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Raspberry Pi - the easiest and most affordable htpc solution

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wirednuts

Diamond Member
Jan 26, 2007
7,121
1
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hmm not so impressed looking at videos online.

very slow boot time.

how will you hook up USB external hard drive? There are only 2 USB jacks and you need them for keyboard/mouse.

It has no enclosure so static electricity could fry it with all those components bare on the PCB.
it idles around 100ma, so there is never a need to turn it off.

you get a usb dongle, or you don't plug in anything but a harddrive. that's what I do, I don't use a mouse or keyboard- I use a cellphone.

I, as have countless others, have been using pi's without cases for a while now. no static death that I have had or heard of. its always grounded through the power input...
 

Gillbot

Lifer
Jan 11, 2001
28,830
16
81
hmm not so impressed looking at videos online.

very slow boot time.

how will you hook up USB external hard drive? There are only 2 USB jacks and you need them for keyboard/mouse.

It has no enclosure so static electricity could fry it with all those components bare on the PCB.
I have mine stuck to the TV and powered by the USB port on the back. By the time my TV powers up, the Pi is already running no problem. I have 1 cable run to it, ethernet. I have a USB receiver for a Lenovo multimedia keyboard/mouse but I rarely use it. I could configure it to be on wireless and there wouldn't need to be a single cable run to it other than the USB power.
 

yhelothar

Lifer
Dec 11, 2002
18,406
35
91
Any of you guys worked out a WiFi solution for it? It's just impractical for me to route a wire there.

If I hook up a wifi dongle though, I won't have enough USB ports for both the KB and mouse simultaneously.

Anyone worked out a solution?
 

yhelothar

Lifer
Dec 11, 2002
18,406
35
91
it idles around 100ma, so there is never a need to turn it off.

you get a usb dongle, or you don't plug in anything but a harddrive. that's what I do, I don't use a mouse or keyboard- I use a cellphone.

I, as have countless others, have been using pi's without cases for a while now. no static death that I have had or heard of. its always grounded through the power input...
How does that cellphone interface with the Pi? Bluetooth?
 

Shephard

Senior member
Nov 3, 2012
766
0
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not sure what you mean using a smartphone to control it since it's linux.

also it's really not $35. you need a lot more to get it going.

hdmi cable - $5 if you want the cheapest.
ethernet cable - $5.
32gb sd card if you want to hold movies - $30
usb cord - $5.
power supply - $30.
keyboard & mouse - $15.

so probably $140 after tax give or take.

most people here probably already have ethernet cables, maybe a keyboard & mouse, and an hdmi cable. most I would guess don't have micro USB, a power supply, and an SD card laying around.
 

wirednuts

Diamond Member
Jan 26, 2007
7,121
1
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not sure what you mean using a smartphone to control it since it's linux.

also it's really not $35. you need a lot more to get it going.

hdmi cable - $5 if you want the cheapest.
ethernet cable - $5.
32gb sd card if you want to hold movies - $30
usb cord - $5.
power supply - $30.
keyboard & mouse - $15.

so probably $140 after tax give or take.

most people here probably already have ethernet cables, maybe a keyboard & mouse, and an hdmi cable. most I would guess don't have micro USB, a power supply, and an SD card laying around.
all of those extras you would need with any computer. and power supplies are more like $7 shipped off ebay for 5v 2a ones that can also power you usb hub or hubs, up to 128 ports if you want.
 

wirednuts

Diamond Member
Jan 26, 2007
7,121
1
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not sure what you mean using a smartphone to control it since it's linux.

it works through wifi and its pretty amazing how well it works. since you clearly have no idea what a raspberry pi does, I would refrain from trying to tear it down with false basis. oh, btw, android is based off Linux.
 
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wirednuts

Diamond Member
Jan 26, 2007
7,121
1
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Any of you guys worked out a WiFi solution for it? It's just impractical for me to route a wire there.

If I hook up a wifi dongle though, I won't have enough USB ports for both the KB and mouse simultaneously.

Anyone worked out a solution?
any wifi dongle with somewhat current Linux drivers should work. you just install with cmd lines in ssh.

I haven't installed a wifi adapter myself, my plan is to use the Ethernet port and plug into a router set to ap mode. i feel that would be the most stable way...

but doing things from ssh is very easy. i just set my pi up to connect to my win7 network, now it shows us as any old network device. its great to add music and playlists this way...
 

Shephard

Senior member
Nov 3, 2012
766
0
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it works through wifi and its pretty amazing how well it works. since you clearly have no idea what a raspberry pi does, I would refrain from trying to tear it down with false basis. oh, btw, android is based off Linux.
so wow defensive.

It's more than $35 to get setup that is a fact some people are mislead thinking you just need the little computer itself. It doesn't come with a power supply.

also what are you talking about USB hub? I hope you aren't plugging the PI into your computer...

I have a little TV with a USB connector, but a lot of TV's don't maybe more expensive models.

