The Raspberry Pi 5 is the first single-board computer from Raspberry Pi to feature a PCIe interface for high-speed connections to SSDs and other peripherals. And the Raspberry Pi team is working on an official HAT that will make it easy for users to connect a PCIe NVMe SSD to the little computer.

But several other companies have beat Raspberry Pi to the punch by launching third-party solutions. Waveshare is the latest company to get in on the action, and the company’s new $9 PCIe to M.2 adapter for the Raspberry Pi 5 is the cheapest option yet.

The adapter measures 65 x 56.6mm and is designed to sit atop a Raspberry Pi 5 and connect to the little computer via a short ribbon cable that plugs into the Raspberry Pi 5’s single-lane PCIe 2.0 interface.

You can use the adapter with an M.2 2230 or M.2242 SSD thanks to screw holes in two different positions, allowing you to securely fasten drives of either size.

And since the board covers the 40-pin GPIO interface, it’s also designed to act as an extender, with a connector on the bottom of the board that extends the pins upward through the top.

Waveshare notes that you can also use the board on a Raspberry Pi 5 that’s been equipped with a fan or an active heat sink, but you’ll need to use the optional header extender that’s included in the kit to make that work.

Other features include power and activity LED, a power monitoring chip, and an EEPROM for storing the HAT ID and product information.

The Waveshare adapter isn’t the first to market. Last year Pineberry launched the HATDrive! Top and HatDrive! Bottom M.2 adapters for the Raspberry Pi 5, and Pimoroni launched an NVMe Base.

But those are priced at about $22, $28, and $15, respectively. And that makes the Waveshare adapter the most affordable option to date for adding a PCIe NVMe SSD to a Raspberry Pi 5.

via Hackster.io and LinuxGizmos

 

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  1. If Raspberry Pi 5 has 2 x Lan Port and 2 x USB4 and a CPU not as shitty as it is now, I will consider buying it

  2. @liliputing_ good to see options for this coming out as it feels like the only storage option that makes sense with the Pi 5. Waveshare's stuff has been available on Amazon EU in the past so I guess this option may be easily available for me in the future.

  3. Like others have said, the 80mm length is also my preference for NVMe drives, hands down. It looks to me like a 3D support could be fastened to either of the PCB’s corners, to create a (kinda flimsy) 2280 support. Not as tidy, but the slot itself doesn’t care how long the drive is. A guy could maybe even just band the 2280 drive down, using those two points, if you weren’t concerned about things that might loosen it from the slot. Bit of hack, but it it works and you don’t care what it looks like…

    Is >2TB necessary for an RPi project? I guess as an HTPC, it would be important. Fanless cooling seems preferable, for an HTPC, though, and at the price & power consumption of an RPi5, there are, I think, fanless x86 options in the ballpark. Would a 1.5TB microSD card be a reasonable alternative to a 2242 NVMe drive?

  4. Three problems: 1. Cannot accomodate an M.2-2280 card. 2. It blocks the fan’s airflow. 3. Costs too much to ship. Otherwise it is a welcome addition to the still hard to get and over-priced RPi-5.

    1. The 2280 incompatibility is a deal breaker for me. I like USB and SD micro cards as they are directly compatible with older RPi.

    1. I paid $15 total to ship to Maryland, and it arrived in 10 days. Up and running at gen3 speeds with the active cooler. Very nice.