We select and review products independently. When you purchase through our links we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Raspberry Pi’s Newest Product Is a $12 Debug Probe

The Raspberry Pi Debug Probe in its plastic case.
Raspberry Pi

The Raspberry Pi Foundation just introduced its Debug Probe—a small board that lets you quickly debug or troubleshoot the Pi Pico and other ARM microcontrollers. At just $12, the Raspberry Pi Debug Probe is an interesting product, though it’s obviously somewhat niche.

Most ARM-based microcontrollers are usually “bare metal,” meaning that they lack an operating system. This makes debugging a bit difficult; you can’t just plug the Pi Pico into a computer monitor to see what’s going wrong. Instead, you must interact with the microcontroller’s built-in SWD (Single Wire Debug) interface.

While the Pi Pico’s SWD interface is fairly easy to access (it’s tied to a few GPIO pins), you need a debug probe to act as an intermediary between the microcontroller and your PC. And that’s the purpose of Raspberry Pi’s new Debug Probe. Once it’s connected to your ARM-based microcontroller, it sends useable debug information to your PC over a Micro USB cable.

This product is obviously geared toward professionals and hardcore hobbyists. That said, it makes the Pi Pico a more accessible software coding platform. Other debug probes cost several hundred dollars, while the Pi Debug Board is just $12.

The Raspberry Pi Debug Board is available today at licensed retailers. It’s intended for the Pi Pico and other RP2040 devices, but it should work with other ARM Cortex M-series microcontrollers. Note that, with a bit of elbow grease, you can also use a Raspberry Pi Pico as a debug probe.

Raspberry Pi Debug Probe

Debug the Raspberry Pi Pico and other ARM-based microcontrollers using Raspberry Pi's official Debug Probe.

Source: Raspberry Pi Foundation

Andrew Heinzman Andrew Heinzman
Andrew is the News Editor for Review Geek, where he covers breaking stories and manages the news team. He joined Life Savvy Media as a freelance writer in 2018 and has experience in a number of topics, including mobile hardware, audio, and IoT. Read Full Bio »