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Baz
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Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:54 pm

I'm after the cheapest possible Raspberry Pi that can connect to the internet, either by wifi or ethernet. The internet part is so I can configure it all with PuTTY on my laptop. It will be connected to a TV all day, playing 1080p videos on loop. I will be using this Video Looper with videos being read from the micro SD card, randomised with no intro.

The idea is to buy a Pi for as cheap as possible, get it up and running as required and if the client is happy with it, clone the micro SD card onto a load of other identical devices. I will also be supplying the power supply and HDMI cable for every device.

I’d guess the Pi 1 Model B+ or the Pi Zero W would be the cheapest options? I’ll price up some below but let me know if anyone knows where to get it all cheaper in the UK.


Required:
Raspberry Pi
A case; don't care how it looks.
A power supply.
I guess if I get a Zero, I'll need a mini HDMI/HDMI adaptor?
HDMI lead.
A 128GB micro SD card
Have I missed anything? I won’t need a heatsink if it’s just playing videos all day, will I?


Pi Zero W
Raspberry Pi Zero Wireless £9.10
Raspberry Pi Zero Case - Black - SKU04713 £3.59
Power Supply - UK Plug 5.1V 2.5A £6.00
Pi Zero HDMI Adaptor White (Mini HDMI to HDMI) £2.00
2m HDMI Cable £2.98
Kingston SDCS/128 GB MicroSD Canvas Select Class 10 UHS-I £14.88
Total: £38.55

Strangely, if I go through modmypi and use the bundle creator on the Pi Zero W page I can get the following:
Raspberry Pi Zero: Raspberry Pi Zero Wireless **MMP-0671**
Micro SD Card: No Thanks!
Power Supply Select: UK **MMP-0018**
Zero Case Select: No Thanks!
Mini HDMI/HDMI Adaptor: Mini HDMI/HDMI Adaptor White **MMP-0674**
Micro USB/USB Adaptor: No Thanks!
Zero 40 Pin Header: No
3 Port USB Hub w/ Ethernet: No
Micro USB Shim: No
Workshop Kit: No Thanks
Total cost: £16.00

Add the case I chose earlier, a HDMI cable and the 128GB micro SD card and it comes to £37.45.


Pi 1 B+
Raspberry Pi 1 Model B+ 26.75
Raspberry Pi Model B Case - Clear - MC-RP001-CLR £2.39
Power Supply - UK Plug 5.1V 2.5A £6.00
2m HDMI Cable £2.98
Kingston SDCS/128 GB MicroSD Canvas Select Class 10 UHS-I £14.88
Total: £53.00


Pi 3 B+
Raspberry Pi 3 - Model B+ £34.00
Raspberry Pi Model B Case - Clear - MC-RP001-CLR £2.39
Power Supply - UK Plug 5.1V 2.5A £6.00
2m HDMI Cable £2.98
Kingston SDCS/128 GB MicroSD Canvas Select Class 10 UHS-I £14.88
Total: £60.25

So the Zero wins, I guess? The case is absolutely perfect too. I can’t help feeling like I’m missing something though. I only have experience with the 3 and I just bought the starter kit for Retropie so everything came with it.

Will the Pi Zero W play 1080p videos okay? The videos will be 15-20 mins long and there will be about 100 of them.

If I go down the Zero rote I could possibly get the W version to set everything up and then get the non-wifi version for all the clone devices, to save cost. This would work, right? There are no other discernible differences between the Zero W and the Zero? It would save me £4.60 per unit. If the client orders even as few as 20, it's a £92 saving.

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davidcoton
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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Thu Mar 21, 2019 10:22 pm

You will not be able to buy multiple Pi0 or Pi0W at the one-off price -- they will cost more. And may not be available in the quantity you want.

You should be able to get the Pi0WH in any quantity, but it will cost more (still less than the Pi1A+).

Also, you may want to check the Pi3A+, possibly less than the Pi1A+ and much better performance.
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Imperf3kt
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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Thu Mar 21, 2019 10:37 pm

I'd suggest the pi3A+
It has all the features you require and is cheaper than the pi3b or pi3b+

I strongly advise against a "zero" model Pi as it will struggle to perform the required tasks.
That's before accounting for the fact only the Pi0WH is available in bulk (for orders of ~100 units), which is the most expensive Pi Zero model available and only a few dollars cheaper than the much more capable Pi3 series.


