The Raspberry Pi is a mini computer that you can convert into many different things. For example, you can stream movies and series or play retro games with it. Curious about the possibilities of the Raspberry Pi 3 or Raspberry Pi 4? Do you want to tinker with the Raspberry Pi yourself? In this article you can read how to prepare the Raspberry Pi 3B to start. From purchase to installation.
The Raspberry Pi is available as a bundle or separately. With the bundles you buy a complete package, often with pre-installed operating system and all other necessities such as an adapter. This article takes the bare-bones Raspberry Pi 3B as a guide.
Buy Raspberry Pi
First of all, you purchase a Raspberry Pi. If you only buy the mini-computer you will receive the following package.
The Raspberry Pi 3B features:
- • 4x 2.0 USB ports
- • 1.2GHz processor
- • 1GB DDR2 RAM Memory
- • Ethernet connection
- •Bluetooth 4.1
- • 3.5mm jack
- • micro-usb connection (adapter for the power)
You can put the mini-computer in a case yourself. But you can also buy it in a case. The housing is available for a price between 3 and 20 euros.
You need an adapter to power the 3B. The Raspberry Pi must be connected to a 2.5A micro-usb of +5.1V. You can buy a universal power supply via the official Raspberry Pi site. They say this one is the most reliable. I myself still had a micro-usb adapter from an old mobile phone. I have used this myself and it works fine. You plug the adapter into the socket and then connect the USB to micro-usb to your Raspberry.
To control the computer you have to use a mouse and keyboard. This model has four USB ports.
Install Raspberry Pi
To get the Raspberry Pi running you need an SD card. Here you need to set up the operating system. After all, with your desktop or PC you also put Windows on your hard drive. Most SD cards are either 16 or 32 GB. You could buy an SD card with an operating system on it or you could buy one yourself and then set up an operating system yourself.
You will also need to use something to read the SD card. Some PCs or laptops already have an SD card reader built-in. If not? Then you can purchase a separate SD card reader. This can be connected via a USB port.
Below is an overview of the most commonly used operating systems:
- Windows 10 IoT Core
- Arch Linux
- RISC OS
The choice of OS depends on what you want to use the computer for. Raspbian is the most common system. This is officially supported by the makers and is an all-round system. He can do anything that is within the power of the computer. Open Source Media Center is also a widely used system. OSMC is intended to turn your Raspberry into a real media player. The OS was developed to work well with Kodi. With Kodi you can stream movies and series. You also have RetroPie, for example. This system turns your mini computer into a true retro console.
As a beginner you can choose to download NOOBS via the official website. This is software meant for beginners. Via NOOBS you can install operating systems such as Raspbian and LibreELEC. Read below how to install Raspbian on an SD card yourself:
Download the operating system first. This can be downloaded as a .zip file. To get the file you need you need to extract this .zip folder. This can be done via balenaEchter. Download this program and then run this:
• Download balenaEtcher and install it.
• Connect your SD card to the card reader
• Open balenaEtcher and select from your hard disk the .img file of the operating system and choose Write to the sd card
• Select the SD card where you want to put the .img file
• Check again if it is correct and click on Flash! writing to the sd card will now start
Then insert the SD card with the installed operating system into your Raspberry Pi and boot it up. Voila, your mini computer is now ready to use.
Raspberry Pi 4
When you buy the Raspberry Pi 4 you have to pay attention to a number of things. The latest version differs from its predecessor in a number of ways.
First of all, the shape is different. The Ethernet connection is in a different place. The housing is therefore also different. So you can't carelessly use your housing of the 3. In addition, the 4 has two micro HDMI connections instead of a normal HDMI connection. The food is also different now. The 4 gets its power via a usb-c connection instead of micro-usb. In addition, two of the four 2.0 USB ports have been exchanged for two 3.0 USB ports.