100th Post Giveaway! CLOSED

wpsuperadmin Arduino, dfrobot, giveaway, microcontrollers 9 Comments

The 100th post has arrived! So to celebrate, we’re having a giveaway! I wrote about it earlier, and I still cannot believe that it is finally here. I’ve wanted to extend my gratitude to those who follow my blog here, and to the electronics community, especially when it comes to Opensource.

Thanks to our friends over at DFRobot for sponsoring this giveaway! 
A little background about them: as an online shop, they specialize in robotics. They make and sell a variety of boards (offering PCB services), tools, components, kits, etc. If it’s about robots, chances are, they’ve got it. They also plenty of other electronic items. If you’ve yet to hear about them, go check them out!

The prize: Dreamer Nano V4.0

Source: DFRobot, with editing by heartsy

Description from DFRobot:

The Dreamer Nano V4.0 is a surface mount breadboard embedded version of the ATMEGA 32U4 with integrated Micro USB. It has everything that Arduino Leonardo has (electrically).Physically, it is just missing power jack to save space.

Using the ATmega32U4 as its sole microcontroller allows it to be cheaper and simpler. Also, because the 32U4 is handling the USB directly, code libraries are available which allow the board to emulate a computer keyboard, mouse, and more using the USB-HID protocol!

The Dreamer Nano v4.0 is compatible with most Nano shield in the market. It’s suitable for projects that require a compact size controller system.


  • Microcontroller:ATmega32u4
  • Operating Voltage:5V
  • Input Voltage (recommended):6.5-12v (VIN) / 5v (Micro USB)
  • Input Voltage (limits):6.5-12V
  • Digital I/O Pins:20
  • PWM Channels:7
  • Analog Input Channels:12
  • DC Current per I/O Pin:40 mA
  • DC Current for 3.3V Pin:50 mA
  • Flash Memory:32 KB (ATmega32u4) of which 4 KB used by bootloader
  • SRAM:2.5 KB (ATmega32u4)
  • EEPROM:1 KB (ATmega32u4)
  • Clock Speed:16 MHz
  • Compatible with most of Nano shield
  • Size: 45x20x20mm

We think this prize makes a great starter microcontroller that is breadboard-able, and Arduino Leonardo compatible.

How to enter the giveaway:

  • One comment, answering: How did you get started into (or what brings you to) electronics?
  • Winner will be picked with a random number generator using an Arduino.
  • The generator will be recorded in action & uploaded on the blog, in a new post.
  • Be sure to log in when you comment. Anonymous types will not be accepted.
Giveaway is now until Thursday, November 22, 2013 at 11:59 PM PST. Winning announcement will be held that same weekend.
Should you have any questions, please send me an e-mail instead of leaving a comment. Good luck!

Comments 9

  1. This video got me into electronics:

    Knowing a thing or two about photography and video, I was amazed that they were able to capture such amazingly smooth time-lapse video with a moving camera. I researched different techniques of doing it and they all involved very expensive equipment (thousands of dollars). Then I came across a site dedicated to DIY motion capture (http://www.openmoco.org/) and they had hardware schematics and code for building just the sort of thing I was interested in, and it was controlled by an Arduino.

    I had known about the Arduino ecosystem for a while, but never really had a desire to delve into it. Now I did. It was right before Christmas so I put the word out that I was interested in an Arduino. I got 3, and I've got all of them put to use in some stage of project prototyping.

    I haven't built by time lapse video rail yet, but I still plan to.

  2. I got into electronics as a high school freshman way back in 1980. A teacher had been offering an electronics class covering basic analog theory and prototyping plus a bit of TTL logic. After really enjoying that class I talked him into offering a second class covering more advanced topics.

    Since then my dabbling has been varied and mostly things I needed but couldn't find or justify the cost of retail. I have jumped in and out of the hobby as the micro-controller scene change drastically from bare 8051 chips, to the early PIC Dev boards that cost $80, ran at 4 or 8MHz, and had only a few pin's of I/O, to the ATMEGA boards with tons of I/O and seemingly unlimited storage.

    I haven't built anything micro based since the arduino bootloader and tools have taken over so this would be a great opportunity to come back up to speed. I have a few project ideas on the shelf waiting for a push to get started.

  3. Technically it all started with a Lego Island CD-ROM game for our family's brand new "Windows 95" PC ~15 years ago at the age of 5. ((That PC had 128Mb of ram and the current Raspberry Pi has 512Mb!!!)) The LEGO Island game was my first toy that had any real building in it & .

    I quickly grew out of the 5 actions you could do in the game, so mom bought me my first physical Lego set of the >800lbs that would come in the next 10 years. Yes you read that correctly, more than 800 pounds followed that. BTW, Is that much Lego mass sane??

    Anyway I only moved on to something besides Lego's at grade 10, which was mechanical engineering, of which I did until I graduated 2 years later.

    On the months approaching my graduation I noticed I was spending more time in the classroom across the hall. (Electrical Engineering) It also came to my attention that I liked building robots, machines, ect.. However a Mechanical Engineer didn't share the same traits that made building with Lego's enjoyable.

    These traits can be summed up in a 4 word sentence:

    Limitless Creative Building Potential

    What I now understand is that in the process of growing up, I needed to move on from Lego's to the next stage in my life. That stage was my career path. I ended up looking for something that would be a logical transition from what I was building with my Lego's. Since I was almost always building robots/machines I thought that a job as a mechanical engineer with an emphasis on designing would be perfect. Unfortunately it was not.

    Although I stumbled upon electrical engineering from something as simple as a cheap CD you would expect to get in a the bottom of a cereal box as a crude prize, I still manged to find it, and I'm very glad I did!

  4. I didn't know it at the time but watching my father change batteries in random stuff was what finally led me to electronics. The journey gathered momentum with my parents giving me a 30 in 1 radio shack kit to prepare for an upcoming 5th grade science fair.

  5. I got started with the hobby Arduino and Android dev projects by reading blogs! Yep, blogs were the inspiration and then I moved to several forums to teach myself all the ins-'n'-outs. I also enrolled in the EdX classes when they first became available. They are awesome!

  6. I started into electronics mostly from instructibles, as well as blogs like yours. As a kid, I loved playing with snap circuits. Back then, I didnt know what a resistor was apart from the little instruction sheet telling me I needed to put one in.

    Being a teen, I went to instructables a lot, and saw other projects, and thought- I would REALLY like to build some of this. Of course, I had no idea how to read a schematic or solder, etc.

    With a passion to learn, I taught myself the basics. I googled a lot (A LOT) of stuff about electronics, learned what resistors were, transistors, etc. MAKE: magazine helped a lot too. I got if for christmas one year with the intention of just following the book, but it helped spark something, and I ended learning a TON of stuff on their website and magazine. It was also great to learn about other people with the same passion as I have for electronics.

    Keeping up with this stuff, i went more in depth. I finally learned what an arduino was 2 years ago, got a couple for my own use, and have been learning since. There is still a lot out there I dont know, but I am pretty certain that my major in college will be electrical engineering- I love it that much!!!

  7. Got into electronic when I was 15 (46 now) hard wiring a Z80 PIO to my ZX81. Was scary cutting holes in the case & soldering directly to the board. Was fab lighting that first LED then using machine code to control my model railway.

    Joined the RAF as an avionics engineer then got more into programming through my career.

    Now back into lighting LEDs (LCDs, etc) using RPi's and loving it. Boring my facebook friends with endless (to them, pointless) versions of traffic lights using just resisitors, then transistors, the I2C. Loving it. Glad to be back.

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