Fake Arduino Uno R3


Recently received a fake Arduino Uno R3 from China. I know this is an old topic but thought I would post here some pictures I took and my recent experience.


Be careful when buying, especially when it's too good a deal, could be counterfeit!


Thank You very much for warning.. Same, I would rather don't buy at all on eBay.. Who knows what will be delivered to you after a period of time..

Does it work? Then use it.

Is it legit? Well, they copied a bit too much of the open source Eagle file Silk Screening, claiming “Made in Italy” and using the official logo but in general making "Arduino boards is not the problem… " The problem is that buying these boards from China does not support Arduino LLC (That’s one reason why they can be so cheap… though not the only reason) It’s very unlikely they send any money to Arduino LLC.

So here is what you do… You figure that you saved maybe $3, $5, $10, $15 on this somewhat 'fiddly" purchase you made… and you go here: http://www.arduino.cc/en/Main/Donate

So now you can make up some of the price difference you could have paid and the fine people at Arduino LLC get reimbursed for some of their fine work.

Yes! It is fake ignore it and don't be use ahead it may create problem for you !

Buy in China only products that are officially clones. Arduino boards are open harware, clones are legal.

Your product displays the Arduino Logo : it is counterfeit. It is illegal.

To be honest i never saw original Arduino, here in my country all what i found is fake board. Arduino use atmega chips, that's the important thing to look about, there is no fake atmega chips for now, so you are in the safe side :D

wow, i just noticed mine is fake too xD too sad it would be completely difficult to find an official one here

You can believe in China! I don't think they are making quality based products, their main focus to target the poor people with manufacturing cheap and attractive products but they don't have any warranty!

An official nano = 25 € + taxes and shipping A chinese nano = 3 € , no taxes and delivered at home for free. Is it necessary to have a guarantee?

Of 5 Chinese nano purchased 0 defects. Of 6 chinese mini-pro purchased 0 defects.

The largest source of low price [u]is[/u] [u]the purchase of components in very large quantities[/u]. This is more important than low wages and non-compliance with environmental standards.

Most "official vendors" sell for high prices the same chinese components bought cheaply. They can provide a guarantee they will not risk anything.

The biggest problems I've heard of include:

1) Fake FT232RLs on Arduino Nano Clones. The kind that the "bad" FTDI driver update would brick. There were a lot of complaints of bricked Nanos. (Now, I think the Nano was never manufactured by Smart Projects (it was done by Gravitech), and it's not clear whether the fake chips appeared on ALL Nanos, or just cloned Nanos. (pick a Nano with CH340G chip instead, and you should be safer.)

2) Unexpected USB chips. A lot of the current crop of Chinese derivative boards are using a CH340G USB/Serial chip instead of an FT232RL. (It's about 1/10 to 1/5 the price, in tens.) I haven't heard anything bad about the CH340G, but: They're not supported by the drivers included with the IDE, drivers can be hard to find, and they aren't reprogrammable as mouse/keyboard/etc like a genuine Uno 16U2. (The CH340G-based design is ... morally interesting. It is NOT a copy of any existing official product; the CH340G is completely different than any officially used USB chip. To my mind, that makes these boards legitimate derivative boards in the OSHW philosophy. As long as they don't claim to be actual Arduinos.)

3) Incorrect bootloaders. There are two bootloaders for the ATmega328p; Optiboot (used on Uno), and ATmegaBOOT (used on some other 328p boards, like "Duemilanove w m328.") I think there have been incidents where people have gotten chips and/or boards with an unexpected bootloader.

4) questionable voltage regulators. A lot of people operate their Arduinos from the USB power, and wouldn't notice if the regulator for the external power was working correctly. There were a couple reports (long ago) where the wrong part seemed to be installed, so that the external power didn't work at all. And somewhat more reports (and more recently) of "marginal" regulator behavior (overheating when it really shouldn't, behaving badly when overheated, etc.) (It's not clear that genuine arduinos have been immune to the latter set of problems!)

5) There were the famous Sparkfun FAKE atmega328s: https://www.sparkfun.com/news/364

Now, I think the Nano was never manufactured by Smart Projects

Arduino LLC shop : exact, no product. But Arduino LLC is not a manufacturer. Arduino SRL shop : Nano = 20 €, Vat and shipping exclude.

Fake FT232RLs on Arduino Nano Clones

I do not know if you've ever collaborated on the design of an integrated circuit, for me 6 IC and 25 in total for the team where I worked. The CH 340G appeared about 2 months after the FTDI dispute. It is impossible to design an IC, to manufacture it, to debug it in less than 9 months. The "counterfeit" circuit and the CH 340G are for me the same die. Two months represents the time required to write the driver.

I haven't heard anything bad about the CH340G, but: They're not supported by the drivers included with the IDE

It is a Microsoft problem! Windows is a poorly designed operating system, even if since Vista there is enormous progress, but he started down well :grin: . I use Debian since 10 years and I have never had a driver to load, Let me say that, now, I find Windows difficult to use. [u]It is not permissible to impose a particular component because one OS is poorly designed.[/u]

incorrect bootloaders.

I trust you on this point, I had not heard of it. I've seen boards within 2 €, it is clear that this is not reasonable.

voltage regulators

UNO R1: Voltage Regulator DPACK package UNO R2 and following Voltage Regulator SOT223 package Does anyone can explain to me why Arduino team have reduced the power of the regulator package while still hugely of unused space on the card ?

Sparkfun FAKE

We must not be naive when bought on Ebay. On eBay there are two kinds of stores: 1) Those that are specialized in a particular area. 2) Those who sell while anything, and with very low prices. These shops have to be escape. They are often crooks.

If you choose a shop that specializes in electronics, which sells only boards and electronic components you have little risk. They are just a little bit more expensive.