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Thread: Pi Zero Advice Please

  1. #1
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    Pi Zero Advice Please

    Briefly - I fed with a 1st generation Pi, it had overheating problems, so I fed using Windows, and now I'm back feeding with the Pi.

    But the Pi v1 USB ports can't cope with both a Wifi dongle and an 820T2 DVB-T stick and I know before long the thermal fuses will start breaking again. They do "mend" after a time (fridge helps) but each cycle reduces the working time and increases the mend time.

    So I've been considering options such as drilling a hole in the case and fitting a fan (not sure it'd be enough cooling), buying a powered hub (means extra wires and power supply), and I'm now on to considering a Pi Zero W - with Wifi - which wouldn't cost much more than a hub anyway.

    So my two questions are:

    1) does a Pi Zero W with just DVB-T plugged in manage OK as far as providing the 500mA(?) without any overheating problems?

    2) can an SD card all set up and running Raspbian/fr24feed just be transferred from a Pi v1 to a Zero without any issues? I ask that because it'd save having to buy mini HDMI to HDMI adaptors etc if any setup/changes could be done on the big old Pi and then any tweaking on the Zero done using VNC.

    Trying to save a bit of my pension you might have guessed! Any help much appreciated.

  2. #2
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    It works fine.
    I was operating a pi zero w for two weeks without any problems, before switching to an Orange Pi Zero, mainly because the latter has an Ethernet port. I moved the receiver to the roof, and the wifi signal was too weak.
    The Pi zero is not as powerful as the Orange pi zero, but unless you have many tracks, you won't notice any problems.


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    https://www.buyapi.ca/product/raspberry-pi-zero-w/ $12.99 Canadian dollars ... that's $9.70 USD. You can't go wrong at that price!

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    Quote Originally Posted by kted View Post
    It works fine.
    I was operating a pi zero w for two weeks without any problems, before switching to an Orange Pi Zero, mainly because the latter has an Ethernet port. I moved the receiver to the roof, and the wifi signal was too weak.
    The Pi zero is not as powerful as the Orange pi zero, but unless you have many tracks, you won't notice any problems.
    Thanks for the advice - I've gone for the Pi Zero, just bought one. Simply because having an old Pi means anything that needs doing to the software - updates etc - can be done on that and then the micro SD card switched to the Zero. Maybe that'd work fine on an Orange one too but I've stayed simple. And it cuts out buying a micro hdmi for the zero. I'm being cheap!

    For abcd567 and 1090MHz and anyone else reading this - the cheapest Pi Zero with wifi I could find in the UK was £9.10 from ModMyPi:

    https://www.modmypi.com/raspberry-pi...-zero-wireless

    Also for completeness - I measured the current draw on my old Pi for the wifi dongle and the ADS-B stick and the results were:

    WiFi dongle - transmitting 90mA, at rest keeping connection alive ≤10mA
    DVB-T stick (820T2) - 250mA

    Flightaware claim 150mA for their Pro stick but ModMyPi who also sell it say "Power Draw: 300mA". Big difference!

    Now it just needs for the postman to arrive .....

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    OrangePi needs different software/sd-card image to run.

    Hope you have an OTG adapter for connecting the receiver

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    Quote Originally Posted by wiedehopf View Post
    OrangePi needs different software/sd-card image to run.

    Hope you have an OTG adapter for connecting the receiver
    Yup - already have one of those! I try to do all communications with VNC but of course, if the wifi isn't configured, that's out. So you end up digging out a keyboard and mouse and plugging the thing into the TV just so you can enter a password or whatever. I'm sure you've been there!

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    No i've never connected a screen to my RPi. Only a network cable after i couldn't figure out that i need to specify the country in the WiFi config or it won't work.

    Not sure why you would ever use VNC when you can just use ssh/putty. Literally all configuration is on the console anyway.

    And without all the graphical packages you just go with Raspbian Stretch Lite and have a lighter weight system so to say.

    (There was also a time when it would have probably been faster to connect a screen but i didn't have one handy)
    Last edited by wiedehopf; 2019-04-05 at 21:42.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wiedehopf View Post
    Not sure why you would ever use VNC when you can just use ssh/putty.
    VNC is just a habit. Back in the day I used to run --interactive and view the output using VNC because I'm in a military TTA and so I could find out which fast jets were buzzing about. But then the FR24 software stopped that being available. And then all the military turned off their transponders.

    Even the Coastguard Search and Rescue helicopters have turned off their transponders here. The ultimate paradox?
    Last edited by aka_pseudonym; 2019-04-05 at 22:13.

  10. #10
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    I guess Coastguard is part of the border patrol so it makes sense as smugglers aren't beyond using MLAT

    Is interactive any better than just using the local map via the webserver?
    Still not sure how VNC helps with any of that.

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