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The newest Arduino has just arrived in the Maker Shed. The Arduino Due is the first 32-bit ARM powered Arduino and packs a number of high-level features into a low-cost package. The Cortex M3 processor operates at a speedy 84MHz making it perfect if you’ve run out of horsepower on your Arduino Uno or Mega. The memory has also been given a significant boost so it will handle your most complex programs with ease.

The Due features 54 digital I/O pins (12 can be used for PWM), 12 12-bit analog inputs, 2 12-bit DACs (analog outputs), 4 UARTs (hardware serial ports) and headers for ISCP and JTAG. There’s an onboard USB 2.0 interface that allows you to plug in cameras, keyboards, and mobile phones (it supports the Android ADK 2012 protocol.)  The Due even has future support for the robust CAN protocol that’s used in vehicles, industrial automation, and in the medical field.

Besides the speed, my favorite feature of this new board would have to be the high resolution analog inputs and outputs. 12-bit resolution means that the Due will handle audio quality input and playback, so an Arduino driven guitar effects pedal is a distinct possibility. The Audio Library even supports OGG and WAV playback right out of the box, no shield required!

I’m excited to see what projects come from a board this feature rich and capable. Faster 3D printers and other personal fabrication tools, data acquisition and signal processing, drone control, it’s all possible. Do you have a project in mind? Share it in the comments!

(Please note: We only received a limited quantity of boards. If they sell out feel free to add your name to be e-mailed when they are back in stock.)

Michael Castor

I am the Evangelist for the Maker Shed. It seems that there is no limit to my making interests. I’m a tinkerer at heart and have a passion for solving problems and figuring out how things work. When not working for Make I can be found falling off my unicycle, running in adverse weather conditions, skiing down the nearest hill, restoring vintage motorcycles, or working on my car.


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Comments

  1. lol says:

    The Raspberry Pi is 10 times faster, $15 cheaper, and supports full HD video playback.

    The age of Arduino boards is at an end.

    1. trenton says:

      They are complementary.

    2. Christopher says:

      If the Raspberry Pi had the hardware input/outputs that Arduino has, you might be right. But you’re not. Arduino’s hardware interfacing is far beyond Raspberry Pi’s, and is a lot easier to program. Raspberry Pi is a cool, cheap computer. Arduino isn’t trying to be that. Arduino makes hacking hardware interface projects, robots, etc, really easy. You don’t need video playback on something that doesn’t want to be connected to video!

      Having a nerd fight about whose product is better (when they clearly serve different purposes) is stupid.

  2. GeekDadof4 says:

    Correction: It’s ICSP

    Opinion: At that price I’d go with a cubieboard. Then again, i’ve never been a fan of programming with “sketches”. If you’re an Arduino fan, and need some more I/O I suppose this is a value added option. Seems like a MUX is a better solution in that case though…

    1. BC says:

      The Due is about more CPU power, not more IO. If you want more IO than a Uno then you have the mega. A Cubeiboard is, like the raspberry pi, a PC running a preemptive multitasking OS. This is great for PC-like applications where realtime performance is not required but it’s not so good for low-level hardware control like control-loops, data acquisitions etc. For this, a microcontroller like the Due/Uno is way way better and easier to program. The clue comes from the ARM CPU name Cortex-M series are for microcontrollers, Cortex-A series (A for ‘Application’) are for multitasking systems (usually running linux or some variant). As far as CPU throughput goes, the fastest I can get an Uno to sample from an ADC is ~ 20KS/s and for many purposes this isn’t enough (high quality audio, for example), besides needing some CPU cycles for further data processing. Also, 32-bit maths on the Uno is very very inefficient (divisions are a killer). For these reasons, the Due provides a hugh performance upgrade while keeping the same easy-to-use programming tools that come with the other Arduinos.

  3. Roger says:

    If your app needs more computing power than a AVR can supply and you don’t need video or a monster OS like Linux for you app, the Arduino Due will fit the bill.

    It all boils down to technical requirements.

    No need for a geek war.