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The SparkFun Serial Basic Breakout is an easy-to-use USB-to-Serial adapter based on the CH340G IC from WCH. It works with 5V and 3.3V systems and should auto install on most operating systems without the need for additional drivers. The Serial Basic uses the CH340G IC to quickly and easily convert serial signals to USB. It’s a great lower-cost alternative to the extremely popular FTDI Basic.
The pinout of the Serial Basic mimics the common DTR/RX/TX/VCC/CTS/GND pinout found on hundreds of FTDI-to-USB derivatives. It can also be used as a general serial device for debugging (such as with a GPS module). There is a jumper on the rear of the board that controls the output voltage on the VCC pin. By default, the board outputs 3.3V and has 3.3V signals. Changing this jumper to 5V will cause the board to output 5V on the VCC pin with 5V signals.
If it requires power, you need to know how much, what all the pins do, and how to hook it up. You may need to reference datasheets, schematics, and know the ins and outs of electronics.
Skill Level: Rookie - You may be required to know a bit more about the component, such as orientation, or how to hook it up, in addition to power requirements. You will need to understand polarized components.
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Based on 6 ratings:
1 of 3 found this helpful:
I tried to compile the linux driver on my raspberry pi:
Linux rpi 4.9.27-v7+ #997 SMP Tue May 9 19:58:37 BST 2017 armv7l GNU/Linux
Didn't work. I googled around and it appears the driver isn't compatible with newer 4.x kernels. I suggest you just buy a real FTDI board so you don't have to deal with this.
seems like some of the other sparkfun USB-Serial adapters don't work at 5V for some production runs at least, ao at the moment I like this one best
This board is working fine for me. I've used it on both Mac (OSX 10.11.3 El Capitan) and Windows 7. I did find it necessary to load the device driver onto both computers. The LEDs that indicate TX and/or RX traffic are a useful feature.
This breakout is awesome. It is a bit cheaper than the FTDI breakouts and the drivers are detected without issue on Windows (Win10 at least), versus the many issues I've had with drivers for the FTDI breakouts. Otherwise, everything else is up to snuff.
I thought that there was a problem with the linux kernel driver, but after using python to talk to the ch340g from a ch340c determined that there was no problem. I was able to transmit and receive at 9600, 115200 and 921600.
I don't know how this board works for some folks (it has good reviews). I bought this along with a SparkFun Edge Board in order to program and monitor output through the UART. I had so many issues with drivers and trying so many different approaches to get this to work (tried both under Linux 18LTS and MacOSX 10.15), Once I "thought" I solved the driver issues, I could not connect at any baud rate. I eventually switched over to an FTDI board (FT232L-based, with selectable 3.3/5V interface Vcc) which JUST WORKED! I will never get one of these WCH-based products again! The FTDI products are just so much better supported, from my vantage point.