from AliExpress for $65. I think it was a good deal considering what I got which I will explain to you later on. But before that and for your convenience, here are some quick facts about Raspberry Pi that I got from Wikipedia:

Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+

* The Raspberry Pi is a series of small single-board computers developed in the United Kingdom by the Raspberry Pi Foundation

* It aims to promote teaching of basic computer science in schools and in developing countries.

* The original model became far more popular than anticipated, selling outside its target market for uses such as robotics.

* According to the Raspberry Pi Foundation, more than 5 million Raspberry Pis were sold by February 2015, making it the best-selling British computer.

* In March 2018, sales reached 19 million.

* On the CPU level, the first generation Raspberry Pi is similar to a 300 MHz Pentium II of 1997–99. While its graphical capabilities are roughly equivalent to the performance of the Xbox of 2001.

* More info about Raspberry Pi including tech specs can be found HERE

First Impressions

I have only seen a Raspberry Pi in photos before so I was quite in awe of its size when I finally opened the box. It measures just 85.60mm by 56.5mm or around 3 by 2 inches.

Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ beside my iPhone 6 and glasses for size comparison

As I said, I got the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ rather cheap since it is bundled with a case, power cord, 32GB micro SD card + adapter, HDMI cable, heatsink, USB cable, and 3.5 inch touchscreen display. It is loaded with a 1.4 GHz 64-bit quad-core ARM Cortex-A53 processor, 1 GB RAM, gigabit Ethernet, on-board dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.2, Power over Ethernet (PoE) feature, and USB and network boot capabilities.

Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ running Raspbian OS

The first thing that I did after unboxing the package was placed the Raspberry Pi inside the included plastic case. The plastic case needs to be assembled and it didn’t come with instructions so I had to figure it out myself. Next, I searched on Google on how to install an OS into my Raspberry Pi. So, I downloaded Raspbian, a Debian-based OS highly optimized for the Raspberry Pi and installed it. On my next post I will be sharing with you more about Raspbian and will guide you on how to install it and give you tips on some of the things that I did after installation.

Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ setup alongside my iPad Pro

As you can see from the photos above, I now have a full-pledged desktop powered by a tiny computer. I connected my Raspberry Pi to my 13-inch HD display and it runs smoothly without lag or graphics issues. I also connected a wireless mini keyboard with built-in touchpad and an external hard drive to complete the setup. As of now, I am using my Raspberry Pi as file and VNC server (set up my iPad Pro as VNC viewer). I also intend to use it for testing Linux distros and for doing a bit of Python programming.

As I’ve said, my next post will be all about installing and setting up Raspbian on Raspberry Pi so watch out.   

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