Raspberry Pi 4: 48 hours later

“We’ve never felt more betrayed and excited at the same time,” admitted YouTubers 8 Bits and a Byte when I told them Raspberry Pi 4 would be out in June, going against rumours of the release happening at some point in 2020. Fortunately, everything worked in our favour, and we were able to get our new product out ahead of schedule.

So, while we calm down from the hype of Monday, here’s some great third-party content for you to get your teeth into.


A select few online content creators were allowed to get their hands on Raspberry Pi 4 before its release date, and they published some rather wonderful videos on the big day.

Office favourite Explaining Computers provided viewers with a brilliant explanation of the ins and outs of Raspberry Pi 4, and even broke their usually Sunday-only release schedule to get the video out to fans for launch day. Thanks, Chris!

Blitz City DIY offered viewers a great benchmark test breakdown, delving deeper into the numbers and what they mean, to show the power increase compared to Raspberry Pi 3B+.

Curious about how these creators were able to get their hands on Raspberry Pi 4 prior to its release? This is legitimately how Estefannie bagged herself the computer pre-launch. Honest.

For their launch day video, Dane and Nicole, AKA 8 Bits and a Byte, built a pi-calculating pie that prints pies using a Raspberry Pi 4. Delicious.

Alex from Low Spec Gamer took his Raspberry Pi 4 home with him after visiting the office to talk to Eben. Annoyingly, I was away on vacation and didn’t get to meet him :(

The MagPi magazine managed to collar Raspberry Pi Trading’s COO James Adams for their video, filmed at the Raspberry Pi Store in Cambridge.

Some rather lovely articles

If you’re looking to read more about Raspberry Pi 4 and don’t know where to start, here are a few tasty treats to get you going:

Raspberry Pi 4 isn’t the only new thing to arrive this week. Raspbian Buster is now available for Raspberry Pi, and you can read more about it here.

Join the Raspberry Pi 4 conversation by using #RaspberryPi4 across all social platforms, and let us know what you plan to do with your new Raspberry Pi.


Arthur Fieldstone avatar

Maybe now with 4GB RAM I can once again attempt to install KDE on Raspbian Lite…

Manoj avatar

Awesome. I’m one of the lucky one who purchased Pi 4 4GB variant in India. Still waiting for shipment to recieve it. I’m super exicited.

Brijesh Kumar Mishra avatar

Hey lucky man,
Kindly share the details from where you got it, m also looking for the same.

Thanks in advance

Dhruv Halwasiya avatar

Really cool!
So how do you intend to use it?
I just got mine and have installed raspbian on it
but i really really want
Chrome os
Windows os
or Android
on it.

Michal Smrž avatar

Office favourite Explaining Computers provided viewers with a brilliant explanation of the ins and outs of Raspberry Pi 4

This is connector, it’s silver, this is another connector, too silver, this is pins, this is board… its green…

But to the point. I am not only one, who have huge overheating issues, even with heatsings on Pi, sitting idle, doing nothing 56°C, without 66°C (even without monitor). It’ll be my first Pi, where I have to order heatsings for every chip (now I am looking for 5x5mm) and thinking, it’ll not work in load without active cooling.

Elliot Stallings avatar

What is the ambient temperature where the Pi with these heating issues is located? It sounds like you definitely need active cooling. Wow, how frustrating.

James Duffy avatar

Where on earth do you live? Are you overclocking it? I overclock my Pi3B+ pretty aggressively and I don’t usually hit those temperatures unless pushing it hard. I’d have to check but idle with overclock I think I sit in the 45°C range. Due to that, I actively cool with a small fan but only due to the overclock and pushing software decode of h265 on it.

ndrw avatar

With the case cover on, USB3 memory stick plugged in, and bbc.com open in the browser, my 4GB Raspberry Pi 4 is hitting >80C and throttling. That’s at 1-2% system load. Without the cover, memory stick and all programs closed it was idling at ~65C at room temperature (~22C).

I’ve noticed similar symptoms in the Cambridge store (choppy scrolling in the web browser and a thermometer icon popping up).

RPi4 definitely needs cooling and a better case.

Anders avatar

I tested it with desktop, web and doing a postgreSQL install when it arrived on Tuesday and I noticed CPU was hot to touch (I was expecting this as Eben is quoted as warning that it will get warmed up) but there was no throttling going on and certainly no thermo or power icon on the top right. No heatsink installed.

I’ll give it a bit more of a test tonight. Maybe a case option should have a fan vents and a built in attachment point for a little fan.

ndrw avatar

You need to wait 30-40 minutes for the temperature to settle. That was a bit of a surprise to me, given the size of the case.

