Arduino as USB Host or Raspberry Pi?

Hi all,

I'd like some advice.

My project (a timing display for RC car racing) needs to be able to talk to a commercial timing display that our club has already purchased. I thought this display had a RS232 DB9 connector so I used SoftwareSerial to provide the output; however, I was wrong, the display only has USB input.

So my question is this - do you guys think it is easier to make the Arduino a USB host and talk to the timing display in this way - or - do you think it is easier to provide serial output to a Raspberry Pi (via SoftwareSerial) and then to talk to the display through the Pi?

I should point out also that I'm already using the SPI pins on my Arduino to provide wireless functionality via nRF24L01 transceivers.



If the display needs to be connected to a USB host I would be inclined to use the RPi. I have no experience of an Arduino USB host shield but I don't think it has the versatility of a PC or RPi and it may not recognize the device.

An Arduino Yun might be another option.

Or just a cheap laptop?


I like your thinking with the latop, Robin, that's something I hadn't considered!

I'm fairly sure the display board uses a FT232 IC, from the point of view of keeping the size of the enclosure to a minimum I'd like to use a Pi Zero, although I have an old Mk1 (256Mb) Pi I could use.

Guess I'd better start learning Python! :)



JoeK1973: I'm fairly sure the display board uses a FT232 IC,

Maybe you could hack into the Serial side of it ?

But don't waste time telling me you have broken it :)