Raspberry Pi HATs help Jams to achieve more possibilities and explore the world of electronics. Thanks to the convenience of Raspberry Pi’s GPIO (General Purpose Input/Output) pins, there are always many expansion boards and breakouts to extend the Raspberry Pi’s abilities, such as adding more sensors and LEDs, combining with microcontrollers and LCDs, etc. But the question is, with so many to choose from, which HATs should you go for?

Here we have selected the 17 most popular HATs and Shields for Raspberry Pi available at Seeed Studio and they are perfectly compatible for Raspberry Pi 4 our test.

The new Raspberry Pi 4 has 3 versions depending on the size of RAM, you can choose according to your needs: 

We hope this selection will help with your future projects and help squeeze every little juicy drop out of your Pi! This article includes descriptions and tutorials or projects to help you quickly find out what can be achieved in your next project.

In theory, HATs for Pi 3 supports Pi 4, but there are some HATs that will have compatibility problems and cannot be used on pi 4. For example, GrovePi+ is temporarily incompatible for Raspberry Pi 4. After testing, the following 17 hats and shields are perfectly compatible with Raspberry Pi 4

At Seeed Studio, we provide not only different Raspberry Pi boards, but also a full selection of Raspberry Pi HATs, shields, starter kits and accessories that can help you expand the Pi’s capabilities.

Raspberry Pi Voice Hats

ReSpeaker HATs

1. ReSpeaker 2-Mics Pi HAT ($9.90)

ReSpeaker 2-Mics Pi HAT is dual-microphone expansion board for Raspberry Pi designed for AI and voice applications. You can build more powerful and flexible voice products that can integrate with Amazon Alexa Voice Service, Google Assistant, and others.

The board is developed based on WM8960, a low power stereo codec. There are 2 microphones on both sides of the board for collecting sound data and it also had 3 APA102 RGB LEDs, 1 user button and 2 onboard interfaces for further expansions. What’s more, a 3.5mm audio jack and JST 2.0 speaker out are both available for audio output.

With ReSpeaker 2-Mics Pi HAT, you could build you own Amazon Echo.

how build your own AVS using a Raspberry Pi and ReSpeaker 2-Mics Pi HAT.

This tutorial explains how you can build your own AVS using a Raspberry Pi and ReSpeaker 2-Mics Pi HAT. All you need is a ReSpeaker 2-Mics Pi HAT, Pi Zero and an external speaker.

Also, by combining with Snips, home barista comes to life with this voice-enabled coffee machine: An open-source, private-by-design coffee machine that keeps your favorite coffee and caffeination schedule private.

2. ReSpeaker 4-Mic Array for Raspberry Pi ($24.90)

ReSpeaker 4-Mic Array for Raspberry Pi is a quad-microphone expansion board for Raspberry Pi designed for AI and voice applications.

Different from ReSpeaker 2-Mics Pi HAT, ReSpeaker 4-Mic Array is developed based on AC108, a highly integrated quad-channel ADC with I2S/TDM output transition for high definition voice capture, which allows the device to pick up sounds in a 3 meters radius. Not to mention, the 4-mic version provides a neat ring of 12 APA102 programmable LEDs.

With 4 microphones and the LED ring, your Raspberry Pi will be able to perform VAD (Voice Activity Detection), estimate DOA (Direction of Arrival), perform KWS (Keyword Search) and indicate the direction via the LED ring, just like an Amazon Echo or Google Home.

In this tutorial, you can learn how to make your own Google Assistant using Raspberry Pi and ReSpeaker 4-Mic Array

3. The ReSpeaker 4-Mic Linear Array Kit ($29.90)

The ReSpeaker 4-Mic Linear Array Kit is great for applications which are stationary such as mounted up against a wall. Capable of 180° voice detection, this kit can detect the relative location, or focus on a specific direction while ignoring other voice inputs. The array has a flexible cable allowing it to be placed in numerous orientations and allowing more options for enclosure design. Unlike other boards, this board only has a single blue LED.

