An original Arduino UNO R3 costs about nearly $25, and I remember clones would cost about $10 on Aliexpress, but today I’ve been informed about VISduino, an Arduino UNO R3 clone, with some cost optimizations such as cheaper components and connectors, which sells for just 15.50 CNY (~$2.50 US) on Taobao, and $4.90 on Electrodragon. But double checking on Aliexpress, I could find another popular Arduino UNO R3 clone for $4.58 including shipping, but no USB cable.
Both boards cut costs by replacing ATmega16U2 by CH340 USB to serial chip, and replacing the ATMEGA328P-PU MCU (DIP) by an SMT version of the Atmel MCU such as ATMEGA328P-AU (QFP).
Other changes on VISduino include:
- Replaced USB B-type connector by a micro USB port
- Added extra through holes side-by-side with the Arduino headers for easier debugging.
- Extra 2×4 pin holes with TX, RX, VCC, GND, and I2C pins
You may have to install extra drivers for CH340.
Thanks to Benjamin (Zoobab) for the tip.
Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011.