Raspberry Pi 5 - the Little Features You Didn't Notice

Raspberry Pi 5 - the Little Features You Didn't Notice

Raspberry Pi 5 is here and it's sporting the headline features we were all waiting for - a faster CPU, better graphics (proper dual 4k!), dual-CSI/DSI, the we've-waited-12-years-for-this power button, massive I/O improvements, an RTC and much more!

But what about the little things people aren't shouting about? Sure those headline features are the reason we want the latest board, but there are a bunch smaller changes, improvements and other little interesting things that we noticed people weren't talking about.

So on with our somewhat-baity-entitled article - the little Raspberry Pi 5 features you didn't notice...

Raspberry Pi 5 front

Remembering the memory

For those of us who owned a number of Raspberry Pi 4 boards, one issue we all faced was figuring out how much RAM each one had, well, at a quick glace at least anyway.

At first we relied on the manufacturing codes on the RAM chips themselves, but they kept changing. You could always run some commands to find out, but that involved booting up the board.

Those clever sorts at Raspberry Pi came up with a nice simple solution for Raspberry Pi 5 - marking it on the front of the board with a small component!

Raspberry Pi 5 Memory Markers

Power buttony goodness

It only took 12 years of begging, but we finally have a power button on a Raspberry Pi board! YES, Raspberry Pi 5 finally delivers the goods, no more pulling cables out every time you want to turn your board off.

It's even better than you thought though - you can add your own button!

The 2.54mm pads underneath the RTC battery connector allow you to solder a 2-pin header (or just solder wires directly) to connect your own wired button - great for using a Pi inside a custom gaming a cabinet or enclosure.

Raspberry Pi 5 power button pads

Unique boards

"This is my Raspberry Pi 5. There are many like it, but this one is mine".

Whilst we will all eventually receive a Raspberry Pi 5 that looks, feels and functions in the same way...it's more unique than you may first realise.

Every single Raspberry Pi 5 is given a unique identification number, laser-etched on to the board (and found in some other places...shh). It helps with traceability and other fun stuff like that, but we just think it's pretty cool that technically every single board is completely unique!

Raspberry Pi 5 ID QR Code

Flush pins n' metal things

If you take a look at the underside of your Raspberry Pi 5, you'll notice something a little different to previous generations...

The underside of the GPIO pins are now flush...kind of - they're a lot more flush than before anyway! It's all part of some snazzy manufacturing improvements the fine folks at Sony have been working on.

The weird result of this change is the need to add some small metal tabs/stands on the underside of the board, as the GPIO pins no longer protrude and provide protection to the components under the board.

...OK, maybe we've been in the Pi game a bit too long, but we thought this was interesting!

Raspberry Pi 5 support tabs

Bye bye audio

Did you spot it? Probably not, because according to Raspberry Pi, a very low percentage of owners used the audio jack on previous generations of Pi.

Like Kate Winslet in one of the sad final scenes from Titanic, Raspberry Pi let Jack go. They've removed the 3.5mm audio connector and used that space to give us other cool stuff - you know, like the power button or...the power button. Hey, did we mention the power button?

The jack is dead. Long live the power button!

Raspberry Pi 5 no audio jack

Mountains of mounting

The very first Raspberry Pi had no mounting holes - so cruel. A couple of versions later, two seemingly randomly placed holes were added, making for some very awkward panel mounting.

Then the original B+ board then came out, bringing with it four sensibly-placed mounting holes and we were all giddy with the beautiful symmetry and common sense.

Would you just look at us now - Raspberry Pi 5 has no less than SIX holes for your mounting pleasure. You get the standard four HAT-holes, and now two extras for mounting chunky heat-removing devices such as the Raspberry Pi Active Cooler. Ace.

Raspberry Pi 5 mounting holes

Old tellys welcome

Hiding down there in the shadow of the new fancy CSI/DSI connectors is a couple of small pads with 'VID' next to them.

This one's for the old schoolers. You've seen the Micro-HDMI ports but that's far too hippy-dippy for you - you want to keep it real, back to basics, OG...

These pads allow you to connect a composite video display, the kind of relic usually associated with old TVs and ancient headrest monitors worthy of a feature in early-2000s Pimp my Ride.

