Guides for product: Raspberry Pi Zero - Version 1.3

At first glance, the Pi Zero isn't much.  It just looks like a slimmed down version of the Raspberry Pi we know and love.  But when we started to think of the possibilities - and what a well-chosen set of accessories could add - we realized the appeal.  And then we saw the price...could it be true? Yes!

This is the slimmest, most pared down Raspberry Pi to date.  It's kind of like the little cousin to the Pi 2 - with just a micro SD card slot, a mini HDMI port, two micro USB ports (one for power, one for USB), and 512MB of RAM. It has a single-core 1 GHz processor chip, similar to the Pi A+ and B+. Check out our writeup on the Pi Zero over at the Adafruit Learning System

Note: This is NOT the new Pi Zero W. This is the original Pi Zero v1 model, which does not include built-in Bluetooth and WiFi. If you are trying to buy the trendy new Pi Zero W click here! Due to popular demand, there might be some delay in shipping products containing Pi Zero!

We think the Zero is a great sidekick for existing Raspberry Pi users. It requires a little more effort to get up and running than a Pi 2 but it also has a lot of potential for IoT, wearable, embedded and battery powered projects!

Adafruit is now selling version 1.3 of the Pi Zero.  Version 1.3 is updated to include a camera port.  The new Pi Zero camera port only works with a Raspberry Pi Zero Camera Cable.  It DOES NOT work with a standard Raspberry Pi Camera cable.

We also have a budget pack and starter pack with all the essentials to get your Zero up and running.

Please note - the Pi Zero is quite minimal and requires a few accessories to turn it into a computer!  At a minimum we recommend:

To keep the price and size as small as possible, there is a spot on the Zero for a 2x20 pin header. This header is not included or soldered on. Creative individuals can easily solder in a set of 2x20 male header strip so you can plug in any sort of Pi HAT or other plug-in topper.  Or, go with a 2x20 female header and plug the Pi Zero directly into an Adafruit Cobbler or T-Cobbler.  

We also strongly recommend some other parts and pieces to make your Pi Zero computing experience easier:

  • Pi Zero Protector - Keep your Pi Zero safe while handling with this simple sandwich-style acrylic case.
  • USB Powered Hub - So you can plug in any kind of USB devices without overloading the Zero's power supply. (You can also, ironically, power the Zero from the hub itself by plugging in a micro USB cable into the hub)
  • WiFi dongle - this chipset is the most common one used for the Raspberry Pi, works great!
  • Mini Wireless Keyboard w/Trackpad - Requires only one USB port, which makes it a great match for the Pi Zero
  • Wireless Keyboard + Mouse set - Also requires only one USB port, but for everyday use.
  • Pi Cobbler or T-Cobbler - When paired with the male or female 2x20 pin header, you can use your Zero with a breadboard to connect sensors, LEDs, motors and more!
  • Ethernet Hub and USB Hub w/ Micro USB OTG Connector - One can never have enough socks, or USB ports. Add some more USB and Ethernet capability to your Raspberry Pi Zero!

Please note: Some boards are made in the UK, some in China - we cannot guess or control which one you will receive.

Learn how to Connect to your Raspberry Pi with a Console Cable
Adafruit's Raspberry Pi Lesson 5. Using a Console Cable
108
Beginner
Authentic sights, sounds and feel of 1980s arcade gaming.
Retro Gaming with Raspberry Pi
96
Intermediate
Go Go Gadget Pi Zero
Turning your Raspberry PI Zero into a USB Gadget
102
Beginner
How to read analog signals from Python with an analog to digital converter and Raspberry Pi.
Raspberry Pi Analog to Digital Converters
45
Beginner
How to compile and install bluez, the Linux Bluetooth classic & low energy system, on the Raspberry Pi.
Install bluez on the Raspberry Pi
32
Beginner
Portable RetroPi with the smallest Pi yet
PiGRRL Zero
193
Intermediate
Tiny Computer, Tiny Camera
Raspberry Pi Wearable Time Lapse Camera
117
Intermediate
Long live Sneakernet!
Resizing the Raspberry Pi Boot Partition
26
Beginner
If you are a NPR nerd, this project is for you.
Raspberry Pi Zero NPR One Radio
34
Intermediate
Tempest in a Teacup
World's Smallest MAME Arcade Cabinet
29
Beginner
Share books with a WiFi access point.
Digital Free Library
46
Beginner
Give your Pi Zero or Zero W the spark of new life.
Raspberry Pi Zero Headless Quick Start
59
Beginner
All-in-one game emulator/controller built inside a NES cartridge using Joy Bonnet and Raspberry Pi Zero!
NES Cart RetroPie Game Console
10
Intermediate
Explore and use the contents of your AdaBox 005
AdaBox 005
18
Beginner
Power! Data! Pi Time!
Adafruit PiUART - USB Console and Power Add-on for Raspberry Pi
18
Beginner
Avoid SD card corruption when powering off
Read-Only Raspberry Pi
39
Intermediate
Want to connect your project to the Internet? Start Here!
Welcome to Adafruit IO
85
Beginner
Help keep your Pi healthy and help it when it's sick.
Raspberry Pi Care and Troubleshooting
5
Beginner
Add low-power long-range radio communication to your Raspberry Pi Project
LoRa and LoRaWAN Radio for Raspberry Pi
6
Intermediate