SparkFun USB to Serial Breakout - FT232RL

Basic breakout board for FTDI's popular USB to UART IC. Now with internal oscillator and EEPROM, the FT232RL is an impressive IC!

VCCIO is now tied to 3.3V through a solder jumper. You have the option of clearing this jumper and tying the VCCIO pin to 5V or any other IO voltage you need. For more information on how to wire VCCIO for 5V, checkout this mini-tutorial on the SparkFun forum.

Board comes assembled with IC as shown.

  • Implements full v2.0 USB protocol
  • Needs no external crystal
  • Internal EEPROM for device ID and Product Description strings
  • Royalty-Free Driver support for Windows, Linux, and Mac OSX
  • 0.9x1.25"

SparkFun USB to Serial Breakout - FT232RL Product Help and Resources

How to Install FTDI Drivers

June 4, 2013

How to install drivers for the FTDI Basic on Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux.

Core Skill: Soldering

This skill defines how difficult the soldering is on a particular product. It might be a couple simple solder joints, or require special reflow tools.

1 Soldering

Skill Level: Noob - Some basic soldering is required, but it is limited to a just a few pins, basic through-hole soldering, and couple (if any) polarized components. A basic soldering iron is all you should need.
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.

  • Numex / about 14 years ago / 4

    Product Request!!!! There should be 3v3 and 5v selectable with a jumper!!!! please sparkfun i'll definitely buy it if you make that product.

  • adamj537 / about 11 years ago * / 3

    Perhaps this page should mention FTDI's EEPROM programming utility FT_Prog? It allows a user to reprogram the chip's EEPROM, allowing you to change:

    • whether the chip uses FTDI's virtual COM port or D2XX drivers
    • whether the chip identifies itself as bus or port powered
    • device manufacturer and description strings
    • maximum current provided by USB bus
    • remote wakeup options
    • signal inversions

    The program can be found on the same page as FTClean linked in the product description.

    • Member #12448 / about 10 years ago / 1

      Thanks for this hint- The program has changed names twice now, but the capability is still most useful.

  • electronictech / about 15 years ago / 3

    Fast & reliable! I let winXP download and install the drivers automatically, then the board shows up as a COM port, doesn't get any easier than this. I've been using an ATmega8(running AVRbasic @ 16MHz) UART with hyperterminal at 115kbps, without any problems. Also my older version of powerBASIC for DOS can open the COM port without any trouble, so now I have a avrBASIC to pcBASIC bridge via USB.....the FT232R IC is a one stop USB solution.......if only the package wasn't so small, perhaps they'll introduce an SOIC-28 or DIP-28 for the PCB DIY'er.

    • mud-o-tron / about 13 years ago / 1

      Yeah, it's a tiny part. If you're up for a soldering challenge it can be done, but the SFE board is certainly the better way. This is about the best I could do with toner transfer paper on a single-sided DIY PCB, but that's with two evenings blown away and since I still had to buy the parts, I saved all of what, $10? Not worth it.

  • kminneman / about 10 years ago / 2

    Problem with your schematic: The pins which TXLED# and RXLED# are on are tied internally to VCCIO with 200k resistors. The LEDs themselves are connected to VCC. Because of this, connecting voltages lower than 3.3V such as 1.8V or 2.8V to VCCIO will not work as they are supposed to because VCCIO is being pulled up to 3V+. So for this schematic it is not possible to have less than 3.3V on TX and RX as they're being pulled up to VCC (minus diode drop).

    For anyone wanting 1.8V or 2.8V on VCCIO, to get around this R1 & R2 can be removed (meaning you lose the LEDs) or they can be removed from the pad connecting them to VCC and jumped to VCCIO.

  • Member #371749 / about 11 years ago / 2

    I'm a bit disappointed the LEDs are still on Vcc instead of Vcio. Had to remove them to make it work on 1.8v.

    What do you recommend for getting 1.8v? I used two 10k ones between 3.3v and gnd. Gives me 1.7v, but sending doesn't work reliable.

  • Member #12819 / about 11 years ago / 2

    I can't believe it's been 4 years, and you still haven't put in a proper (pin) jumper to select the pin voltage. I shouldn't have to unsolder and resolder things every time I switch projects and need a different RX/TX level.

