How-To: Shrinkify Your Arduino Projects

How-To: Shrinkify Your Arduino Projects

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If you have a simple Arduino project that uses only a few pins, you might be able to shrink it down to a single 8-pin ATtiny chip. In this video, Matt Richardson shows you how, based on a tutorial from MIT Media Lab’s High-Low Tech Group. The best part is you can use the same Arduino code and development environment that you’re already used to.

More information about this how-to is available at:

19 thoughts on “How-To: Shrinkify Your Arduino Projects

  1. Sam says:

    Hi there, I was just wondering where the written instructions and file downloads went, i can’t seem to find them.

  2. hugo says:

    Ok, does it work with an arduino mega ?

  3. Peter says:

    1. can I just take the chip from uno and use itself without arduino board? (Project already uploaded)?

    2. How to power up the chip? Use 5V pin? On arduino 5V is output :/

    Reason I asking I have two arduino and one of them is broken but chip itself is fine (replace it and work)

    Kind regards


    1. Christian says:

      Hi Peter,

      1. Yes, you can.
      The chip on the Uno-board is an ATmega328P-PU (datasheet:

      2. There is a tutorial on the Arduino pages on how to program a ATmega328 on a breadboard ( or how to setup a standalone ATmega328 Arduino on a breadoard (

      Kind regards

  4. Neil says:

    I think the link is down.

  5. Pequenos projetos Arduino | THT – Things Hacker Team says:

    […] Bom, navegando pela internet me deparei com um vídeo que me interessou. Ele falava sobre como voce pode diminuir o seu projeto de Arduino se ele usar apenas algunsa pinos. O link do vídeo segue abaixo: […]

  6. Iceteaboy99 says:

    I tried to override the chip but I always get this error:

    avrdude: Yikes! Invalid device signature.

    Double check connections and try again, or use -F to override

    this check. What can I do?

  7. Zeth Palmgren says:

    I get this error:

    Blink.ino:18:21: error: Arduino.h: No such file or directory
    Blink.ino: In function ‘void setup()’:
    Blink:20: error: ‘OUTPUT’ was not declared in this scope
    Blink:20: error: ‘pinMode’ was not declared in this scope
    Blink.ino: In function ‘void loop()’:
    Blink:25: error: ‘HIGH’ was not declared in this scope
    Blink:25: error: ‘digitalWrite’ was not declared in this scope
    Blink:26: error: ‘delay’ was not declared in this scope
    Blink:27: error: ‘LOW’ was not declared in this scope

  8. Avr 10 Pin Isp | best - topnetworks says:

    […] How-To: Shrinkify Your Arduino Projects – Ever since I started making projects … of using the Arduino IDE and programming language to program 8 pin ATtiny45 or ATtiny85 chips. Not only that, but they also walk you through using an Arduino board to act as the programmer, or ISP. […]

  9. How-To: Shrinkify Your Arduino Projects - Make: - DevOps Infographics Resource Center says:

    […] The source of this magnificent design from […]

  10. How To Shrink Your Projects For Arduino | Device Plus says:
  11. How To: Shrinkify Your Arduino Projects - Electronics For You says:

    […] For more information: click here […]

  12. David A Riewe says:

    Thanks for the tutorial

  13. La gran José macho says:

    Tutorial is incomplete. Also where can I buy the exact parts used in video?

  14. STI2D Arduino | Pearltrees says:

    […] How to Print a Paper Arduino. Shrinkify Your Arduino Projects. Ever since I started making projects with the Arduino, I’ve had a desire to shrink them down to […]

  15. Upping the game: battery powered SNES – all in the controller | brain -> blueprint -> build says:

    […] ATtiny 85 which drives the LED. Programming this is easy using an arduino – instructions here. Note, using a dedicated microcontroller to drive an LED is complete overkill. I just included it […]

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Matt Richardson is a San Francisco-based creative technologist and Contributing Editor at MAKE. He’s the co-author of Getting Started with Raspberry Pi and the author of Getting Started with BeagleBone.

View more articles by Matt Richardson


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