PiPad Build

PiPad_Gif_300

Two weeks before I had to leave for Maker Faire Bay Area 2013, I decided it was time I built an enclosure for the PiPad. I’d been helping a guy in the Shed Tech Support queue that needed some help with his Maker Faire project, and thought “You know, I want a Maker Faire project too.” Crazy – right? I had all the parts, so really the only thing holding me back until this point was a deadline. According to Parkinson’s Law “work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion” so at two weeks, I didn’t have much time for expansion. I started on some conceptual CAD work for the project before so I had a *slight* idea of what I was doing.

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Design Goals:
I like simplistic, functional design. I don’t like extra crap that doesn’t do anything and I enjoy fun, hidden features. I also like for my projects to look as “sexy” as possible. I thought about hollowing out a book and putting it in there (like Penny’s book computer from Inspector Gadget) but decided to go with a stand-alone tablet form-factor. Since I wanted to let the PiPad keep me company on flights, the enclosure had to look as factory as possible, while remaining accessible and usable. The last thing I want is for it to freak out the TSA or the old lady sitting next to me.

Bill of Materials:

  • Frame Material – 1/2″ Baltic Birch Plywood (local lumber supply)
  • Backing Material – 1/16″ Carbon Fiber Sheet (I buy scraps from here and happened to get a flawless, large piece. Don’t count on that!)
  • Finish – Watco Dark Walnut Oil Finish – Amazon
  • Latch / closing – 14 – NdFeB Magnets – Amazon (These are *probably* overkill.)
  • Battery - Anker Astro3E 10,000mAh battery – Puts out 3A @ 5V! Gives me about 6hrs of battery life.
  • WiFi – I’m using this adapter from Monoprice, but this one from Amazon should work well too.
  • USB HUB - IOGear Micro Powered USB Hub (removed from casing)
  • Bluetooth – After experiencing issues with an AZIO bluetooth dongle, I switched to one like this and it worked great.
  • Keyboard - Adesso Bluetooth Mini Keyboard
  • Main brain - Raspberry Pi Model B (Ethernet and 1 USB port removed.)
  • Heat Sinks for Raspberry Pi  – Amazon (There’s no airflow in the case so I figured this was a good idea.
  • Misc USB ends – Male A (3), Micro (1), Female A (I hacked an extension I had laying around.)
  • Screen – 10″ Capacitive Touch Screen with LDVS Adapter from Chalk-Elec.com. I had a great experience with this company (they are based in Malaysia) but have heard mixed reviews from others.
  • Brightness adjustment – 10K Potentiometer (I had this lying around – it replaced the light sensor that came with the screen / LDVS adapter.)
  • GPIO - Ribbon cable and connectors (male and female) for GPIO.
  • Power switch – Waterproof Metal On/Off Button with White LED Ring – From Adafruit.
  • Screen / backing adhesive – Permanent double stick scrapbooking tape -Picked up locally from Hobby Lobby (if this ever fails I’ll get the 3M stuff they use on iPads)
  • Hinges – 1″ Brass hinges (Picked up locally from Hobby Lobby)
  • Extension for battery charging – Micro to Mini USB adapter – Amazon (to extend the charging port to outside the case.)
  • Amplification – Fiio E5 Headphone Amplifier (Now replaced by the Fiio E6) – The Pi doesn’t have an on-board amplifier. This miniscule amp works and sounds great and pumps out enough volume to hear on planes.)
  • Audio extension – 3.5mm Audio jack (like this) and hacked extension cable.
  • Probably one or two other things I’m forgetting.

Associated Files:

Everything I used in one .zip file.

