DIY Head Mounted Display

In this instructable I will show you how to make a DIY head mounted display (HMD) that uses a raspberry pi and a 7 inch composite or HDMI display.

UPDATE: 20 000 views!

Please vote for this project in the Formlabs contest, if I won the 3d printer I would use it to make cases for my projects and do time lapse videos and post them on a youtube channel every 1-2 weeks!

DIY Head Mounted Display

Update! this project was in the adafruit blog for #piday!…

Sorry for not having a picture for every step. I finished the project before I took pictures for the instructable.

Step 1: Parts and Tools

Here are the parts and tools that you will need to make this project:


SD card 4gb or more

Ethernet cable (optional)

Micro usb cable

Raspberry Pi Model B

1/8 Inch Acrylic or Wood ~3-4 sheets at 8″ x 12″

Latching switch

Female 3.5mm audio extension cable (for headphones)

DC barrel jack and cable (same size) and must provide the input voltage to the screen so the adapter should be around 9 volts

Bi-convex lenses:®-Biconvex-Cardb…

7 inch display. You can use one from a portable dvd player but they are usually low quality so I recommend this one: It is very high quality and because the biconvex lenses zoom into the display you can really see the pixels in low quality ones.



Laser cutter, I used the one at my local makerspace.


Computer to flash the raspberry pi or you can buy a card with noobs pre-installed.

2 inch elastic

Step 2: Flash OS Onto Raspberry Pi

Flash a linux distro onto the sd card. I chose the Raspbmc because it was very simple and could do everything that I wanted to do with my head mounted display, watching movies listening to music and viewing photos.

For Mac I use apple pi baker :

Step 3: Test Display with Raspberry Pi (Skip if Display is HDMI)

Test the display by hooking the composite input on the display to the composite output on the raspberry pi.Then power up the display. If the screen doesn't show anything after about a minute power off the raspberry pi, take out the sd card and put in your computer and open the file called “config.txt” and look if it says “hdmi_force_hotplug=1” if it does, comment it out by using the “#” in front of the line. This makes the raspberry pi skip over this line. Now try again It should work.

Skip this step if you have a HDMI display as it will automatically go to HDMI output

Step 4: Laser Cut Parts

Laser cut all files on this page:

Don't cut through Any red lines! If you do the pi image will be cut out!

DIY Head Mounted Display

Step 5: Add Power Switch

Add a latching power switch to the input voltage pin for the LCD and the power input (7-9 volts). This will be a ON/ OFF switch for the head mounted display. The display should have a pin that says VCC or VIN wire the positive lead of the 9VDC barrel plug to this pin (the input plug). Then have the ground pin of the lcd to the negative pin of the barrel plug.

For more detail: DIY Head Mounted Display

About The Author

Ibrar Ayyub

I am an experienced technical writer holding a Master's degree in computer science from BZU Multan, Pakistan University. With a background spanning various industries, particularly in home automation and engineering, I have honed my skills in crafting clear and concise content. Proficient in leveraging infographics and diagrams, I strive to simplify complex concepts for readers. My strength lies in thorough research and presenting information in a structured and logical format.

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