Raspberry Pi Roundup - the NEW Raspberry Pi 3B+, an LED matrix gaming table and a way to use cheap LCD displays

The Raspberry Pi 3B+

Raspberry Pi has announced the launch of the new Raspberry Pi 3B+. An incremental upgrade of the Raspberry Pi 3, the 3B+ features:

  • an improved processor running at an increased speed of 1.4GHz with an added ‘heat spreader’ to help with thermal performance.
  • a new Cypress wifi chip and Prolant antenna technology giving access to both 2.4GHz and 5GHz wireless networks.
  • a new onboard header for a Power Over Ethernet HAT which will be released by Raspberry Pi in the coming months.
  • improved Ethernet speed courtesy of an upgraded LAN chip. Although still limited by going through USB 2.0, Ethernet users can now get a maximum speed of 300mbps.
  • improved power circuitry to support all the new functionality.

All these incremental improvements add up to a more powerful, zippier Raspberry Pi which retains the same price-point.

You can read more over on Raspberry Pi Pod, enter a competition to win one of five 3B+s here, or just buy one from The Pi Hut here.

LED Matrix Table

Andreas Rottach from Germany has taken 300 LEDs and a Raspberry Pi 3 and created this stunning LED matrix gaming table. He’s implemented several low-res games on it, including Tetris (above) and Flappy Bird as well as programming challenge favourite Conway’s Game of Life. It can also display static images – I particularly like the chessboard one – very functional.

You can find out how to build your own table via Andreas’ tutorial on GitHub.

Take a look at it in action below:

16x2 LCD

You can get hold of these HD44780 16x2 LCD screens quite cheaply on eBay and AliExpress. Over on my blog, I've written a tutorial that tells you all about how to use them the simple way, over the I2C bus, and explain the use of a Python library which lets you control them. Take a look here.