We like that Raspberry Pi have maintained the composite connection, carrying over the simple 2-pin pads from the older Raspberry Pi Zero board where we've seen some nice examples.

raspberry pi 5 composite video header

Power all the things

This one's about the new 27W USB-C power supply that Raspberry Pi are offering to go with your Raspberry Pi 5.

Sure, it'll do the business and can feed your hungry Raspberry Pi 5 the full 5V 5A it (might) need when running at full whack, so it's the perfect match for your new board.

What some might not realise is that this power supply has Power Delivery (PD) technology, meaning it can power a lot of other PD-compatible devices in your home, with standard modes offering 5V/3A, 9V/3A, 12V/2.25A and 15V/1.8A.

Whereas previous Raspberry Pi power supplies could be repurposed as a really-frustratingly-slow-overnight 5V phone charger, the new 27W PSU can charge a PD-ready laptop and other higher-voltage PD devices too!

Raspberry Pi 27W PSU

Stack em' high!

On to another accessory. A little feature of the new Raspberry Pi 5 case that you may not have clocked is the ability to stack them for a Raspberry Pi 5 cluster or similar project.

Yes we know we're initially limiting sales to one per customer but we really like this feature!

We haven't got our hands on one yet so we can't tell you exactly which fixings and standoffs to buy for this, but we're pretty sure stacking involves M2.5 standoffs and screws.

We'll likely be making an updated version of our hugely popular laser-cut cluster case, however in the meantime, here's a neat option using the official hardware on offer.

Raspberry Pi 5 Case Stacking

Found another cool hardware or software feature? Let us know in the comments section below (feel free to mention that power button again).

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11 comments

Nick

Nick

No Audio jack ,bad move if you consider that people may actually consider RPI 5 as a desktop and a near useless on/off switch ,back as you were please with on/off switch on power wire !Many more people than you seem able to count want the Audio Jack back !Do we need to have an online outcry and a national or even International campaign to " Free Audio Jack " ,release the voice of Raspberry Pi !

No Audio jack ,bad move if you consider that people may actually consider RPI 5 as a desktop and a near useless on/off switch ,back as you were please with on/off switch on power wire !Many more people than you seem able to count want the Audio Jack back !Do we need to have an online outcry and a national or even International campaign to " Free Audio Jack " ,release the voice of Raspberry Pi !

Rene

Rene

Any ideas on which powersupply to power 3 rP5’s in one go? For the RP4 there where compatible solutions when rack mounted.

Any ideas on which powersupply to power 3 rP5’s in one go? For the RP4 there where compatible solutions when rack mounted.

A Sforza

A Sforza

I don t think killing the Jack is merely commercial, since it s analogic gave me many problems using pwm on gpio, also quality was very bad
There are usb sound “Keys” for 2-3 Eu or I2C audio dacs hats for that job

I don t think killing the Jack is merely commercial, since it s analogic gave me many problems using pwm on gpio, also quality was very bad
There are usb sound “Keys” for 2-3 Eu or I2C audio dacs hats for that job

KiKiHUN

KiKiHUN

You can use any 5v 5A or more psu with only 2 wire(+ and – to the usb-c breakout board) for the rpi5.
Only need to change one settings.
Add this line to the eeprom config file:
PSU_MAX_CURRENT=5000

You can use any 5v 5A or more psu with only 2 wire(+ and – to the usb-c breakout board) for the rpi5.
Only need to change one settings.
Add this line to the eeprom config file:
PSU_MAX_CURRENT=5000

The Pi Hut

The Pi Hut

@michael rowland – It’s a fair comment Michael – we didn’t update the compatibility markers on our SD cards (that’s now been done). Any newly flashed Raspberry pi OS image will work on both the Pi 4 and Pi 5, but older images need to be re-flashed as they don’t have the ‘stuff’ needed to work with the Pi 5 (kernel changes etc). Sometimes you can just update an image, but there are times when you need to completely reflash, which is what we always recommend.

