Arduino compatible bare PCBs
William Westfield email (remove spam text)
> Why are you looking for a bare board, anyway?
> So that I can send the bare board(s) to my friend overseas, and let
> him build one or a few. I believe that is the whole idea behind the
> Arduino revolution; so that one can build themselves. Isn't it?
Well, perhaps originally that was part of it. It was certainly significant in my decision to jump on that bandwagon… But I think these days it’s more about building things using pre-assembled Arduino boards. Especially since you can get a pre-assembled Chinese Nano-workalike for less than the cost of DIP parts.
>>> My “Freeduino” design is still around, but it’s duemilanove-era (no I2C pins, no power auto-switch (perhaps a “feature”?), etc.)
> Sorry I was not able to find it? Please provide a pointer for all of us.
It’s the one that was sold by NKC (version 1.19.2 or something like that.) I thought they weren’t selling it any more, though.
There’s also a slightly older set of 4 other boards with a “truer” form factor. One each using 0603 SMT, 0805 SMT, 1206 SMT, and mostly through-hole components. Those were all tested, and work, before we did further refinement of the TH version. Those are here: http://www.freeduino.org/freeduino_open_designs.html
There’s a more detailed explanation here: https://forum.arduino.cc/index.php?topic=174734.0
> FTDI is based in UK *and* over the period of time they were unable to bring down their prices.
They DID bring down their prices with the new FT230X and FT231X chips. Less than half the price of the FT232RL, and a smaller package. I think Adafruit and Sparkfun are using the new chips. (Note that they are slightly cheaper than the ATmega16u2 that Arduino Uno ended up using. Based on distributer prices, anyway (I’ve wondered what sort of “deal” Arduino has with Atmel…)
> the Chinese came up with a simpler (and physically smaller) CH340 chip.
Neither is as cheap as the CH340, though I’m not sure what the added requirement for an extra crystal does to a self-assembled design. The CH340 is in a more hobbyist-friendly package, too. I’m sort-of proud of the Advances the Chinese have made in the Arduino; they’re well past simple theft at this point!
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