The Raspberry Pi Camera Module: Part 1 – Setup

The Raspberry Pi Camera Module: Part 1 – SetupThe CSI connector (Camera Serial Interface) for the camera

As I mentioned in a previous post, I recently purchased a Raspberry Pi Camera Module to open up a whole new bag of Raspberry learning opportunities and potentially take some great videos as well.

Before I jump into the code and start to take time-lapse videos of various pointless things, I thought it would be worthwhile to share some steps on of how to connect your camera module to your Pi, including a few things to look out for. This will be ‘Part 1’ of a series of camera module posts. Let’s begin…


You should have a Raspberry Pi and a camera module (I’m using the standard module) which comes with a belt. 

Optional parts are a camera mount/case and some kind of case for your Pi. I’d recommend using at least a camera mount as it’s a delicate piece of kit and can equally be damaged by static from your hands. I’m using the Pi Pod from OneNineDesign – it protects the module, and holds it in 5 different positions as well.

Connecting the Camera

Connecting the camera module is very simple and takes just a minute to complete. 

1. Locate the CSI connector, which is the one nearest the HDMI port. Squeeze the edges of the connector and lift gently – the top section should loosen (but NOT detach).

Raspberry Pi CSI Connector

CSI connector – closest to the HDMI

2. Insert the camera belt cable with the shiny foil/metal side facing towards the HDMI connector. It should push in to a point, where the top of the foil is still slightly visible.

Raspberry Pi Camera Belt

The shiny/foil side

3. Holding the belt in place, push the top of the CSI connector back into it’s slot. You should hear it click back in. You kind of need 4 hands for this, but just take your time and us regular 2-armed mortals can achieve a good fit.

Raspberry Pi Belt Connected

Belt connected – job done

4. Done!

Video Guide

I created a short video to show you how to do this;

Our camera is now connected and ready to use. In Part 2 I will show you what you can do now that you’re all set on the hardware side. I’ll cover the different types of standard functions such as still shots and video capture, and some simple code you can use to execute these on the fly. Later we will cover more advanced topics such as slow motion and time-lapse.

Until then…keep it fruity!

Average Man

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