Weekly Roundup #14 – New Maker Products

MickMake’s Weekly Roundup #14!
We have 3D printing, LoRa and Bluetooth modules, a CAN bus logger, and… robots… again…
What is it about robots? Haven’t we learnt our lesson from Skynet?


Kickstarter

Lot’s of stuff on KickStarter… like robots.

Dobot M1

WR-NMP14p01-640xThe Dobot M1 is actually quite a cool little robotic arm. Why? Well for $1400 US you get an arm that can 3D print, laser engrave, solder, pick and place using OpenCV. How accurate is it? 0.02mm accuracy.

If you’re looking for a robotic arm that does all your desktop manufacturing then this is it. For only $1400 US!

ShopArm

WR-NMP14p02-640xAt the other end of the scale we have the ShopArm which is designed as a training tool for STEM education. It’s a 3D printed robotic arm that claims 0.5mm repeatability accuracy. That’s pretty good for a 3D printed arm for only $500 US!

QuadBot

WR-NMP14p03-640xMake your own robot! The QuadBot reminds me of the replicators from Stargate SG1, except I don’t think they’re sentient… yet…

It’s one of the better robots I’ve seen around, basically because it doesn’t have boring wheels. Contains an ATmega32u4, WiFi, bluetooth, LiPo and sensors to enable some basic kinematics. Most of the parts are 3D printed, and supports the Arduino IDE, LabView API and Ardublockly.

PUREmodules

WR-NMP14p04-640xPUREmodules is a board that contains an nRF52832 SoC, accelerometer, coin cell holder, JTAG connector and NFC expansion header. It pushes out 20 GPIOs for you to play with.

The board has edge connectors so that you can connect to a variety of sensor and control boards such as thermal cameras, GPS and ethernet.

As part of this Kickstarter they’re also offering a super sensor board designed for health tracking.

Avocado Pi

WR-NMP14p05-640xThe Avocado Pi is a small board designed for STEM education that attaches to a Raspberry Pi and comes with a variety of sensors and buttons. This is the second Kickstarter this guy has launched with the previous one being quite successful.

FiPy

WR-NMP14p06-640xThe FiPy, (I’m sure I’m going to get some heat for saying that wrong), is an ESP32 based all-in-one wireless module. It doesn’t just contain wireless and bluetooth, but also LoRa, Sigfox, and cellular LTE.

Holy cow, Batman! My expense budget has just been blown again. So stay tuned for a review on this when they’re shipped.

Oh, they also have a PySense and PyTrack board on offer that the FiPy slots into enabling motion sensing and GPS. Nice.

The Oscilloscope Clock IV

WR-NMP14p07-640xThis is one of those things. This guy is converting old CRT oscilloscope displays into useful items, like a clock. It comes in kit format with everything except the CRT and housing. Note: CRTs contain very high voltages, so this one is only for experienced Makers.

ProtoLeap Starter

WR-NMP14p08-640xAnother STEM product that I was tossing up not to include. It’s a protoboard based board that really doesn’t give any details on what’s on it. I’ll be writing to this guy to get him to provide some more detail. So check back on this one if you’re interested.

PDK-64

WR-NMP14p09-640xThe PDK64 is an industrial tablet platform containing a sunlight readable TFT touch display, Allwinnder A64 quad core running at 1.2GHz, 1G RAM, 8G flash, SD slot, WiFi, ethernet, and a standard Pi and Euler GPIO header. All for $118 US! Is this Kickstarter too good to be true? I’ll be keeping my eye on this one so stay tuned.

SENTINEL

WR-NMP14p10-640xThe SENTINEL is a small device you attach before your 3D print head which will both clean your filament before it gets to the head and also pause your printing should you run out. A nice little add on if you don’t have this functionality on your printer.

Re-ARM for RAMPS, simple 32-bit upgrade

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Oh, talking about 3D printing. I have to apologize for a guff I made in last week’s roundup. The Re-ARM board I mentioned doesn’t actually include the RAMPS board.

Thanks to skwisgar2322 for picking that up.

