Raspberry Pi, Arduino, Android and Microcomputer Fun

As I’ve mentioned in a previous post, USB 3.1 and USB-C is going to shake things up for photographers. As much as I’m hoping a USB 3.1, and USB-C phone is going to be available for me to use on the Pacific Crest Trail (assuming I go) next year, I am not 100% sure.

I’ve been researching microcomputers. Things like a Raspberry Pi tend not to weigh very much (about 50 grams), and you do not need a dedicated battery like with a phone (you can just use the USB battery pack you charge your camera gear with). I believe they’re fairly easy to set up (I’ve used various Linux distributions and I cannot think they’re much more difficult than that). A lot of them sort of cheat with their USB ports, as they piggyback off of the same network they use for Ethernet. This means that they often lack USB 3.

The pros and cons of a microcomputer…


  • Theoretically lightweight compared to a phone
  • Faster backup speeds to clone an SD card to another SD card
  • Can plug into any television (useful for people that stay in hotels a lot)
  • Parts are cheaper to replace and the touch screens for them aren’t very expensive
  • It’s possible to make a completely waterproof case
  • Any material can be used for the case


  • Phones are easier to set up
  • The battery life might not be as good as a phone
  • They might be more fragile than a phone but this depends on the case you make
  • Possibly slightly bulky

I won’t actually have phone reception, so I only really need a Wi-Fi compatible device. At the moment it’s just a thought I’ve been having. I could possibly replace a phone, and I’d also have a solution to my SD to SD backup solution. I would like to be able to clone SD cards, not just for backup purposes but also so I can physically mail one to my family.

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