Pimoroni Octocam

This is another little project from Pimoroni. This ones really simple, its just a Pi Zero W with a tiny camera housed within a cute octopus frame. The octopus has tentacles (suction cups) so that you can attach it to a window.

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With the Octocam kit I also received a PI 3 which I will be using with the Google AIY project that came with the latest edition of the Mag Pi magazine but I will save that for another post. There was also a neat little coaster in the parcel.

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As I mentioned above this is a simple build compared to others with absolutely no soldering required and it does not make use of any hats. We start by putting the octopus frame face down and inserting the nylon bolt into it.

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When the screws are on and a first set of nuts added a space is added to the bolt in order to keep the pi a good distance from the frame. After that it is time for one of the things I hate most, attaching a flat cable. To do this you need to gently pull the black plastic clip on the camera connector away from the pi until there is a small gap. After that the camera cable is inserted and the black clip pushed back in.

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The Pi and camera are then flipped over. A rubber pad is added to the back of the camera to help keep it in place as it rests between the frame and Pi.

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The camera is then positioned in the frame and the Pi is folded over and positioned over the bolts. This took a few attempts as the camera kept popping out of the hole in the frame. Another 4 nuts are added to the bolts to secure the Pi in place.

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Next the suction cups are added. Just pushing them in does not work well but if you twist them at the same time they go in pretty easily.

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Lastly and optionally you can add the stand to the camera if you want to place it somewhere instead of stuck to a window.

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Here is the finished Octocam. The Pimoroni guide explains how to set it up running motionEye OS but of course you can run whatever you want on it.

For now I have been playing with motionEye OS and it seems a pretty solid platform with lots of options to explore. With a little bit of tinkering you can get a good performance live stream going.

I will be sticking with this operating system for now and exploring the storage options and ability to stream over the internet securely.

All in all I am impressed with this little kit (The Pi zero’s size never ceases to amaze me especially given the w includes Wifi and Bluetooth).

 

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