My results:
Raspberry Pi 4b, closed case, stock Raspbian, desktop via hdmi (1920×1080), open terminal window, wifi, keyboard + mouse from Raspberry Pi 3, default voltage (0.8824V).

– Idle: 67C
– Idle+USB3 memory stick: 71C
– stress -c 1: 81C (half thermometer icon displayed, throttling to 1GHz)
– stress -c 2: >85C (full thermometer icon displayed, throttling to 0.75GHz)

How to reduce CPU and GPU clock frequencies and the CPU supply voltage? I don’t mind lower CPU speed, I bought RPi4 for larger memory size and higher IO speed. I would like to keep the case cover on and passive cooling, perhaps with an internal radiator.

anders avatar

My temperature at idle according to vcgencmd is 53C It’s been left on since tuesday.

It used to be /boot/config.txt where the CPU clock speed was set, there were arm_freq, core_freq settings in there and settings for voltage. I don’t know if it’s the same for buster but the file is still there.

anders avatar

Update, it’s up to 57C idle with the current ambient of 32C.

Peter Stevens avatar

Our DC based ones running this website are sat at 47-50C. There’s a gentle flow of 18C air across them and they have the fan from the PoE unit.

T L avatar

I have a 4GB Raspberry Pi 4, plugged into a 1920×1080 monitor logged into the desktop, with an official USB keyboard and a Logitech USB G502 gaming mouse plugged into that (probably irrelevant!). The Pi is in the new Pimoroni coupe case. It is plugged into the router using the ethernet cable, wifi and bluetooth are disabled in config.txt and raspi-blacklist.conf (just to be sure as I don’t use either). To the point now…
The CPU temperature (using /opt/vc/bin/vcgencmd measure_temp) sits between 63 and 65 deg C when sitting idle in the desktop. I left it for a couple of hours with a crontab entry writing the temperature and time to a text file every minute to check this. The ambient room temperature is 26 deg C and the Pi is sitting on its own with plenty ventilation around it.
Is this okay/normal? I have only really used heatsinks before when using the Pi-Desktop case or home-made Lego cases, but don’t usually bother for Pis that aren’t left doing heavy tasks most of the time.

Liz Upton avatar

Yes, that’s normal (and quite within range for consumer electronics – feel the top of your set-top-box!).

T L avatar

Thanks Liz, I was just a bit concerned when I first noticed the heat (when showing off my Rainbow Pibow Coupe case to my children).
On a different note: I’ve been trying to find out if the MicroSD card read/write speeds have improved on the RPi 4, but can’t find much online. I have a few Pis with SSD/HDD/mSATA drives, which I know will perform better with USB3.0, but I like to keep my “PlayPi” with just a MicroSD card for portability and wondered if it was worth buying a faster one than the usual Class 10 ones I buy… I’m not complaining about the speed though as it is nice and fast :-)

ndrw avatar

Sorry, idling at 67C is excessive. This leaves almost no headroom for any useful work or increase in ambient temperature. Even rebooting is enough to push my RPi4 into throttling.

I will keep the board for use with active cooling but the case is going back. It is a bad design and it makes RPi4 useless.

Leania Mahimer avatar

Hoping this comes to my country asap. I’m excited to have one!

Guy the It Guy avatar

It would be nice if I could order a 4GB model. I absolutely refuse to buy anything less since I have been waiting on this. But hey, let’s go the Nintendo classic route and not make very many and screw over people who don’t have a disposable income 24/7.

Simon Long avatar

Seriously? Do you think we are artificially restricting supply? Why on earth would we do that? We’re in the business of selling computers, for crying out loud – we want to sell as many of the things as possible.

Our factory is building Pi 4s as fast as possible – any stock shortages are temporary, and a little patience will be all it takes to get one. This is not a “limited edition” product like the Nintendo; there will be plenty of Pi 4s available for everyone who wants one. Try to turn down the aggrievedness slightly and just wait a week or two.

Okurka avatar

You already forgot the shortage of the Pi Zero when it was released?

Simon Long avatar

No, I didn’t – Pi Zero was restricted in quantity due to a restriction on the supply of some parts and on factory capacity. It wasn’t an artificial restriction; it was just that we couldn’t make them faster than we did.

Similarly, there is no artificial restriction on Pi 4 manufacture – we are making them as fast as we are able to. It’s our flagship product; any shortages are purely temporary due to high demand at launch. We want everyone who wants one to be able to buy it; it would be really bad business to do otherwise.

