June 24, 2013

Make your own ATtiny programming shield

 When making a large volume of Arduino-based projects that don't use all the features of the ATmega328, it can start to seem like a bit of a waste. One way around this is the use of the smaller Atmel ATtiny microcontrollers - they're much smaller and thus cheaper, however with a reduced feature set. 

Nevertheless if they meet your needs, it's easy to program them with the Arduino bootloader - and a great way of doing this is with the shield created by Kevin Rye. He's taken the simple programming circuit required and published the details to make your own Arduino shield version that works with almost any Arduino-compatible board. Which leaves you to upload sketches to the ATtiny and get to work, for example:

Not bad at all, and a fine example of a simple project anyone can reproduce. And for more, we're on twitter and Google+, so follow us for news and product updates as well. 

If you're new to Arduino and want to join the fun, the first step is a solid board for your projects - our Freetronics Eleven - the Arduino-Uno compatible with low-profile USB socket, onboard prototyping space and easy to view LEDs:


steve said:

Would uploading the sip code to an eleven mean the eleven would forever be able just a attiny programmer?


John said:

No, you can just upload another sketch to the Eleven as normal. Another method is described here: http://tronixstuff.com/2011/11/23/using-an-attiny-as-an-arduino/

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