If you're looking for an inexpensive way to get started with Raspberry Pi, it only makes sense to snag one of the best Raspberry Pi kits. These kits include almost everything you need to get started, with most kits even including the best Raspberry Pi accessories that you can find anywhere. The only thing you might need after getting one of these kits is the best Raspberry Pi controller, especially if you plan on creating a unique and awesome retro-console.
Which flavor Raspberry Pi kit will you choose?
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The New Model
The new Raspberry Pi 4 is a significant improvement over the 3 B+, and this kit from CanaKit has what you need to get up and running right away. This kit features 2GB of RAM, along with three aluminum heat sinks, and a USB-C power supply designed specifically for the Pi 4. You'll just need to get a case on your own when the time comes, or even if you want to.
The true portable computer
There are all-in-one Raspberry Pi kits, and then there's the Raspberry Pi 400. Instead of needing to put everything together yourself, the Pi 400 is essentially the Raspberry Pi 4 mounted inside a keyboard. This creates the all-in-one solution that you may be looking for, and all you'll need is a monitor.
All the RAM
With the Vilros Raspberry Pi 4 Starter Kit, you'll be getting just about everything you need to get your Pi up and running, short of a keyboard and mouse. The kit includes the 8GB version of the Raspberry Pi 4, an aluminum alloy case, power supply with a built-in power switch, HDMI to Micro-HDMI adapter, and two metal heat sinks with a pre-installed fan that ensure that your Pi 4 will never overheat.
Test the sensors
As you go through and build your Raspberry Pi computer, you may want to experiment with different things, but don't know where to start. With this Modules Sensor Kit from SunFounder, you are provided with 37 different modules, which will help you to attempt to complete 35 different projects. Plus, this kit includes the Raspberry Pi 3 B+ and all of the modules, so you shouldn't need anything else.
That retro look
There are some tremendous open-source arcade system images built for the Raspberry Pi, and this kit is a fun way to get started with one. Vilros includes a retro-styled Nintendo case, two USB gamepads, and a 32GB Samsung EVO microSD card. This card is pre-loaded with NOOBS and RETROPIE, so you are ready to play some games after assembling everything.
The Kitchen Sink
Made for hobbyists that want to go to the next level, this kit comes with everything needed to connect to the rest of the world and do cool things. Not only do you get the basics, but this Starter kit features a keyboard, mouse, microSD card, and a cooling fan. And to complete the "desktop" ensemble, there's a six-foot micro HDMI to HDMI cable, which will support up to 4K at 60fps.
Game on the go
Do you miss having a handheld game console that wasn't your smartphone? What about something that looks and feels like a Game Boy? That's exactly what you'll get with this kit, as you'll get the Retroflag GPi Case, along with a Zero, 128GB microSD card, heat sink, microSD card reader, and the Game Boy-like case for old-school on-the-go gaming.
Zero to hero
The Vilros Zero W Raspberry Pi kit includes the Zero W, which is largely based on the original Raspberry Pi while providing onboard Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.1. Vilros also consists of a basic case, power supply, and a few heat sinks to get you rolling. This kit is really designed for those who aren't sure about the world of Raspberry Pi and don't want to spring for the "full kit."
All the essentials
If you aren't sure exactly where to start with the Raspberry Pi, this Desktop Computer Starter Kit will be the perfect way to go. Included in the box is the official Raspberry Pi Beginner's Guide, along with a case, HDMI cable, microSD card, power supply, and of course, the Raspberry Pi 4 itself. And there's even a keyboard and mouse, leaving you to just supply the display.
If you want one of the most powerful Raspberry Pi's on the market, then you won't be disappointed by CanaKit's Extreme Kit. This kit features a 128GB microSD card, along with the company's Premium Aluminum Case which includes passive heat sink cooling. Plus, the included Pi Switch provides an On/Off switch right on the power supply.
Get started in DIY with the best Raspberry Pi kits
You can do so much with a Raspberry Pi. Yes, you. This little PC board was designed with education in mind. It's easy to learn, relatively simple to master, and extremely powerful when used to control things like a smart home or robot. Best of all, they're incredibly inexpensive.
You'll find kits for every level of skill and our staff pick — the CanaKit Raspberry Pi 4 Basic Kit — is perfect for most people who aren't quite sure where to start. Like the Pi itself, it was designed as a STEM tool for kids that have an interest in building a PC and programming. But it features many necessary accessories to get started with Raspberry Pi.
Those who want to bump things up a notch will want to check out the Raspberry Pi 400 computer kit. This is the all-in-one computer that you've been looking for, with the Raspberry Pi 4 already installed in the case. The case doubles as a keyboard and offers (mostly) easy access to all of the ports at the top, so you can plug in the best Raspberry Pi screen, along with your favorite mouse.
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Andrew Myrick is a Senior Editor at Android Central. He enjoys everything to do with technology, including tablets, smartphones, and everything in between. Perhaps his favorite past-time is collecting different headphones, even if they all end up in the same drawer.