Dan Bernhardt avatar

Thank you Simon. I have mine on order for the 4GB starter kit and it (should) ship around Aug-1. I’m looking forward to receiving it. I’m an old guy and I have learned patience, so I’m not addressing manufacturing issues. I understand. I’ve had a lot of fun with my Pi 2 and 3b+. I appreciate all you and the entire team do.

Stephen avatar

There was always going to be an excessive amount of demand on launch of a product. The only way they could have ensured enough stock for everyone that wanted one would have been to delay the launch/announcement to build up more inventory – which would have increased costs (For storage) for the company. And you wouldn’t be getting your Pi any earlier as a result.

San Miguel avatar

I have a 4GB one. You can have it for $1M :)

Leigh avatar

Hi, will it be possible / easy to boot the Pi 4 off USB 3.0?

Stephane BUISSON avatar

I second your request, could we boot from usb3 SSD?

Liz Upton avatar

Not quite yet – but you’ll be able to shortly (we’ll make an announcement here when it’s ready). Ethernet boot will be first, followed by USB booting later.

M-H avatar

Hi guys and girls. Thank you so much for releasing a new pi version 2 days before my birthday. and have it available ( = delivered ) to me on my birthday!.
There will be plenty of users less fortunate , but I have my new 4 gig pi in less than 48 hours after ordering.
super how you are able to keep it a secret while making that much effort to preload the distribution channels.
As you mentioned it in the leaflet anyway..it should be public knowledge soon, when would we be able to get news on the 8 gig version ?

Simon Long avatar

The mention of the 8GB part in the leaflet is a typo – I’m afraid it doesn’t exist! The BCM2711 processor is in theory capable of addressing 16GB of SDRAM, but at present there is no available memory package larger than 4GB that works correctly with its SDRAM controller and PHY.

M-H avatar

I somehow do not think it is really a typo, in 16 languages.
:-) I am sure that in time you will find a way to solve the issue that puts the limit at 4 gig today.
Please celebrate this release, and then head back to your ideas on the next one.

Murugan avatar

Hi this is Cool ..!!! Will this support AI ??? or RPI4 will capable to run Machine Learning Projects??

dr. Memals avatar

it always has and now it will be able to do so quicker and for larger projects.

Tom avatar

You can do AI on a Pi Zero! ARM have a couple of libraries for doing faster maths on their chips and you can run tensorflow on then. There is also a project to use the GPU (thats 12GFlops at least you can play with)
The new CPU should be even better – if I can only get hold of one!!!!! Those 4G ones seem to have all flown!

Bz16 avatar

Hi! Will the new Pi support USB PD power ability at higher voltages? A, say, 9V 2A power supply would make powering this beefy Pi and any attached devices a lot easier.
Super excited for the Pi 4B nonetheless! That extra RAM will finally satisfy Chromium’s appetite XD

Alec avatar

Cant wait to get my hands on this and see how it performs with retro pi showing off dreamcast n64 ect.

Will the pi3 heat sinks work with this ?. Can it be overclocked.

Alastair Stevens avatar

I’ve stuck a Pi3 heatsink on my 4, and it’s fine. The CPU heat spreader cap is the same size. The idle temperature on mine, without case, dropped from 58-60C down to 48-50C, so a decent 10C drop on average. The Pi3 ran at around 44C typically (with case), so it’s not too much worse.

mohammad avatar

I’t good to release a review for desktop kit

Liz Upton avatar

We’re sending quite a few out to journalists this and next week, and several got pre-release packages; you’ll find reviews if you search online.

Phil avatar

For my 1GB 4, I set up a swapfile and workspace on a usb3 ssd and it works really well. USB boot will be nice, but until then, this seems to be a good alternative.

Colin 't Hart avatar

Any chance you can make a Nordic keyboard? Would love to buy a desktop kit, but need a Swedish keyboard layout.

Sam Vimes avatar

Why did you stick to the “Model B” addition? The combined changes to the form factor could have justified changing it to “Model C”.

I would have dumped it all together…

Alastair Stevens avatar

I believe the ‘Model B’ name is a reference to the old BBC Micro computers, the Pi’s spiritual ancestor!

David Osborne-Carey avatar

I can’t wait even though I after a little water related accident had to replace my pi3b+ with a like for like will be getting one of the 4gb versions ASAP.

Now all I need to do is figure out how to install it in my retroflag SNES case.

Nick avatar

Got RPi 4Gb, my experiences with Buster so far:
1. Installing Openmediavault failed, I should use beta software channels probably.
2. Hypriot (Docker for RPi) failed, no version ready for Buster.

