How to add an HDMI port to your laptop? A Raspberry Pi “is enough”!
If the use of a second HDMI port for a laptop PC is felt and no USB graphics card is available, the use of a Raspberry Pi can make up for this lack… but be careful, that’s all a micmac.
Sometimes the most complicated way to solve a problem is also the only one available. The Raspberry Pi is a very practical tool that can solve many problems, provided of course that you show a little patience.
Get a second HDMI port with the Raspberry Pi? It’s possible
“Tinkering”: the English term corresponding in French to “DIY” is perfectly suited to the process of obtaining a second HDMI port on a laptop PC, in the event that the use of an external port is not possible . This is what developer and computer science professor Pierre Couy offers on his site (source at the bottom of this article). There is a list of prerogatives to follow to broadcast in “streaming” on an additional screen via a Raspberry. This solution is not really economical, but it can be interesting to broadcast on a screen a little too far from your PC.
Pierre Couy details all the steps to follow to carry out this DIY. The main objectives of its approach are as follows:
- Allow unnoticeable latency when scrolling the mouse;
- Image quality high enough to read text;
- A target of 10 FPS in order to be able to play static content;
- Do not depend on a server to display the stream on the Pi.
A complex methodology
To do this, the developer follows many different steps that range from pure hard coding to simple tinkering. After many tries (and failures), he managed to find a solution that can be used on a daily basis, with various small practical counterparts that do not affect regular use too much.
This method is indeed not perfect. It sometimes happens that various bugs appear on the screen before finally disappearing a few frames later. Nevertheless, overall, this solution proposed by Pierre Couy can be used and is fully functional. One more reason if necessary to consider the Raspberry Pi as a particularly versatile tool, capable of solving various problems, provided you have a little patience and a handyman’s spirit.
Limitations depending on the versions
It is important to specify that to avoid potential technical limitations, the use of a Raspberry 4 is recommended. The problem is that it has been very difficult to get your hands on the fourth version of hardware for a few months, a direct consequence of the semiconductor crisis.
In his efforts, Pierre Couy originally used a Raspberry Pi 3, which quickly showed its limits. Among other things, the tool offered a too slow CPU, which pushed it to use light encoding. Overall, to apply the steps described by the computer science professor in his long tutorial, it is rather recommended to use a Raspberry Pi 4.
Source : Pierre Couy