Looking for a Raspberry Pi 5? Shortages could be over for good as company almost doubles production

Raspberry Pi 5 close-up on chip
(Image credit: Raspberry Pi Foundation)

The popular Raspberry Pi 5 single-board microcomputer should be in ready supply in 2024, with an estimated 70,000 boards a week being manufactured as we write - a figure that, with any luck, should scale up to 90,000 over the course of the year. 

That's the promise of Raspberry Pi CEO and birth mother Eben Upton, who shared the secrets of the pharaohs with Tom’s Hardware.

Upton attributed the boost to manufacturing numbers in part to Sony - yes, that one - which operates the ‘bakery’ (chortle!), in Pencoed, Wales, where all the mummy and daddy Raspberry Pis live happily ever after.

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To make us jealous, Upton told Tom’s Hardware, “[Reaching 90,000 units manufactured a week]” is mostly due to bringing more test heads online in the auto test pods.” Someone reading this must know what that means, but we like it.

Though he claimed that Raspberry Pi 4s were also seeing similar production increases, he didn’t have the exact figures. Poor Raspberry Pi 4, all they need is to ask for their half of the inheritance and it’s basically biblical.

Tom’s Hardware probed Upton as to why more Pis are being made. To this he claimed that its aggressive manufacturing pace would continue until morale improves "backlogs are fulfilled and the channel (Approved Resellers and others) is in a good stock position.”

Alas, the slippery character managed to back away into a fridge whilst muttering about those meddling tech journalists before we could learn the true, dark, more interesting motive behind this.

Analysis: Hi Approved Resellers and others mate

Can you actually get a Raspberry Pi, right now, in January 2024? Yes. I’m delighted to tell you that the shortage of this niche hobbyist project, that was in full swing throughout the bubonic worst of the Covid-19 pandemic, has eased off considerably in recent months. 

In fact, opening up Pandora’s Checkout Counter was the main catalyst for me both getting one and being anointed, for my strife through the Nine Circles of Linux, as this esteemed publication’s (even if you want to dispute this, we can at least spell-check a strapline) Raspberry Pi correspondent.

And as I can now claim some air of authority on this stuff, I’ll say that, yes, the Raspberry Pi is popular, so you might find that the exact Pi with the exact RAM configuration you want isn’t immediately available from your Friendly Neighbourhood Approved Reseller. I, for my part, had to sign up to stock alerts to get my Pi 4 Model B, but I didn’t have to wait that long, and only had to wait at all because I’m bourgeois filth and wanted 8 gigabytes of RAM with it.

Fast forward to now, checking the same reseller that I purchased my Model B from last year, it’s pretty much the same situation: a Pi 5 is available now, if you’re willing to opt for ‘only’ having 4GB of RAM. Honestly, If you want a Raspberry Pi that badly, just pluck out the ‘numbers go brrr’ mind worm living in your own eyeball and settle for a machine that fits in the palm of your hand and could probably run a manned space mission no matter what configuration you buy it in. (Note from Legal: do NOT try this at home.) 

Or just do what the rest of us ‘enthusiasts’ do when we can’t immediately get the shiny thing we want:  go crawling to the PR machine for a freebie turn the router off for a bit to go and stare at a butterfly.

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Luke Hughes
Staff Writer

 Luke Hughes holds the role of Staff Writer at TechRadar Pro, producing news, features and deals content across topics ranging from computing to cloud services, cybersecurity, data privacy and business software.