After seeing the brilliant article from the Adafruit Blog describing in detail how to build a Raspberry Pi laptop, I decided I had to have one !
For those that might not have seen the article, take a look here …
Some of the parts are a little tricky to find, mainly the female micro hdmi coupler, as they are usually embedded in the equipment itself. Due to this I found myself waiting for what seemed like an age for bits to turn up from Hong Kong.
But there was an upside, in the meantime the Raspberry Pi revision was announced. This brought about many changes to the board, but the one we’re most interested in relates to the USB interface.
This means that by using a Revision 2 (004) board, we can actually do away with all the soldering previously required to get this modification up and running.
To build your own Raspberry Pi laptop, you’ll need the following items …
Shopping List :
1 x Raspberry Pi Revision 2 ( 004 ) ( although I hear a revision 003 may work )
1 x Motorola Atrix LapDock (UK , US)
1 x Female USB Micro to Male USB A connector (UK , US)
1 x Micro USB Female to Male extension cable (UK , US)
1 x Female Micro HDMI to HDMI Male connector (UK , US)
1 x HDMI coupler (UK , US)
1 x 30cm HDMI cable (UK , US)
1 x SKPang Raspberry Pi Starter Kit ( Optional )
1 x Self Adhesive Velcro for attaching the SKPang Breadboard area ( Optional )
1 x Edimax EW-7811UN Wireless 802.11 b/g/n USb Adaptor ( Optional ) (UK , US)
The original video used a female to female micro usb coupler, but I found it very difficult to track down. After finding a single ebay supplier selling them out of Hong Kong, I’m still waiting for it to turn up nearly 4 weeks later. Hence the alternatives listed above.
The Step By Step :
Step 1 – Making a bit more space to play
The LapDock arrives with a neatly fitted panel, which I’m sure fits wonderfully when used with the intended Motorola Atrix phone, but for our purposes it just makes things more awkward to fit.
If you look at the right hand end of the dock, you’ll notice a little cut out. If you insert a flat blade screw driver here and gently pry, you’ll find the insert separates and can be lifted out.
Without the insert you’ll find things are a little more spacious around the connectors, which will help greatly in a few moments.
Step 2 – Persuading the adaptors to fit
When you see the Female Micro HDMI to HDMI Male connector you’ll realise that its a little large to take up residence in the dock, and will need some minor modification before it’ll fit. I did mine with a knife, but I would suggest using a small file. As you can see in the picture below the female connector is offset to one side. You’ll need to file down the plastic till its possible to insert the connector into the dock without it binding.
Step 3 – Assembling our USB connectivity
Step 4 – A little more persuading
Step 5 – Connect up your HDMI side
Step 6 – Connect the HDMI to the Pi
Step 7 – Connect up your USB ‘et Voila’
Step 8 – Attaching our SKPang start kit. ( Optional )
For more detail: A Raspberry Pi Laptop, the easy way.