Freetronics: Arduino-Compatible Electronics Kits & Parts

Here at Freetronics we design, sell and support our range of flexible, easy to use boards and modules, making it easy for you to build your own electronic projects.

What Is Arduino? Arduino is a very popular and easy to use programmable board for creating your own projects. Consisting of a simple hardware platform and a free source code editor with an easy “one-click compile/upload” feature, it’s designed to be really easy to use without being an expert programmer. Arduino is also the most popular microcontroller board for advanced users and all kinds of more ambitious projects.... Read more

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Arduino Kits Online

Looking for an Arduino kit online then you have come to the right place. We design, sell and supply electronic components which are arduino components.
For Arduino kits in Melbourne then always go for Freetronics.

Arduino parts online

If you need Arduino parts online our store has a wide range of kits and parts. Arduino melbourne, arduino uno, arduino duemilanove usb

Arduino duemilanove

We have lots of Arduino electronic components like ethernet shield, arduino mega usb and buy usbdroid

Microcontroller Boards

We sell a huge range of microcontroller boards which will be compatible with adruino electronic components

News

July 30, 2015

Monitor multiple buttons with only one Raspberry Pi input

Reading the status of more than one digital input such as a button with only one input pin is a common method of minimising I/O usage and is accomplished with a resistor network and a single analogue-to-digital pin. However as the Raspberry Pi doesn't have an ADC, another method is required. 

One example of this has bee demonstrated by Instructables member JRV31 whose solution still uses a resistor network, but instead uses the resulting voltage to charge a capacitor at a varying rate depending on which button has been pressed. The Pi then monitors the duration between state changes of the digital pin connected to the circuit - and then with the timing knowledge can determine which button has been pressed. 

An ingenious solution to a common problem, of which you can learn more about from the Instructable page. And for more, we're on facebookGoogle+, and twitter - so follow us for news and product updates as well.

Another neat way to interface your Raspberry Pi with external hardware is to use an Arduino-compatible board - and one neat example is the Freetronics PiLeven board:

The PiLeven is an Arduino-compatible board based on the Arduino Uno, but with a few changes. Obviously it's a bit of a strange shape! The PiLeven fits right on top of a Raspberry Pi (either model B or B+) using the Raspberry Pi expansion headers.

The PiLeven also has a high-current switchmode power supply, so you can plug in anything from 7V to 18Vdc using the standard 2.1mm jack. The PiLeven can power the Raspberry Pi, so you don't need a regulated 5V USB connection anymore.

Serial communications on the PiLeven is linked through to the Raspberry Pi, so your Pi can upload new sketches straight to the PiLeven or send/receive data and commands. We've included level shifters so the 3.3V Pi can talk safely to the 5V PiLeven. And you can plug standard Arduino shields right into the PiLeven, giving your Raspberry Pi access to the huge range of shields already available. For more information about the PiLeven, including our tutorials - and to order yours today, visit the PiLeven webpage.

July 27, 2015

Build your own custom Minecraft controller with Arduino

Fans of any keyboard-based computer game - and especially Minecraft players, will appreciate the ability to execute commands as quickly as possible. One neat method of doing so is to make your own control board with an Arduino or compatibe and a great example of this has been demonstrated by Lakhan Mankani.

By using an Arduino Leonardo or compatible board - as they can emulate a USB keyboard or mouse - you can easily create your own input device and have that emulate keyboard presses or a sequence of keystrokes to your PC. Thus by arranging simple buttons to the Arduino in the required layout - and with the matching code - you can have a custom keyboard to take care of finicky commands.

This type of device is also useful for non-gamers, any sequence of keystrokes used repetitively can be assigned to a button and exectured when necessary. To learn more and make your own, visit Lakhan's website. And for more, we're on facebook, twitter and Google+, so follow us for news and product updates as well.

Looking for a small Arduino-compatible board to use as the basis of your own keyboard? Consider our LeoStick - it's the Arduino Leonardo-compatible board that's cheaper and smaller than the original:

Apart from being one of the smallest Arduino-compatibles on the market with USB, it also has an onboard RGB LED and piezo which can be used a knock sensor and various tune and sound effects. Plus you can add extra circuitry with the matching protostick! For more information and to order, click here.

July 22, 2015

Make your own "connected" lighting device with Raspberry Pi and PubNub

One of the great benefits that comes with the Raspberry Pi is the ease of connecting external hardware to the Internet thanks to the onboard network interface. This synergy can be harnessed for your benefit and one neat example of this is the connected light device described by Kevin Gleason.

His example of a connected device is the ability to control a RGB LED connected to the Pi from an Android device via the PubNub cloud-based data service. This is made easier thanks to PubNub's python and C++ libraries for Raspberry Pi - along with notes on creating an Android app for control. 

Even if you're not interesting in controlling lights, this project is an excellent framework for creating connected devices you can control from afar - so visit the project's Instructable page to get started. And for more, we're on facebookGoogle+, and twitter - so follow us for news and product updates as well.