    • steven-michael / about 10 years ago * / 1

      Wouldn't it be possible to remove the solder jumper completely and then use Pin4 on JP2 to select between 5v and 3.3v? Then there would be no modifications necessary afterwards. 5v projects would just already have 5v tied to VCCIO and 3.3v projects would have 3.3v tied to VCCIO

      The 5v and 3.3v would come from pins 4 and 5 (respectively) on JP1, but I'd assume doing it this way you could use any voltage that the chip is capable of handling by just tying it to JP2 Pin4 (VCCIO)

  • Member #25712 / about 11 years ago / 2

    It would be interesting if there was a way to rearrange the pinout so that VCCIO, VCC, and GND are next to each other in that order. This would make it easier to add a three pin TO92 LDO regulator for 1.8v (or anything else), which is the only feature this board is missing. It would also be possible to put a thru hole (or solder jumper) for V3.3 next to VCCIO (inside the current row of pins). This pin arrangement could be solder jumpered directly, removing the need for separate solder jumper. Maybe all this was tried and it didn't fit...

    Also, the features of the FT232H are worth looking into to make a similar board (even if you use a similar form factor and can't breakout all the pins). There are a number additional features, but the main one is that the buffer of the FT232R is so small that if you bitbang (8 bits wide) out more then (I think) 64 cycles, it breaks it up into multiple usb packets, which causes large pauses in the signals until the next packet arrives which is no good for some applications. FT232H also allows a HUGE pattern length if you're only toggling or reading one pin.

    The main difference is the FT232H has a sequencer that allows you to make cycle accurate timing (even "pause for input change" on one pin!) on the 8 bit bus which enables a much larger application space, whereas the FT232R does not have this sequencer (and has uselessly small buffer).

    They're great chips but their documentation requires some imagination to comprehend(it's all software api based, no hardware architecture details). I would recommend getting a chip and just trying stuff out to understand the behavior, I think the chances are high you'll get burned someway if you try to design anything complicated ahead of time just based on what you read in the datasheet. I got burned by the buffer size differences between FT232R and FT232H which are not documented, but I guess since they make no claims I can only blame myself there.

  • Member #297238 / about 12 years ago / 2

    Has any one else run into this issue. I breadboarded a ATMega328 and tried using this FT232RL, but I keep getting a "out of sync" error. I know the breadboard is working because I used the FTDI on my uno to upload to it and it works fine. We determined it has something to do with the reset pin.

    Using the UNO, the board is sending about 5V to the reset pin, and we think that it is dropping the voltage for just a fraction of a second, although we can't see it on our meter, so we are assuming it is happening very quickly.

    When we use this board, it is sending about 3v to the reset pin, but when the voltage drops, it just stays down at 0, and then we get the error.

    Just wanted to know if anyone else has come across this, or has found a work around for it.

    • Kevind / about 12 years ago / 1

      I'm not getting quite as far as you did. I can interact with a sketch which responds to keyboard input and sends different output to the console so I'm sure the board is working but I cannot send any sketches to the UNO (both an R2 and R3). I get:

      avrdude: stk500_getsync(): not in sync: resp=0x00

      This is exactly the same symptom I get with an XBee setup. I'm jumpered for 5V and have the following connections:


      Am I missing some sort of necessary handshaking between the FT232RL BOB and the UNO? I'm sure if I can solve this I'll probably be able to figure out my XBee issue also.

      • digifun / about 11 years ago / 1

        Hi Kevind, Did you figure it out? I now have the same issue. Thanks,

        • Kevind / about 11 years ago / 3

          Howdy. Yes, it worked but my documentation is a little sketchy. I passed RESET from the Arduino through a 0.1uF cap to RTS (or was it DTR?) of the Breakout. This apparently reset the Arduino just before sending over the sketch.

          My notes have two drawings, one showing DTR and other showing RTS. Sorry about that but I think you could try both easily enough. Let me know if you want me to set it up again to check for you.

          • digifun / about 11 years ago / 2

            Hi Kevind, Thank you for your reply. I pass 0.1 from Arduino reset(Pin 1) to Breakout Board DTR pin. And now it is working flawlessly.

            • Kevind / about 11 years ago / 1

              Excellent. I will fix my docs to show DTR as the correct signal to route to reset. Have fun!

