Hardware

Parts

You'll need the following parts to build this project:

  • Raspberry Pi - Any model will do, including the Raspberry Pi 2, B+, A+, and even older original models like the A and B.
  • Raspberry Pi Camera - I recommend the Pi NoIR camera which can detect infrared (IR) light and see in darkness (with illumination from IR LEDs), but the normal Pi camera will work great too.
  • Optional: Longer Pi camera cable - The cable that comes with the Pi camera is fine for positioning it near the Pi, however if you need to move the camera further from the Pi look into a longer cable.
  • If using the NoIR camera to see in darkness you'll need a source of infrared light like from IR LEDs.  To build the 3D printed Pi camera holder with IR LEDs shown in this project you'll need:
  • Miniature WiFi Module - Not required if your Pi can connect to your network with an ethernet cable.
  • Power supply - Use a good quality 1.5-2 amp 5V power supply to power the Pi.
  • Raspberry Pi case - Although not required a case will help protect your Pi.  Make sure the case has a slot to allow the camera cable and GPIO pins to be accessed!  If you have a 3D printer you can even 3D print a nice Pi case.
  • MicroSD card - You'll need an 8GB card to run the latest Raspbian 'Jessie' operating system used in this project.

Raspberry Pi Setup

Start by burning the latest Raspbian Jessie operating system to a SD card for the Pi.  You can find the latest image from the Raspberry Pi foundation here (remember you want the Jessie version!).  To burn the image to a SD card follow the official instructions here or this great guide on the topic.

This guide is written to use the latest Jessie version of the Raspbian operating system.  Be sure to use this newer version or else the later software installation steps won't work!

If you're using a WiFi adapter with the Pi follow this guide on how to setup the adapter and connect it to your WiFi network.  Before continuing to the next steps make sure your Pi has internet access either through a wired or a wireless connection.

This guide was first published on Nov 05, 2015. It was last updated on Nov 05, 2015. This page (Hardware) was last updated on Dec 03, 2019.