A dignified Raspberry Pi with its HAT.

A dignified Raspberry Pi with its HAT.

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Raspberry Pis are commonplace for many makers and engineers around the globe — which of course make sense as it empowers us to tackle problems that previously were too expensive and/or too complex. I love many things that the Raspberry Pi and it’s amazing community offers, but I do have a favorite: HATs. A quick aside – whenever I see “Pi HAT” all I can imagine is a RaspPi wearing a cowboy hat. When the HAT specification was introduced it was a call to arms in the community. It said, “Come show the world that as a community we can create tools that enable us to solve any problem.” Well, if you do a search for Raspberry Pi projects you will see that there are hundreds of ways that it has been used to solve problems, and many of those solutions involve a HAT.


So let’s talk HATs, HAT stands for “hardware attached on top”. Really it is just hardware that (is suppose to) adhere to a standard and extends the functionality of your RPi. We aren’t suppose to call them a HAT unless they follow the exact standards such as including an EEPROM chip, but that is sometimes disregarded. I am excited by how many makers, engineers, and companies have designed and sold their own HATs, but if you are willing to crawl through GitHub and other project sharing sites you can find the files for numerous HATs that are open source, yet not being sold. I am also excited that on our Seeed Bazaar we sell quite a few HATs ourselves. Below you will find my favorite six hats on the Seeed Bazaar.

Arduino Adapter For Raspberry Pi

$19.99

ArduinoRP

One board is as iconic as the Raspberry Pi – the Arduino. Both of these boards have communities that have created extension boards. While the RPi brings inexpensive computing power the Arduino was here first and has so many peripherals to take advantage of. Many of the shields for Arduino (think Arduino HATs) are now available to be used with it. With the hundreds (thousands?) of Arduino shields now able to work with your Raspberry Pi what will you create?

Grove Pi+

$29.99

GrovePi

The Grove Pi+ enables the Raspberry Pi to extend it’s reach into our physical world easily. The Grove connectors on the GP+ allow Seeed’s more than 100 sensors to be added to it, greatly increasing its functionality. A great example is the AWS Simple Beer Service. Using the GrovePi+, AWS has created mobile beer taps that broadcast and share their usage all over the world! Once your RPi dons this HAT it will be ready to face any adventure you have in store.

ReSpeaker 2-Mics Pi HAT

$9.90

ReSpeaker Pi HAT

Interested in creating a project with a smart assistant? Then you should grab the ReSpeaker 2-Mic Pi Hat. Have your Raspberry Pi use Amazon’s Alexa, Google’s Google Assistant, and others to interact with the world and expand the uses of your project. This board is not able to tell the users location, but is able to take in voice commands up to 3 meters away. It also features two Grove connectors allowing quick and easy prototyping. Audio output can either use the audio jack or a JST speaker out connection. The best part is for last – you can grab this board for just $9.90!

Raspberry Pi LoRa/GPS HAT – 868MHz

$32.00

LoRaGPS

If you have a project that requires or would benefit from long range communication you should use this LoRa/GPS HAT. When you need to reach a sensor far away, or that will be moving far distances and use low bandwidth this is the HAT for you!  It also includes a GPS so you don’t lose your Raspberry Pi while it is out in the field. Don’t forget you will need a LoRaWAN gateway – we have a kit for that too!

Raspberry Pi Relay Board v1.0

$32.00

RelayHAT

If you have a project that requires or would benefit from long range communication you should use this LoRa/GPS HAT. When you need to reach a sensor far away, or that will be moving far distances and use low bandwidth this is the HAT for you!  It also includes a GPS so you don’t lose your Raspberry Pi while it is out in the field. Don’t forget you will need a LoRaWAN gateway – we have a kit for that too!

I hope you enjoyed this look at some Pi HATS that we offer. Please let us know if you have any questions or feedback on the products covered here, or if you’d like to see more articles like this!