SparkFun Sale!


This is a much anticipated feature that is now coming to fruition - the SparkFun Sale! You may have noticed the recently added Sale category, which contains a variety of items from slow sellers to things we have too many of. However, the real goal is to get products on sale that we really believe in, enjoy using ourselves, and want you to try out as well.

It works like this: starting this Wednesday (June 23) for exactly one week (until June 30th), we are going to have 12 true "sale items" - cool products with discounted prices. So what's going to be on sale during that week? Well, we're glad you asked.

If you're looking for a long range serial cable replacement, this week is the week for you. First we have the XBee Pro 60mW U.FL Connection. This version of the module is higher output (60mW) and uses an external antenna so you can maximize the range by placing the antenna further away from the ground or the base electronics. Turn two units on with and start passing serial characters back and forth - it's that easy.

To finish out the XBee module, the 2.4GHz rubber duck antenna and U.FL to RP-SMA cable will be on sale as well. These three items together create a powerful combination.

This is the SM5100B GSM/GPRS cellular module. While the SM5100B doesn't have every bell and whistle that the Telit cellular modules do, the SM5100B can still get a text message sent, or a data message posted to an HTTP server all using AT commands. It can be integrated into a great number of wireless projects. You can use this module to accomplish almost anything a normal cell phone can - SMS text messages, GSM/GPRS, TCP/IP, and more! We're putting the module, the evaluation board, and the Arduino Shield on sale.

Here's a product with a million and one applications - a Square Force Sensitive Resistor! Use this is any project where you need to sense the presence of an object (but remember, these are probably not accurate enough to be used in a scale).

This is an MP3 Codec breakout board for use in your next audio application! The VS1033 is a single-chip MP3/AAC/WMA/MIDI audio decoder and ADPCM encoder. The bare VS1033 IC will also be on sale for use with your next MP3 project!

This is the IDG-1215 - an integrated dual-axis angular rate sensor (gyroscope). It uses InvenSense’s proprietary and patented MEMS technology with vertically driven, vibrating masses to make a functionally complete, low-cost, dual-axis angular rate sensor. It will work wonders combined with an accelerometer! The bare IDG1215 IC will also be on sale.

Don't have the power? Problem solved with this 12VDC 600mA wall adapter. Give your project the power it wants and needs!

Written by Tom Igoe, this is one of the best books out there for people wanting to get started in physical computing and embedded electronics - Making Things Talk. A must have for the electronic enthusiast's library!

It is SparkFun's belief that you can never really have too many extra batteries. Add some of these to your tool box - 900mAh Polymer Lithium Ion Batteries! These are very slim and extremely light batteries, perfect for any project where portability is a concern.

Here we have a nice, straight-forward Full Rotation Servo Motor! Perfect for all your mechatronic needs!

And last, but definitely not least, we have a group of awesome robotics kits for beginners and experts alike. We are offering the BOX3.0, the PICA2.0, the POP-BOT, MicroCAmp2.0, and Robo-CIRCLE. All of these kits are a great way to get started in robotics - or to perfect the skills you already have!

So that completes it for the version SparkFun Sale items! There will be more of these in the future, so keep an eye on the homepage and the Sale Section for updates. Remember, the sale starts Wednesday, June 23rd and ends on Wednesday, June 30th!


Comments 35 comments

  • I too can not find the items on sale!

  • What time today do these go on sale?

  • Nate: I updated the schematic to show the part # MIC5205. I also posted the eagle files while I was in the product page.

    You might also want to update the schematic for the new “XBee Explorer Dongle”, the “XBee Regulated”, the “XBee Shield” and the “FIO” as they also don’t show the part number
    And, when you do update to a higher current regulator, can you carry the part so those of use with older boards can update them. Thanks.
    Wayne

  • This is the SM5100B GSM/GPRS cellular module. While the SM5100B doesn’t have every bell and whistle that the Telit cellular modules do, the SM5100B can still get a text message sent, or a data message posted to an HTTP server all using AT commands. It can be integrated into a great number of wireless projects. You can use this module to accomplish almost anything a normal cell phone can - SMS text messages, GSM/GPRS, TCP/IP, and more! We’re putting the module, the evaluation board, and the Arduino Shield on sale
    Extract from the text above….

  • The SM5100B module and Shield do not appear to be on sale at the moment thought.

  • The Sale has started - just placed my order!

  • The SM5100B GSM module is not in discount… at least the arduino shield… it has the same price for about one week before… are you sure is the item on sale?

  • so now it has been wednesday for a good couple of hours (in europe at least) - can we please get some more items on sale :) sorry, I just can’t wait to spend some money!

    • Hah, ditto that. It’s 9:30am here on the east coast. I guess the sale starts 9am mountain time?

  • besidemyself: _ Some one on IRC suggested blocking this with adblock. But this is no good since it blocks the add to card and add to wish list buttons. _
    To what “wish list button” are you referring? Some of us have been asking for a “wish list” facility and have been told it’s on the list of things to be done, but not given any concrete target date, much less a release.
    TIA,
    Eric

    • esklar81:
      Blocking that image basically removed the add to cart, auto notify, back order buttons. I was mistaken about the add to wish list button since I could not see any of the buttons at the time.

  • I think I’m confused, though I’m not sure whether or not I am.
    The home page seems to suggest that the items on sale are the XBee, the SM5100, the MP3 board and so on, but when I click on any of them, I don’t see sale prices. When I click on the “sale items” link, I do see a completely different set of items that do seem to have sale prices.
    Did I miss something?

    • Sorry for the confusion. The sale starts tomorrow (Wednesday the 23rd), so you won’t see the items in the sale section until then. The sale lasts until the next Wednesday (June 30).
      Thanks!