Your cost estimation seems unusually low. Reading your post, it sounds like you're getting the micro SD card really cheap.
Are you sure they're not fake?
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fruitoftheloom
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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Fri Mar 22, 2019 7:23 am

Baz wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 9:54 pm
I'm after the cheapest possible Raspberry Pi that can connect to the internet, either by wifi or ethernet. The internet part is so I can configure it all with PuTTY on my laptop. It will be connected to a TV all day, playing 1080p videos on loop. I will be using this Video Looper with videos being read from the micro SD card, randomised with no intro.

The idea is to buy a Pi for as cheap as possible, get it up and running as required and if the client is happy with it, clone the micro SD card onto a load of other identical devices. I will also be supplying the power supply and HDMI cable for every device.

I’d guess the Pi 1 Model B+ or the Pi Zero W would be the cheapest options? I’ll price up some below but let me know if anyone knows where to get it all cheaper in the UK.


Required:
Raspberry Pi
A case; don't care how it looks.
A power supply.
I guess if I get a Zero, I'll need a mini HDMI/HDMI adaptor?
HDMI lead.
A 128GB micro SD card
Have I missed anything? I won’t need a heatsink if it’s just playing videos all day, will I?


Pi Zero W
Raspberry Pi Zero Wireless £9.10
Raspberry Pi Zero Case - Black - SKU04713 £3.59
Power Supply - UK Plug 5.1V 2.5A £6.00
Pi Zero HDMI Adaptor White (Mini HDMI to HDMI) £2.00
2m HDMI Cable £2.98
Kingston SDCS/128 GB MicroSD Canvas Select Class 10 UHS-I £14.88
Total: £38.55

Strangely, if I go through modmypi and use the bundle creator on the Pi Zero W page I can get the following:
Raspberry Pi Zero: Raspberry Pi Zero Wireless **MMP-0671**
Micro SD Card: No Thanks!
Power Supply Select: UK **MMP-0018**
Zero Case Select: No Thanks!
Mini HDMI/HDMI Adaptor: Mini HDMI/HDMI Adaptor White **MMP-0674**
Micro USB/USB Adaptor: No Thanks!
Zero 40 Pin Header: No
3 Port USB Hub w/ Ethernet: No
Micro USB Shim: No
Workshop Kit: No Thanks
Total cost: £16.00

Add the case I chose earlier, a HDMI cable and the 128GB micro SD card and it comes to £37.45.


Pi 1 B+
Raspberry Pi 1 Model B+ 26.75
Raspberry Pi Model B Case - Clear - MC-RP001-CLR £2.39
Power Supply - UK Plug 5.1V 2.5A £6.00
2m HDMI Cable £2.98
Kingston SDCS/128 GB MicroSD Canvas Select Class 10 UHS-I £14.88
Total: £53.00


Pi 3 B+
Raspberry Pi 3 - Model B+ £34.00
Raspberry Pi Model B Case - Clear - MC-RP001-CLR £2.39
Power Supply - UK Plug 5.1V 2.5A £6.00
2m HDMI Cable £2.98
Kingston SDCS/128 GB MicroSD Canvas Select Class 10 UHS-I £14.88
Total: £60.25

So the Zero wins, I guess? The case is absolutely perfect too. I can’t help feeling like I’m missing something though. I only have experience with the 3 and I just bought the starter kit for Retropie so everything came with it.

Will the Pi Zero W play 1080p videos okay? The videos will be 15-20 mins long and there will be about 100 of them.

If I go down the Zero rote I could possibly get the W version to set everything up and then get the non-wifi version for all the clone devices, to save cost. This would work, right? There are no other discernible differences between the Zero W and the Zero? It would save me £4.60 per unit. If the client orders even as few as 20, it's a £92 saving.

You would not save by buying a non W Zero as you would have to buy a USB Ethernet Adaptor.

Regards prices some resellers have slight differences, but Officially:

$5 Zero $10 ZeroW $15 ZeroWH $25 3A+ $35.00 3B+ / 2B

Plus local taxes and shipping......


https://www.raspberrypi.org/products/



The Adafruit Tutorial states Raspbian Jessie which went end of life August 2017, you need a Tutorial for Raspbian Stretch !
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bensimmo
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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Fri Mar 22, 2019 7:39 am

Look around and don't forget shipping.

You'll not be able to buy the Zero or ZeroW in more than one in one go
You can buy them at separate times.

The ZeroWH is the bulk buy one (annoying as you then have the GPIO pins you don't need). That's my current problem to so I'm moving to another device, though its not suitable for you video iirc (ESP32) otherwise I'd be sticking to ZeroW's

Anyway, get one and see if it does you job it only a few quid for testing.
Look for a direct miniHDMI to HDMI cable as it'll be more robust and tidier.

If that doesn't work then the 3A+ certainly will.
No need for all the extra parts of the 3B+.