Also looking at youtube videos the PI struggles with real Blue Ray 1080p videos. It doesn't have a problem with ripped compressed 600-1gb not true HD videos though.
 

wirednuts

Diamond Member
Jan 26, 2007
7,121
1
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im getting defensive because you don't have experience with what youre objecting about.

whats the alternative? every other diy computer comes with a power supply? the cheapest build you can do besides the pi is an e350 mini itx board for $70 and that is like 5x the size and 10x the power draw.
 

Shephard

Senior member
Nov 3, 2012
766
0
0
im getting defensive because you don't have experience with what youre objecting about.

whats the alternative? every other diy computer comes with a power supply? the cheapest build you can do besides the pi is an e350 mini itx board for $70 and that is like 5x the size and 10x the power draw.
or just use current computer with an hdmi cable and that can play real blue rays and hold all your media?
 

Gillbot

Lifer
Jan 11, 2001
28,830
16
81
Any of you guys worked out a WiFi solution for it? It's just impractical for me to route a wire there.

If I hook up a wifi dongle though, I won't have enough USB ports for both the KB and mouse simultaneously.

Anyone worked out a solution?
I use a powered USB Hub but you can also use the Lenovo Multimedia keyboard which is a mouse/kb in one port and the Wifi in the other.
all of those extras you would need with any computer. and power supplies are more like $7 shipped off ebay for 5v 2a ones that can also power you usb hub or hubs, up to 128 ports if you want.
This ^

I got a Powered USB Hub from ebay with a stout power brick (5v 2.5A) and use it for everything.
 

wirednuts

Diamond Member
Jan 26, 2007
7,121
1
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or just use current computer with an hdmi cable and that can play real blue rays and hold all your media?
ok, I hate to call people out on this but you're just trolling. raspberry pi's are the alternative to "just hooking your $1000 computer to your tv that costs $10 a month to run and sits there in your entertainment center like a noisy boulder."

what's so neat is they weren't even designed to do this. they were supposed to be diy educational boards for low income needs. the fact that people got xbmc to run, and it works as well as it does, is what exciting.

we get the fact that you don't like something you don't even understand. let it rest.
 

Shephard

Senior member
Nov 3, 2012
766
0
0
ok, I hate to call people out on this but you're just trolling. raspberry pi's are the alternative to "just hooking your $1000 computer to your tv that costs $10 a month to run and sits there in your entertainment center like a noisy boulder."

what's so neat is they weren't even designed to do this. they were supposed to be diy educational boards for low income needs. the fact that people got xbmc to run, and it works as well as it does, is what exciting.

we get the fact that you don't like something you don't even understand. let it rest.
I didn't say that. Just telling you it's more than $35 price tag and can't play real blue ray discs. If people are compressing then that's fine.

also you would need good quality USB hub since some cannot power as an external HD as you suggest.
 
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Gillbot

Lifer
Jan 11, 2001
28,830
16
81
I didn't say that. Just telling you it's more than $35 price tag and can't play real blue ray discs. If people are compressing then that's fine.

also you would need good quality USB hub since some cannot power as an external HD as you suggest.
You are still trying to troll because you are looking over many replies to your statements.

I ran my Pi without a case and any extras. I had an SD card and multimedia keyboard/mouse combo already here so my initial total into the Pi was $35 for the unit itself and $4.50 for a USB hub on ebay shipped. (and it came with a 5v 2.5A power supply) For under $40 total, I have a working system.

What you fail to realize is MANY who are buying these are using them as a low power alternative to the full size PC that WAS their media player before. Trying to add in the cost of a keyboard and other items many of us already have on hand is silly, because you would still need those to hook in to the full PC anyway. If you want to compare apples to apples, compare across the board and do it right.

To those who would rather build a full PC, by all means do it. I use the Pi to replace a full PC because it's quieter and it's powered by my TV. Now if you want to break it down we can.

PC = hard drive, Pi = SD card. Cost Advantage Pi
PC = Mobo/CPU/Cooler/Ram, Pi = All in one. Cost Advantage Pi
PC = KB/Mouse, Pi = KB/Mouse. Cost Advantage DRAW
PC = Case if you want, Pi = Case if you want. Cost Advantage DRAW
PC = Power Supply, Pi = USB Port on nearby device, USB hub or USB Charger. Cost Advantage Pi
PC = Wifi/Ethernet, Pi = Wifi/Ethernet. Cost Advantage DRAW

As I said, if you have all the parts extra either one is a suitable option. I like the Pi and it's a neat little device. If you accept it for what it is and what it will cost, it is well worth the price. If you need more functionality then yes, by all means build a full PC and stop complaining.
 

Shephard

Senior member
Nov 3, 2012
766
0
0
Pi doesn't have wifi unless there is a new model I don't know about.

Model A - 1 usb no ethernet. (for school use)
Model B - 2 usb and ethernet. (home theater)

link me your usb hub I want to see price and check specs.
 