  • The battery is brilliant! remember to get the max1555 charger chip as well!

  • Anyone else think the swag section should go on sale? ;)

  • Nice. I look forward to ordering lots of stuff! However, since no one has fixed or replied to my queries I am posting here for all to see. The is a problem with your HTTPS on your website. Every time I try to get a secure connection to login etc. I get SSL security for a second and then loose it! Not good! The offending files seem to be http://static.sparkfun.com/images/framework/arrow_down_2.gif and data:image/gif;base64,AAAA. Some one on IRC suggested blocking this with adblock. But this is no good since it blocks the add to card and add to wish list buttons. It would seem that the problem is part of the website frame work: http://static.sparkfun.com/images/framework/*. Any chance of getting that fixed before Wednesday? Regards.

    • <blockquote>The offending files seem to be http://static.sparkfun.com/images/framework/arrow_down_2.gif</blockquote>
      This should now be fixed.
      <blockquote>and data:image/gif;base64,AAAA.</blockquote>
      The data URI scheme allows for inlining files in a page or stylesheet, so it seemed unlikely to me to be served over regular HTTP if the rest of the page wasn’t. That said, it appears to show up in lightbox.css, and there is a case where Lightbox loads a single navigation element over plain old HTTP when an image is clicked. We’ll fix this soonish (well, not really - what we’ll do is stop displaying product pages over HTTPS at all), but it shouldn’t have any impact on the checkout or login process.

    • Weird, I keep my SSL Certificate and HTTPS connection but some content is insecure (I’m guessing the images.)
      –MTG

  • What is the percentage off?

    • The percentage off varies by item, with one product at 50% off and a couple of others close to that. The majority of sale items are marked down a healthy amount in the 20% to 30% range.

      • From a sales perspective it would be really useful for you to also post the “marked down from” price so buyers know how great a deal they are getting. I know my mind works that way – if I know I’m temporarily able to get 50% off something I’m much more likely to buy it. I think Amazon does a good job with this approach. MHO.

  • Those 900mAh LiPos are the bees knees! =D

    • Yes - These LiPos are nice. I definitely appreciate the fact that they have flying leads with the JST connector attached. It seems that most of the time these batteries only come with contacts meant for mating up with spring loaded pogo-pins. It’s up to you to keep the battery in place and held firmly against the pins, which can be a pain in the neck. The connector definitely makes things easier (even if the JST’s tend to fit a little too snug).
      The only thing that threw me for a loop at first was the fact that these batteries are missing a third connection for the thermocouple. But I guess this is built in? Can anyone confirm that there is built in protection to keep these batteries from over heating?

      • I agree with all of the above. I’ve heard about hte connectors being sticky but I solved that by chopping them off and using my own.
        The product page says “Battery includes built-in protection against over voltage, over current, and minimum voltage.”, but I didn’t see anything about that on the linked datasheet. It would be nice to know just for confirmation, but I’ve got resettable circuit breakers for mine or order just in case. I also thought about making some sort of fail-safe enclosure that would disconnect automatically in case it went all silver sausage on me.

  • Antennas for the XBee but not the SM5100B? You should put the CEL-00290 antenna on sale for it and I would be the happiest SFE customer.
    SparkFun does have a 3.3v 3A regulator for everyones wireless needs> TL1528. It’s a bit pricey but has some extra features.

  • Oh, and the XBee Pro 60mW module is also not compatible with the FIO board:
    http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=9712

  • For anyone thinking of buying the XBee Pro 60mW module that’s going to be on sale, just be aware that this module takes 3.3V @ 215mA, which means it is not compatible with the following products:
    http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=8687
    http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=9132
    http://www.sparkfun.com/commerce/product_info.php?products_id=9588
    as the 3.3 volt regulator on these boards is limited to approx 150 ma.

    • I agree with you, at least on paper but do you have personal experience using them together? I used the 60mW Pro XBee units on my AVC vehicle and base station. The Explorer worked wonderfully and the vehicle had the same 3.3V 150mA vreg. The Micrel MIC5205 is rated at 150mA, but I’ve done some stress testing on it and found it can output closer to 300mA without too many problems (depends on input voltage). Yes out of spec. Yes not guaranteed. But are they compatible? I think so. Who would we be if we weren’t pushing things a bit?

      • Nate: The Micrel MIC5205 is rated at 150mA, but I’ve done some stress testing on it and found it can output closer to 300mA without too many problems (depends on input voltage). Yes out of spec. Yes not guaranteed. But are they compatible? I think so. Who would we be if we weren’t pushing things a bit?
        Honestly, it took me some time to figure out that the regulator on these boards was a Micrel MIC5205, as the schematics don’t show the part number (hine, hint…) I prefer not to reply on out of spec behavior to make things work, so I’m wondering why you guys don’t use a Micrel part with a rating that fits the XBee specs, as I’ve discovered Micrel does make them (up to 500 ma in the same form factor, if memory serves.)

        • Dah! I hate it when you’re right. And here you’re really really right.
          I updated the schematic to show the part # MIC5205. I also posted the eagle files while I was in the product page.
          And you are correct about the higher current parts: http://tinyurl.com/2d695po Looks like the MIC5219 has the same footprint with a rating of 500mA (assuming good heat dissipation).
          Originally I wanted to keep the board small, and the MIC5205 was the only option. MIC5219 has been out for a year, we just didn’t catch that it was available. Assuming there is stock available, we’ll try to migrate to this part. Thanks Wayne!

      • Regulators are generally limited by die temperature rather than a specific current limit. If you keep the die temp below about 125C you should be fine.


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