Using a Raspberry Pi 400 as a desktop computer #PiDay #RaspberryPi @Raspberry_Pi

Recently, the Raspberry Pi Foundation launched the Raspberry Pi 400, a keyboard with a build in Raspberry Pi 4. It features a CPU very similar to the Raspberry Pi 4, 4GB RAM and it’s priced 15$ higher than the comparable Raspberry Pi… It looks like it’s meant to be used as a desktop computer, more than a Raspberry Pi 4 at least.

Just another electronics blog decided to use it as their desktop computer for a week to see how it fared.

Results:

  • Many programs available, bit not all
  • Coding and compiling is slower than a desktop but usable
  • Compiling for ARM generally works well
  • Overclocked to 2.1 (from 1.8GHz), the device still isn’t hot.

But…

  • Some tools didn’t compile or run the same as desktop apps
  • No Spotify or Discord clients, web version must be used
  • Light weight tends to make keyboard shift with cable tension
  • A pleasant multitasking capability is limited

And strange…

  • Chromium not quite Chrome
  • Half sized keys for ] and # – they wish the whole device was just a tad wider to fit a more normal keyboard

Conclusion:

All in all, the Raspberry Pi 400 makes a surprisingly usable desktop. Considering that the Raspberry Pi 400 is 15 euro’s more than the comparable Raspberry Pi 4, it seems like a no brainer when you plan to use it for desktop use. For integrating or headless use, the Raspberry Pi 4 still makes a lot more sense.

If you want to use a Raspberry as a desktop and you plan on using the Raspberry part like the 40 pin extension connector, it’s a great choice. However, if you need an affordable computer for everyday use, I think a second hand laptop makes more sense. With that you get a screen and portability and most likely more performance.

Read all the details (and buy them a coffee) on the Just another electronics blog

Funky half keys for ] and #

 


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