The B+ (pi1) is slower by default than the Zero, easily clicked to the same speed though, but also cost more and you have no WiFi. All you gain is a few extra usb ports and Ethernet. Which you'll not need.

Basically it just down to if it plays your video or not.

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Baz
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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Fri Mar 22, 2019 9:58 am

Thanks for all the replies (so far). It's only a small company so with a few colleagues ordering individual Pi0s we should be able to fulfill the demand.
Imperf3kt wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 10:37 pm
Your cost estimation seems unusually low. Reading your post, it sounds like you're getting the micro SD card really cheap.
Are you sure they're not fake?
Nah, they're just cheap. *shrug*

I've had a few similar priced Sandisk cards from a website called picstop but the delivery times weren't great. If there's no rush I may use them again, but I figured you can't go wrong with Kingston and Amazon. Hopefully I won't need 128GB cards anyway. Will the Pi0 cope with microSD cards of that capacity?
bensimmo wrote:
Fri Mar 22, 2019 7:39 am
Look for a direct miniHDMI to HDMI cable as it'll be more robust and tidier.
Good idea.

And like you said it's probably worth getting one to test. I guess this is my shopping list:

Pi Zero W
Raspberry Pi Zero Wireless with UK Power Supply and 2m mini-HDMI to HDMI cable £19
Raspberry Pi Zero Case - Black - SKU04713 £3.99
Kingston SDCS/128 GB MicroSD Canvas Select Class 10 UHS-I £14.88
Total: £37.87

Then it's [hopefully] just a case of installing Raspbian Lite, connecting to wifi, installing Video Looper, adding the videos and then leave it running for an hour or so to see if it works. Easy, right. ;)

If not, I'll go down the pi3A+ route, I guess.

May as well check the prices now, just in case:
Raspberry Pi 3 - Model A+ £23
[case required]
Power Supply - UK Plug 5.1V 2.5A £6.00
2m HDMI Cable £2.98
Kingston SDCS/128 GB MicroSD Canvas Select Class 10 UHS-I £14.88
Total without case: £46.86

Hmm, I'm struggling to find a case. Will any Pi A+ case be okay for the 3A+? Like this one. That's very expensive though, £12.23. Can anyone provide examples of cheap plain cases for the Pi3A+ please? Or is the gourdy red and white Official Case the cheapest, at £4.99? :(

For the £13.98 extra, I'm wondering if it's worth assuming the Zero won't be powerful enough and just going for the 3A+. :| Decisions, decisions.

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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:19 pm

Baz wrote:
Fri Mar 22, 2019 9:58 am
Thanks for all the replies (so far). It's only a small company so with a few colleagues ordering individual Pi0s we should be able to fulfill the demand.
Imperf3kt wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 10:37 pm
Your cost estimation seems unusually low. Reading your post, it sounds like you're getting the micro SD card really cheap.
Are you sure they're not fake?
Nah, they're just cheap. *shrug*

I've had a few similar priced Sandisk cards from a website called picstop but the delivery times weren't great. If there's no rush I may use them again, but I figured you can't go wrong with Kingston and Amazon. Hopefully I won't need 128GB cards anyway. Will the Pi0 cope with microSD cards of that capacity?

"sandisk" and "kingston" are among the most faked SD-cards, if you are not buying them from a reliable source you should assume they are FAKE!!!!

fruitoftheloom
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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:27 pm

Baz wrote:
Fri Mar 22, 2019 9:58 am
Thanks for all the replies (so far). It's only a small company so with a few colleagues ordering individual Pi0s we should be able to fulfill the demand.
Imperf3kt wrote:
Thu Mar 21, 2019 10:37 pm
Your cost estimation seems unusually low. Reading your post, it sounds like you're getting the micro SD card really cheap.
Are you sure they're not fake?
Nah, they're just cheap. *shrug*

I've had a few similar priced Sandisk cards from a website called picstop but the delivery times weren't great. If there's no rush I may use them again, but I figured you can't go wrong with Kingston and Amazon. Hopefully I won't need 128GB cards anyway. Will the Pi0 cope with microSD cards of that capacity?
bensimmo wrote:
Fri Mar 22, 2019 7:39 am
Look for a direct miniHDMI to HDMI cable as it'll be more robust and tidier.
Good idea.

