Tessel 2

The Tessel 2 is a development board with on-board WiFi capabilities that allows you to build scripts in Node.js. This Tessel provides you with a connected hardware prototyping system that can be used in multiple different applications. Each board boasts thorough command line tools that make it simple to deploy your code, set WiFi credentials, and easily manage authentication needs. With the Tessel 2 you will be able to interact with the physical world from sensing to actuation to connecting with other devices. It should also be noted that though the Tessel 2 is programmable in JavaScript it does possess the ability to support other languages as well!

The Tessel 2 is equipped with a slew of on-board features including two 10-pin module ports to add sensors and other external hardware, two USB ports for camera peripherals and flash storage, a 10/100 supported ethernet port, and a microUSB connector for power and tethered programming. Each Tessel 2 offers an 802.11 b/g/n WiFi setup, a 580MHz Mediatek router-on-a-chip, a 48MHz SAMD21 coprocessor, and 64MB of DDR2 RAM with 32MB of flash.

Needless to say, the Tessel 2 has been designed from the ground up with the fastest possible path to producing your projects. Simply plug and play multiple modules and high-level APIs and you have a development board that is levels ahead of most other development boards!

  • Preinstalled with Node.js 4.2.1 LTS or newer
  • Easy to use CLI for remote programming and configuration
  • 580MHz Mediatek Router-on-a-Chip
  • 48MHz Atmel SAMD21 Coprocessor
  • 64MB DDR2 RAM
  • 32MB Flash Storage
  • Wirelessly Programmable 802.11 b/g/n WiFi
  • Supports 10/100 Ethernet
  • MicroUSB Power
  • 2x 10-Pin Tessel Module Ports
  • 2x USB Ports

Tessel 2 Product Help and Resources

Logging Data to Google Sheets with the Tessel 2

December 12, 2016

This project covers how to log data to Google Sheets two ways: using IFTTT with a web connection or a USB pen drive and "sneakernet" without.

Getting Started with the Tessel 2

October 12, 2016

Get your Tessel 2 up and running by blinking and LED, the Hello World of embedded electronics.

Sunrise Machine with the Tessel 2

October 13, 2016

Are you to sleepy to enjoy a sunrise on a brisk morning? Yeah...us too! No worries, with a Webcam, a Tessel 2 and a bit of code you can sleep in and catch the sunrise at your leisure with the Sunrise Machine.

ReconBot with the Tessel 2

October 13, 2016

Build a robot with the Tessel 2 that you can control from a browser on your phone or laptop.

Environmental Monitoring with the Tessel 2

October 13, 2016

Build an air-conditioner monitoring device to collect environment information and store it in the cloud.

Experiment Guide for the Johnny-Five Inventor's Kit

June 28, 2016

Use the Tessel 2 and the Johnny Five Inventors kit to explore the world of JavaScript enabled hardware through 14 awesome experiments!

Core Skill: Programming

If a board needs code or communicates somehow, you're going to need to know how to program or interface with it. The programming skill is all about communication and code.

3 Programming

Skill Level: Competent - The toolchain for programming is a bit more complex and will examples may not be explicitly provided for you. You will be required to have a fundamental knowledge of programming and be required to provide your own code. You may need to modify existing libraries or code to work with your specific hardware. Sensor and hardware interfaces will be SPI or I2C.
See all skill levels

Core Skill: Electrical Prototyping

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.

2 Electrical Prototyping

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.
See all skill levels


Looking for answers to technical questions?

We welcome your comments and suggestions below. However, if you are looking for solutions to technical questions please see our Technical Assistance page.

  • Member #524644 / about 8 years ago / 1

    Is it possible to power this with a battery? How is the low power options exposed?

  • Gerpus / about 8 years ago / 1

    How customizable is the embedded node.js system? Can I upgrade it? Can I use npm to install global packages? Are there limitations? Most importantly, is this running some sort of embedded Linux?

    • rlramirez77 / about 8 years ago / 1

      Yes, yes, and OpenWRT. Tessel 2 is very picky when it comes to what version of Node.js you run on a host dev machine, 4.2.x is the ticket currently, but any OS can be used. Support on Windows 7, 10 until recently was a little sketchy, but it's working pretty well now. Using the T2 from a Linux environment such as a RPi actually works quite well. On any OS, you are able to deploy code via USB, WiFi or LAN, which is pretty nice. I was a supporter of T2 on Kickstarter and have many hours of "fun" under my belt now, but as I said, things are pretty stable and working as intended at this point.

  • Member #821052 / about 8 years ago / 1

    The datasheet for the Mediatek MT7620 says this SoC has five ethernet adapters. Are these broken out to the female header, or ... ?

Customer Reviews

4 out of 5

Based on 4 ratings:

Currently viewing all customer reviews.

First impression is very favorable

I have been through all the steps in the Tessel installation tutorial (tessel.github.io/t2-start/cmd.ht) with only a minor glitch ... Here is a point of interest to other beginners:

Once you start Access Point, it stays there until disable() is used. If the board is switched OFF and ON again, AP is up again automatically. Trying to install WiFi client when AP is active will not succeed, without notification and AP is not disabled.

Nothing wrong with this, but it would be good to learn that while learning how to use the Tessel.

Now that I have been successfully trough all the examples, there is still a lot to learn to be able to set-up the practical application I have in mind because I am also a beginner with Java. I'll get there. Eventually.

Tessel 2 is simple effactive and JavScript friendly

I just started programming a Tessel 2 driven robot. The learning curve with JavaScript and Johnny Five is fairly steep, Once you get familiar with it it is a dream!

0 of 1 found this helpful:

Worst thing I ever bought

We bought it with all the materials specified in the tutorial "Environmental Monitoring with the Tessel 2", and only to find out later that the Phant no longer works. The tutorial was not updated, there was no suggestion that part of it no longer works and we were trapped. The suggested replacements for Phant was not even explained clearly. Worse, we bought a new air conditioner just for this. Now, the air conditioner cools our kitchen while the Tessel2 rests in the trash bin. It seems like you just tricked us into buying it and all the other materials. And one more thing, your technical experts not only reply late but also without clear solution. Hope you either bring down that tutorial, update it or warn anyone who will order. For now, we believe we were cunningly deceived.


Sorry that this happened to you. Right now we've had some issues with Phant and had to take it down, the reasons are outlined here: https://data.sparkfun.com/ We're currently in the process of revising our tutorials to not contain the Phant.io system. Again I apologize for the misfortune that occurred.

Please contact us and we would be happy to work with you to find a resolution for this issue.