In the below project, we create a smart mirror with Raspberry Pi and a 4-Mic Linear Array

Mojing Mojing – A Smart Mirror with ReSpeaker!: A smart mirror with voice interface control via ReSpeaker. We also connect it with Wio Link to control other objects!

4. ReSpeaker 6-Mic Circular Array Kit for Raspberry Pi ($39.90)

The ReSpeaker 6-Mic Circular Array Kit is great for projects where the device is situated in a central position. Capable of 360° voice detection, this kit can also detect the relative location, or focus on a specific direction while ignoring other voice inputs. This array also has a flexible cable for greater design flexibility.

Notable Features:

  • 6-Mic Circular Array
  • Ribbon Cable for Flexible Placement
  • 12 x RGB LEDs
  • 2 x Grove Connectors (I2C & Digital)
  • 1 x 3.5mm Audio Jack (Stereo)
  • 1 x JST Speaker Connectors (Mono)

Raspberry Pi Breakout Board

5. Grove Base Hat for Raspberry Pi ($9.90)

6. Grove Base Hat for Raspberry Pi Zero (8.90)

Grove Base Hat for Raspberry Pi

The Grove Base Hat for Raspberry Pi ($9.9) provides a range of Digital, Analog, I2C, PWM and UART ports to meet all your expansion needs. Also, with the help of a built-in MCU, a 12-bit 8 channel ADC is made available to the Raspberry Pi.

There are currently about 60 Grove modules that support the Grove Base Hat for Raspberry Pi. We will continue to add more compatible modules in the future. If there are any new modules you would like to add to your Raspberry Pi, let us know!

For software installation, we provide step-by-step guides and one-click installation where possible to help you get started quickly with Raspberry Pi.

Alternatively, you can choose the Grove Base Hat ($8.9) for Raspberry Pi Zero as shown below.

Grove Base Hat ($8.9) for Raspberry Pi Zero

7. Raspberry Pi Breakout Board v1.0 ($11.50)

Raspberry Pi Breakout Board for Raspberry Pi is a prototype board that you can combine your raspberry pi with other components, modules. As a prototype board, it also provides power, state indicator light, button and universal transistor, such as NPN, PNP, N-MOS, P-MOS. 

Features:

  • Raspberry pi compatible
  • Micro USB power supply
  • Basic Circuit: state indicator light, button, and universal transistor(NPN, PNP, N-MOS, P-MOS)
  • 3.3 volt, 5 volts, and ground power rails are easily available anywhere on the board

Raspberry Pi Display Hats

8. 2.7” Triple-Color E-Ink Display for Raspberry Pi ($28.90)

9. 2.13” Triple-Color E-Ink Display for Raspberry Pi ($21.50)

Triple-Color E-Ink Display for Raspberry Pi is high contrast, wide viewing angle triple-color e ink Display for Raspberry Pi.  The e-ink screen can customize the picture when it is powered on, the picture will not disappear after power off, and it can be displayed for a long time. We provide two versions of 2.7 inch and 2.13 inch.

Raspberry Pi ADC Hats

10. 4-Channel 16-Bit ADC for Raspberry Pi (ADS1115) ($10.95)

The analog-to-digital converter(ADC) is a common accessory for Raspberry Pi. This is a 4-channel ADC based on Texas Instrument’s ADS1115, which is a precision, low-power, 16-bit ADC chip. We make this ADC into a compact Raspberry Pi Zero form factor and integrated an analog Grove connector so that you can also use analog Grove modules with it.   

11. 8-Channel 12-Bit ADC for Raspberry Pi (STM32F030)($9.90)

Pin Out: 8-Channel 12-Bit ADC for Raspberry Pi (STM32F030)

ADC is a common accessory for Raspberry Pi. Nowadays many cheap MCUs has built-in ADC, so we make this 8-channel ADC based on STM32F030, which is a cost-effective, low-power ARM Cortex M0 MCU. We breakout 8 channels ADC from the MCU, and integrated 4 analog Grove connector so that you can also use analog Grove modules with it.   