  • Ugilten / about 12 years ago / 2

    Love this board, but... Is it possible to use it to program the arduino Pro Mini? Do you have to reprogram the FTDI chip somehow or install another driver (As far as I can see it is the same as the FTDI basic but with a different breakout board) Obviously you would have to connect the DTR signal to the arduino... Thanks in advance

  • I really Like this board except for two things:
    (1) The serial TX/RX pins opposite of the USB only does 3.3V and not the selected VCCIO. This very annoying in application.
    (2) Also I would prefer a real VCCIO jumper opposed to the solder one; even if it made the card bigger. (I change this alot between work & personal stuff.)
    Other than those two minor things, this card is amazing.

  • godofcode / about 12 years ago / 2

    I love this product. With just a couple headers this thing is so useful. Not only can this be used to program AVR microcontrollers but by modifying the code, it can program a PICAXE without buying a $25 cable.

    • TheRobberDotCom / about 12 years ago / 1

      Can you say how to modify the code please? I bought this specifically for PICAXE programming :S

      • nekomatic / about 11 years ago / 2

        Using the configuration utility you can download from FTDI, you can set the chip to invert the RX and TX signals and you can then use this board to program a PICAXE without using an extra inverter or converter chip. You can also power the PICAXE from VCC which is handy :-)

  • Paul B. / about 13 years ago / 2

    Newbie question: Every picture I see of these has it on a breadboard but this has no pins on it. Are people soldering pins to the board to plug it in to the breadboard?

    • Nic / about 13 years ago / 1

      I just ordered one of these and yes, I intend on putting pins on it and putting it on a breadboard. Hopefully the spacing works with a standard breadboard.

  • I use these a lot. Instead of buying uC boards with the big serial port plug on them, I can buy a board with just headers and re-use this. Also, my laptop has no serial port.

  • AretCarlsen / about 14 years ago / 2

    I've successfully awoken an Eee 701 (running Ubuntu-Eee) from standby using the ring pin ("RI") on this board. Easy way to conserve a lot of power - the 701 drops from 13 watts active to 2 watts standby, for instance - while allowing lower-power hardware to monitor for wakeup conditions, i.e. certain XBee commands.
    The other USB boards don't breakout the RI pin.

  • dv / about 15 years ago / 2

    I love the fact thay put in the VCCIO jumper. I am interfacing to a 1.8 volt system and use this functionality. Unfortunately the LEDs are also both pulled up through VCCIO and both remain constantly lit when operated with VCCIO at 1.8v. They should have pulled up the LEDs through the dedicated 3.3 volt regulator.

    • williams / about 13 years ago / 1

      I think what is happening is the leds are actually driving from vcc (5v usb source) (per the schematic). They should, instead, be driven by vccio. The 5v is finding its way into the 1.8v logic rail and keeps the current flowing - i.e. the door is not closing. The ft232 datasheet shows connecting leds via VCCIO (not vcc). I think leds will be much less bright, but should turn off as normal.

      • dv / about 11 years ago / 1

        You are right the LEDs should be pulled up to VCCIO. I would be vary cautious about using this to translate to 1.8v. Depending on how you drive your VCCIO (I was just using a resistor divider from the 5v). You will get bleed through of the VCC through the leds and will hike up the VCCIO. I removed the LED resistors and now translates to correct levels.

    • Doctor Who / about 15 years ago / 1

      And where are you connecting to I have mine restrapped to 5v and naturally I don't have a problem per se.
      I can tell you, (and everyone else) this particular board is the best thing that FTDI created a chip for since they started the process of making USB to anything function chips.

  • Member #106794 / about 9 years ago / 1

    Please get more of these in stock, I need to order a quantity of these!

  • ArtFaks / about 9 years ago / 1

    I can program this "Redboard" with the Sparkfun FT232RL available here ---> please ?

  • Member #615312 / about 9 years ago / 1

    Ok, I am interested in this board to use along side a tutorial found to bootload my own AtMega328P-PU chips. And from the reviews/comments I am assuming in order to do so I will have to modify this thing before it becomes of any use to me to do so?

  • Doctor Who / about 9 years ago / 1

    The one I bought from the ITP store for NYU sometime ago, (this one with the LEDs on it) resembles the first style. That is there's a fixed blob on it for 3v3 volts. I know from my experiences with an older one, that without the LEDs on it that I can clear the blob and set it for 5v.

