Pirated Arduino Boards?

I was surfing around on eBay when I came across some really cheap Arduino boards. I then notice the fine print that says something like, "Arduino Uno compatable." What? Are these pirates or do they have permission due to the open source hardware spec? Has anyone of you tried these boards? Do they work? Sorry for all the newbee questions, but I am just getting started with my Uno and I still have a lot of questions floating around in my head. TIA Craig :grin:

I wouldn't touch any product from someone who can't spell 'compatible'. Don't go anywhere near them.

The real MacKay... http://arduino.cc/en/Main/Hardware

Policy regarding hardware... http://arduino.cc/en/Main/Policy

Just like in the PC world, 3rd parties are able to make "arduino" board clones. There might be some issues with some vendors selling "fakes". i.e. They are making their board look just like the original including the colors and logos and saying it is an official board, when it really isn't.

But in reality I wonder why a vendor would bother trying to make a fake? It is perfectly legal to make a clone and depending on how you design it and the components you use, you can potentially make one that is better with higher margins than the original even if you sell it for a lower cost than the original.

So I found that I prefer the 3rd party boards over the "Real" ones because they often offer better or additional features and usually cost less as well.

--- bill

craigdobis: Are these pirates or do they have permission due to the open source hardware spec?

If something is completely open and freely distributed, how can it be pirated?

Want to build and sell your own Arduino-compatible boards? I heard there is a web site where you can download both the schematic AND board files. I just can't seem to remember the URL....

I'm surprised some people do not read the pages in a website (at least superficially) before they post.

Usually, if you choose "the original", you get more assurance that you will have support, it's "the good quality", etc.

When you step out of that and look at clones, you'll see that for example, Olimex makes clones with some HW innovations (I like the 24VDC input as I need to put my board in an industrial system), pinguino makes innovations in the IDE, pjrc makes really small DIL variations with "full USB" (teensy) and some Chinese make cheaper boards (a MEGA for 20 USD for example).

I was wondering, is there a part of this forum for "discussing clones" ? For example, one of the limitation of Arduino is its use of 8-bit chips. I'm interested in 'going 32 bits' but seriously hesitates between PIC32 and Maple. Can someone give advice on that somewhere ?

Is there a PIC32 based Arduino clone?

I'm interested in 'going 32 bits' but seriously hesitates between PIC32 and Maple. Can someone give advice on that somewhere ?

Well even more seriously, wouldn't you want to wait and see about the new 'official arduino' 32 bit arm based board due out real soon before looking at other alternatives?

Arduino Due, a major breakthrough for Arduino because we’re launching an Arduino board with a 32bit Cortex-M3 ARM processor on it. We’re using the SAM3U processor from ATMEL running at 96MHz with 256Kb of Flash, 50Kb of Sram, 5 SPI buses, 2 I2C interfaces, 5 UARTS, 16 Analog Inputs at 12Bit resolution and much more.

Instead of just releasing the finished platform we are opening the process to the community early on. We’re going to be demoing the board and giving away some boards to a selected group of developers who will be invited to shape the platform while it’s been created. After Maker Faire, we will begin selling a small batch of Developer Edition boards on the Arduino store (store.arduino,cc) for members of the community who want to be join the development effort. We plan a final and tested release by the end of 2011

Lefty

[quote author=Coding Badly link=topic=78207.msg592495#msg592495 date=1320881496]

Is there a PIC32 based Arduino clone?

[/quote]

Its called ChipKit..

There are definitely "clone" manufacturers that contribute significantly, and those who simply take the reference designs and manufacture/sell them for a lower price, and still others that are outright dishonest (and will sell you a clone while claiming it to be the real thing.) This is a risk of open source hardware (all of them.)

is there a part of this forum for "discussing clones" ?

The more valuable clone vendors have their own forums (Adafruit, Sparkfun, ChipKit, Maple, etc.) The big "sin" of the less-favored clone vendors is that they sell boards without much participating in their support ("buy it form me and then ask on the Arduino Forums for help if you need it." (which isn't so bad if most of the support on the forums is from volunteers anyway (as it is here), but gets pretty petty when you see questions on one vendor's website about clones from another vendor.))

There's a fair amount of discussion about Major Improvements (like 32bit Arduino-like systems) in the Hardware part of the forum, but those aren't really clones.

There is also "wiring.org.co", which is Arduino-like (Arduino's origin, in fact) and seems to be more aggressively courting multiple platforms ("AVR Xmega, AVR Tiny, TI MSP430, Microchip PIC24/32 Series and STM M3 ARM Cores will be available soon.") The PIC32 ChipKits and several other vendors have also made specific efforts toward multiple platform compatibility.

craigdobis: I was surfing around on eBay when I came across some really cheap Arduino boards. I then notice the fine print that says something like, "Arduino Uno compatable." What? Are these pirates or do they have permission due to the open source hardware spec? Has anyone of you tried these boards? Do they work? Sorry for all the newbee questions, but I am just getting started with my Uno and I still have a lot of questions floating around in my head.

Since Arduino is open source anyone can produce a arduino compatible board, it is perfectly legal. There are numerous high quality Arduino compatible boards on ebay which are manufactured in china and are available quite cheaply too. I strongly recommend them as their build quality is awesome and China is where the Iphone's are built as well :) Buy the boards from a seller with a high rating and you will get a good deal. I personally prefer ebay sellers because even with shipping the costs are far less than buying from sparkfun and other sources.