Epic New Product Thursday

A whole bunch of new products, now with video!

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We've missed the new product posts from the past couple of weeks, so we have a lot of new stuff to talk about. In addition, we have a special surprise - a new product video! Every week, alongside the new product post, we will also try to post a video talking about my picks for the week. Here is our first of many new product videos:

Now that we've seen my internet video debut, let's take a look at the whole list of new products.

The Alphanumeric Display Driver allows you to use our alphanumeric displays (red, blue, and green/yellow) with a serial interface. With a slick design, you can daisy-chain numerous boards together to produce scrolling messages and such. We've also provided two mounting holes since our love affair with double-stick tape is not shared by everyone. Note, these boards do not come with a display, so you will need to get that separately.

Controlling your next contraption with a wireless remote will certainly make you more popular with your peers. We can't guarantee this, but we suspect it to be true. This is why we now carry an infrared remote and IR receiver diode. The remote is a simple key-chain version with basic volume/channel/power buttons. The IR diode allows you to use any basic remote control with your favorite microcontroller. They work together wonderfully and we even have example code to get them both up and running.

I don't want to sound like a cheesy infomercial, but the Nokia 5510 LCD could change your life. It's inexpensive, simple to use, and can be connected without SMD connectors. The 5510 shares the same driver as the Nokia 3310, so there is plenty of information and examples out there. With some breakaway headers you can even mount it in a breadboard.

We have a couple new OLEDs if you're looking for a small high contrast display. OLED technology is nice because it doesn't require a backlight like LCD and has much better contrast, which makes it ideal for use in direct sunlight. These screens have a 0.96" display area and come in both white and blue. We are working on some example code but for the meantime check out the driver datasheet for more information about how to get peanut butter jelly time - or anything else you want - on the screen.

A few weeks ago we started carrying the SM130 MIFARE RFID module. We now have 3 RFID tags to use with the module. They are all MIFARE 1K tags which means in addition to the unique RFID, you have 1K worth of storage for additional information (name, phone number, social security number, blood type, location of birthmarks, etc). We have them in a 30mm ABS token, 25mm transparent tag, and 13mm laundry tag.

It can be very difficult to predict how popular a product will be and sometimes we don't order enough. This happened with the HH10D and DHT22 humidity sensors. We didn't order enough and now we are out of stock. But we are getting more! We found out about these at the same time and just decided to order both. The DHT22 is a humidity and temperature sensor, and the HH10D uses an I2C interface and is pre-calibrated. Both are inexpensive ways to measure humidity and are easy to use with a breadboard or embedded in your next project.

There is a new version of the DSO Nano. It has a slick new package and some minor revisions. If you're looking for an inexpensive scope that fits in your pocket, check out the DSO Nano V2.


We're really trying not to be a hardware store, but we like to carry some basic hardware just so you don't have to go everywhere to find your parts. We realized that we didn't have any 4-40 nuts to go with our 4-40 screws. Also, sometimes you don't want the magical conductive powers of metal and would rather have the inertness of nylon. That's why we carry 4-40 nuts in nylon as well. Also, if you've ever needed to mount two things perpendicular to each other, we have some handy angle brackets. It's a simple little part that easily allows you to mount all sorts of parts to your robot or even PCBs.

We were looking for some small scale connectors for the High Altitude Sensing Board and found these. We decided to get them in 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 pin varieties. This is the same connector used on the EM-406A GPS module. We don't have any cable assemblies for them yet, but they are quite useful when you need to cram a lot of components in a small space but still need connectors.

We have a new version of the Ardubot Bare PCB out. This revision fixes some minor issues with the old board and adds some new features. All the Arduino pins are now broken out, we've added an LED and a reset button, and the wheels don't hit the USB connector on the Arduino. We are working on getting some rad action shots for the new board.

Most things use the convenience of a USB cable for charging nowadays. Cell phones, portable electronics, and even SparkFun electronics use a USB A type connector for power. This wall charger has a USB jack instead of the usual DC barrel jack.

Remember the good old days when almost nothing had a microprocessor in it? Well, those days are gone. Now, everything has  its very own microprocessor and the Dice Kit is no exception. What happens if you want to play your dice games in pitch black? Your old-fashioned dice just won't cut it. Through the power of technology, it is now possible to play Parcheesi in complete darkness. Technology, ain't it grand? The Dice Kit uses a piezo element to detect 'taps' and then virtually rolls the die and displays a presentation of that roll. It comes with a nice base with all the hardware you need.

As promised, we have a fiber optic cable to go along with the fiber optic transmitter and receivers. It's a standard TOSLINK cable 6-feet in length. You can use it for data, audio, or a measuring tape that only measures approximately 6 feet .

The BeagleBoard XM has too many features to list here. Basically, it can do just about anything. We were lucky enough to get a limited stock of the boards, so get them while they're available. Check out the introduction video to see what all you can do with this powerful board.

Aside from having the coolest name ever, the SI4735-C40-GU AM/FM Radio IC has some pretty neat features. You can use this at the heart of your next radio project. The IC is a fully-featured AM and FM receiver that supports RDS and RBDS and has analog and digital audio outputs. Of course you can just buy a radio for probably a penny lately, but if you are looking to add some cool feature we can't even fathom, this is the IC for you.