    But will plugging it into a TTL logic circuit damage one of these, if I were to leave it strapped at 3v3? I'm not ready to make this second one user selectable.

  • Member #553015 / about 9 years ago / 1

    Hello. I just powered my brand-new FT232RL but when I hook up my usb cable to it , any ports doesnt seem in the device manager. I am sure that I wired ground, tx, rx pins properly. I downloaded VCP and D2XX drivers. Can it be a problem because of these drivers ? If it is , How can I setup it if any port doesnt seem on the computer when I hooked up my FT232RL ? Thanks in advance.

  • schizobovine / about 9 years ago / 1

    What're the difference between FT232RL and the FT231X breakouts? Obviously mini vs. micro USB connectors are one.

    I ask because the description for the FT231X says it's a drop-in replacement for the FTDI basic cable. However, the Arduinos with USB based on the ATMega328PU (i.e., not the ATMega32U4 with built-in USB comms), like the RedBoard or Adafruit's USB Boarduino, all seem to use the FT232RL instead.

  • Member #530096 / about 10 years ago * / 1

    I downloaded and installed the drivers, but it's not showing up as tty.usbxxxx in /dev or arduino software, though it's powering my atmega328 successfully from the computer. I'm on mac osx and Ft232 drivers installed successfully... frustrating! any ideas?

  • Member #12448 / about 10 years ago / 1

    Sigh, I got this because I have one of the "green board" predecessors. I am going to have to mount it with double-sided tape, not a favorite method, for something that's going to have a cable plugged in.. The previous version actually had mounting holes for screws, which I like. And it looks as if it would be practical to have done this.

  • Member #480178 / about 10 years ago / 1

    what about reset pin??its floating.should'nt it be connnected to vcc as recommended by datasheet.

  • Member #479207 / about 10 years ago / 1

    I 've bought this,, but I can't download the driver from Is there anyone have the backup?

  • Member #471059 / about 10 years ago / 1

    When plugged into a USB should I expect the chip to get hot? Is that a sign I have things wired wrong?

    • Generally, chips getting hot is a bad thing. Double check your wiring and make sure there are no shorted pins on the board itself.

  • teddy / about 11 years ago * / 1

    Is it my browser, Firefox with Foxit, or is there a problem? I see solder pads, but NOT the schematic!

    Never was Foxit plug-in

  • Member #423117 / about 11 years ago / 1

    Will I be able to connect this breakout board to the GPS module from sparkfun ( EM-406A ) directly ??

  • Member #6799 / about 11 years ago / 1

    I am using this board with 1.8 volts from the host. However, when the host is not powered, I am seeing 3.3 volts on the TX and RX outputs. They are actually powering the device through its TX and RX ports.

    What should be done to remedy this?

  • Why doesn't this board break out the USBDM and USBDP pins? Now I'm having fun soldering to individual pins!

  • AsaJ / about 11 years ago / 1

    Just to make sure, I should be able to use this in place of the MAX232 to connect a Atmega328p to my pc?

    • AsaJ / about 11 years ago / 1

      Me from the future again. It does work. Just get ur friggin fuses right or the baud rate won't match. Also don't buy sushi at the Piggly. Just trust me on that one.

  • tweedius / about 11 years ago / 1

    Has anyone had any experience with using this BOB with an ATtiny85 and the Arduino IDE?

    • tweedius / about 11 years ago / 1

      Obviously the Arduino bootloader isn't going to be able to be used with a tiny. However, I had pretty good success using this BOB hooked up to the TX/RX so that I could use softwareserial to debug my code.

  • Member #349047 / about 11 years ago / 1

    Ftdi mentions ( an "Adjustable receive buffer timeout." Anybody know how to set that?

    I tried MProg3.5 and FT_Prog v2.6.8 and I can't see anything that seems related.

    • Member #349047 / about 11 years ago / 3

      Answering my own question. It seems to be set by the driver (not EEPROM). There are documented registry entries for it for windows.

      For Linux, it seems that you write the number (in milliseconds) to: /sys/bus/usb/drivers/ftdi_sio/module/parameters/ndi_latency_timer

  • slouis / about 11 years ago / 1

    Want to point out one thing, I was hoping VCCIO would go as low as 1.8V, but it seems the minimum value clams around 2.2V.