Currently for my experimentation needs it’s useless. On the other hand I was pretty amazed by performance of the board, although it heats up to the temperature that I can not touch it with my finger. Will definitely install radiator & fan.

Tux avatar

Can it work as a Thin Client

Liz Upton avatar

Yes, it can – Citrix makes a port of their client software (which they generally deliver via partners).

Neil Mason Stewart avatar

All of the videos benchmark the 4gb version. Is there a comparison of the 1gb version to the 3B+?

Phil Freeman avatar

I was going to purchase a Pi 4 until I read this review over at CNXSoft WITH a heat sink attached.


Then I thought there may have been hope after a test firmware update


It seems quite clear that there is a real issue with overheating and thermal throttling that may only be addressed with an active cooling solution (more cost).

Idling at 61°C is too hot for any SBC.

Add to this the fact that 4k playback is so buggy from release, it is clear that the Pi foundation has rushed released the Pi 4 without decent quality control being in place.

As such, what could have been a real game changer could end up being a real noose around the proverbial neck.

Alastair Stevens avatar

I’m sure any issues relating to firmware and software (i.e. Raspbian Buster) will be rapidly addressed in the weeks ahead. As to the harder, the 4 does run quite hot, and I do wonder whether a simple heatsink should be included in the standard spec. The cost would be pennies, surely? I’ve stuck a simple Pi3 heatsink on my 4, and it’s dropped the temp by around 10C on average – so well worth doing.

Exaga avatar

I posed exactly the same question(s) on the Raspberry Pi Forum to [Principal Software Engineer at Raspberry Pi (Trading) Ltd.] James Hughes. I was accused by him of “concern trolling”. URL: https://www.raspberrypi.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=28&t=243500&p=1492343#p1492314

It’s unclear if the RPi4 was rushed to market, or not. It has a copyright/manufacturing date of “2018” screen-printed on the board. So who knows if that’s just another tactic? However, questions about quality control and inspection procedures this time around are not without some justification and merit.

Mikael Bonnier avatar

How does the Raspberry Pi 4 work with TV HAT or Sense HAT? Would these HATs e.g. prevent cooling of the chips?

Sven Heine avatar

Finally a raspi which is faster than the beagleBone.
As the old beagleBone was a hell of a lot more responsive (even with less CPU speed and less RAM) and used less power I was Using it quite a lot more.

Now I am giving the PI an other chance …
So Far from Testing:

Lots of support
Runs stable

Hot as hell 82°C idle in Original case 27°C Outside
Hot as hell 63°C idle Original case open – small passive heat sink
Not possible to run without active cooling or a huge heat sink

Con – Original case:
Original case is crap ripped the SD-card slot from board as I took of a head – A cut out so an sd-card clears the case would not hurt.
No ventilation holes in original case no way to fit active cooling without cutting the case

Alastair Stevens avatar

Mine idles at 48-50C using a simple Pi3 heatsink without a case, so you should be able to do better than 63C? I’m going with the Pibox Coupe case, awaiting arrival, and hopefully that will still let it run cooler as it has big openings in the top.

Jorrit avatar

As the Pi has now a dedicated Ethernet phy, can it support wake on lan?

Graham Toal avatar

“Pi Zero was restricted in quantity due to a restriction on the supply of some parts and on factory capacity. It wasn’t an artificial restriction; it was just that we couldn’t make them faster than we did.” – you say that like it is past tense but pi zeroes are still one per customer. If I wanted to buy 50 of them (which I soon will), what are my options?

James Hughes avatar

Buy the ones that are not restricted to single educational purchasers – the ZeroWH for example. They are available in whatever quantity you want. For 50 off, you might want to contact us directly for a bulk order, although its a bit low.

Lee the Geek avatar

Finally got a 4B. After many buckets of tears, I finally (somehow) got the network to work! It’s fast!
Still hate Libre, so I will install AOOo.

Lee the Geek avatar

…and that was a fluke because the network hasn’t worked since.
systemd says “$XDG_RUNTIME_DIR IS NOT SET.”
route has no entries
ifconfig shows 2 entries until after I run ‘ifconfig eth0 up’. After that, it shows 3.
After a fresh boot, when I hover over the Network icon in the system tray, it says something about not connecting to dhcpcd.
This is an issue with Buster. I know because my RPi 3B+ network works flawlessly under Stretch, but shows exactly the same issue with Buster. Is this the way Buster is going to go? I think you were in too big a hurry to market.

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