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Video Pi

Video player for artists by artists

Video Pi is a simple video player specifically designed for art installations. It is a software package for the Raspberry Pi mini computer.


  • supports a wide range of video formats
  • plays all video files from a USB stick in a loop
  • turns on automatically when connected to power
  • HDMI and S-Video output

Supported hardware

Supported and tested:

  • Raspberry Pi 4
  • Raspberry Pi 3 Model B

Supported but not tested:

  • Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+
  • Raspberry Pi 2 Model B

Not supported:

  • Raspberry Pi 1


  1. Install Raspberry Pi OS on your Raspberry Pi. Follow the installation guide.

  2. Download the Video Pi package and its dependencies and transfer them to the Raspberry Pi:




  3. On the Raspberry Pi, install the packages:

    sudo apt install ./omxiv_*.deb
    sudo apt install ./udevil_*.deb
    sudo apt install ./video-pi_*.deb

    Be aware that the video-pi package installs several files in the home directory. If these files exist, they will be overwritten:


User guide

Starting Video Pi

  1. Make sure the HDMI or S-Video cable is connected before you power on the device.
  2. Plug in the power source.

When Video Pi finishes startup, it will show a desktop with dark background and the red Video Pi logo.

Changing video output resolution

  1. Connect a USB mouse and keyboard.
  2. Click the configuration icon in the top left corner of the desktop. Use the keyboard to navigate the interface. Screen resolution settings are under Advanced.

Video playback

To start playing videos, connect a USB stick with the video files. Video Pi will play all files in alphabetical order. When it finishes the last file, it will start again with the first file without any break.

When a USB stick is connected before the device starts, Video Pi will start playing the videos immediatelly after starting up (you don't need to disconnect the USB stick and connect it again).

To play the videos in particular order, name your files with numbers or lowercase letters. Non-latin characters (with diacritics, in cyrillic etc) as well as special characters (punctuation etc) are discouraged.

Video Pi supports Full HD (1080p) video resolution.

The loop (repeat all) function cannot be turned off.

Image slideshow

You can put image files on the USB stick too (even mix video and image files). Each image will be shown for 5 seconds.

Audio output

To adjust audio volume, disconnect the USB stick and then use the blue icon on the right side of the top system panel. Right-click the icon to change whether the sound will play from HDMI or from the 3.5mm jack.


Video playback is not smooth

  1. Make sure your power supply is strong enough.
  2. Try different encoding options when rendering the video. Videos transcoded in VLC with the setting Video for MPEG4 1080p TV/device are tested to play well.
  3. Lastly, you can try overclocking your Raspberry Pi.

Changing the time between images in a slideshow

You can change the setting only by editing the files /usr/bin/video-pi-play and /usr/bin/video-pi-play-images-only.

Support and getting involved

If you have an idea on how to improve Video Pi or if you need help using it, send me an email to:

videopi at saloun dot cz

Also please let us know if you're in Berlin or Prague and have a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ or Raspberry Pi 4 to lend out for testing.

Buy Video Pi

If you don't feel like installing Video Pi yourself, I can

  • lend you a Video Pi (or more) for a daily price
  • or I can sell it to you

In either case, I will help you with the initial setup.


videopi at saloun dot cz


Video Pi uses:

Building from source

  1. Install Docker and start it.

  2. Build the Docker container in which the package will be built:

    make debian-docker-build
  3. Build the video-pi Debian package:

    make debian-build
  4. Build the omxiv Debian package:

    1. Clone this repository on the target Raspberry Pi.
    2. Run ./build-omxiv.
  5. Build the udevil Debian package:

    1. Clone this repository on the target Raspberry Pi.
    2. Run ./build-udevil.

All packages will be created in the directory dist/.


Additionally, you can sign the built package with GPG:

make sign key_id='<gpg key fingerprint>'


Copyright 2015-2022 Jakub Valenta

This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program. If not, see