SafFire

WR-NMP14p12-640xWe’re starting to see a lot of alternatives to 3D printing. The SafFire is a laser SLA printer that is similar to last week’s UV based printer, but this one claims around 3 micron resolution with a slightly larger print volume.

Since it’s laser based it can also engrave and cut thin objects.

L2S 3D Printer

WR-NMP14p13-640xAnother 3D printer, but this one is a photolithographic printer similar to the SafFire. It’s a huge rack sized thing that will print down into the material, but only claims 50 micron accuracy. It uses a standard 1080p projector for setting the resin.

Fotric 123

WR-NMP14p14-640xThe Fotric isn’t a traditional Maker product, but could be a useful addition to something like a drone. It’s a thermal camera designed to detect any abnormal heat. It claims much better accuracy at detecting a fire than traditional methods with a 80 by 80 pixel sensor and onboard analysis.

Go Big 3D Printer

WR-NMP14p15-640xHey! Another 3D printer! However, this one is big. Claiming a print volume of 600mm cubed down to 8 micron accuracy. It contains the Repetier firmware and Azteeg X3 Pro controller board. It’s a heavy duty machine designed to control either laser or traditional 3D print heads.

Multex4Move

WR-NMP14p16-640xOh, look! Another 3D printer. This one is slightly different in that it has 4 extruders. This one looks quite good, but the creator hasn’t put up any specs on the darn thing. If anyone can find any then add it into the comments below.


IndieGoGo

Unusually IndieGoGo seems to be busy.

Mioswitch

WR-NMP14p17-640xMioswitch provides a method to physically power on and off your 3D printer. It is based on the ESP8266 and also contains a power meter. So you can set it to automatically turn off when printing has finished, or by smartphone app.

LaserConversion

WR-NMP14p18-640xIf you already have a laser cutter and are getting frustrated with its low power then you can upgrade the laser module to something that will cut 19mm thick wood. Wow! It’s a fairly quick and easy replacement for your existing laser.

Yeehaw 3D printing

WR-NMP14p19-640xThis one is apparently the best 3D printer for creative kids. The Yeehaw is a low cost printer that has a very simplified interface running off your tablet. Has an autolevelling platform and protective door to avoid any potential issues. Looks good.

Blocks Zero

WR-NMP14p20-640xBlocks Zero is another 3D printer. Man, I thought we had an oversupply of robots, it’s world domination from 3D printers we need to be careful of.
This one is designed to be an ultra portable version, claiming to print at 80mm/s on a 200mm cubed bed. That’s quick.

RabbitMax Flex Raspberry Pi HAT for IoT

WR-NMP14p21-640xRabbitMax Flex is a Pi hat with a whole bunch of sensors and interfaces, like infrared, relay, 16×2 LCD header, UARTs, and headers for various I2C sensors.

I nice little hat if you want to sense stuff and act on it.


CrowdSupply

And only one in pre-launch on Crowd Supply.

imix: A Board for Tock OS Development and IoT Prototyping

WR-NMP14p22-640ximix is a development board in pre-launch on Crowd Supply. It contains a Cortex M4 MCU, Nordic NRF51 bluetooth, ZigBee, battery charging and sensors. You can individually control and monitor power to each sub-section and also contains an auditable random number generator.


Tindie and others

While on Tindie there’s no robots. I promise.

CAN Bus Logger with SD-card

WR-NMP14p23-640xThis a great self contained CAN bus logger. It supports bit rates up to 1Mbps and supports any 2.0A and 2.0B CAN interfaces. Has an SD slot supporting up to 32GB cards. If you want to be able to snoop on your vehicles CAN interface, then get one of these.

SlushEngine: Model X LT

WR-NMP14p24-640xI mentioned the SlushEngine in a previous roundup, but this is a new model. The Model X LT is basically the same but without the UEXT expansion header.

Esus board kit

WR-NMP14p25-640xThe ESUS is a board targeted towards robotics. Contains the usual NodeMCU based ESP8266 and 2 full H-Bridges. Controlled via the Arduino IDE or Blockly.

