The Raspberry Pi 4 is a single-board computer with a quad-core ARM Cortex-A72 processor, support for up to 8GB of RAM, and a starting price of $35 (for a model with 2GB of RAM).
It’s hardly the most powerful computer money can buy, but it’s got enough horsepower to make it a decent media streamer, retro gaming machine, or even a simple desktop computer (as long as you’re comfortable with the fact that some software may not work).
One limitation though? It uses a microSD card for storage, which can be a limiting factor when it come to speed and storage capacity. But the Raspberry Pi 4 can support a range of accessories including hard drives – and the new DeskPi Pro is basically a PC case for the little computer that makes adding a 2.5 inch hard drive or SSD easy. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Actually, calling the DeskPi Pro a case might be a little misleading, because it’s actually more like a system for transforming the single-board computer into something more like a desktop PC.
In addition to the case, there’s a board that connects to the HDMI and USB ports on the Raspberry Pi 4 in order to”
- Replace the two micro HDMI ports with two full-sized HDMI ports.
- Move those ports to the back of the computer, so they’re on the same side as most of the USB ports.
- Add three extra USB ports (two on the front, one on the back).
- Move the microSD card reader to the front.
The 2.5 inch drive bay support comes courtesy of a USB-to-SATA Connector, which allows you to add a laptop-sized storage device.
The DeskPi Pro also comes with a cooling system that offers active or passive cooling thanks to fan speed controls. And it comes with a power supply.
Priced at $55 during pre-orders, the DeskPi Pro costs more than an entry-level Raspberry Pi 4 computer. But it still lets you create a small, low-power desktop computer for around $90 – $130 once you factor in the price of the Raspberry Pi.
Update: Now that pre-orders have ended, the DeskPi Pro is available for purchase from the DeskPi website for $60.
One thing to keep in mind is that this case/system is only compatible with the Raspberry Pi 4. Earlier versions of the Raspberry Pi Foundation’s little computer have a different port layout, so they won’t work with the DeskPi Pro’s adapter board.
Low voltage lightening bolt on display after assembly of deskpi
case. All the pi4 stuff in use for months w/ no problems. Used
input power provided w/ deskpi kit. Used lab power supply set to 6 volts same problem. Disassembled and reassembled case same problem. This causes slow/ sluggish operation using pi4 system.
Put the pi4 back to original setup and it works fine.
Sent 2 emails to [email protected] so far no response.
Today I received an email from the deskpi team. They apologised for:
“not bringing a good user experience for the first batch of DeskPi Pro. For the quicker shipment of the pre-sale orders, we ignored your needs on the Deskpi function ”
I myself have not experienced any problem, and am using the product for a ‘production’ homeserver. To be honest I was surprised with the quality of the product.
SteveS mentions the HDMI issue’s. This might be to do with the extension of the adapterboard. And Deskpi team does promise replacement boards in “the middle of March 2021”.
Do we know about other problems with the product ?
Does anyone know a forum to discuss problems and solutions with this product ?
What can cause the deskpi pro to not power up?
The paper Q&A in the product carton mentions:
“Measure: Plug out type C power cable, turn plug over, plug it again.”
I joked about this with my friends , as usb-c should be oke in either position. But if this is a design issue ( not reversible usb-c connector ) the handed solution is a workaround you should try.
DeskPi Pro Raspberry Pi 4 Case – a beautiful and robust case. Many features including large heatsink, full sized HDMI ports.
One problem: I instilled a Pi 4 8g an SSD, and everything worked on the test bench. However, when I went to install the DeskPi in the media room, the monitors would not connect. Everything I tried didn’t work. I then took it back to the test bench with the monitor, etc. and it worked. The monitor is a DVI with an adapter. I then tried a different Pi 4 and the media room monitors worked.
The long and short of it is, the DeskPi Pro cannot function with cables longer than 6 ft. Also, HDMI to VGA converters don’t with the case. Multiple monitor HDMI switch boxes also don’t work.
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