Construction:
The principle components of the enclosure are 1/2″ Baltic birch plywood and 1/16″ carbon fiber (for the back). I designed the cut files in Vectric’s incredible Aspire CAD/CAM package (though everything I did was in 2D) and used the image tracing feature to digitally recreate the components to ensure enough clearance. The components were placed on a scanner and loaded into the software so I could manipulate them for what I thought would be the best layout. Fortunately the folks at Chalk-Elec published a datasheet for the display with dimensions, although the corner radius wasn’t listed (it’s 10mm if you’re wondering.) I wanted to make the back the same size as the LCD panel, but the carbon fiber scrap I had was slightly too small so I had to re-size. I intended to machine the slots for the components using multi-sided machining but kept getting my layers confused. Because I was short on time and had limited material, I decided I’d hand cut the necessary slots (which ended up being easier than I thought.) I bought a new spiral downcut bit for a smooth finish and turned my CNC machine loose on the wood. After a bit of sanding and an inspection, I machined the carbon fiber with a 1/8″ carbide Dremel bit, sanded, and did a test fit. Everything lined up!

Next I laid out the electronics and marked out where I needed to cut access holes in the plywood frame. After everything was marked I cut though one layer of plywood with an Exacto knife, popped out the layer, and continued down until the slot was deep enough. Then I popped in the component, placed on the top, and checked to see if any more material needed removed. The SD card slot was another challenge. After measuring where the SD card would be and marking the area that needed removed, I taped a level onto my drill and drilled a series of holes using a 1/8″ bit. Then I used a coping saw to remove the rest. The results were a bit jagged so I cut a strip of sandpaper and worked it though the slot until smooth. Once I was satisfied with the holes, cut out the area for the hinges and mounted them into place. I’m not sure if was just me or a “thing” with hinges, but once installed the frame didn’t quite line up. Despite tweaking as much as I dared, it still wasn’t perfect. I ended up getting mad, mounting a belt sander in a vise and sanding the heck out of it until it lined up 100%. Once I was happy with it, I drilled in holes for the magnets. After I got the polarity right (yeah – I messed up a few times) I glued them in. Once dry, I removed the hinges and applied several coats of rub-on varnish.

When the varnish dried, I glued the carbon fiber backing in place, then installed all the components and ran / soldered the wiring. I put the whole thing together (nothing anchored in place yet) and turned it on. The power indicator blinked on and after a few tension-filled seconds, it booted! Everything including the touchscreen functioned as expected (which NEVER happens for me). I shut it down, finalized the layout, and started anchoring the components in place using either hot glue (I used this mainly for the wiring), permanent double sided tape, and foam tape. The display was affixed “Apple Style” using some crazy strong permanent tape around the inside edge. I clamped the battery and screen down and allowed the tape to cure over night to ensure a good bond.

The next day I realized I had a problem – the touchscreen wasn’t tracking my finger and a section of the screen was the wrong color. I quickly realized that I didn’t have enough clearance between the back of the Pi and the back of the screen. At this point I only had a few days before I left for Maker Faire, so I started freaking out a little. The Pi had to stay in it’s current location and was already as low as I could get it due to the SD card slot. I tried bending the metal around the USB port down but the issue persisted. So I got out my exacto knife and some pliers and pried the metal USB housing off completely. Then I took some cutters and completely removed the top USB port connections and plastic. That had to do it, right? Nope.. now the Ethernet jack was touching. While it didn’t distort the screen it was causing the touch to be erratic – so out came the soldering iron and away it went! Essentially I converted my Raspberry Pi Model B into a Model A with 512mb of RAM. But importantly, it worked and the PiPad was complete!

Conclusion:

IMG_1295

This image was taken while on my fight from Ohio to San Francisco (using a mouse because the touch-screen doesn’t work with RaspBMC.) The PiPad preformed flawlessly and didn’t raise an eyebrow going through security. On the plain though, a flight attendant kept walking by, looking closely at the homebuilt gadget I had on my tray table playing Talladega Nights. At one point I could feel her looking over my shoulder and was sure she was going to say something. She nudged me (I thought it was over at this point) and said “I love that movie – you’re coming up to the best part!” I’ve taken the PiPad on every flight I’ve been on since then and it’s never raised an eyebrow.

