Best Raspberry Pi Projects: May 2023

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

Lucky for you this month, we’ve got a nice selection of Raspberry Pi projects to inspire your inner maker. From revitalizing old hardware to magic wands, there’s plenty to get psyched about. These are some of the best projects we’ve come across over the last month and we’re delighted to share them with you again for the extra attention they deserve.

These makers use the best Raspberry Pi accessories and HATs to bring their crazy imaginative ideas to fruition. If you’re looking for something fun to explore this spring, these projects are sure to get you going. So grab your Pi and heat up that soldering iron, it’s time to delve into these wonderful creations.

Raspberry Pi Helps TRS-80 Model 102 Deploy Kubernetes

(Image credit: Amazon Web Services / Darko Mesaros)

It’s been over 30 years since the TRS-80 Model 102 portable computer was released but thanks to our favorite SBC, you can use it to successfully deploy Kubernetes. This would never be possible on its own as the Tandy 102 is nowhere near powerful enough. Maker Darko Mesaros is using a Pi as a Telnet server to help make this project possible.

Why we love it:

We love old school computers and we love the Pi. Stick them together and we’re guaranteed to get excited! This project showcases great ingenuity with a well executed end result. This is far from a plug-and-play project and we respect the work it took to bring this impressive idea together.

Read: Raspberry Pi TRS-80 Model 102

Harry Potter and the Raspberry Pi Powered Wand

(Image credit: ThatsSoM0)

This project works like magic…almost. It relies on a Kano wand with a little help from a custom Python script to interact with the new Hogwarts Legacy game on PC. The wand communicates with the Pi via Bluetooth which is connected to the PC as an HID device. The Pi translates the wand gestures into keypresses to trigger spells in game.

Why we love it:

This project looks just as fun to play with as it does to build! What Harry Potter fan hasn’t wanted to cast a spell using a wand in real life? This is as close as we’re going to get to the real thing. Kudos to Mo for creating this project and bringing a little magic into our lives.

Read: Raspberry Pi Harry Potter Wand

Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W Powers Budget Friendly NAS

(Image credit: Michael Klements)

If you've ever wanted an NAS device on a budget, this is the project for you. Michael Klements has created an NAS from scratch using a Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W. In addition to working as a full-fledged NAS, it's finished off with a custom 3D-printed case. This project is running on Raspberry Pi OS Lite and uses a 128 GB micro USB flash drive for storage space.

Why we love it:

This project is a great example of how you can create quality hardware at home with a little bit of work and a Raspberry Pi. The hardware inside is impressive enough but finishing off the build with a 3D-printed shell is icing on the cake.

Read: Raspberry Pi Zero 2 W NAS

Raspberry Pi Serves Up News and Weather, Retro Style

(Image credit: Jeff Jetton)

Not sure what to do with that old school TV? Throw a Raspberry Pi into the mix! This project uses a Pi to scroll weather data, news, and more across an old CCTV monitor. The idea is pleasantly simple but the end result is really cool. If you have a taste for old school tech, this is a great way to bring vintage hardware into the modern age.

Why we love it:

This is a really clever use of old hardware that we can help but want for ourselves. It’s not uncommon for the average maker to have a few Pis lying around and this is an excellent use case for a standalone project that’s both decorative and functional. We definitely recommend checking this project out to anyone who likes to tinker with old hardware.

Read: Raspberry Pi Retro News and Weather TV

Tom's Hardware Projects

It's hard to look at so many fantastic creations without getting inspired ourselves. If you'd like a project to recreate at home with steps to guide you along the way, this is the section for you. Our guides always list everything you need for the project and walk you through the creation process.

How To Install Tiny11 for Arm64 on Raspberry Pi 4

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

If you want to try running Windows 11 on your Raspberry Pi, the best method is to use Tiny11 for Arm64, a custom Windows image that's extremely lightweight. We tested Tiny11 on a Pi and, while the performance wasn’t great, it mostly worked. 

You don't need much hardware to get off the ground with this project. You'll need a Raspberry Pi 4, a microSD card for storage, a heat sink for cooling, a monitor for video output and any accessories for input like a mouse and keyboard.

Read: How to Install Tiny11 on a Raspberry Pi 4

Ash Hill
Freelance News and Features Writer

Ash Hill is a Freelance News and Features Writer at Tom's Hardware US. She manages the Pi projects of the month and much of our daily Raspberry Pi reporting.

  • R_1
    Raspbian XP has merged with RaspbianX and is now Twister OS.

    you can get it here
  • princeror
    Admin said:
    Makers this summer are keeping their hands busy with plenty of cool Raspberry Pi projects. Here are some of the best ones we've encountered over the past month.

    Best Raspberry Pi Projects: August 2020 : Read more
    Raspberry Pi Scoreboard is the best Pi project
  • Endymio
    >> "This matrix cube project was created by a maker known as Sebastian Staacks. Using a Raspberry Pi, it constantly displays an animation that changes as his CPU temperature rises ..."
    A quad-core CPU and 20 million lines of Linux OS code-- all to implement a color-changing thermometer? And this is your number one project for the month? As much of a Raspberry Pi fan as I am, there is something indescribably banal in many of these projects.
  • mrv_co
    Wow, judging by what I've seen on Reddit, I thought the only possible RPi projects were 'smart mirror' projects.
  • jtremblant
    @Tomshardware, It's "Pi Labs", you have a typo in your article
  • DotNetMaster777
    Nice review
  • mamasan2000
    If you want a static IP on your RPI and you have it at the same spot (at home for example), go into your router and find Lan Setup or similar. Tie the RPIs MAC-address to an IP. It will always get that IP, even if you have DHCP on. Same goes for all the other devices you set up that way. So you can wipe the PC, RPI, whatever and they will always have the same IP.
  • dmijaj9
    Well explained about the Raspberry-pi topic. Could you please add something about the CAN Protocol interface with raspberrypi? I want to have it with deep from basic to deep about CAN BUS.