How to Get FREE Atmel Chips





Introduction: How to Get FREE Atmel Chips

The popularity of the Arduino development platform has brought the world of micro controllers out of engineering labs, and onto the kitchen table or garage workbench. It has also made Atmel AT chips infamous among electronics enthusiasts such as myself, as well as those who's primary interests are in software development. Atmel, like many electronics component manufacturers, will provide free samples of their products to interested parties. However the primary intended recipient is a business or university considering buying large quantities of the product. That said, I recently decided to find out if I could acquire some free samples from Atmel and I'm sharing my experience in this article.

Step 1: Evaluate Your Ethics

I think this is an important recommendation as a first step because understandably some may initially feel this is unethical. If so, please consider the following.

  1. I did not lie during the sample request process.
  2. What is your intent behind acquiring free samples? Do you have an idea that could develop into a business that utilizes the products you're sampling?
  3. Have you ever sold something? If so, then you have acted as a business entity.
Now, if your still with me, please do read on.

Step 2: Create a MyAtmel Account

You can see the information required to register in the screen shot.

  1. The first caveat to ordering free samples stipulates that this benefit "(requires a company or educational/university email address)". I don't have a company, or university email address, I successfully used the email address provided by my ISP.
  2. A Company name is required. I operated a small business in the past and used a "doing business as" name, however the business was not licensed or officially recognized by any authorities. I successfully used this as my Company name for registration with Atmel. If you don't already have such a name I suggest using something generic like **** Technology, or **** Research.
Here is the URL for the account registration form:

Step 3: Login & Add Samples to Your Cart

Here is the Login URL:

Once you're logged in you can search for products that you're interested in acquiring samples of. Some chips popular for Arduino development are the ATmega328 and the ATTiny85.

Step 4: Submit Your Request

Once you've added all items of interest to your cart, click the "Submit Request" button and you will be directed to the page shown in the screen shot. You are required to complete this form before you can submit your sample order. Again, I did not lie when completing this form. I did indeed have an idea for a product utilizing the chips I requested samples of so I filled in the information accordingly. I entered my name, phone number, and email address as the "Project Engineer", because I am. Once I submitted the completed form I was able to enter my shipping information, and at last submit my order.

Step 5: Appreciate & Enjoy Your Free Samples

Atmel generously uses 2nd day air shipping, so you won't have to wait long for your samples that were in stock to arrive.



    • Epilog Challenge 9

      Epilog Challenge 9
    • Paper Contest 2018

      Paper Contest 2018
    • Science of Cooking

      Science of Cooking

    We have a be nice policy.
    Please be positive and constructive.




    EVERYBODY SHOULD ALWAYS READ THE USER AGREEMENT/TERMS OF SERVICE! “Free” might be enticing, but, be careful of what you say and who you say “what” to. Atmel lets you “sample” the chips in order to gain access to your rights for intellectual property. Just thought you should know.

    Thank you


    Any remarks, suggestions, ideas, graphics, or other material, information or othercommunication (collectively "Communications") you transmit or post on this website is deemed public and non- proprietary. You agree that Atmel has no obligation with respect to the Communications and has the right to copy, disseminate, incorporate and otherwise use the Communications and all data, images sounds, text, and other things embodied in the Communications for any purpose, commercial ornon-commercial. Any Communications transmitted or posted by you that are threatening, libelous,defamatory, obscene, pornographic, or otherwise unlawful, are strictly prohibited and may be actionableby Atmel.


    Atmel, at its sole discretion, may monitor or review any portions of its website where users transmit or posts Communications, as defined above, solely with each other, including without limitations, chat rooms, bulletin boards or other user forums, and the content of any such Communications. Notwithstanding, Atmel shall have no responsibility or liability related to the content of any such Communications, whether or not arising under any applicable law.


    Atmel is the owner of numerous intellectual property, including patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets ("Intellectual Property"). Nothing contained in these Terms shall be construed as conferring by implication, estoppel, or other legal theory, a license or right to any of Atmel'sIntellectual property, except those expressly provided herein. Use of any of such Intellectual Property is therefore strictly unauthorized without the prior written consent by Atmel.

    Come on, those very cheap MCUs can be bought from ebay.

    I work for Atmel...
    thanks for this... Now we know how to shut down requests that are not legitimate :)

    i think you really work for Microchip, and you really just want to steer novices students and young professionals away from Atmel :)

    In my opinion every chip soldered in an entertainment project is legitimate.

    Or, just order them - you can get 10 on ebay for < $15, shipped. If you can't afford $1.50/chip - you're in the wrong hobby.

    True but eBay is rife with fraud, and even if the part is legit, you won't know if it's been handled correctly (static). Free samples are often US only, and in the U.S. It's easy to setup a DigiKey account.

    i'm an electronics student from Slovenia and i can't seem to get free samples of anything, i wanted an attinny45 for a project

    any suggestions?