Best starter kit for arduino?

Hey,

As you can guess, i'm planning on buying a starter kit/parts to start learning some programming and electronics. What I'm particually interested in is motor control (DC and steppers), and camera control (building an intervelometer).

I want to buy a kit that will be able to lead me into those projects at a later date, I dont fancy purchasing components which might lay around unused.

Prefentially I would get a kit from the UK (as it will post quickly), but ebay seems to have far better value for money.

Anyway these are some of the kits im considering: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Arduino-MEGA-2560-Board-Starter-Kit-w-Graphic-LCD-IR-Remote-/280759368411?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item415e8ffadb http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/UNO-ATmega328-Inventor-IR-LCD-Motor-Servo-ARDUINOS-Kit-/130560894058?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item1e6609246a http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Arduino-Compatible-MEGA-2560-USB-Board-LED-LCD-Ethernet-Shield-Starter-Kit-/280795294220?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4160b42a0c http://www.oomlout.co.uk/arduino-starter-kit-ardx-p-183.html

Anyway, what kit would you recommened for my requirements?

Thanks for your time! (And sorry if its the wrong forum, this seemed like the most appropriate place!).

-agour

i'm no expert on Arduino and have only had experience with the Arduino Ethernet (built in ethernet magnetic jack, with POE optional). What I would tell you however, is make sure you spend a little extra cash and buy one of the boards with a little bigger processor/ram. I say this for a few reasons:

1) for beginner programmers these boards are wonderful but just like any microcontroller, they have extremely limited resources and its easy to write a simple program that eats a majority of them up 2) if your looking to do very specific timing, you'll want a board that you can write some code that will actually execute before the next timing cycle happens. basically, you'll want a board that can achieve 30 or 60 frames per second or more without having to optimize the code to an expert programmers level. (and i'm only talking about running some computations for the timing data you get, actually working with the raw webcam data would be very difficult and require a lot of processing to achieve a high frame rate)

I'm very pleased with my board as a starter kit. I made sure to order the usb2serial light plus arduino ethernet (not poe version) from Mouser.com. it was reasonably priced and i was up and running examples in about 15 minutes.

Also, you'll want to get a breadboard so you can do several experiments without having to solder everything together.

Lastly I suggest you order parts online as the local store is going to be about 5 times more expensive than an online outlet such as mouser. I only say this because a 'simple' roving truck i built (ping distance sensor, ir led and transistors, potentiometer for sensing steering angle and an accelerometer) ended up costing about 600 bucks once i had learned everything i needed. buying online when possible can save you a lot and that project taught me loads of info, totally worth the money.

If you're looking to order from the UK, I've used Proto-Pic (http://proto-pic.co.uk/). I've had a few orders with them, delivered quickly and without any trouble.

working with the raw webcam data

I don't read that as a requirement. It looks, to me, more like the OP is interested in motion-control and/or time-lapse, which an arduino is quite capable of. I could be wrong though (certainly wouldn't be the first time).

no problem. i just wanted to make sure he understood that processing images with an arduino is going to be a potentially daunting task and it may require more computing power than one board can provide.

I think your absolutely right however that he just wants to deal in time lapse, which arduino is plenty capable of.

cheers!

Apologies for posting in completely the wrong forum!

Yeah you got it right dxw00d, im looking at controlling a motor to move the camera, and also to control when the camera takes a photo. Ill be using a dslr, so a webcam isnt a requirement!

Getting this combination now seems like a good choice to me! http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/ARDUINO-MEGA-2560-ATmega8U2-USB-Board-Free-Proto-PCB-/130618082172?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item1e6971c37c http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Arduino-Kit-Wires-Breadboard-LED-Resister-Servo-IR-green-LCD-UNO-MEGA-Nano-/280792281317?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item41608630e5

Thanks for all the help!

one of the forum members, terryking, has a webshop which has very competetive prices. I believe the website was yourduino.com or something similar. (google will help you.) I remember seeing some pretty amazing starter kits there.

I have ordered stuff from him, and everything was as described and it arrived within a reasonable time (I believe it was about 5 days.)

dont know if they have the type of kit your looking for, but you might want to check out his website.

p.

Is it better to buy the original starter kit or some cheaper alternatives, like this one https://geeklah.com/best-arduino-starter-kit.html#two? It is cheaper and includes original Arduino Uno 3 board. But I wonder is it worth to save money or better buy original?