No doubt you’ve heard of the SeedStudio Grove Starter Kit for Raspberry Pi Pico. Just in case I’m wrong, the Pico is a recent development from the Raspberry Pi people, a small board that in fact is actually nothing like a Raspberry Pi. While I am here, I should point out that Seeed the company are also responsible for the WIO Terminal.
It has no Internet connectivity and is simply a small, inexpensive (but speedy) microcontroller. For something relatively new on the market, competing with the likes of ESP8266 and ESP32, not to mention Arduino, the Pico needs lots of libraries and lots of companies bringing out support products to help it find a niche.
The Grove Starter Kit is one such support package, though the contents could as easily be used with almost any other small controller. On the seeed site there is a LOT of information for tech beginners.
The contents of the kit include a 16-char-by-2-lines LCD display (white characters on blue background), a mini PIR motion sensor board, a wS2813 RGB LED board (1 LED), a light sensor board, a button board, a rotary angle sensor board, a sound sensor board with microphone, a LED socket kit with potentiometer, a relay board and more.
On the underside of the package is a mini fan kit, a temperature/humidity sensor kit (DHT11), a servo board with accessories and finally 4 general purpose LEDs. all boards have GROVE connectors so no soldering needed. Oh and you get several Grove-compatible leads with connectors.
For someone starting off down the road of using Microcontrollers, this could be as good a start as any. I WAS planning on putting some of the boards together with one of my Raspberry Pi Picos – but in the rush to get to the UK for Christmas, I left the Picos in Spain so we’ll skip that part for now.
Instead, I’ll simply add some more photos and point you back to the Seeed Studio website (yes, that is spelled correctly).
As you can see in the photos, nothing onerous here. Presonally I’d rather have seen a modern colour LCD display but it might be that the drivers for that are pushing it a bit for the Pico. Let’s see. Erm, no, it seems the Pico CAN support a half-decent, small RGB display.
About my only gripe is the temperature/humidity sensor based on the DHT11. The DHT22 is VERY similar, only slightly more expensive and is a much better product IMHO. In the box they mention the Micropython tutorial which goes with the pack but which of course resides on their website. There is a link to the starter kits on that site but the link on the packaging didn’t work so I’m just pointing you to the Seeed site so you can find in there whatever interests you.
If you have any questions about the Grove Starter Pack, just contact the company directly.