Buying an Arduino UNO, what is needed?

Discussion in 'Embedded Systems and Microcontrollers' started by Captain E, Jun 16, 2015.

  1. Captain E

    Thread Starter Member

    Jun 16, 2015
    I'm going to buy an Arduino in a week or two, and I'm currently learning electronics from books.
    I have been programming and scripting in a few languages and platforms for a few years, so that part wont be a problem when it comes to the Arduino.
    But I have some questions for me, but also others in my spot: (some that pop'd up in my head, you dont need to write a page where you answer them all) =P
    1. How much knowledge of electronics is needed/recommended for starting to use the Arduino? (for normal use)
    2. Is learning about AC current as important as DC?
    3. Do you recommend learning only the basics of something you do, or should I go fully into the deep theory of it?
      - like using a speaker without knowing how it works?
    4. Your recommended way of learning the Arduino? (books, own testing, youtube videos, etc.)
    5. Best practices after getting comfortable using the Arduino?

    If there is ANYTHING you want to say that could help a newbie, please do :)


    Message for future self:
    Hi me! Looking good as always, I see! This is you, currently just started learning electronics. I wonder how much I'll have learned a year from now :3 See ya at 2016-06-16 xD
  2. ErnieM

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 24, 2011
    Knowledge begins from right where you are. So jump right in and try some things. It worked for me, I would just try to build things I would think of. Some worked, some didn’t, all taught me something.

    1. I don’t know what “normal use” means, unless you want to sense buttons, light LEDs, beep speakers and such. That’s all pretty basic stuff you need to know later and is all good.
    2. You can leave AC for later. Using DC in logic circuits just means you have to work things out twice: once for the high level, and again for the low level.
    3. Learn what you need to do the task at hand. You will never know how everything works, just how it works, what you feed it and what comes out. Do learn all the fundamental things you can like ohms law and basic circuit analysis.
    4. I’m not an Arduino user but would recommend any structured learning tool such as a kit of parts and tutorials.
    5. No comments, not a user.

    And welcome to the forums!
  3. MikeML

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 2, 2009
    On the Arduino, after going through a few of the simple sample projects (flash a LED on up), pick a self-choosen project and follow it through. If you need help with the hardware interfacing requirements, ask here.

    In the long run, do not power the project through the USB cable. Get a 2 to 3 Amp regulated 12Vdc Wall-Wart to power the Arduino with some power left over for the project itself...
  4. sirch2

    Well-Known Member

    Jan 21, 2013
    I agree with MikeML, just buy the Arduino and work through the basic examples then find a project that interests you. Personally I learn one piece at a time but find it really helps to have a project I want to make.
  5. djsfantasi

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 11, 2010
    The Arduino starter kit has a 9VDC power supply. While 12VDC is within spec, the onboard regulator may become too hot, dependent on the current draw.
    OBW0549 likes this.
  6. MikeML

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 2, 2009
    I have been running an BUono Uno R3 knock-off, from EBay, for a year from a SLA floated at 13.65V. I'm stealing a few tens of mA from the Uno to power some interface logic.

    The onboard SMPS (not linear) 5V regulator is not even the slightest bit warm...
  7. Captain E

    Thread Starter Member

    Jun 16, 2015
    Thank you all for the help guys :D
    Can't wait to get my own precious arduinoo ;_;
    ErnieM likes this.
  8. jarvir

    New Member

    Jun 19, 2015
    Hi! I bought mine a few months ago. I've been tinkering with it and a Raspberry Pi. I agree with above, try a few introductory projects, get used to it, and then build something that interests you. I quess a robot is something you can always do and learn a lot. I'm getting started with my robot and already I'm learning many things about electricity, electronics, serial communication etc. I'm particularly interested in slapping a raspberry pi on my robot and trying image recognition with OpenCV as there are several good tutorials on OpenCV. The coolness factor would be through the roof. But thats for later :D First I'll need to get distance sensoring working and a bluetooth connection to my phone for controlling the robot. Have fun!