And like you said it's probably worth getting one to test. I guess this is my shopping list:

Pi Zero W
Raspberry Pi Zero Wireless with UK Power Supply and 2m mini-HDMI to HDMI cable £19
Raspberry Pi Zero Case - Black - SKU04713 £3.99
Kingston SDCS/128 GB MicroSD Canvas Select Class 10 UHS-I £14.88
Total: £37.87

Then it's [hopefully] just a case of installing Raspbian Lite, connecting to wifi, installing Video Looper, adding the videos and then leave it running for an hour or so to see if it works. Easy, right. ;)

If not, I'll go down the pi3A+ route, I guess.

May as well check the prices now, just in case:
Raspberry Pi 3 - Model A+ £23
[case required]
Power Supply - UK Plug 5.1V 2.5A £6.00
2m HDMI Cable £2.98
Kingston SDCS/128 GB MicroSD Canvas Select Class 10 UHS-I £14.88
Total without case: £46.86

Hmm, I'm struggling to find a case. Will any Pi A+ case be okay for the 3A+? Like this one. That's very expensive though, £12.23. Can anyone provide examples of cheap plain cases for the Pi3A+ please? Or is the gourdy red and white Official Case the cheapest, at £4.99? :(

For the £13.98 extra, I'm wondering if it's worth assuming the Zero won't be powerful enough and just going for the 3A+. :| Decisions, decisions.

You appear to be looking at cost consideration not usability.


eBay sell cheap cases for a few £££ such as:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/NEW-Raspberr ... 3068642099



The Raspberry Pi 2B v1.2 / 3B / 3B+ / 3A+ can all boot from USB Drive. Flash Drives are similar price to "quality" SD Card.
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Baz
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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:52 pm

mahjongg wrote:
Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:19 pm
"sandisk" and "kingston" are among the most faked SD-cards, if you are not buying them from a reliable source you should assume they are FAKE!!!!
picstop is definitely legit but I understand your concerns.
fruitoftheloom wrote:
Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:27 pm
You appear to be looking at cost consideration not usability.


eBay sell cheap cases for a few £££ such as:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/NEW-Raspberr ... 3068642099



The Raspberry Pi 2B v1.2 / 3B / 3B+ / 3A+ can all boot from USB Drive. Flash Drives are similar price to "quality" SD Card.
The pi will sit on a shelf and never be interacted with. Usability is not an issue, so long as it plays 1080p videos. However, that case is for a 3B, not 3A+.

As for booting from USB, I'd rather not have a USB protruding out of the unit, hence me wanting to use an SD card for boot and for storage.

I think I'll order a Pi0 tonight as a prototype.

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bensimmo
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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Fri Mar 22, 2019 1:36 pm

That is just the price of 128GB cards now, I have Samsung, SanDisk and Transcend all for around that price too from Amazon by Amazon, they go up and down a fiver, so just buy when low.
I've just bought a load of them 16GB Kingston ones for less than £3 each more room than I need and quick enough for a bit of datalogging and general non desktop use.


People have been doing the video loops for a while and I'd be surprised if the Zero isn't good enough.

drgeoff
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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Sat Mar 23, 2019 8:34 am

If the videos are H.264 there will be hardware decode by the GPU. All models of RPi have the same GPU.

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Baz
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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Sat Mar 23, 2019 8:56 am

drgeoff wrote:
Sat Mar 23, 2019 8:34 am
If the videos are H.264 there will be hardware decode by the GPU. All models of RPi have the same GPU.
Does that mean the Pi Zero could play 4K (2160p) videos?

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/H.264/MPEG-4_AVC

fruitoftheloom
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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Sat Mar 23, 2019 8:59 am

Baz wrote:
Sat Mar 23, 2019 8:56 am
drgeoff wrote:
Sat Mar 23, 2019 8:34 am
If the videos are H.264 there will be hardware decode by the GPU. All models of RPi have the same GPU.
Does that mean the Pi Zero could play 4K (2160p) videos?

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/H.264/MPEG-4_AVC


Always best to research what has been previously discussed, just 2 at random:

viewtopic.php?f=38&t=79330

viewtopic.php?t=223801
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Imperf3kt
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Re: Cheapest Pi For My Purpose? (In the UK.)

Sat Mar 23, 2019 12:13 pm

Baz wrote:
Fri Mar 22, 2019 12:52 pm
However, that case is for a 3B, not 3A+.
The Pi3A+ will fit almost any case designed for any Pi except a zero. It will fit in any case designed for a Pi3B+, though you'll have an empty gap where the ethernet circuitry and usb ports would otherwise fill.

The only thing to really watch out for is if the case hugs the board too closely, such as covering part of the PCB, as it may not fit well with moved components over time.

The Pi3A+ and Pi1A+ are physically identical in the way of ports, mounts, sizes and positions.

Otherwise, as long as the case can accommodate the slightly taller SOC, it should fit just about any case.
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