    • Member #371749 / about 11 years ago / 1

      Remove the resistors on the LEDs, and it'll go down to 1.8v

  • whitnasty / about 11 years ago / 1

    Ok I just ordered one of these boards and I was wondering what the default voltage setting is that is configured when the board is shipped? What voltage setting needs to be applied if I am using this on an ATMega328p? If it does need to be changed is there a tutorial somewhere on how to do so? Thanks a lot everybody!

  • Member #354080 / about 11 years ago / 1

    What kind of header pins do I need for this and does Sparkfun sell them?

  • Member #141932 / about 11 years ago / 1

    We need USB Mini-B cable for this ?

  • Flapjackbatter / about 12 years ago / 1

    I altso noticed the same thing as Member243237. That there is a new verson of this board I got just now that have 3 solderpads where there before were 2 (as shown in the schematic.)
    The schematic is not up to date with the product, in other words.
    The leftmost pad says 3.3 the rightmost pad says 5.
    Am I right to assume I should solder together the middle pad and the "5"-pad to have the board poerate at 5 volt ?
    I don't want to fry my board : |

  • lulingar / about 12 years ago / 1

    Please include this board in the SparkFun's Fritzing parts bin! I've made over 10 projects with this board and it would be of great help. Thanks!
    PD: How could I get the part/updated part bin after you added this breakout board?

    • I know this is an incredibly delayed response, but we have a Fritzing repo here, so you can always check there for new parts or contribute new parts there.

  • Member #243237 / about 12 years ago * / 1

    The schematic and layout do not match the board that I received. The board I received has three solder bumps for, I assume, connection VCCIO to either 3.3V of 5V. The silkscreen indicates this but the schematic and layout do not show this. Also, there is no 'solder jumper' among these bumps. The schematic and layout I downloaded from the site only show 2 solder bumps. Additionally, the back of the board has '4-16-2010' date code in the copper. How can I get the correct layout and schematic for this board?

  • baum / about 12 years ago / 1

    If this is SPI... then does that mean we can bit bang ICSP over this?!?!?!?

  • Member #192254 / about 12 years ago / 1

    What is the voltage at pins RX and TX?
    I ask that because I want to connect this board to a 3.3-volts microcontroller. Can I do that, even though the USB is 5-volts?
    Thanks in advance

  • Eraticus / about 12 years ago / 1

    Obviously, I'm a complete noob here. This is my first serial project. Can anyone enlighten me on a couple of hopefully easy questions? There seems to be multiple "TX" and "RX" pins. Just wondering what the difference between "TX-0", "TXDEN", and "TXLED", "TXD". Also, there are two "V3.3" pins, are they different?. My goal here is to connect this to the Bluesmirf product, then usb to my Mac, BTW...

  • Member #104819 / about 12 years ago / 1

    One more thing.
    I have a serial output but i need to operate it on my laptop which has no serial port.
    So will this board solve my problem of connecting a serial based output to a usb slot?
    I'm stuck at the moment, so please do guide me.

    • MikeGrusin / about 12 years ago / 1

      It depends on what you mean by "serial". If you're talking about "RS-232 serial" (which commonly uses a 9-pin or 25-pin D-shaped connector), then no, this board can't interface to those signals (but see our CAB-10270 which does).
      However, if you're talking about "TTL serial", which is low-voltage signaling between microprocessor and other chips, then this board will allow you to connect those signals to a USB port.

  • Member #104819 / about 12 years ago / 1

    Is this board self powered from the USB port directly?

  • Member #104819 / about 12 years ago / 1

    I have one query here.
    I have seen the datasheet of FT232RL IC.
    In section 8.1, usb to rs232 converter configuration, it is shown that after the FT232RL IC, a RS232 level converter should be attached like MAX213.
    The above board states its USB to serial.
    so what to do then?
    I need to connect the following pins: RTS,CTS,TD,DTR,Gnd.
    How to operate my board with the board stated above?

  • erich81 / about 12 years ago / 1

    how do you pick a resettable fuse for this thing? I don't understand these fuses. Do you want 500mA as the hold current or trip current?

  • luesie / about 13 years ago / 1

    I'm using ft232r breakout to send a msg from/to a mobile using microcontroller,, pic16f877a> ft232r breakout> mobile .
    do I have to use something in between, is there is some drivers should be installed on the mobile "I'm using AT commands to send the msg",, actually I don't know if the output is serial or what from ft232r . Can you help please ?!!

