Computers & Electronics

Where to start with Arduino/ Raspberry Pie

  • Last Updated:
  • Dec 11th, 2017 10:56 am
[OP]
Newbie
Oct 10, 2017
40 posts
19 upvotes
Barrie, Ontario

Where to start with Arduino/ Raspberry Pie

I would like to try both and have no idea where to start. I have zero programming experience and I have no idea what these do or what I would build with them.
I know that I want to buy both.
I just want to buy a kit first and go from there. Where do I start, what are decent starter kits that's not crazy expensive but not lacking quality?
27 replies
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May 22, 2005
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Pi3 is pretty easy to set up, there are tons of guides. Might be a good idea to plan what you want to make first before buying a kit.
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Aug 29, 2017
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RFDizzy wrote:
Nov 17th, 2017 8:41 am
I would like to try both and have no idea where to start. I have zero programming experience and I have no idea what these do or what I would build with them.
I know that I want to buy both.
I just want to buy a kit first and go from there. Where do I start, what are decent starter kits that's not crazy expensive but not lacking quality?
Arduino is a microcontroller, wheras RaspberryPi is a mini computer.

For beginners, start off with Arduino. Simple C++ language and there are a lot of fun small projects with lots of sensors that you can play with.

If you are more into programming an actual OS, then try RaspberryPi. This is too high for you if you haven't programmed before (and even for most seasoned programmers)


I would recommend starting off with Arduino, then learn Android (smartphones), which is essentially a mini computer anyways. You can already connect the two for cool projects (e.g. bluetooth controlled car).

To start off:
1. Buy a Mega board instead of the Uno board (more flexibility, same programming) in a kit:
https://www.amazon.ca/Kuman-Starter-ard ... o+mega+kit

2. Then buy a 37 in 1 sensor kit to have fun.
https://www.amazon.ca/Elegoo-Upgraded-M ... +kit&psc=1

Often, ordering from Amazon US is a lot cheaper, and some will deliver to Canada for free
“It's unwise to pay too much, but it's worse to pay too little. When you pay too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do."― John Ruskin
[OP]
Newbie
Oct 10, 2017
40 posts
19 upvotes
Barrie, Ontario
BuciMaci wrote:
Nov 17th, 2017 9:31 am
Arduino is a microcontroller, wheras RaspberryPi is a mini computer.

For beginners, start off with Arduino. Simple C++ language and there are a lot of fun small projects with lots of sensors that you can play with.

If you are more into programming an actual OS, then try RaspberryPi. This is too high for you if you haven't programmed before (and even for most seasoned programmers)


I would recommend starting off with Arduino, then learn Android (smartphones), which is essentially a mini computer anyways. You can already connect the two for cool projects (e.g. bluetooth controlled car).

To start off:
1. Buy a Mega board instead of the Uno board (more flexibility, same programming) in a kit:
https://www.amazon.ca/Kuman-Starter-ard ... o+mega+kit

2. Then buy a 37 in 1 sensor kit to have fun.
https://www.amazon.ca/Elegoo-Upgraded-M ... +kit&psc=1

Often, ordering from Amazon US is a lot cheaper, and some will deliver to Canada for free
wow thanks for the post! I think I will stick with Arduino to start. It seems like I would enjoy it more. Do you have any links to these cheaper US links you are talking about? I cant seems to find them.
Deal Addict
Nov 24, 2004
3289 posts
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A good place to start is Elmwood Electronics, which is in Toronto. They are local redistributors of Adafruit and Sparkfun products (both are manufacturers of hobbyist-friendly Arduino and RPi-related kits etc.)
Newbie
Dec 6, 2006
25 posts
5 upvotes
BuciMaci wrote:
Nov 17th, 2017 9:31 am
Arduino is a microcontroller, wheras RaspberryPi is a mini computer.

For beginners, start off with Arduino. Simple C++ language and there are a lot of fun small projects with lots of sensors that you can play with.