PiPad_Back

I’d e-mailed Eben Upton a few times for work, but didn’t have the chance to meet him at Maker Faire Bay Area. I did catch up with him at Maker Faire New York though. Eben is probably the most humble, down to earth person I’ve ever met – I really can’t say enough about him. After a long chat I showed him the PiPad. After several compliments and a few minutes of playing with it, Eben graciously signed the back at my request. His signature looks amazing on the carbon fiber!

Future Upgrades:

I’ve been considering adding a camera and IR sensor but am not quite sure if I want to bugger up the case. I do need to figure out how to get the touch screen working in Raspbmc – evidently it isn’t compiled with the nTrig driver.  I may someday build a version 2.0 if I get ambitious..maybe if the Pi gets an upgrade. We’ll see!

387 responses to “PiPad Build

  1. Should i unrar the file first on a computer and then try to connect it to my raspberry pi with ssh
    Also would this screen work better without code for the raspberry pi
    learn.linksprite.com/pcduino/linux-applications/how-to-use-2-8-usb-tft-touch-display-module-for-pcduino/

  2. Hi Michael,
    What a great project! I’m looking forward to building one for my daughter (who will be helping!) as soon as the parts arrive. I have one quick question. I noticed your parts list includes a bluetooth keyboard. Does the software not include an on-screen keyboard?
    Thanks so much,
    Arnie

    • Hi Arnie,
      Sounds like a great father – daughter project!

      Raspbian doesn’t include an onscreen keyboard, but you can install one by opening the terminal and typing “sudo apt-get matchbox-keyboard” (no quotes.) I found the keyboard a bit difficult to use so I got the Bluetooth one.

      • Thanks so much Michael. I’ll look into that and let you know how it goes. I’m hoping for my daughter to do most of the build with just my occasional help. She’ll then have a pipad of her own building to take with her when she starts high school in September. Gotta love geek daughters! Thanks so much again.
        Arnie

      • Michael: I too am trying to build the pipad with my daughter. She LOVES computers and is entranced by your project. BUT we cannot read any of the files in your zip file. They are as good as useless to us and make us both feel very dejected and utterly ignorant (which we are, to an extent as I am not an engineer). Is it because .tap files are MS only (and we are Apple)? Could you provide a list of applications that your files run on? Thank you.

  3. As a school project me and my brother created a pipad and were wondering how to make the double tap function work and is their any alternative to the wall plug-in power source that connects to the screen?

    • Hi Brandon,

      You can power the screen with a 5V power supply like cell phone battery charger. Just make sure the one you choose can output at least 2amps. You can solder the power in on the bottom of the connector like this (black = -, red = +) (https://www.evernote.com/shard/s81/sh/f80af5a6-2ab9-464a-ac4e-55eb6986a98f/0955205a0c8421ee3fd0364af4930743)

      I still haven’t gotten double clicking to work right. A commenter left a suggestion but I can’t find it at the moment. Make still has the PiPad but I’ll try some things when I get it back.

      • Mr. Caster, the reply to Brandon suggests you can solder a 5V power supply like a cell phone battery charger to the LVDS board and you show where. I get that part. But I’m trying to get the screen to plug into my battery, not a battery charger. What would I be soldering LVDS board to? USB cord that plugs into my battery? Something else?

      • Hi Eric,

        In this case we are using the battery charger as a battery. The Pi, LVDS board / screen, and hub all use 5V which is the same voltage that most cell phone require for charging. We’re just using the battery to power our electronics instead of a charging a cell phone. The Anker Astro E3 listed in the BOM provides 10,000mah of 5VDC at 3amps, which is plenty to power the PiPad.

        Please let me know if you have additional questions!

  4. Micheal im back on building the pipad until i install puddy on my laptop for my pipod but i was wondering 2 things 1 does the difference in what program im running like raspbian and arch linux change how the screen work and most importantly 2 DOES THE TOUCHSCREEN NEED ANY DRIVERS OR CODE WRITTEN FOR IT TO WORK.