  • kminneman / about 13 years ago / 1

    I've tried to use this at 1.8V but there is a voltage always on the VCCIO which pulls up the voltage I try to use there. I remove the jumper to 3.3V (and I've checked, they are no longer connected) but there is still 3.3V on the VCCIO pin. I've done different ways of supplying the 1.8V to VCCIO with a 1.8V regulator with VCC tied to the regulator's input voltage (as the datasheet suggests) or to the 1.8V of the system I'm using these with. Neither one works as the voltage is pulled up to around 3V by the 3.3V already on the pin. I can get the voltage down to about 1.8V by loading the pin down with a 1.2k resistor as a workaround. I'm wondering what I am missing that the VCCIO isn't acting as it is supposed to. I've used many of these boards and they're all the same. However, tying VCCIO to VCC does work as expected.

  • thank you / about 13 years ago / 1

    dose this on is suitable for
    50 Channel GS407 Helical GPS Receiver
    or can this act as
    GS407 Breakout Board
    please i need the answer as fast as you can

  • BFMS01 BFMS01 / about 13 years ago / 1

    Is this the board I need to program my XBee 900?

  • Member #73574 / about 13 years ago / 1

    I need to use the Rx on the UART for another device and only use the FTDI to grab the Tx of the UART.
    When I have both the Rx and Tx connected FTDI UART (reversed of course), it works fine. If I remove the wire to the FTDI Tx coming from the Rx from the UART, it is jibberish.
    I have the solder blob removed and supply 5V to the VCCIO pin of the FTDI.
    Does the Tx pin of the FTDI need to be pulled up or grounded or something?
    Thanks for any help.

    • Member #73574 / about 13 years ago / 2

      Resolved....the issue was with having a floating Rx pin on the UAV Dev Board UART. With the other device hooked up to the Rx of the UART and the FTDI hooked up to the TX of the UART (and GND/Vcc to both devices) it all works fine. Bottom line is you can make the FTDI run with only 3 wires, Vcc to VCCIO (if needed) GND and TX from UART.

  • Member #40423 / about 13 years ago / 1

    If someone can clarify this device for me I'll really appreciate it. The comments sound as it this can do all kinds of great things, but I have one specific need.
    I would like to burn an Arduino sketch to an Atmega328 on a breadboard. I will buy a 328 with the bootloader already on it, so all I need to do is burn the sketch.
    Is this the device that I need? I've seen all kinds of "FTDI" gizmos and AVR programmers and am confused by all the options!

  • jtlancer / about 13 years ago / 1

    Am I correct that I don't need a MAX232 between this and an ATTiny2313? I'm able to send data to the microcontroller from my terminal program, but I just get back garbage. Should I use the FT232's clock to drive the AVR? Thanks!

    • jtlancer / about 13 years ago / 1

      I added a 8mhz crystal to the Attiny2313 and it's working fine.

  • BrentFinley / about 13 years ago / 1

    Help. I'm trying to talk to a device that expects RS232 io via a MAX232 chip. Do I have to invert the signals so TXD is TXD# and RXD is RXD#?
    I'm testing connectivity to a Scott Edwards Serial LCD backpack and keep getting garbage.
    Is this a TTL signal inversion issue?

    • Nic / about 13 years ago / 1

      What is your setup? Is it:
      PC -> FTDI -> MAX232 -> LCD
      If so, you shouldn't need to invert any signals. I've used the MAX3232 dip before and I just had to send the FTDI output to it.
      As a test, you could measure the voltages when the serial port is in idle. The TTL should be high (5.0v or 3.3v). The RS232 should be a negative voltage.
      Have you tried hooking the LCD directly to a 5.0v RS232 source, like a laptop serial port?
      One other thing to check would be Rx & Tx. Remember that they should cross at some point. I.E. the LCD Rx should get piped into the PC's Tx. (and vice versa).

  • ARap / about 13 years ago / 1

    Can anyone please help me with this issue. I connect it to a my Win7 laptop but no connection seem to be made? Only RX and TX leds keep twinklin and nothing happens. What's up ? Do i have to connect something before it makes virtual com port?

    • Sorry for the delayed response, but for anyone running into this issue currently, double check under your device manager. If the board shows up as an unknown device, try reinstalling/updating your drivers. That should fix this issue.