Other Hats and Shields for Raspberry Pi 4

12. Raspberry Pi Motor Board v1.0 ($48.50)

Raspberry Pi Motor Driver Board v1.0 is based on the Freescale MC33932 dual H-Bridge Power IC, which can control inductive loads with currents up to 5.0A peak per single bridge. It lets you drive two DC motors with your Raspberry Pi B/B+/A+ and Pi 2 Model B, controlling the speed and direction of each one independently. Raspberry Pi Motor Driver Board v1.0 supports a very wide range of input voltage from 6V~28V. otherwise, the onboard DC/DC converter supports a very wide range of input voltage and can provide a 5V power supply for the Raspberry Pi with 1000mA maximum current. So, you just need one power supply to drive the motors and power up the Raspberry Pi.

13. 3D Gesture & Tracking Shield for Raspberry Pi (MGC3130) ($12.90)

This shield is based on Microchip MGC3130 chip, which enables the Raspberry Pi with 3D gesture recognition and motion tracking function. It can capture x y z position information, can also do proximity sensing and touch sensing, support tap and double click.

Thanks to the Microchip’s patented GestIC® technology, this shield utilizes electrical near-field sensing to detect movements. The shield generates a magnetic field above the central panel when the hand approaches, it will interfere with the magnetic field, and the magnetic field receiver below the shield can detect the change.

We prepared this tutorial using a 3D Gesture Tracking Shield for Raspberry Pi MGC3130 to control uArm robot to transfer part from one location to other location.

14. RS-485 Shield for Raspberry Pi ($7.95)

RS-485 Shield for Raspberry Pi

RS-485 is a cost-effective solution in serial communication networks. It can be used for data rates of up to 10 Mbit/s or distances up to 1200m at lower speeds. This RS-485 Shield is a standard add-on board for Raspberry Pi. It is integrated with a simple screw terminal as well as a DB9 interface.

Features:

  • One driver and one receiver per part
  • EMI noise minimization
  • Transmission rate up to 2.5Mbps
  • No driver slew rate limitation
  • Short-circuit current limited
  • Fail-Safe Applications
  • Please follow up our Wiki tutorial to get started with RS-485 Shield.

15. Raspberry Pi Relay Board v1.0($24.50)

The Relay Shield utilizes four high-quality relays and provides NO/NC interfaces that control the load of high current. Which means it could be a nice solution for controlling devices that couldn’t be directly controlled by IIC bus. Standardized shield form factor enables smoothly connection with the Raspberry Pi. The shield also has four dynamic indicators show the on/off state of each relay. 

16. Pi RTC (DS1307) ($4.45)

Pi RTC (DS1307)

The Pi RTC is based on the clock chip DS1307, it can provide a real-time clock (RTC) for Raspberry Pi via an I2C interface. The clock can count seconds, minutes, hours, days, months, days of the week, and years with leap-year compensation valid up to the year 2100. The clock operates in either the 24-hour or 12-hour format with an AM/PM indicator. To keep this module ticking when the Raspberry Pi is powered off, a 3V CR1225 lithium cell can serve as an alternative power supply.

Follow up our Wiki tutorial to set up RTC function in 4 steps

17. High Accuracy Pi RTC (DS3231) ($6.75)

Difference between Pi RTC (DS1307) and High Accuracy Pi RTC

Different to the Pi RTC (DS1307), this High Accuracy Pi RTC is based on the clock chip DS3231. The DS3231 is a low-cost, extremely accurate I2C real-time clock (RTC) with a built-in crystal oscillator. With the TCXO (temperature compensated crystal oscillator), the RTC provides seconds, minutes, hours, day, date, month, and year information, can automatically adjust the date for months with fewer than 31 days, and includes corrections for leap years. The clock operates in either the 24-hour or 12-hour format with an AM/PM indicator.

Same as Pi RTC (DS1307), simply add a high accuracy RTC to your Raspberry Pi in 4 steps.

That’s the wrap-up of our favorite Pi expansions and especially perfectly compatible for Raspberry Pi 4that we think will help you in your Pi journey. Which have you used? Did we miss any other must-haves? Let us know please 🙂

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