X-8266

WR-NMP14p26-640xAnother NodeMCU ESP8266, but this one is an ultra compact version measuring only 35 by 27mm.
Pushed out all the GPIOs onto male and female headers so you can stack things on top like an LCD.

SPI to DMX controller

WR-NMP14p27-640xAre you an audio engineer? You might find this SPI to DMX512 controller handy. Has three DMX channels with the first capable of being either master or slave. Contains an onboard MCU that handles all the logic grunt work so all you have to do is speak SPI.

640 – DC and Stepper motor control board

WR-NMP14p28-640xYet another DC and stepper motor controller for the Pi. This one is capable of controlling up to 6 DC motors or 3 steppers. It also has two additional PWM connections for servos or LEDs.
Motor voltage from 2 to 11 volts and accessible over I2C.

ZERO Color 2

WR-NMP14p29-640xThe Zero Color was also in a previous roundup. This one is the next version with the only difference being an additional SPI and I2C pin out. It contains the same SSD1331 OLED and micro SD slot.


AdaFruit, Seeed, SparkFun, DFRobot, DigiKey

MAXREFDES117#: HEART-RATE AND PULSE-OXIMETRY MONITOR

WR-NMP14p30-640xOver at Seeed there’s a heart rate and oxi-meter containing the MAX30102 which gives you heart rate and O2 blood absorption…

BAT Detector v1.0

WR-NMP14p31-640x… and a bat detector. No, not the flying type. This handy little device will give you an estimate of just how much juice is left in your LiPo. Just connect and 4 LEDs will indicate the percentile.

Adafruit VL53L0X Time of Flight Distance Sensor – ~30 to 1000mm

WR-NMP14p32-640xLooking for an accurate ranging sensor? The VL53LOX breakout from AdaFruit is capable of measuring from 30mm to 1.2 metres at 5% accuracy. All working off 3 to 5 volts with logic level converters.

SparkFun nRF52832 Breakout

WR-NMP14p33-640xSparkFun have their nRF52832 breakout board operating at the usual 1.7 to 3.6 volts, but this also has an onboard regulator so it can be powered up to 6 volts.


The Cheap Side

The cheap side of town seems to be going wireless.

2.4G 100mW Wireless Transmission Module nRF24L01P+PA+LNA With Shielding Case

WR-NMP14p34-640xOver at BangGood there’s a cheap 100mW nRF24L01 based transceiver running off a 3.6 volt supply.

Wireless Charging Receiving Module Qi Wireless Charging Receiver Wireless Charging Receiving Board DIY PCBA

WR-NMP14p35-640xAnd a QI wireless charging receiver capable of hitting 5 volts at 1A.

CSR8630 Bluetooth 4.0 Audio Module Bluetooth Stereo Receiver Board For Modified Speaker

WR-NMP14p36-640xA handy bluetooth 4.0 audio module based on the CSR8630 chipset.

433Mhz FSK Receiver CC1101 SPI RF Wireless Module Board

WR-NMP14p37-640xAn SPI based 433MHz FSK receiver using the CC1101 and running off 1.8 to 3.6 volts.

SCS15 Multi-purpose UART Bus Robot Servo for Arduino DIY

WR-NMP14p38-640xAnd this is cool. Similar to two servo modules I mentioned in past roundups. This is a servo that has inbuilt positioning and is controlled via a 3 wire interface. It’s bi-directional so you can set the angle of the servo and query it’s temperature, load, speed, and position.

GPRS/GSM Camera Shield

WR-NMP14p39-640xThere’s also a GPRS/GSM based shield with onboard camera and SD slot. Supports all the usual GSM functions like SMS and voice calls, but remember GSM will be phased out in most countries. So might not be worth getting it.

Lora RFM95 Shield- 915MHZ

WR-NMP14p40-640xA cheap 100mW LoRa module based in the RFM95 chip. Gives you an effective 37.5kbps bit rate. A decent enough LoRa module for that price.