    • Hi Ben,

      1. It doesn’t make a difference as long as they come compiled with the N-Trig driver. I know it comes preloaded in Raspbian but not sure about Arch.

      2. Nope! It’s plug and play if you’re using Rasbian. Quite refreshing!

    • It could be. Make sure the screen is hooked up to the 2amp port and make sure nothing is pressing on the back of the screen. Even slight pressure will make the touchscreen seem buggy.

    • Hi Ben,
      It doesn’t look like your pic came though. Can you send a link using Skitch or Imgur?

    • It should display with no issues but I’m not sure if the touchscreen will work. I’ll give it a shot when I get off of work and let you know.

      • Hi Vincent,

        I tried hooking the PCDuino (Versions 1 and 2, 1 with Android and 2 with Ubuntu) and I couldn’t get either to display on the Chalk-elec screen. The Pi worked perfectly though. It *should* work and I have no idea why it doesn’t. I’m on a mission to figure it out and will keep you informed (might make another blog post..)

      • Hi Michael Thank you for letting me know. I need to find a touch screen for the pcdunio soon. Anybody know of a touch screen that works?

      • Hi Michael, would this allow the Chalk-Elec touch screen to work? (Read the part about the touch driver)http://learn.linksprite.com/pcduino/usb-development/7-hdmi-lcd-with-usb-touch-for-pcduino/

      • Hello again,

        connected the USB cables to the PCDuino and the HDMI to a separate TV/Screen and found out that the touch works, so LVDS cable apparently should be connected directly to the PCDuino. Couldn’t test that as I don’t have the right cable.
        As soon as I get one (don’t know yet where) I’ll post my test result.

        But I guess that if touch works, and if the chalk-elec HDMI adapter may replaced by the LVDS cable, it should work.

  5. Micheal-
    I think my screen from chalk–elec. is disfunctional so im looking at other options if i can get a refund from chalk-elec. would this screen need any code written for it or would it work right away

    http://www.sainsmart.com/7-inch-tft-lcd-monitor-for-raspberry-pi-touch-screen-driver-board-hdmi-vga-2av.html

    And also can you install puddy on a dell to connect to the ssh on the raspberry pi
    Ps. can you give me a picture of how to connect the wires to the chalk.elec screen and lvds board.
    Thanks,
    Ben

  6. I just made some progress on my small touchscreen for my pipod and i cant figure out how to get the touch function to work, the gpu is almost all being used, and the image on the small screen is all messed up: its mirrored and the icons and bottom bar are in the wrong places. Anything i need to do?

    Oh yeah and chalk-elec. is sending me a new cable which seems to be the problem

  7. Pingback: PiPad: Dank Raspberry Pi - Tablet zum selber Bauen - Connecta AG - Blog·

  8. Never mind about the tontec stuff or the tontec touchscreen i just returned it because i found a micro usb touchscreen with the instructions and a tech support email
    Also chalk-elecs. sending me a new screen

    • Probably not. The Pi is pretty thick and the iPad screen uses a non-typical communications method and a special connector. There’s really not much space inside an iPad to add much of anything.

  9. I went with the 4.3″ raspberry pi touchscreen from hwlevel for my pipod. Also do you now why Dr. Ace Jeangle isnt responding to my emails. Is their a holiday in Malaysia?

    • I’ve heard responses can be sluggish from Chalk-Elec. My advice is to keep trying and leave a comment or two on the site.

  10. Wow So cool,

    if you don’t have a problem with it i would love to use this as my 4-H project next year but i have a few questions

    1st do i need to get the power adapter for the touch screen
    2nd do i need to have the keyboard for set up or can i use the on screen keyboard like you said before to type in the password??

  11. I finished the pipod with a 4.3″ touchscreen from hwlevel but then decided I wasnt going to need it because it was to small to use well, and Im getting my new chalk-elec. screen today!!

