Beginning Raspberry Pi Workshop: Make an HD Video Player

Tuesday, August 20th and Thursday, August 22nd // 7pm – 10pm
at Machine Project

Non-members – $175
Members – $150

Registration for this class is CLOSED. E-mail us at to be put on the wait list, or to find out about next time we hold a class like this.

Instructor: Clay Chaplin

In this workshop we will cover getting started with Raspberry Pi computers, with an emphasis on creating a super-simple HD video player for gallery environments. Filmmakers, video artists, VJs, and photographers are encouraged to attend, but anyone with a general curiosity about the Raspberry Pi and Linux is welcome to attend.

If you present video work using DVDs, a laptop, or a Mac mini in a gallery setting that has limited security or tech support then this is for you! You will create a 1080p HD video player on the Raspberry Pi that connects to a HDMI flatscreen monitor and, when booted, will immediately start playing your HD video content. No buttons, no software, no instruction sheets . . just plug it in and your videos start playing. We’ll provide all the materials, and you’ll leave the class with a functioning HD video player for you to keep.

Class One:

– Raspberry Pi basics
– Command line (Unix) basics
– Installing Linux on the Pi
– Initial Settings for the Pi
– writing a shell script to email the RPi’s IP address
– connecting to the PI without a monitor

Class Two:

– formatting your HD video with the right codec
– uploading videos from your laptop to the Pi
– writing a shell script for playback
– tweaking some code for auto booting and screen blanking

Participants should bring their laptop (Macs preferred) with free Terminal software installed and downloaded here:, as well as a usb keyboard and usb mouse. If your laptop has an SD reader, even better!

Participants should be of high school age or older. Basic to intermediate computer skills are required for this class. Basic command line experience, Linux skills, and knowledge of digital video file formats and codecs are all helpful, but not required.

If you have any questions about the class, feel free to email — or watch this helpful video!

Raspberry Pi – HD Video Player Demo from CalArts-ESP on Vimeo.