Retired Product

This product has been retired from our catalog and is no longer for sale. This page is made available for those looking for datasheets and the simply curious.

Creative Commons images are CC BY 2.0

Description: Our UAV Development Board is back! The UDB5 (UAV Development Board version 5) comes populated with a dsPIC33FJ256 CPU, and the impressive MPU-6000, a MEMS 3-axis gyroscope and 3-axis accelerometer. The on-board Invensense gyro even has enough vibration tolerance to be used in RC heli applications.

By itself, the board can be used to develop a three axis IMU controller. By addition of an EM406 or D2523T GPS receiver, it can be used to develop a UAV controller for an RC car, plane, helicopter, or boat. It comes with self-testing firmware that can serve as a starting point for you to develop your own control and navigation firmware. There is even fully functional, open source autopilot firmware available. We’ve made a few changes with the UDB5, we’ve removed the MMA7361 three axis accelerometer, the dual axis IDG500 gyro, and the single axis ISZ500 gyro and moved to an MPU-6000. The PCB form factor hasn’t changed. If you like, you can add a reset button and/or a 0.2F super cap.

Note: For programming, we recommend the PICkit3. Check the related products below.

Note: A GPS module is not included. Check the related products below.


  • compatible with 20-channel EM-406A SiRF III GPS
  • compatible with 48-channel EM-506 GPS with SiRF Star IV chipset
  • compatible with 50-channel GS407 Helical GPS
  • dsPIC33FJ256GP710A Controller (with onboard 3.3V and 5V glue logic)
  • dsPIC runs at 80MHz (40 MIPS) with 8MHz resonator and PLL
  • MPU-6000 MEMS 3-axis gyroscope and 3-axis accelerometer
  • External 256Kbit EEPROM
  • Up to 8 Input, 8 output PWM points
  • 6-wire debug header or ICSP header
  • 4 separate colored status LEDs
  • On board 3.3V and 5V regulators (150mA max)
  • Spare USART connection for debugging, flight logging, wireless telemetry, etc.
  • I/O pins include a CAN, an I2C, and a SPI port
  • 30 spare analog and digital I/O pins for debugging and interfacing to sensors



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Customer Comments

  • @member427317

    It has been my goal to use algorithmic innovations to squeeze as much performance as possible from minimum hardware, to come up with an inexpensive hardware platform that will satisfy most of the users, and support optional sensors such as magnetometer, pitot and barometer for other users.

    For fixed wing, the MartrixPilot firmware actually works better without a magnetometer than with one. For multicopter, a magnetometer is necessary, it can be mounted directly to the board.

    For more information on the algorithmic innovations in the firmware take a look at the following collection of discussions:

    Also, take a look at the following discussion thread on diydrones:

    Best regards, Bill Premerlani

    • Makes sense. I’ve been building my own board in the interest of learning the complexities of stabilization, and I love looking at other work to get an idea of how it’s done. This thing looks beautiful btw :)

  • Out of curiosity why isn’t there a magnetometer on this board?

  • You recommend PICKit3, for the UDB5 What if I already have a PICKit 2 ? is there any incompatibility ?

    I’ve been through all the MatrixPilot stuff and find it really impressive,

    However, I ’d like to know how many hours/Days are req’d to pro[erly configure the board for a first flight ?

    Best regards jjdavidian

    • Regarding PICKit3/2, UDB5 can be programmed with PICKit2, but it is not easy. I recommend PICKit3.

      Regarding time required to configure the board, I suggest you post your question to the UDB community and get a range of answers from UDB users. The link is in the list of documents above, click on “MatrixPilot Firmware Home”.

      Best regards, Bill Premerlani

  • The EM-506 is now available from SparkFun:

  • UDB users: The EM-406 GPS has reached its end of life, and is no longer available. As “MagicRub” mentioned, the EM-506 is now available from SparkFun. I have tested it, it is a direct replacement for the EM-406 for use with UDB and MatrixPilot. Best regards, Bill Premerlani

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