  • jcp / about 13 years ago / 1

    I accidentally erase the eeprom memory of my ft232rl module. What is the procedure to set the memory the way it was? where can I find the original hex file?

    • jcp / about 13 years ago / 1

      OK I found FT_Prog. I try to program using a ft232r template but the device shows as ft245r. I am not able to change the device type to ft323r as it should be.

  • wchill / about 13 years ago / 1

    To clarify, VCC is tied directly to 5V from the USB port, correct?
    And please add a 5V jumper/switch!

  • rice / about 13 years ago / 1

    Im getting a USB Device not recognized error, any suggestions?

    • I know this is a very, very delayed response, but this sounds like it may be a driver issue for anyone currently running into this problem. Try reinstalling/updating the drivers on your computer, and see if that helps.

  • Howie2 / about 13 years ago / 1

    Awesome !
    I think that is the right word for this board !
    Top 5 products from Sparkfun !
    Greez from Germany

  • Sacko / about 13 years ago / 1

    I'm lookin to interface this with a MSP430 that only uses the RX and TX lines. In the datasheet it shows an example of a UART interface with a microcontroller, but it has the RTS and CTS lines going to the microcontroller as well. Can these signals be left disconnected and still work? Should they be tied together? Pulled high or low?
    Thanks for the help.

    • Engineer203 / about 13 years ago / 1

      I am curious how the FT232RL board worked out for your MSP430 serial interface. The "MSP430 Launchpad Getting Started Guide" shows a software UART implementation just using two output points on the MSP430G2231 to the MSP430 UART emulation section. It use a Capture and Compare feature of a timer to emulate the UART comm.<br />
      <br />
      But I noted that their were 100R ohm resistor in series with TX and RX lines between the chips.

    • 60amprelay / about 13 years ago / 1

      You can leave RTS and CTS disconnected if your application doesn't need flow control. The FT232RL chip has its own pullup resistors internally for those signal lines.

  • Ivan747 / about 13 years ago / 1

    I ordered this board, but it's probably at 30,000 feet high right now, so, can someone tell me the distance between those 9 pin headers? I want to solder the whole board into a single sided PCB.

    • Ivan747 / about 13 years ago / 1

      Nevermind, i received it. I should say this is a great board, it comes with everything you will ever need and much more. In fact I could do USB>Serial converters with this thing. For interfacing with a Picaxe do this: and then this
      After that just use Vcc for 5V Gnd for 0V Tx-O for Picaxe's Serial in and Rx-I for Picaxe's Serial Out.
      Also i wanted to say that the board is smaller than how it looks like on your screen. Its like 1" by 0.75"

  • Olben1 / about 13 years ago / 1

    Like most here I truely like this little board. I'm having one issue. I have ir conected to a ATMega168 running a simple character repeating program. The MCU is running on the internal oscillator at 8mHz. all works fine at 5V but there is no indication of character transmission at 3.3V.
    Any thoughts. I plan to run the project using a 3.7 LiPo battery, so 3.3V operation is required. Or is there an equivalent form factor 9 V battery?

  • James12 / about 13 years ago / 1

    Great product, I have these all over a robot w/ a linux brain. Nothing simpler than plugging these in and interfacing with python.
    I wish there was a way to have a general purpose pin or two on this board, I need to do some half-duplex TTL (Dynamixel servos!) and I don't want to use a separate microcontroller just for one 5V pin.

  • Member126971 / about 13 years ago / 1

    Why does this board use resettable fuse instead or not in addition to a ferrite bead per the ft232rl datasheet?

    • wcbri21 / about 13 years ago / 1

      I believe the polarized capacitor is used instead of the ferrite bead to suppress line noise. The PTC fuse is just to prevent current overdraw on the bus.

  • Got mine through a reseller along with a seeedstudio rfid reader and cards/fobs. Somewhere along the line, the RX led resistor popped off in the heat sealed bag, so spent ~15 minutes with a cheap soldering iron to fix it (poor fine motor skills combined with too large/low quality iron tip). Spent another hour or so trying to figure out why it would not create a tty device.
    Turns out that I had too many memory hogging programs open, like firefox with 60+ tabs on a 5 year old computer, causing error of "allocation failed: out of vmalloc space - use vmalloc= to increase size." in output of "dmesg | tail".
    Other than that it has been a useful tool and hope it will continue to be.