If you are more into programming an actual OS, then try RaspberryPi. This is too high for you if you haven't programmed before (and even for most seasoned programmers)


I would recommend starting off with Arduino, then learn Android (smartphones), which is essentially a mini computer anyways. You can already connect the two for cool projects (e.g. bluetooth controlled car).

To start off:
1. Buy a Mega board instead of the Uno board (more flexibility, same programming) in a kit:
https://www.amazon.ca/Kuman-Starter-ard ... o+mega+kit

2. Then buy a 37 in 1 sensor kit to have fun.
https://www.amazon.ca/Elegoo-Upgraded-M ... +kit&psc=1

Often, ordering from Amazon US is a lot cheaper, and some will deliver to Canada for free

Just wonder for an 8 years old kid, should he start with UNO R3 or Mega 2560? I saw this kit below and don't know which one to choose.

https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B0188T ... bw_c_x_1_w

Thanks,
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Aug 29, 2017
167 posts
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quants wrote:
Nov 24th, 2017 9:43 am
Just wonder for an 8 years old kid, should he start with UNO R3 or Mega 2560? I saw this kit below and don't know which one to choose.

https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B0188T ... bw_c_x_1_w

Thanks,
Go with the Mega. It is easy to outgrow the Uno. The Mega also has a lot more PWM pins. Eventually, when you want to shrink your project, you'll go to a developer board anyways, but that's a long ways off for an 8 y.o. Keep in mind that you'll probably have to do the programming while the kid does the board assembly. By the way, these Mega boards are small enough as is (about 3/4 of a smartphone). You will also want to get a sensor kit to actually have fun exploring all the capabilities.

Go with this:
https://www.amazon.ca/Kuman-Starter-ard ... o+mega+kit

And this sensor kit (or any kit that has a CD included for instructions):
https://www.amazon.ca/Elegoo-Upgraded-M ... sensor+kit
“It's unwise to pay too much, but it's worse to pay too little. When you pay too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do."― John Ruskin
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Aug 29, 2017
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RFDizzy wrote:
Nov 24th, 2017 9:51 am
Whats the different between these two aside from price?
https://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B0188T ... bw_c_x_1_w

https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B01BY16KCU/_en ... UIU2W01T4Q
In short, the UNO kit has a couple of sensors. The Mega kit does not, but it gets a stepper motor (more fun).

EDIT: They both have the extra 3.3v/5v power supply, so really not much difference.
“It's unwise to pay too much, but it's worse to pay too little. When you pay too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do."― John Ruskin
Deal Addict
Dec 6, 2006
3818 posts
712 upvotes
Toronto
Have some programming exp but otherwise on the same boat as OP. Always wanted to try one of these 2 but have absolutely no idea (or desire) what to actually do with it...
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Nov 24, 2004
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boyohboy wrote:
Nov 24th, 2017 12:50 pm
Have some programming exp but otherwise on the same boat as OP. Always wanted to try one of these 2 but have absolutely no idea (or desire) what to actually do with it...
People tend to lump Arduino and Raspberry Pi together, but they're really very different beasts.

Raspberry Pi is basically a low-end computer that runs a full operating system, can interface with standard peripherals, act as a basic server, retro gaming box, firewall, etc.

Arduino is a microcontroller (really, a board and ecosystem built around a microcontroller). It doesn't have much computational power at all. It is designed to make it easy to interface with physical devices (sensors, motors, displays, etc.) (Raspberry Pi can do this too, but it is trickier, and much more expensive.) Arduino doesn't have an operating system -- you program it by uploading code from another computer, then it does its thing.

I think a kit is great if you're just getting started. The key is to get one with good instructions, or find a friend to help get you going. The Mega models do have lots of PWM pins and analog inputs but it may be overkill at first.
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Oct 8, 2006
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CameraBill wrote:
Dec 1st, 2017 12:51 am
Neither. This is too hard for an 8 year old.
No not too hard for a 8 year old. There are scratch based programming languages for Arduino too. A lot of kids are learning scratch type programming in their schools.

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