A Special Saturday New Product Post

To accommodate the announcement for the ProtoSnap series, we've moved the post back to Saturday for this week.

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Thanks for taking time out of your weekend to check out some new products! As you may know, we announced the ProtoSnap line yesterday. In addition to those boards, we also have a few other new products for this week. We also have a surprise guest appearance for the video this week!

Yes, it was a real puppy and she was really cute too. She was quite sleepy though. Don't worry, we'll be back next Friday with another product post.

Yesterday, we had the official announcement of the ProtoSnap lineup. The LilyPad line expands with two new ProtoSnap boards, the Development Board and the E-Sewing Kit. Check out the post yesterday to learn more about these cool boards.

And of course we also have the ProtoSnap Pro Mini. This board combines a Pro Mini, FTDI Basic and other useful boards. Plug it in and you're ready to go, no need to get out the breadboard! Again, check out the post yesterday to learn more about these cool boards.

Wireless is cool, but sometimes you don't want to shell out the cash for a pair of XBees or a Bluetooth module to do something simple. Thankfully, these RF Links are inexpensive and reliable. We have them in 315MHz and 434MHz. We have a transmitter and receiver for each frequency. These are not transceivers; they can only send data one-way. For simple wireless communication, these are fantastic.

When you need to connect a lot of pins with one cable, ribbon cables come in very handy. We now have connectors and cable so you can make your own ribbon cables. We carry 6-pin (2x3) and 10-pin (2x5) connectors and we have 6-wire cables in 3 feet and 15 feet, as well as the 10-wire cables in 3 feet and 15 feet.

Wouldn't it be nice if you didn't have to connect power AND Ethernet to your networked project? Well, with these PoE cables, you don't have to! These cables allow you to pass power over your network so one RJ45 cable can both power your project (if your Ethernet device supports this) and allow it to talk to the outside world.

We have some more retail products this week as well. The popular ProtoScrewShield has been added to our products donned in retail attire. Of course we will still sell this kit as a standard product, but now you can see it at retail outlets as well.

In addition, we also have a new version of the GPS Shield for retail. You might have seen the revision of the GPS Shield a few weeks ago, and now that board has made its way into retail packaging as well. This retail version not only comes with attractive packaging, but also a GPS module and headers.

And lastly, we have another In2Rowing case that was found. This one was for the smaller unit and is a few inches shorter than the case we talked about a couple weeks ago. Use it for storage, target practice or just bury them in the backyard.

That's all we have for this week. We will be back to our regularly scheduled post on Friday next week. Thanks for reading and see you in a week!

Comments 33 comments

  • Nerdrobin / about 13 years ago / 2

    Is that puppy ESD safe?

    • SomeGuy123 / about 13 years ago / 2

      Better question: Is it for sale?

    • RichardK_Solar / about 13 years ago / 1

      Well for sure she has a pretty decent power saving mode! Robert what did you guys do to that puppy? She was totally in "sleep mode" during the whole thing!

    • ESD safe - no.
      RoHS compliant - yes* (depending on diet)
      For Sale - if the price is right (sorry Jake)

    • snowbarrr / about 13 years ago / 1

      and more importantly, RoHS compliant?

  • scharkalvin / about 13 years ago / 1

    The choice of 6 and 10 pin cable / connectors almost seems a reference to AVR programming connectors. So how about a 20 pin cable / connector when 10 isn't enough? (Also that's whats used to program ARM's with JTAG).

  • Pokey / about 13 years ago / 1

    Rainbow cable! So much better than the gray stuff for making IDC-to-something-hand-soldered cables

  • I can see the point of making the entry into advanced electronics easier with things like protosnap, but I think that it would be better to help newcomers to learn and understand more fully fledged electronics more easily than to almost emphasize the complexity of these systems, and in the process loose some of the insight that a beginner might get into the versatility and amazing potential that electronics offer. Using unrelated and ballpark components like buzzers and LEDs limit what is achievable with these kits greatly, and it would be a shame to loose people who were deterred by not seeing the potential of this field. Also, learning how to program before understanding the hardware could be risky, and knowing how your project works is very important.

    • baum / about 13 years ago / 3

      I think it would also be easier if Legos were sold as a mold and required kids to inject plastic into the mold to make their parts.

  • "We 6-pin (2x3) and 10-pin (2x5) connectors."
    I think you accidentally a word.

  • Eric15 / about 13 years ago / 1

    Is that an ESD-safe puppy? And is that dog tranquilized? It seems way too calm for a puppy.
    How are these wireless TX/RX pairs different from the ones offered previously?

    • Nah she was running around all day, so she was tired. puppies are either super hyper or dead asleep.
      they are not any different really, just a new supplier. they seem to be drop-in replacements for the old ones.

  • Blacklab1 / about 13 years ago / 1

    @RobertC.- I was wondering if the GPS shield could connect to the 66 Channel LS20031 GPS 10Hz Receiver?

  • snowbarrr / about 13 years ago / 1

    What a great week! The receivers are back, and you're now carrying ribbon cable/connectors. Hooray!

  • TeslaFan / about 13 years ago / 1

    My first thought was that this is the point where you have officially Jumped the Shark. Then I thought... No, it's not quite over the top enough. To do that, you would have needed to paint a SparkFun logo onto the puppy.
    Ooo. I've been looking for low cost transmitter / receiver pairs. Perfect! Thanks!

  • One product that I am surprised that sparkfun is yet to sell is blank PCBs and etchant

    • There's some issues with shipping around chemicals. And batchPCB is easier :-)

      • urjaman / about 13 years ago / 3

        And batchPCB is easier :-)
        You mean it would be if USPS shipping option would work for non-US people? ...

      • scharkalvin / about 13 years ago / 1

        That's going to depend on how complicated the board is and how quick you need it. If the circuit is very simple for a one off I'll just point to point wire it on perf board. However if SMT parts are involved and the layout is simple enough to be single sided (or too complex for a perfboard build) and could be done with the free version of Eagle I might try making my own. I've done this for a few projects where I wanted the board NOW. Also if I have a PCB layout in tiff, pdf, or jpg format from a magazine article or web page I'll make my own.
        I use the PnP-Blue transfer sheets and print the layout with my laser printer. You can do this from Eagle by choosing just the layers you need to print. Ironing the transfer to the board takes patience and a good hot iron. You also need to clean the board very well first with Scotchbrite. I make my own etchant using a 2:1 solution of H2O2 and HCL. (Drugstore 'peroxide and pool supply Muriatic Acid).
        I wouldn't consider doing my own boards for a layout that really needs multiple layers with plated though holes. Also anything larger than a few square inches (except for maybe a large board with very few parts and heavy traces for a power amp or power supply) I'd send out. Finally, home brew PCB's are really only suitable for quick prototypes or one off projects. If you get to the point where you have something you are building for sale it's time to have them made for you.

      • batchPCB is easier, but their is something to be said about making a PCB at home

        • godofcode / about 13 years ago / 1

          It's a lot of fun but it's also a major pain in the butt.

  • Azayles / about 13 years ago / 1

    Sparkfun Dog! Yay! Is Sophie gonna be the new Sparkfun mascot?
    How much is that doggy in the product post? ~woof woof~

  • SomeGuy123 / about 13 years ago / 1

    This is definitely a big week for SparkFun. I can't wait to see how those new ProtoSnap boards evolve.

  • Ekisu / about 13 years ago / 1

    Are these new RF link transmitters replacing the other cheaper ones you already carry?
    oh, and nice dog!

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