Are you set on the Zero board's form factor? There are some really nice boards that use the same microcontroller as the Zero but have a much more compact and breadboard-friendly form factor. The only reason I can see for using the Zero is to be able to use shields.
RSWWW seem to still have M0 Pro here
Ebay has SAMD21 clones e.g. M0 board without EDBG. The Ebay text is completely erroneous. It talks about an onboard EDBG chip i.e. as used on Zero or M0 Pro I do not see any external USB-UART chip
I have one of the original European Zero Pro which is now called M0 Pro.
The Zero is very nice to use with its EDBG chip. On the other hand, the clone has a SWD header that you can use with an ATMEL-ICE (or ST-LINK)
Arduino projects should upload fine with a bootloader. You only need the SWD for hardware debugging.
Personally, I do not see much convenience in the breadboard-able versions. The whole point of an Arduino is standard Shields.
STM32 Nucleo boards are very nice for prototyping. And the M3, M4 chips outperform the Zero's SAMD21
david_prentice: Personally, I do not see much convenience in the breadboard-able versions. The whole point of an Arduino is standard Shields.
I guess you don't use breadboards much. Having a Zero style board connected to a breadboard circuit with a mess of jumper wires is a headache. Breadboarding circuits is an excellent way to learn about electronics. You learn nothing about electronics from plugging a shield into an Arduino board. There's a time and place for shields but saying "The whole point of an Arduino is standard Shields" is just completely wrong. The whole point of an Arduino board is to provide a microcontroller with the basic support circuitry on a PCB, whatever form that might take.
No, I certainly don't. I suppose they are sometimes handy for for a short term lash-up.
I mount external electronics on Protoshields. And non-Arduino friendly boards on Protoboard "adapter" with Arduino headers.
I can swap prototype hardware between Uno, XMINI, Zero, Due, Nucleo, FRDM, ESP32. Or LogicGreen, Xmega, Teensy, BluePill, NXP on "adapter" board.
Everyone has their own personal preferences. I prefer soldered wiring connections on protoboard with proper header strip mating. If I have reliable hardware, I know that the problem must be my software.
I would never dream of connecting a parallel bus with Dupont wires. I2C or SPI use less wires but are still "risky"
Yes, I can and do swap prototype "shields" between different targets. I doubt if you often dismantle and rebuild your breadboard to test with a different target.
Oh, having developed some project on comfortable hardware, you are always going to build the finished result on soldered pcb (or protoboard).
Sparkfun and adafruit have full-sized samd21 boards. No edbg though.
There are several breadboard-able modules. There are conventional Uno-format M0 boards. These do not have onboard EDBG chips.
I like single USB cable boards like Zero or M0 Pro with onboard EDBG. But you can always use an external ATMEL-ICE.
Looks like the zeros are out of stock again. Do they sort of come and go?
Arduino Customer Support responded to my query on availability with: "We are not manufacturing this product."
Is this the death of the Zero?
Was that their full reply?
I see they are still available from the "Africa and Europe" version of the Arduino Store.
Looks like US is out until September perhaps. I wish support would be a bit more cohesive.
Their first response was this:
We are not manufacturing this product.
What about this one? https://store.arduino.cc/usa/arduino-mkrzero
So I clarified my interest:
We’ve already invested in shields that use the standard Arduino form factor.
Would the Due be a safe product to continue to invest time into?
Is there any blog or news source somewhere that explains the future focus of Arduino hardware platforms? It seems the Zero was a widely supported product that just suddenly stopped being manufactured without warning…
And then they responded with:
The Arduino Zero board is already available in Europe and Africa and it is expected to be as well for US, Oceania and Asia in September.
We also recommend you to check if some of the Arduino resellers have the product you are looking for available. Please find the list with all of them on the link below:
Still no more Zeros available. Is this product officially discontinued? Does anyone have any details on it?
The zero is still out of stock as of now. Anyone knows when it will be available again?
They are still available from the "Africa and Europe" version of the Arduino Store.
Check out the MKR Zero. It's really a nice board. It uses the same microcontroller, but in a breadboard friendly form factor, and it's 1/2 the price of the Zero!
So it's been at least 6 months now that the Zero has been out of stock both on the Arduino website and with the major distributors. Does anyone know what the status of the Zero is? It's been way too quiet from Arudino on the subject so far.
Interestingly Digikey lists the Zero as obsolete.
Well I'm pretty well convinced Arduino silently killed off the Zero. I am going to start designing my Zero equivalent board, should anyone be interested PM me.
I have an original "Zero Pro". It was later called "M0 Pro".
I also have a Chinese clone "M0" i.e. without the EDBG chip.
Personally, I find it very pleasant to have an onboard EDBG chip. Much like STM32 Nucleo boards have an onboard ST-Link debugger.
From the Manufacturer's point of view, a debugger chip costs about a $1 and uses a bit of pcb real estate. From Arduino's point of view, it depends on how much Microchip charge for the EDBG chip.
The Zero would never be a mass market board. Nor would it be able to compete with Nucleo as a useful development platform. M4 Nucleos show just what good performance is possible. i.e. much better than M0 SAMD or the M3 Due SAM3X.
Mind you, CMSIS-DAP is provided for free by ARM. The Chinese could put CMSIS-DAP into whatever chip they wanted. And produce a Zero clone.
I'm actually very surprised there isn't any Zero clones out there alrady with an on board debug chip. Even Sparkfun and Adafruit don't include on board debugging. I've already spoken with a debugging tool manufacturer, the cost per board is extremely low so I would definitely include it.
I've already spoken with a debugging tool manufacturer, the cost per board is extremely low
Riiiight. The debugger chip in the Zero is probably the most expensive component on the board; a AT32UC3A4256 that normally sells for about $8 (compared to $3-4 for the SAMD chip.) Yeah, some of the more modern "development board with built-in-debugger" boards have cheaper chips (an ATmega32u4 on the Uno WiFi2, for instance), and if you happen to be the CHIP manufacturer, you can probably get (your own) chips really cheap. But for a relatively small manufacturer like Arduino, I'd bet it more than doubles the (maufacturing) cost of the board. (You'll note that none of the MKR boards include debugging.) (OTOH, the Zero was never "inexpensive", so the debugger costs should be covered, and there's little excuse for the Board to have just disappeared from stocks)
CMSIS-DAP is provided for free by ARM. The Chinese could put CMSIS-DAP into whatever chip they wanted. And produce a Zero clone.
Or, you know, provide a $10 CMSIS-DAP debug probe...
The Xplain series of development boards use an ATMega32U4 as a programmer/debugger- they call it the mEDGB. The schematics and firmware are freely available, and there is even this project to make a DIY mEDGB standalone programmer.
I’m sure if you wanted to get enterprising you could design your own board with an mEDGB onboard.