We now have stock of the new PICAXE 18M2 microcontroller. The new chip has more memory, a faster operating speed, and many more features. Check out the info sheet for a full explanation and a comparison with the older version.

There's just something inherently cool about wireless data transmission. We've carried the RFM22 for quite awhile and they have a new revision called the RFM22B. The new version adds some minor changes and updates. We just got stock of these and are working on a breakout board.

As always, thanks for reading (and watching!) and we'll have even more stuff for you next week!

Comments 29 comments

  • adel95 / about 14 years ago / 2

    Wonderful ! Will all the new product posts have the YouTube Video Attached ? :D That would be nice.

  • Jollian / about 14 years ago / 1

    Awesome! These vids are a great idea and really give you context to the physical size of the items. One thing though - both the IR and RFID items are missing a key aspect (IMHO) - RANGE!!! <br />
    <br />
    No need for a hugely deep analysis like the RFID vid & RF posts u guys did a while back, but maybe just simply something like an indicative "we found xyz has a read range of around blah metres more or less..." Cheers! :-)

  • Member #105131 / about 14 years ago / 1

    I just wanted to give you an "attaboy!"<br />
    <br />
    No, don't dismiss it. Just bask in it.<br />
    <br />
    I run some boards where I'm a big fan of pickiness and welcome constructive criticism., but when folks give me attaboys, I often shrug them off: why praise me when I can't wouldn't do it any other way? But subconsciously the nitpicks can wear on you over time<br />
    <br />
    You done good. A lot of us notice. Bask in it.

  • TLAlexander / about 14 years ago / 1

    Is the OLED really better for use in direct sunlight? I hear they have problems specifically in direct sunlight? That was one of the complaints when all the phones started using OLEDs!<br />
    <br />
    Of course, my Nexus One is OLED and it's just fine in the sun, but I'm not sure it's better than an LCD, and even then it might be a nice display.<br />
    <br />
    It's just funny that you guys recommend them for something that is generally regarded as one of their few weak points!<br />

  • Azayles / about 14 years ago / 1

    That purple solder iron is great :D I want one!<br />
    That IR remote and detector looks like a good idea, but may be a bit unwieldy for anyone that doesn't have a lot of programming knowledge. A better implementation would be a preprogrammed chip that'd read data from the IR detector and output a logic high on one of the chips output pins, for example. Maybe sell a breakout board with IR detector and chip all in one, with the raw IR data brought out to a separate pin.<br />
    <br />
    You can have that idea on me, SF :-)

    • Check the example code, it's pretty darn easy to figure out, especially with Arduino. I see what you're saying though.<br />
      <br />
      As for the iron, it's a Hakko 951:<br />
      <br />

  • Great products, and a great screen debut by Robert! A star is born!

  • N.Poole / about 14 years ago / 1

    Good format, if you guys can find the time I say you stick with this video thing. These mini-demos will definitely get people excited about using the new parts in their projects.

  • Hi, I've a OLED breakout board for SH1101A OLED controller with code at http://rusticengineering.wordpress.com/

  • @ SF<br />
    <br />
    when do you intend to manufacture a board for the ADH8066? http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10138<br />

  • sanloublues / about 14 years ago / 1

    An HD Radio chip would be nice. Most of them do am/fm too.

  • docman / about 14 years ago / 1

    Minor correction: it's BeagleBoard XM not BeableBoard XM.<br />

    • OK, I was curious about the Justin Beiber comments, now I get it. Fixed. Yes, it's a BeaGleBoard.

  • PatSharbaugh / about 14 years ago / 1

    I'm pretty sure Sorry uses cards that you draw, not dice.

    • It's so obvious now. We were trying to figure out a game that uses just one die, and we thought sorry did, but now I realize you're right, it uses cards. What's a game with only one die?

  • sgrace / about 14 years ago / 1

    Minor typo:<br />
    <br />
    All the Arduino pins are now broken out, we've added and LED and a reset button, and the wheels don't hit the USB connector on the Arduino. We are working on getting some rad action shots for the new board.<br />
    <br />
    That should be an "a" shouldn't it?

    • Nice find! However, it's one of those quirky grammar rules so it's "an" instead of "a." It's the sound of the word that counts, not the letter - meaning because it's pronounced "El Eee Dee" it's "an LED." I will now step off my soapbox - and thanks for catching that for us!

      • sgrace / about 14 years ago / 1

        No problem on the find. My grammar skill and knowledge is not as high as others, so learning about how it works always helps me.

  • dantearmando / about 14 years ago / 1

    BeableBoard...for Bieber fans?

  • WOW! I watch the video and it resume everything, I like that!<br />
    <br />
    Finally some nokia LCD! and there CHEAP! I use to get my 3310 on ebay for 9.99$! It even has 4 mounting holes! YEAH!<br />
    <br />
    Even the angle bracket seem nice!

  • Member #107503 / about 14 years ago / 1

    Very well prepared! Love the T-shirt too.

    • Thanks! Yeah, we ran a small batch of 'special edition' Antimov t-shirts. Of course I'm going to show it off :-)

  • Coyote / about 14 years ago / 1

    Yes! Finally an alphanumeric driver!<br />
    Perhaps someone was watching the 'New product ideas'<br />
    :D<br />

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