Make: Volume 83 — 2022 Boards Guide

It’s been another tumultuous year in the world of embedded electronics: Supply chain snags have scarcely relented, while new chips jostle for position as the go-to for makers. In this issue of Make:, we look at how scarcity is affecting the industry and impacting new and stalwart boards alike (page 36). We explore how RISC-V chip architecture is putting open silicon in the hands of makers (page 42). And if your favorite board is out of stock, we offer smart substitutes (page 46). Also included is our annual Make: Guide to Boards comparing 79 of the hottest microcontrollers, single-board computers, and FPGAs — with an emphasis on those you can actually get your hands on.

Plus, 25 projects to make, including:

  • Use full-color LED strings and a Pixelblaze controller to make cuddly animated pillows.
  • Stitch a stylish and sturdy roll-up tool carrier for on-the-go fixes and builds.
  • Convert your 3D printer to 5-axis and print the impossible.
  • Take control of smart home gadgets with Z-Wave and Raspberry Pi.
  • Make a fun paper airplane that blows bubbles as it soars.
  • And much more!

On the cover: From left to right: Adafruit Feather RP2040, Arducam Pico4ML, Raspberry Pi Pico W, M5Stack M5Stamp C3U Mate, and Seeed Xiao RP2040. Photos: Mark Madeo and ElectroMage.

Table of Contents


From the Editor's Desk

Tips, tributes, tidings, and tweets from readers like you and members of our worldwide community.Page 05

Welcome: Tilling the Fields of Scarcity

Flexibility is built into the maker mindset — perfect for weathering today’s supply chain woes.Page 06

Made on Earth

Backyard builds from around the globe.Page 10


The Amazing Maker Awards: Community Maker Award

Given to a person or organization whose work expands the maker community, this year’s award goes to Noelle Conover for her groundbreaking work developing Matt’s Maker Space.Page 21

Best Maker Schools 2022

College and university makerspaces and programs are on the rise. Here are this year’s standouts.Page 24

A Perfect Circle

An LED “supergroup” collaborates to create the tiny, mesmerizing Lux Lavalier pendantPage 28

California Fresh

Three California women makers tell why they launched new businesses building and selling kits.Page 30

Now Boarding

Now Boarding

Need a board? Buckle up for a bumpy ride through all that’s new in 2022.Page 34

When Chips Are Scarce

Maker companies share how they’ve been impacted by shortages, and what the future looks like. Page 36

A RISC-V Revolution

Free and open-source silicon is poised to take the maker ecosystem by storm.Page 42

The Replacements

Unsatisfied with back-orders for your favorite Pi or Arduino? Consider these alternatives.Page 46

Build-a-Board Synth-Pop

Get an exclusive sneak peek at Arduino’s back-to-basics Uno kit! Page 47


Pixelblaze Pillows

Use full-color LED strings and a Pixelblaze controller to make these cuddly animated throws.Page 48

Waxed Canvas Tool Roll

Stitch a stylish and sturdy roll-up tool carrier that will last for many tough jobs.Page 56

1+2+3: LED Pendant

Build a glowing, wearable circuit sculpture. Page 61

Power Through Thin Air

Learn how to transmit and receive audio signals on an AM radio carrier wave.Page 62

LED Love!

Cover the LED basics and create amazing light patterns with addressable LEDs and controllers.Page 70

Pi Cam Speed Trap

Build a motion recorder that analyzes video to catch speeding vehicles on your street.Page 76

Make a Mac Mini Mobile

Hack that powerful Mini M1 with an iPad Mini to make a badass portable computer.Page 84

Kit Cards

Modern model method: 3D print the parts on an old-school “sprue” then snap them off and build. Page 86

The Fifth Dimension

Convert your 3D printer to 5-axis, and print the impossible.Page 88

One-Shot Wonders

Design simple mechanisms with moving parts that print in place — no assembly required.Page 92

Long-Distance Emoji Lamp

Build an interactive lamp that sends emojis to its partner — miles away — using LoRa radio modules.Page 94

Remaking History: Christiaan Huygens and the Pendulum Clock

Build the ingenious gravity-driven mechanism that kept the world’s time for 270 years.Page 100

Electronics Fun & Fundamentals: Analog Reborn

Before the digital revolution there was analog computing — and it’s making a comeback.Page 104

Toy Inventor’s Notebook: Bubble Plane

Rock crushes scissors, scissors cut paper — but bubbles rule them all.Page 108

Skill Builder

Find My: DIY AirTag Tracker

Understanding, (ab)using, and extending Apple’s offline finding protocol. Page 110

RaZberry Rescue

Take control of smart home gadgets — and revive those zombie bulbs — with a Z-Wave hat for Raspberry Pi.Page 118



Gear up with the latest tools and kits for makers.Page 124

Maker Faire Hannover Returns

Maker Faire Hannover Returns

After a two-year hiatus, Maker Faire returned to Hannover, Germany. Here are a few of our favorite moments.Page 128