RPi, camera module and face detection – possible?


I just started out playing with Processing on macOS but ultimately I’d like to use Raspberry Pi for a bunch of potential projects. One idea is to use a camera module and face detection to drive visualisations beamed to multiple monitors (via HDMI splitters).

However, upon reading this and other forums, it seems not that straightforward, with compatibility issues, unmaintained libraries etc.

Could you let me know how easy it is to use Processing on RPi and how feasible is this platform for stuff like image analysis and general audio-visual work? I’d prefer not to have to hack too deep into RPi system to be able to run things as I’m a designer and would rather invest my limited programming skills and time into something that works and has a potential.

So, a more detailed questions:
– Does Processing work on newest RPis?
– Would installing Linux on RPi4 be better in the long run?
– Can I use OpenCV on RPi for face detection/tracking on camera feed or is there another library?
– Do you know of any multimedia/audio-visual/generative art projects driven by RPis/Processing?

Thank you!

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Hi @figle,

Welcome to the forum! :wink:

Looking at the Getting started page on the Processing for pi website, it looks like it’s supported on rpi 2, 3 and 3+. I don’t see why it shouldn’t work on a raspberry pi 4. Also the rpi 4 is much more powerful and seems adapted if you want to do sound/visual interactive work with some computation.

The download link provided on the rpi processing website is actually a Raspbian OS with Processing installed. Most of the supported OSes are UNIX based and I think that there’s a Windows Iot something but Linux is the way to go! You can check them here: 20 Best Operating Systems You Can Run on Raspberry Pi in 2020

Yes I think so, it’s listed in the technical page

For projects using RPis, maybe someone can provide some links :wink:

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See this previous discussion P4 on Pi4 (is not a joke) I have experience of using USB Camera but not the camera module.


I just wanted to make sure I won’t be digging myself into a hole by purchasing RPi, camera etc just to realise some things won’t work.

Are you on RPi 4? Have you tried installing OpenCV library and run the basic code? What USB camera are you using?

Many thanks.

I have not tried to install OpenCV on my RaspberryPI4, I note there seems to be binary support for linux-armv6f, since I prefer to use a 64 bit OS (ManjaroARM) that’s no good to me. The library does not seem to have been updated recently and things have moved on apace since then on the RaspberryPI front, you might be better looking outside processing for a solution.

Check this out Add face recognition with Raspberry Pi | Hackspace 38 - Raspberry Pi You could probably hook it up with py5 if you are keen to keep connection with processing.