      • Yes i got the pipod to work and my new screen from chalk-elec. works great so im just waiting for a few cables i ordered to come in to finish my pipad. But ive got everything working

    • Wow – looks great! Very clever splitting the case in two so it would print on a 3D printer – and great dovetailing! What printer did you use? I’m going to have to give it a shot.

  12. Hello Michael,
    Just had to report: it works for me. Thanks a lot for all the help.
    In the end, the toughest part was making everything fit in the cramped space inside, especially the cables. But it works.

    pic.twitter.com/T9wpSIxaxf

    • Nice work Nicolas! Looks very clean. Can I asked what material you used for your enclosure? I’m impressed!

      • I use transparent plexiglas, in 3 layers of 8 mm (total width 2.4 cm, or approximately an inch). It makes a semi-transparent enclosure. I left beams in the bottom layer to keep the battery and board in place without having to use 3M scotch :

        I also chose to move the board to the side so that the audio output is directly accessible (thus I had less soldering to do). Of course, this meant that the RCA out had to go.

        The side view shows both the red LED of the Pi board… and the fact that I wasn’t very accurate with my drilling.

        Switching materials was (partly) because I had easier access to a laser cutting machine than to a driller. This way, I just had to cut things. It makes the enclosure slightly smaller and lighter, while being stronger.

        Even though in theory one inch is more than enough, in the end I had to remove many things to make the boards fit in the enclosure: USB ports, power, RCA, DSI… I made a before/after comparison.

        Before : https://twitter.com/nholzschuch/status/472764340719079424
        After: https://twitter.com/nholzschuch/status/472765364523507712

        It’s a fun project, where you both solder wires on a micro-usb plug… and remove power input with a cutter. Thanks again.

    • Hi Christian,
      The hard parts are the recesses. Harrison above made a great looking 3D printed case if you have access to a 3D printer. If not – I may be able to help you out.

      • I do not have access to a 3d printer so can you Help me I am really intressted in this stuff and this

    • Hi Donald,

      A 16″ screen is pretty big and will likely draw a lot of juice but I don’t know how much. Also – I’m not sure how much current your batteries can put out. Step-up converters boost voltage at the expense of amperage. These are rated for 12V and 2A provided your 5V batteries put out enough current. As long as your display doesn’t require more than the converter will supply you should be ok!

      Alternatively, I’d look at RC Lipo batteries. They put out 11.1V (3S batteries at least) which is enough for most 12V displays and can put out a good amount of amperage (my drone uses 4000mah batteries – 4 amps!). To power your Pi you can use something like the UBEC (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00BS4Z9BC/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00BS4Z9BC&linkCode=as2&tag=mkcastorcom-20)

      Let me know how it goes!

  13. Hi, can you post the design files for the latest case (with space for the mounting brackets) please?

    • Hi Harry,

      I *just* got the PiPad back from Make so I can start taking measurements and updating the files. I’ll probably do another post when I release them.

  14. I’m 15 and I want to build a tablet with a 7″ Touchscreen any helpfull comments?
    And what to do you think about running Android 4 on it when it is ported?

    • Alex,
      You can find a few 7 in. touchscreens for the raspberry pi on amazon but if you’re going to run android you might want to think about using a pcduino instead of a pi.

  15. Do you have a wiring diagramme for this? Actually, all I need is this:
    Should I wire the pi and screen in series or in parallel. I have a switch and a power supply and everything that I necessary.

    Thanks.

    PS, I think I emailed you about a month ago. Idk if you got it or not.

  16. Hi, my screen has a 2 usb’s one for touch and the other as far as I can tell does nothing. Is it safe to cut the second usb wire as it takes up valuable space in my case?

    • Hey Harry,

      Could you take a pic of this and e-mail it to me at michaelcmaker(at)gmail.com? Sounds odd..

    • Hello Jean-Marc,

      The screen will need to be powered from a 5-12VDC source through the barrel jack connector. You’ll want to make sure your supply puts out around 2A for the screen. The jack looks like a typical 5.5mm input and these are usually center positive. You can power it from a USB charger like the Anker Astro E3 that I used and use one of these connectors.

