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Universal prototyping shield supports numerous Arduino models

Sep 19, 2016 — by Eric Brown — 327 views

On Indiegogo, Awesome PCB’s $13 “ArduShield” prototyping shield supports a wide variety of Arduino boards, including the Uno R3, Mini, Mini Pro, and Nano.

The ArduShield “universal” prototyping shield is notable for supporting a wide variety of Arduino boards, including the Mini and Mini Pro. Created by Polish developer Szymon Mackow at his company, Awesome PCB, the ArduShield is available for $13 for another 23 days on Indiegogo, where it has successfully funded. (The $8 early birds are all gone.) A $17 version adds a breadboard, and $22 gives you two ArduShields. All packages ship in November. A stretch goal has added a footprint for a WS2812 RGB LED.

ArduShield, front and back views
(click image to enlarge)

The ArduShield has been tested with the Arduino Uno R3, Micro R3, Nano V3, Mini V5, and Mini Pro, as well as with the Arduino compatible, Linux-driven Intel Galileo. Compatibility is also likely with the Arduino Zero and Leonardo, and with the OpenWrt-supported Arduino Yún.

ArduShield with breadboard, surrounded by supported Arduino boards
(click image to enlarge)

The ArduShield is claimed to shrink the amount of cabling required between an Arduino Uno and a breadboard by half. An extension that stretches over an adjacent breadboard provides easy access to all the Arduino pins. The device can also power the breadboard through a smaller extension.

ArduShield with Uno and breadboard (left) compared to more extensive cabling required with Uno connected directly to breadboard
(click images to enlarge)

The flexible design enables Arduino Uno users to use the ArduShield as a programming tool for an Arduino Mini or Mini Pro. The shield also offers a socket that supports the addition of an Atmel ATTiny85 8-bit RISC MCU, enabling programming via the Arduino IDE.

ArduShield breadboard extension closeup (left) and shown as programming interface between Uno and top-mounted Mini Pro
(click images to enlarge)

Other touted advantages include easier access to analog pins A4, A5, A6, A7 on the Arduino Mini and Mini Pro without using shortcuts. The shield also offers access for all four holes from each side of the breadboard, and enables prototyping two Arduino devices at once using a single breadboard.

ArduShield demo video

Further information

Awesome PCB’s ArduShield is available for another 23 days on Indiegogo for $13, or $17 with a breadboard, or $22 for two ArduShields. All packages ship in November. More information may be found at the ArduShield Indiegogo page and at the AwesomePCB website.

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