@michael rowland – It’s a fair comment Michael – we didn’t update the compatibility markers on our SD cards (that’s now been done). Any newly flashed Raspberry pi OS image will work on both the Pi 4 and Pi 5, but older images need to be re-flashed as they don’t have the ‘stuff’ needed to work with the Pi 5 (kernel changes etc). Sometimes you can just update an image, but there are times when you need to completely reflash, which is what we always recommend.

michael rowland

michael rowland

Just received my RP5 and the SD card from my RP4 did not work with the RP5.. I looked at the Pi Hut SD cards for sale but they were clearly marked as suitable for RP3 and RP4. No mention of RP5 SD Cards anywhere, though the RP5 starter kit did include an SD card.
In the end I ordered a RP3/RP4 SD card and I hope it will work!!
Forgive me, i’m 74 yrs old and I have to work at these things!!

Just received my RP5 and the SD card from my RP4 did not work with the RP5.. I looked at the Pi Hut SD cards for sale but they were clearly marked as suitable for RP3 and RP4. No mention of RP5 SD Cards anywhere, though the RP5 starter kit did include an SD card.
In the end I ordered a RP3/RP4 SD card and I hope it will work!!
Forgive me, i’m 74 yrs old and I have to work at these things!!

The Pi Hut

The Pi Hut

@HOWARD M BENNETT – The pre-order was made available with estimated shipping dates. We didn’t give exact dates because we simply didn’t have them from Raspberry Pi, and also because we don’t manufacture the boards ourselves, therefore that part of the process is out of our control and open to the many usual risks that any manufacturing processes can be susceptible to.

We have been updating our pre-order information page, as well as actively emailing customers updates to keep them informed. We also offer the option to cancel orders at any time with a full refund provided if customers aren’t happy with any slippage in the estimated timescales.

The pre-order support page is here, for reference: https://support.thepihut.com/hc/en-us/articles/13847961024925-Raspberry-Pi-5-Pre-order-Information-Updates

@HOWARD M BENNETT – The pre-order was made available with estimated shipping dates. We didn’t give exact dates because we simply didn’t have them from Raspberry Pi, and also because we don’t manufacture the boards ourselves, therefore that part of the process is out of our control and open to the many usual risks that any manufacturing processes can be susceptible to.

We have been updating our pre-order information page, as well as actively emailing customers updates to keep them informed. We also offer the option to cancel orders at any time with a full refund provided if customers aren’t happy with any slippage in the estimated timescales.

The pre-order support page is here, for reference: https://support.thepihut.com/hc/en-us/articles/13847961024925-Raspberry-Pi-5-Pre-order-Information-Updates

HOWARD M BENNETT

HOWARD M BENNETT

The thing I notice about the 5 is the dishonest delivery dates which have not been honoured , the lack of any sort of apology and the silence that follows.
Retailers should not make promises they cant keep or have no intention of keeping.

The thing I notice about the 5 is the dishonest delivery dates which have not been honoured , the lack of any sort of apology and the silence that follows.
Retailers should not make promises they cant keep or have no intention of keeping.

Dave

Dave

I’m pleased I’m not the only one who thinks taking away the audio jack was complete madness. I’m sure the percentage of usage wasn’t that low and even if it was it should have been kept in as a ‘public service !’ Bad move pi

I’m pleased I’m not the only one who thinks taking away the audio jack was complete madness. I’m sure the percentage of usage wasn’t that low and even if it was it should have been kept in as a ‘public service !’ Bad move pi

Ta Parrty

Ta Parrty

I second the irritation at no audio jack. I would rather suspect that the audio take-up was measurably higher than the composite video usage. They could have at least included the pads for an optional audio jack. At least Pi should keep their excuses consistent.

I second the irritation at no audio jack. I would rather suspect that the audio take-up was measurably higher than the composite video usage. They could have at least included the pads for an optional audio jack. At least Pi should keep their excuses consistent.

Philip Le Riche

Philip Le Riche

Wot no audio jack?? If they provided pads for composite video, surely they could have done the same for audio. I was one of that “very low pecentage” who used it with great effect to deter the neighbour’s cat from stealing Mog’s breakfast!
See https://youtu.be/tMxXY4qSWSg

Wot no audio jack?? If they provided pads for composite video, surely they could have done the same for audio. I was one of that “very low pecentage” who used it with great effect to deter the neighbour’s cat from stealing Mog’s breakfast!
See https://youtu.be/tMxXY4qSWSg

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