  17. Should I wire the pi and screen in series or in parallel. I have a switch and a power supply and everything that I necessary.

    A Greeting.

    • You basically copied and pasted what I asked a long time ago. Between then and present, I have figured out that the two devices need to be wired in parallel, because if they were wired in series, they would not both get 5v. When items are wired in parallel, they both get the same voltage and draw different currents. Good luck.

  18. Hi,
    I bought the same battery, power switch and touch screen that is on the list. Next step is to solder everything together and on a photo we see black and red wires. Where can I find wires like this? Can someone give me a little bit more details about those wires?

    • Hi Vincent,

      The black and red wires were some that I had laying around. You can get similar here.

      The wires carry power from the USB port on the battery. From there the negative wire branches to the power switch LED, hub, Pi, and LVDS converter. The positive is switched by the power switch then goes to the positive side of all the components listed above.

      You can view a wiring diagram here.

  19. How does the touch panel interface with the Pi itself? Is the only connection between the panel and the Pi through the HDMI-LVDS converter board?

    • Hi Ben,

      The touch panel connects to the Pi’s USB port for communication with the touch screen.

  20. Hi! I loved your project and thought I’d have a go myself. I’m almost there with sourcing parts, but one main issue I have is with the battery. I bought a different 10,000mAh to the one you used (made by EasyAcc) and found that despite quoting a 5V and 2.1A output, it could not power the Pi and the monitor together. In fact, it couldn’t power the monitor alone. I thought that maybe 2.1A still wasn’t enough, so I followed your footsteps and bought the Anker too. Even with the 3A output from the Anker (the same as the power adapter that came with the monitor) it still couldn’t power the whole set-up, and the screen conks out before Raspbian even loads up. I’m really confused as to why this should be the case. The only thing I can think is that both batteries are not providing that current that they are reporting, which I find unlikely. Did I miss something about how you connect the battery to the board? I’ve connected directly into the Chalk-elec board with a simple USB-barrel jack converter.

    Cheers in advance for your response. It sounds like a lot of people are asking you stuff so if you have any ideas that would be great!

    • Hello,

      Hmm, I could see how the 2.1A battery might not work but am unsure why the Anker is giving you issues. I soldered the power wires directly to the Chalk-Elec board (example here) so the barrel jack should work. I’d try the following steps:
      1. Make sure your battery pack is fully charged. (sorry for stating the obvious – I did (and still do) tech support for maker oriented products so I have to check!)
      1. According to what I can find online, both ports on the Anker E3 can put out 3A. Just for fun, try switching ports (apple for android or vise versa) and see what happens.
      2. Try hooking the display up to a regulated 5V 3A wall adapter (like this) and power up the Pi. Does the display still shut off? If so, try hooking the display to an alternate HDMI source. If it still shuts off with that chances are that you got a bum display or LVDS board.
      3. It’s possible that there’s too much resistance in the wires you’re using or you have a loose or bad connection. Make sure you have have solid connections (soldered or otherwise) and check your barrel jack for shorts and to make sure it’s connecting properly into the LVDS board. The wires I’m using are 18 gauge which seem to be fine for this application. Use a multimeter to make sure there’s nothing wonky going on.

      Give that a shot and let me know what happens!

      • Wow! Thanks for your response!

        Yes, I’d assumed the batteries were near fully charged out of the box because their LED output said 75-100% charged, but I guess that’s a bit of an assumption. I’ll charge them tonight til they stop charging. The internal resistance of the cable is something I need to check too – it was pretty cheap.

        The whole setup runs fine off the mains, and both batteries can power the Pi alone. It just seems to be the screen. I’ll try the things you suggested tonight and hopefully that might fix something.

        Thanks again!

      • OK! I found the issue. I think the cable was just too long and had too much resistance. I cut it down to a few centimetres and it works fine now (in fact I’m writing this from the PiPad now).

