Description: The nRF52832 is Nordic Semiconductor’s latest multiprotocol radio System on Chip (SoC). It’s half microcontroller, with a list of features including 32 configurable I/O pins, SPI, I2C, UART, PWM, ADC’s, 512kB flash, and 64kB RAM. And it’s half 2.4GHz multiprotocol radio, supporting Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), ANT, and Nordic’s proprietary 2.4GHz ultra low-power wireless communication – it even features on-chip NFC tag support.
SparkFun’s nRF52832 Breakout provides easy access to all of the chip’s features. It breaks out all of the nRF52’s I/O pins, provides a 32.768kHz RTC crystal, a user-programmable button and LED, and a trace antenna to send and receive those 2.4GHz transmissions. Plus, to make the chip as easy-to-flash as possible, the breakout comes pre-programmed with a serial bootloader.
Nordic’s nRF52832 is an SoC that combines an ARM Cortex-M4F microprocessor with a 2.4GHz multiprotocol radio. In addition to providing access to all of the chip’s I/O pins, the breakout board includes a handful of external components. The nRF52832 can operate on a power supply between 1.7 and 3.6V. The board also includes a 3.3V regulator with a maximum input of 6V, if you want to power the board with batteries or a regulated wall supply.
Based on 3 ratings:
2 of 2 found this helpful:
Great board. It works well and it is easy to program using SWD and the Nordic DK which I previously used for development. I suggest buying a breakout board like this before thinking your firmware is complete. It turns out aspects of my code that worked on Nordic’s DK did not work with this breakout. I was therefore able to fix my program before starting the design of my own PCB. I’ve been working with nRF52 for my senior year project as an ECE and this product and additional files have been excellent resources.
4 of 4 found this helpful:
This is a good board, it does exactly what I need. It was almost trivial to get the Bluetooth up and running, and control a stepper motor controller through it (which also leverages SPI libraries). I’ve not tested I2C.
The SparkFun Arduino IDE plugin made it simple to get started and accomplished all of the above. My only complaint is that it doesn’t include a straightforward flash access functionality from the nRF SDK out of the box. This would be handy for accessing flash without having to do a lot of research. I spent a few hours deep-diving into the SDK, which has half a dozen ways to access flash with various configurations that may or may not work depending on how the device is configured. The best option would be if they could add support for FDS, which is a record-based filesystem driver in the nRF SDK, but it has a fair amount of dependencies and requires understanding of the SoftDevice that might need to be abstracted away for the average Arduino user. nrf_nvmc on the other hand is pretty simple and standalone, and doesn’t require any SoftDevice config. You just read internal flash directly from memory addresses and write to addresses in bytes or words using the library functions.
While they do provide their bootloader code, it would also be nice for noobs if they provided their procedure for installing the bootloader to a new chip. I buy from SparkFun for prototyping, but ultimately I want to make my own board. If I want it to work like this one, I do have the Nordic docs regarding bootloader installation, but I’m going to have to do some trial and error to figure out the options they used when flashing the bootloader package. UPDATE: I found their procedure in the Makefile located in the bootloader source repo: https://github.com/sparkfun/nRF52832_Breakout/blob/master/Firmware/bootloader-custom/sparkfun/dual_bank_serial_s132/armgcc/Makefile – “make flash_softdevice”.
ONE WORD OF CAUTION - This device by default is capable of being powered by the serial interface. Unfortunately, the power from this interface does not go through the VIN voltage regulator as one might hope. It goes directly to VDD, so be sure you use a 3.3v serial adapter. I literally caused the nRF chip to smoke and bubble a bit by using a serial adapter configured for an Arduino at 5V. Luckily (perhaps amazingly), nothing got damaged before I noticed my mistake.