New drugs arrived

Yesterday this nice package arrived. It’s the revision B+ of the Raspberry Pi, providing improved audio quality and a microSD card slot instead of the formerly used SD card slot.

Additionally I bought a box to house it.

The board’s edge with the pins gets inserted into some kind of groove. On the opposite side, the housing provides two plastic pins which snap into the board’s drillings. To remove it, it is required to remove the microSD card first and to bend both plastic pins in direction of the HDMI port.

I’ve chosen Raspian as the operating system. The installation is quite simple. Insert the microSD card into your desktop computer. Format the card using SD Formatter 4.0. Download the NOOBS installer. Extract the archive and copy the resulting files to the micro SD card. Insert the card into the Pi. Attach a monitor via HDMI as well as a USB mouse and a keyboard (since the Dell U2312HM does not provide an HDMI input, an adaption to DVI is required).

Insert a Micro USB cable as a power supply. The Pi will start running the NOOBS installer; simply follow the instructions on the screen, and you are up and running within a couple of minutes.

The Pi will serve me for just one purpose – running a software synthesizer. Unfortunately the internal sound card is not suitable for this purpose. While the playback of some mp3 file went well, it failed completely as an audio device for the synth, not to mention jackd, the realtime audio sound server. USB devices will do a much better job. I tried a rather dated Terratec Aureon successfully. An Edirol UA25 seems to be supported as well. I even managed to (ab)use an Access Virus synth as an USB breakout box. Since jackd consumed quite some CPU, I ran the synth without it, accessing the USB hardware directly via ALSA.

I’m desperately looking for a touch screen of about 22″ @ a resolution of 1920×1080 px. The Iiyama ProLite T2236MSC-B1 reportedly works right out of the box, but unfortunately it’s built using a glossy screen. In case anyone knows of a touch screen display with similar specs but with a non-glare display please drop me a line.

That’s it so far. For the time being, I’ll be busy configuring Aeolus for seamless use on the Pi.