HAT Hacker HAT review

By Phil King. Posted

With two sets of 40 GPIO pins, the HAT Hacker HAT enables you to connect two mini HATs (aka pHATs) – or one mini HAT and one full-size HAT – to Raspberry Pi. It serves a similar function to Pimoroni’s earlier (and still available) Black Hat Hack3r, but rather than being connected via a ribbon cable, it is a HAT itself and so mounts directly on Raspberry Pi’s GPIO header.

Supplied fully assembled, it’ll work with any 40‑pin Raspberry Pi model. Pimoroni has thoughtfully included six metal PCB standoffs (with screws) for spacing and securing it, and/or the attached mini or full-size HATs, via pairs of the eight mounting holes provided.

Pin checking

No extra software is required. So, in theory, you just mount your two mini HATs on the HAT Hacker HAT and you’re all set to go. Well, you do need to check that the same pins aren’t used by both HATs (unless they’re I2C pins with different addresses), which is easily done by looking them up on pinout.xyz – or using the pHAT Stack Configurator, although the latter offers a limited selection of HAT options and could do with updating.

If you need to attach more than two HATs to Raspberry Pi, a pHAT Stack would be a better option, as you can attach up to five mini HATs or three full-size HATs.

For most project setups, however, the HAT Hacker HAT should suffice. You might well want to connect just one mini HAT, e.g. a display, and use the other set of pins for connecting electronic components – for which the full labelling of the second header’s pins is very useful. Unlike the similar FullpHAT, however, there are no bonus GPIO breakout holes in addition to the two main headers.

Verdict

8/10

A compact and solidly built solution to mounting more than one mini / full-size HAT on Raspberry Pi at a reasonable price

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