Does anyone have a Raspberry Pi, what do you think of it

I’m looking for something that I can use to run a VLC media player to play various video files in multiple formats, as well as something that can hold emulators and roms for 3rd and 4th generation consoles.

The Raspberry Pi seems like a good bet, I’m looking at their new model for $35 which has 4 USB ports and a faster processor with more RAM. I’m assuming I’d need 4 USB ports since at least 1 will be the wifi dongle, then another for the keyboard/mouse combo, then a third for a removable USB stick to transfer movies.

Do you need to know a lot about computers to get it up and running, or is someone who is just computer literate with windows able to make it work? Like I said, I don’t need a lot of programs. I think VLC media player and Roms/emulators would be sufficient.

I’ve got one of the new models. I can’t speak to using it for console emulations, but as to your question about ease of use… It’s a Linux PC. If you’re familiar with Linux, you’ll be fine. If not, there’ll be a learning curve.

The Raspbian desktop feels like Windows 95. It won’t take long to get familiar with it. There’s a software repository which is pretty much the same concept as a modern App store. Linux tends to rely more heavily on the command line than Windows or OSX, but there are plenty of guides to get you up and running.

I’ve got one of the early models that I have tinkered and exoerimented with, but never really put to good use.

I use them at work to run a variety of display screens in our office and warehouses. One of my techs wrote a few startup scripts so they boot directly to a fullscreen browser and load a specific preset url. They work really well, as they can be powered from the USB socket on a modern TV, so switching on the TV starts them up.

Yep. You can also run them headless if you don’t need physical access to them - set up SSH and VNC and then shove it in a cupboard with a power supply and access it remotely. No keyboard, mouse or monitor required once it’s set up.

Probably not directly of interest to the OP given the specific use case, but worth mentioning as it might be of interest to others following along. :slight_smile:

I have one of the new ones. It sits a lot.

I’ve gotten some add on hardware recently which I want to use to make it fun to use again.

These extras really add up quickly.

It isn’t for the casual user. A good amount of knowledge is necessary. E.g., I had to buy the unlock codes for the hardware codecs so that it could play videos better. And doing that isn’t for beginners.

I use the OpenELEC distro of Kodi. It’s all-in-one so it boots straight into Kodi for playing videos.

Adding an IR remote can sometimes be a nightmare. Stick with a well known MCE remote.

A much better idea for a non-computer geek is a device like Roku, Amazon FireTV (I have the stick, hence the Pi’s lesser usage), etc.

I have both Kodi (which it’s set up to boot to the launch icon for it) and VLC on it.

Just bought a 2B, been debating what to do with it. Top contenders are an automated Brewing controller or smoker controller. moi wants an emulator in an arcade cabinet. She knows some Linux, but I’m a newb. So we’ll see. For $25, what the hell.

Tried it for Kodi.

A few months later we replaced it with a used PC. The Pi was just too weak, too temperamental, and requires more farting around with code. Peple give away older PCs for nothing so we got one, fired up Kodi, and it’s flawless.