  • PRDC / about 14 years ago / 1

    Big fan of this improved board. I like all the new features but I do have two slight issues:
    I would have rather this had a new part number, and been specified as the improved replacement of the old part number (but that's just personal preference, so not biggie).
    More importantly, the mounting holes in the corners have disappeared. Understandable since that space is now taken up by LEDs, but does anyone have any suggestions on how to mount this puppy?

    • We are trying to get better with version control. It's a big project, but you will start to see more retired items linked to their clones (a clone is a product with a small change, like a PCB revision).
      Sorry! I had to make an executive decision and nix the mounting holes for the LEDs. We can increase the board size if it's really important to users.

  • pbfy0 / about 14 years ago / 1

    is there a 5V version?

  • billiam2536 / about 14 years ago / 1

    So I'm confused, is there a power out pin, like powered from the USB?

    • Nepharis / about 14 years ago / 1

      Yes, the 3.3V pin on the end is power out, from an internal regulator on the chip. There's also the VCC pin out, which is the direct 5V USB line.

  • BootHowTo / about 14 years ago / 1

    I noticed this "red PCB" version has some differences from the previous "green PCB." The improvements should be mentioned in product description.
    - two LEDs for Tx and Rx added,
    - pin layout and pin description on back were changed,
    Nice changes, I will add the new batch next my purchase.

  • galaxip / about 14 years ago / 1

    I have to echo.. This board rocks!
    I am using it to programm funnel I/O remixed, and it operates flawlessly.
    I was even able to configure Arduino Alpha 0017 to recognize FIO remixed via this board... Too cool.

  • LanceW / about 14 years ago / 1

    Hello, I'm a programmer trying to develop a 'toy' as a hobby. I'm noob when it comes to electronics, but trying to learn.
    I basically want to route the information received by an rf module ( to a PC via USB. Is this the board/chip I need?
    Thanks in advance

  • Abraham / about 14 years ago / 1

    I am new to this little board and I was wondering if you can connect this board directly to any usb com on my computer without any extra devices?
    When you interface this board with your Atmega chip do you only connect RX,TX and ground?
    Thank you,

    • Yvan256 / about 14 years ago / 1

      I only connected GND, RX and TX and I'm able to send and receive to a PC. So yes it does work with only 3 wires, the IC is powered by the USB port.

  • formerisan / about 14 years ago / 1

    Has anyone tried successfully with multiple boards working on the same PC?

  • Doctor Who / about 14 years ago / 1

    Okay, what changed? Originally this was the breakout board for the FT232R part.
    While I can see the differences, namely lower power consumption and (theoretically) easier programming, I can not see why the firm didn't simply create a new board number to accommodate this part number.
    I have here both the board for the FT232R and now the one for the FT232RL and the differences are apparent.
    Even the comments, including mine seem to be strangely wrapped around it. Although the threading seems to be broken.

  • jimmy3091 / about 15 years ago / 1

    hey can somebody help me out i bought this board instead of the FTDI Basic Breakout - 3.3V and now i dont know what pins to solder and what way to connect it to my ardupilot can anyone point me in the right direction thanks

  • -henry- / about 15 years ago / 1

    I messed up my EEPROM with MProg, and I uploaded the default file. What can I do to make it work again like it did?

  • Capissen / about 15 years ago / 1

    I'm pretty much a total n00b when it comes to low-level electronics stuff, but I am already knee-deep in TTL thanks to this board. True plug-and-play in both Ubuntu 8.10 and Windows XP, no driver load needed. Comes right up as a COM or ttyUSB0. Will definitely order more FTDI products and other stuff from SFE!

  • atomriot / about 15 years ago / 1

    so i'm looking at this and i see the solder jumper, but how would you get it to be 5v? clear the solder jumper and then jump vcc and the 3.3V holes? or is it more complicated?

  • This board is very useful, even when working on rs485, :)

  • Member #8450 / about 17 years ago / 1

    This board rocks! The EEPROM is robust and loaded with options. The breakout board makes it super easy to setup (thanks for putting in the solder jumper for VCCIO). I used this with a 232 device that used RXD, TXD, CTS, RTS, DTR, and DCR pins and the unit worked flawless.

Customer Reviews

No reviews yet.