If you're looking for a neat way to add external circuitry to your Raspberry Pi model A+, B+ or 2 model B then check out our new PiBreak Plus Raspberry Pi Prototyping Board:

This is a great way to add your own electronic components, circuitry, sensors or other devices to your Raspberry Pi model A+, B+ or 2 Model B - any of the current Raspberry Pis with a 40 pin GPIO header. The PiBreak Plus also includes a GPIO female header to solder yourself, and a pair of nuts, bolts, washers and spacers to ensure a a great fit.

And in the Freetronics fashion we've used a quality gold-plated (ENIG) PCB for durability, brought out all the power rails along with the GPIO next to the prototyping area to make adding circuits a breeze. Furthermore the pinouts are labelled on both the top and bottom of the PCB to save time referencing the right GPIO pins. For more information and to order - visit the PiBreak plus page now!

July 20, 2015

Blinky's Brother - A Colourful Arduino-controlled Clock

Next in the subject of interesting clock projects is "Blinky's Brother" by Paul Swider. This is a neat clock that displays the time with blinks and colours instead of numbers. An RGB LED is used to glow inside a sphere which creates a neat effect and can be also quite mesmerising.

And thanks to the core being an Arduino or compatible board - you can customise the visual effects to suit your needs. For example, reducing the brightness during late hours, or blinking furiously to indicate an alarm.

Either way, for complete details to make your own version - visit Paul's Instructable page. And for more, we're on facebooktwitter and Google+, so follow us for news and product updates as well.

The most important part of any clock project is the inclusion of an accurate real-time clock IC. Here at Freetronics we have the Maxim DS3232 real-time clock IC module:

Apart from keeping accurate time for years due to the temperature-controlled oscillator and having a tiny coin-cell for backup, it is very simple to connect to your Arduino project. A driver library allows your program to easily set or read the time and date. Perfect for clock projects, dataloggers or anything that needs to know the date and time. Furthermore it contains a digital thermometer and 236 bytes of non-volatile memory to store user settings and other data. For more information, check out the module page here

July 17, 2015

Experimenting with the Freetronics Dual-Channel I/R Reflectance Sensor

We're great fans of the MrHobbyelectronics' YouTube channel, and in the latest update they show us how easy it is to use the Freetronics Dual-Channel I/R Reflectance Sensor. This module contains two infra-red reflectance sensors which return analogue values.

These can then be used to determine the difference between a dark and light surface - ideal for line-following robots or other devices. You can see this in action through the following video:

For more interesting videos like this, subscribe to the MrHobbyElectronics YouTube channel. And for more, we're on facebooktwitter and Google+, so follow us for news and product updates as well.

As shown in the video above, the Freetronics Dual-Channel I/R Reflectance Sensor is an incredibly easy method of sensing light and dark surfaces:

Furthermore you can split the module into two - which allows you to spread the sensors further apart. Each sensor returns a varying signal which can be read by an analogue input pin. The sensor is fully supported with design files and our great Getting Started guide, so to learn more and order please visit the sensor home page.

July 15, 2015

Measuring temperatures with Raspberry Pi and multiple DS18B20 Sensors

The DS18B20 temperature sensor is easy to use, inexpensive and has a repeatable level of accuracy which makes it a top choice for measuring temperatures in all sorts of environments. However using multiple units with a Raspberry Pi may have seemed too difficult - until now. 

Thanks to the efforts of Malcolm Maclean the process is quite simple. Only one GPIO pin is required as each DS18B20 has a unique 1-wire bus address, and with the example code running under Raspbian you can poll all the sensors in one hit and receive the temperature in Celsius along with the individual sensor's address.

Fore more information, visit Malcolm's interesting website. And for more, we're on facebookGoogle+, and twitter - so follow us for news and product updates as well. 

If you're interested in measuring temperature with a reliable sensor - consider using our TEMP: DS18B20-based temperature sensor module:

The TEMP: uses the Dallas DS18B20 1-wire digital temperature sensor, with a wide measurement range of -55 to +125°C at an accuracy of +/- 0.5°C. For more information, tutorials and to order - visit the TEMP: page

July 13, 2015

Monitor temperature and humidity using Thingspeak and NodeMCU

One of the benefits of the ESP8266-based NodeMCU development boards is the ease of getting local data onto the Internet thanks to the onboard WiFi system and the Lua programming language. This has been demonstrated very well by Instructables user WilliamT15 who has documented how to get the data from a DHT22 temperature and humidity sensor into the Thingspeak open-source data platform.

As the code for our popular DHT22-based sensors has now matured for the ESP8266 getting started is fast with the only hurdle being connecting the sensor to the NodeMCU module. In the example project a small prototyping expansion board has been created which solves the problem neatly and preserves the NodeMCU board for use in other projects. However the effort is worthwhile as the data can be presented neatly and accessed from any web-based device, for example:

For complete details and links to the code, visit the project Instructables page. And for more, we're on facebook, twitter and Google+, so follow us for news and product updates as well.

If you're looking for a sensor to measure temperature and humidity - check out our HUMID: humidity and temperature sensor module. Designed around the DHT22 sensor, it only requires one digital pin and power - and is easy to use with out Quick Start guide. With a temperature range of -4°C to +125°C with +/-0.5°C accuracy, and humidity at 0-100% with 2-5% accuracy you're ready to measure. For more information and to order, click here

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