Instructables
Picture of ArrDrownHo! - Easily convert AVR to Arduino


Cap'n ArrDrownHo! is the lovechild of Ardweeny and Boarduino and he's here to commandeer your AVR ships. ArrDrownHo! inherits pros of both and cons of neither. Pick up an AVR chip and start prototyping instantly on a breadboard! Want to replace that costly Arduino in your project with a cheap AVR, but don't know how? Use the simple plug-and-play ArrDrownHo! piggybacked onto the AVR to act as interface for programming and provide power.

I'll let the features of ArrDrownHo! do the convincing:
  • On-board power regulator: Accepts 7-18V to power your AVR safely
  • Serial communication pins: To connect USB-to-serial boards for communication with PC and uploading Arduino sketches
  • 6-pin ICSP: To upload code or burn bootloader using a programmer
  • On-board 16MHz crystal/resonator: For precise timing. Both crystal and resonator are comptible with board.
  • Selectable power source: Choose power from 5V regulator, FTDI board or AVR programmer
  • Breadboard and perfboard/veroboard compatible
  • Tiny 1.6cmX4cm (0.65"X1.6") package: Takes only 1 extra row on a breadboard.
  • Home fabrication friendly: No plated through holes!!!
  • Power indicator LED
I made this when I wanted a simpler way to work with AVRs. Boards like Boarduino and RBBB used plated through holes which I couldn't make at home. Ardweeny required soldering pins to AVR's legs and provided very few features. So I combined the two and took the best of both worlds.

Here's a pretty bad video of it in action:

Notes:
This can only be used directly with ATmega8, ATmega168 and ATmega328.
To burn bootloader or Arduino sketches, a programmer is required. You can check out my Instructable on how to make one.
For serial communication or uploading Arduino sketch to an AVR(with bootloader), a USB-to-serial converter like FTDI or ATmega8u2 breakout board is required.

Edit: Modified board so resonator can also be used for timing! If using crystal, middle pin for resonator can be ignored. If using resonator, no need to solder capacitors C1 and C2.
 
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lmperkins10 months ago
I'm not very good with making my own boards so I sent your Eagle file off to OSH Park to be made. I just finished the build and uploaded the blink sketch. Very nice little project.
   
photo.JPGphoto 2.JPG

Any chance of passing the gerber/eagle file to me. I just could not get the org. file passes the oshpark design rules.

Many thx.

Antzy Carmasaic (author)  lmperkins10 months ago
Wow, what a beauty... The silkscreen looks great. My DIY one was very blurry and the pin number rubbed off during soldering.
I wasn't really sure if the closely placed components would clear a PCB fab house's guidelines, but guess you made it :)
Thank you for trying out my instructable!
rpotts21 year ago
this is pretty cool! how long would you say it takes to build? I have some micro skills from modelling and have successfully put together a couple of EMSL kits and some hackduinos.
Antzy Carmasaic (author)  rpotts21 year ago
If you have already soldered a few kits, it shouldn't be much of a problem. Fabricating the double sided PCB is the bigger challenge. I make it at home myself and starting from scratch takes me one whole day to make the PCB, drill holes and solder.
If you are thinking of sending it to a fabrication shop, let me know before sending it.
shobo1 year ago
i wonder how small it will be if made with smd's,for the regulator ic you can reclaim one from an old PC motherboard for example
Antzy Carmasaic (author)  shobo1 year ago
It won't be smaller in dimensions with SMDs since the length has to be atleast the same as that of AVR IC and width will be atleast the width of AVR+space taken by 2 rows of male header pins. Infact, I'm think of increasing the length substantially for the SMD version to fit in more features. :-)
SMD components are easily available from where I buy my through hole ones. Just haven't dived into the world of SMDs yet. Right now I have a basic design in Eagle. Have lots of ideas for it but am caught up with other projects.
Orngrimm1 year ago
I had some difficulties to understand how this thing is used... I finally got it at the image in "Step 8" :)
Maybe you could write in a sentence just at the beginning how this thing is to be used like
"It is piggybacked onto the DIP-package and acts as interface for programming and using your single Atmel-chip with this backpack. No Arduino-Board needed anymore."
Just my 0.02$

Cool 'ible thou! I like it! :)
Antzy Carmasaic (author)  Orngrimm1 year ago
I've included your suggestion in somewhat layman's terms and added a GIF showing the setup. It's very easy to overlook such things and to take the reader's knowledge for granted. Thank you for helping me make this more understandable. Will probably be adding a video in action soon.
The GIF is superb! Thats exactly what makes it clear and understandable how all the stuff fits together. :)
Antzy Carmasaic (author)  Orngrimm1 year ago
Yeah that is a good suggestion. You've put it pretty well in a single sentence. Will put it in the intro page. Also will try to put an image that will make it clearer. Thanks! :-)
padbravo1 year ago
I know that my question is not about the main thing, but...

What did you use to make the animation? wich CAD?
Antzy Carmasaic (author)  padbravo1 year ago
I used Eagle to design the board. Then used EagleUp to convert it into a 3D Google Sketch-Up model.
Placed the items in sketch up as needed and took screenshot. Repeated this for each frame. Combined all the screenshots into a GIF using GIMP.
The Sketch Up model file is available in the attached files if you want to take a look.
Yeah!... great way... I'll grab them and look at...

Tks for your answer.