Bluetooth modules

WR-NMP14p41-640xAnd then we have a whole bunch of Bluetooth modules from ICstation; cc2541 to cc2640 to nrf51822.

http://www.icstation.com/cc2541-bluetooth-ble40-serial-port-module-power-consumption-p-10451.html
http://www.icstation.com/ti2640-cc2640-bluetooth-module-power-consumption-electronic-components-p-10450.html
http://www.icstation.com/cc2541cc2590-ble40-wireless-bluetooth-module-280m-15x25mm-p-10449.html
http://www.icstation.com/nrf51822-bluetooth-wireless-module-intelligent-control-system-p-10448.html
http://www.icstation.com/cc2640-bluetooth-module-118x158mm-power-consumption-arduino-p-10447.html
http://www.icstation.com/bluetooth-ble40-module-cc2541-serial-port-transparent-transmission-with-shield-p-10437.html
http://www.icstation.com/bluetooth-ble40-module-cc2541-50ma-support-iosandroid-p-10436.html
http://www.icstation.com/bluetooth-ble40-module-cc2541-serial-port-transparent-transmission-module-p-10435.html

Navigation

WR-NMP14p42-640xSome ultra cheap Beidou and GLONASS GPS modules.

http://www.icstation.com/atgm332d-beidou-satellite-navigation-system-module-compatible-p-10440.html
http://www.icstation.com/compass-module-beidou-satellite-navigation-system-replace-p-10439.html

Sensors

WR-NMP14p43-640xAnd motion sensors, current, pressure, temperature and humidity sensors. The MAX30100 heart rate sensor I’ll shortly being running a tutorial on. So stay tuned for that.

http://www.icstation.com/mpu6500-6dof-protocol-attitude-sensor-axis-accelerometer-gyroscope-module-breakout-arduino-p-10434.html
http://www.icstation.com/9250-10dof-attitude-sensor-axis-accelerometer-gyroscope-module-breakout-arduino-p-10433.html
http://www.icstation.com/9250-protocol-9dof-attitude-sensor-axis-accelerometer-gyroscope-module-breakout-arduino-p-10431.html
http://www.icstation.com/9255-9dof-attitude-sensor-axis-accelerometer-gyroscope-module-breakout-arduino-p-10430.html

http://www.icstation.com/max471-current-sensor-module-195x203mm-current-detector-sensor-arduino-p-10429.html
http://www.icstation.com/ml8511-cmos-ultraviolet-sensor-module-analog-voltage-output-arduino-p-10428.html
http://www.icstation.com/ms5611-pressure-altitude-sensor-module-24bit-converter-p-10426.html
http://www.icstation.com/bme280-pressure-sensor-module-serial-interface-p-10425.html
http://www.icstation.com/max30100-heart-rate-monitor-sensor-14mm14mm-interface-arduino-p-10424.html
http://www.icstation.com/sht31-temperature-humidity-sensor-module-arduino-p-10423.html

ESP-32S breakout PCB

WR-NMP14p44-640xAnd IC station also have a nice GPIO breakout for the new ESP32, which allows you to chuck it into a breadboard.


Honorable mentions

I’ve created an “honourable mention” section on my website that contains some things that didn’t make it into this video. So check that out if you’re interested.

ARMA IoT

WR-NMP14p45-640xARMA IoT is an Arduino shield that contains an esp8266 and SD slot. There’s a lot of these on the market, and here’s another!

CF SD to SCSI conversion KIT for ENSONIQ ASR-10

WR-NMP14p46-640xA fairly specialized bit of kit that provides an SD to SCSI converter for Musical Instruments models such as AKAI MPC3000, MPC60, Roland S770, E-mu E-III and others.

SD-ATAPI conversion adapter for Roland SP-808EX

WR-NMP14p47-640xSD MistyGhost made by the same guy is an SD to ATAPI adapter for musical instruments such as AKAI MPC2000XL, Roland VP-9000 and others.

Blackout Light

WR-NMP14p48-640x

DIY Infrared Wireless Sound Transmission(5026)

WR-NMP14p49-640x

5W wireless DTU for SCADA 10km data transfer

WR-NMP14p50-640x


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