Gillbot

Lifer
Jan 11, 2001
28,830
16
81
Pi doesn't have wifi unless there is a new model I don't know about.

Model A - 1 usb no ethernet. (for school use)
Model B - 2 usb and ethernet. (home theater)

link me your usb hub I want to see price and check specs.
Further proof you are trolling. You can go search ebay and do your own research. I know what I got and know it powers my Pi fine. Either way, I don't need the USB hub since I can power the Pi from my TV directly so it's a moot point.

Most PC's don't come with Wifi either so a USB wifi dongle will be needed on both if you want wireless. Also, FWIW, I didn't know they were still selling Rev A as all i've seen for sale is Rev B which has Ethernet like most PC's do.

Now stop trolling in the thread, add something useful to the discussion or please exit.
 

wirednuts

Diamond Member
Jan 26, 2007
7,121
1
0
ok I just want to mention again about the wifi thing, for anyone that might search this thread in the future.

with the model B, you get an Ethernet port, so you do not need a usb-wifi adapter. a $25 micro router can be turned into an AP plugged into the Ethernet port. this way, there is no drivers to install and you have excellent reception.

I just stress it because its so much easier and more stable this way. I never understood all of these usb wifi adapters when most computers have working Ethernet ports...
 

Plugers

Senior member
Mar 22, 2002
547
0
0
not sure what you mean using a smartphone to control it since it's linux.

also it's really not $35. you need a lot more to get it going.

hdmi cable - $5 if you want the cheapest.
free, probably laying around
ethernet cable - $5..
free, probably laying around
32gb sd card if you want to hold movies - $30.
32g Class 10 easily had for $20 , but you only need a 4g if your streaming your files $5
usb cord - $5..
free, probably laying around
power supply - $30..
not needed, runs off USB port on TV
keyboard & mouse - $15..
free, probably laying around, or not even needed
so probably $140 after tax give or take.

most people here probably already have ethernet cables, maybe a keyboard & mouse, and an hdmi cable. most I would guess don't have micro USB, a power supply, and an SD card laying around.
 

poison.apple

Junior Member
Jan 19, 2013
6
0
0
I've looked into this Rasberry Pi, it's garbage. All the work involved just to get a laggy xbmc is not worth it.

Please read Gillbot's response below. It's spot on. -Admin DrPizza
 
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Gillbot

Lifer
Jan 11, 2001
28,830
16
81
I've looked into this Rasberry Pi, it's garbage. All the work involved just to get a laggy xbmc is not worth it.
Ok, do people just not get it. Add something constructive or just flat stay out. If you don't have one, can't add anything useful to the conversation or otherwise have ACTUAL information, DO NOT POST HERE.
 

wirednuts

Diamond Member
Jan 26, 2007
7,121
1
0
Ok, do people just not get it. Add something constructive or just flat stay out. If you don't have one, can't add anything useful to the conversation or otherwise have ACTUAL information, DO NOT POST HERE.
thanks. especially when I titled the thread the way I did. I wasn't even thinking there could be a debate, but apparently I was very wrong.

people constantly worry about costs, direct and indirect, but when someone makes something that is leaps and bounds cheaper and easier there is still hatred for it. makes no sense to me, especially since I have been using my pi setup for a month now every day. its an ULTIMATE jukebox player.

so much so, I think im going to take my other pi and install it INTO my home theater receiver. theres room in there to mount a pi, and since the android phone control works so well it could easily run headless. and, if I want, I could run whatever ports I want to the back where there is plenty of I/O port room..
 

Shephard

Senior member
Nov 3, 2012
766
0
0
I don't think that's very fair saying I didn't have actual information. I watched videos on youtube and read comments on multiple sites including the anandtech thread I linked.

Ok I can see it being fine as a jukebox.

I think people can be mislead that is can stream perfect 1080p. Not that I have seen.

All early early reports on Model B said it struggled. With some xmbc tweaks it can do it now, but not TRUE 1080p. You still must compress. 10gb > 800mb 1080p rip for example. Good, but not the best quality. Some videos show it can take a while if you want to seek to a certain point in the movie and sometimes it will artifact for a few seconds before going back to normal.

I may have to get one myself just to do my own tests. I don't see any videos of anyone's pi posted in this topic.
 

Gillbot

Lifer
Jan 11, 2001
28,830
16
81
Why do we need to post video to justify our own experience and satisfaction of the Pi to you? We stated over and over, if you prefer a full PC and the cost + power consumption behind that, do it and exit this thread.

Otherwise, you can watch all the youtube videos you want. For every one youtube video you find that bashes the Pi, there will be another who raves about it. It all boils down to what you expect out of it vs. what you pay for it. It's been stated a thousand times, it is NOT as powerful as a full PC. It doesn't have the features of a full PC. Can it handle video and such well? Yes. Does it do it for less than a full PC? Probably.

If you buy a 10 speed bike expecting to go drag racing and win, you will inevitably be disappointed with your results.
 

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