        Thanks for your help! Now just to build a casing!

  21. Hey again is there also a raspi compatible input microphone that’s really small and connects to an audio jack

      • Hello Michael,
        I’am quite satisfied with the BananaPi. It is really powerfull, but i did not yet figure out how get Android to work. With this OS, I think the BananaPad would be perfect.

        As soon as I finish my Pad, I’ll post some photos, docs, and wikis.

        Will keep you up to date.

        P.S.: unfortunately I did not manage to get the pcDuino to work with the Chalk-elec screnn. For what reason ever.

        Regards
        Moritz

      • Please do! It sounds like I need to pick up a BananaPi. Odd that you couldn’t get the PCDuino going. I’ll bet it has something to do with the display settings stored in evb.bin (tutorial)

      • Hi Michael,

        if you cannot get the BananaPi to US, you may try a cubieboard2, which is similar to the BananaPi. It has the same specifications.

        Will try out to get the PCDuino to work as well, as soon as I finish my BananaPad.

        Regards

  22. Hey Michael! I’m new to the Raspberry Pi, and I was wondering, is it possible to connect a mouse and keyboard at the same time, and add more RAM, so that I can play light Steam games? Also, how much memory does the PiPad have?

    • Hello!

      It’s definitely possible to connect a mouse and keyboard at the same time. The Raspberry Pi has soldered on RAM so expansion past the on-board 512mb is not possible (well, without major surgery.) I don’t think the Pi is powerful enough to run Steam but using a program called LimeLight Pi you can stream Steam games from your PC to your TV.

    • Hi Paolo,

      I’d say it weighs around 2 lbs (1kg) or so. Not light but not heavy either.

  23. Pingback: BananaPad | BananaPad·

    • Hi, Michael
      Sorry for writing in spanish, i want to know what is the low price in dollars of the components and how is the better way to buy it and
      receive here in argentina.
      Pd: i dont want to buy the keyboard.
      thanks in advance for your time.
      Regards
      Pikel

      • The lowest price you could get is probably around $310, but it all depends on how much you buy and use. Also you can get a free virtual keyboard running on the screen instead of buying one (matchbox-keyboard).

  24. hello micheal,
    is it possible to power a raspberry pi and the new Piscreen together with a 5v 1.5a external battery. I couldn’t find this myself thanks in advance for any help

    • Hi Ben,

      It’s hard to say for sure since I can’t find a datasheet, but since it’s powered through the Pi’s GPIO I can’t imagine current draw will be that much. I would venture to say that you’d be fine with a 5V, 1.5a battery.

  25. Hello,

    I’ve made a “PiPad” Too, it works on Raspbian, but it doesn’t work on XBMC. Does anyone have a solution for my problem? It looks like the RaspbianXBMC software doesn’t regonize my 10″ Chalkboard electronics screen. Thank you!

  26. On my button I got (not the same one as you got as I got mine from a place called Jaycar in NZ) I have a positive LED contacts to solder on to and a negative LED one which when I put the wires on to the tablet the LED on the button lights up but when I press the button nothing happens. I also have two NO (normally open) contacts, two NC (normally closed) contacts and two C (common) contacts. Can you please tell me how to wire this so the button and LED work. There is a photo/diagram of my button below

    Download link of diagram:

    https://mega.co.nz/#!NxcR1bjT!WgeKTpTyU3gUWTMyt3J6opLj2Q8j9bJlIqTEVPCOe3A

    Thanks,
    Harry

  27. Hi MIcheal,
    I was wondering if there was any drivers or things i had to install to get the banana pi to work with the chalk-elec. touchscreen.
    Thanks,
    Ben

    • Hi Ben,

      n you don’t need any driver for the chalk-elec screen. It worked fine with my screen. I used the Lubuntu distribution. The only thin you might consider is that you shouldn’t connect the BananaPi power to the screen USB-Power.

      Regards

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