Goldilocks: an Arduino Clone

This would definitely save a lot of space and frustration. Could use this for my project:

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Review – LBE “Magpie” Arduino-compatible board

This is a pretty cool re-make of the very popular Arduino UNO. LittleBird Electronics added a status LED to every output on the board for troubleshooting and quick prototyping. Beats having to wire up a bunch of LED’s yourself.

t r o n i x s t u f f

In this article we review the “Magpie” Arduino Uno-compatible board from Little Bird Electronics.


Finally I’m back at the office and have a pile of things to write about. Starting with the subject of this review – the “Magpie” board from Little Bird Electronics in Australia. It seems that a new Arduino-compatible board enters the market every week, thanks to the open-source nature of the platform and the availability of rapid manufacturing. However the Magpie isn’t just any old Arduino Uno knock-off, it has something which helps it stand out from the crowd – status LEDs on every digital and analogue I/O pin. You can see them between the stacking header sockets and the silk-screen labels. For example:


and for the curious, the bottom of the Magpie:


At first glance you might think “why’d they bother doing that? I could just wire up some LEDs myself”. True…

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LED Control PCB

Some more notes on lighting effects for my project:

I have finally found a decent PCB for consolidating the hundreds of wires that would be needed to hook up and control 16 RGB LED’s. That’s 16 bulbs each with 3 individual colors to control (red, green, and blue). That makes 48 different channels. This handy little PCB makes it all a little cleaner and simpler. These boards can even be cascaded to hook up even more LED’s!

Its called the LED Painter by Brilldea. I had thought about designing my own PCB to accomplish this, however for a first prototype, I thought I would purchase some pre-made products, then improve them later myself. It was very reasonably priced (only $15 for the PCB). However, you will have to purchase the electronics parts yourself as well. I purchased all of my parts for this on eBay for cheap. At a minimum you will need:

  • 3 – TLC5940 Integrated circuits (For controlling the LED’s, the Arduino connects to these)
  • 3 – 28 pin DIP sockets for the 5940’s
  • 3 – 270 (ish) ohm SMD 1206 resistors (basically sets the current for your LED’s)
  • Lots of 0.1″ headers for connecting the LED wires to the board as well as the Arduino.
  • 1 – 2 way terminal block for connecting power.

Here is the link to the product on their website:

Youtube video showing LED’s being tested with this board:

I will be starting a parts list page soon so you can reference anything that I talk about in these posts.

Happy Wednesday!

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Watch “Arduino GSM Shield – Trailer” on YouTubeBrainstorm! How could this awesome add on to the arduino be used to make an automated bartender even better? Share your thoughts!

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Welcome to The Liquorator project blog!

Thanks for checking out this blog! It just started this week so there is not much to look at yet. Enjoy!

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