Raspberry Pi AI Kit Brings AI Inferencing to Single Board Computers

With the rise of generative AI, machine learning is bigger than ever, with more and more outfits looking to integrate the tech into many of their projects. Same goes, we’re guessing, for the people who make products using single board computers, which is why we’re now seeing models like this Raspberry Pi AI Kit.

That’s right, it’s an add-on kit for Raspberry Pi 5 board computers that offers inferencing capabilities, giving you a way to add AI functionality into your projects. Whether you’re prototyping a keyboard computer, building a custom smart home solution, or putting together a creative installation, this thing lets you bring AI inferencing to the mix.

The Raspberry Pi AI Kit is consists of the outfit’s M.2 HAT+ add-on board, , which serves as the communications bridge between the AI module and the main processor, and a Hailo-8L M.2 AI accelerator module that packs 13 tera-operations per seconds (TOPS). Sure, that isn’t a lot of inferencing power compared to what you can get from modern PCs, but it’s plenty enough for the kind of projects people normally do using palm-sized single-board computers. The accelerator consumes just 2W of power, while being passively-cooled using a thermal pad for dissipating heat, although the whole thing is also compatible with the outfit’s active cooler for even more improved thermal performance.

The kit is designed to be installed on top of a Raspberry Pi 5, essentially giving you an AI-capable board computer ready to bring the power of AI inferencing to your single-board computer projects. According to the outfit, the board should be compatible with both first- and third-party cameras for vision applications, with the ability run multiple neural networks off both single and dual camera feeds. This ensures that the AI framework can be easily integrated with the camera subsystem, which, the outfit claims, is one of the major hurdles when creating real-world vision-based applications. Can this be used for non-vision AI apps? Probably, but vision apps are definitely the main focus for the system at launch.

The Raspberry Pi AI Kit comes with everything you need to integrate it into a Raspberry Pi 5 board computer, including a ribbon cable, a GPIO stacking header, and all necessary mounting hardware. The kit is meant to go on top of the board computer, situated about an inch above the board’s components, so it can get plenty of airflow for cooling. Do note, you’ll need to not just update the board’s software, you’ll also need to install all the dependencies requires to run the AI kit, along with suite of camera applications you want to use.

According to the outfit, you can use it with pre-trained neural network models from Hailo’s Model Zoo project on Github, which includes systems for vehicle detection, face detection, license plate recognition, and more. Full instructions for setup, along with all the necessary software installations with a fair amount of documentation, are available from the kit’s product page,

The Raspberry Pi AI Kit is available now, priced at $70. Of course, you will also need a Pi 5 to go along with it, which costs an additional $80, as well as an optional active cooler, if you need it, which goes for well under $10.

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