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Author Topic: Best expandable Arduino starter kit  (Read 1916 times)
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Montreal
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Hi everyone,

I'm new on the forums, I'm a (pre-)starter at this, and I'm interested in learning how to use an Arduino board... I have no specific projects in mind, but they all hover around home automation, receiving commands through the network and maybe using with an Android later

I don't understand the difference between the different Arduino models (I know some have more ports/more memory/faster processor, but I don't really understand how this translates in practice). From what I understand, an Arduino Uno is for novice projects, but an Arduino MEGA can also be used for beginner projects but it's more expensive?

I'm in Canada, probably going to use Solarbotics.com, unless someone has a better suggestion! smiley
The price isn't too important for me, as long as it's expandable.

I heard the Oomlout ARDX kit is a very good starter/intermediate kit (I am looking forward to spending a lot of my free time learning how to use this, maybe I'm too ambitious)
http://www.solarbotics.com/product/ardx_na/

And what would you guys suggest as an Arduino board?
If I understand correctly, the ADK Mega supports using the Android ADK programming kits (optionally?). Can you also use the normal programming language? Will I be able to follow the basic Arduino Uno guides?

Thank you very much, everyone. And sorry for the stupid questions!

-Marc
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If solarbotics,
get an ardweeny an FTDI Basic to program it, and
plop it on a solderless breadboard and add in all your external home automation stuff.
They even have that as a set!
http://www.solarbotics.com/product/bapp/

Add that to the ARDX kit, will be able to do a lot.
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Designing & building electrical circuits for over 25 years. Check out the ATMega1284P based Bobuino and other '328P & '1284P creations & offerings at  www.crossroadsfencing.com/BobuinoRev17.
Arduino for Teens available at Amazon.com.

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The kit looks good but rather expensive i would not pay 1/2 that price for that. you can ebay the items youself, and get it all for around 25-35 shipped even to canada.
and for breadboards i like the nano (they have clones on ebay that work great $14) i like ebay by the way, but shipping is slower if u need anything fast.
uno's are expandable(easy shields), and a mega can do about anything a uno can do + some.

my solution for this  delema? well, i bought all three nano, uno, mega.
use the nano for about everthing. mega for large, havent touched the uno.
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Montreal
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So I think I'm pretty set on getting that ARDX kit (when I get a bit more practical knowledge, I'll probably buy separate), now what I'm not sure of is whether or not I should get the Arduino ADK Mega or the Ardweeny kit.

I have a couple of questions before I make my decision:

1. Will I be able to follow, for example, an Uno guide if I have an ADK Mega? (I'm guessing not always vice versa?)
2. I am considering adding an Ethernet shield (or preferably a Wireless-N shield, if you guys say they're okay, not b/g -> will downgrade the network from n to b/g), so the Arduino receives its commands through the network. This is possible without running another server connected to the Arduino by USB, right?
2a) If yes, Thoughts on this? http://www.dfrobot.com/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=548
3. Any suggestions on documentation for me to start with? (is there different documentation between the Uno or the ADK Mega, appart from the 'ADK' documentation from Google?)

Thanks again in advance.
-Marc
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1. Will I be able to follow, for example, an Uno guide if I have an ADK Mega? (I'm guessing not always vice versa?)
Yes. "The ADK is designed to be compatible with most shields designed for the Uno, Diecimila or Duemilanove. Digital pins 0 to 13 (and the adjacent AREF and GND pins), analog inputs 0 to 5, the power header, and ICSP header are all in equivalent locations."

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2. I am considering adding an Ethernet shield (or preferably a Wireless-N shield, if you guys say they're okay, not b/g -> will downgrade the network from n to b/g), so the Arduino receives its commands through the network. This is possible without running another server connected to the Arduino by USB, right?
2a) If yes, Thoughts on this? http://www.dfrobot.com/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=548
Sorry not familiar with that shield nor have I tested WiFi. However, I have been using dfrobots bluetooth module for sending commands without usb, so I see no reason you couldn't do the same with WiFi. If you are wanting to upload sketches though, I don't beleive thats possible with the Ethernet shield or WiFi shield.

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3. Any suggestions on documentation for me to start with? (is there different documentation between the Uno or the ADK Mega, appart from the 'ADK' documentation from Google?)
Other than Google, I don't know of another central location for adk, but you should look two URLs over.
http://arduino.cc/en/Main/ArduinoBoardADK
http://labs.arduino.cc/ADK/Index


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