Breadboard Buddy Pro on the bench

I got a great gift in the mail yesterday! I sneak preview of the up coming Breadboard Buddy Pro. This one is a development board but it looks good and worked even better.

New breadboard buddy with a LiPo battery interface for the hardware hacker on the go!
New breadboard buddy with a LiPo battery interface for the hardware hacker on the go!

I am working on a little project that reads data from Maxim 1-wire temperature sensors (coming soon!) so I put the new BBB into action. The LiPo charger seemed to work just fine.. power was all good. The only thing that I noticed, and honestly I haven’t read the documentation on AdamSoftTech’s Tindie store site, when running on the battery the power supply will only provide 3.3V, not 5.0; the 5.0V rail goes dark .. so no boost on board but in reality that’s not a surprise as there isn’t any big inductors sitting on the PCB.

This product is definitely going into my electronics hobbyist go-bag! My favorite feature on this new product is the handy LiPo battery connector making development on the road easy. Whenever I’m on a trip for training, or working out-of-town I enjoy bringing a few basics to work on some project I’ve had back-burnered but can be worked on by breadboard. I like to pack light and this tool helps out greatly.

Besides the LiPo battery option, battery is not included, I really like the fact he crammed a USB-serial bridge on a power supply board. The RX/TX lights are nice and I imagine for people putting a chip in board the reset button is handy. I use plug-in dev boards and almost everyone puts a reset button on those. I used both 5V then switched to 3.3V .. more than enough current at 500mA of course.

The BBB Pro is also pretty robust: In a silly mistake I accidentally put my logic analyzer ground on the 5V plane.. well the BBB Pro folded back and protected itself.. before it did that though it delivered enough current to melt down my micrograbber…  I’m very thankful I caught it quickly and my LA, USB ports and the BBB Pro are all just fine. The clip was replaced and made its way into my Bag Of Shame. The micrograbber will fit in well within the BOS, which includes such things as an 18F26K22 I melted down.. a handful of MOSFETs (a bag favorite), and assorted other parts I’ve cooked making dumb mistakes.

On the photo above you also notice two new breadboard favorites:

The tinyLEDx4 from AtomSoftTech and a board I made recently for attaching jumpers for my scope and logic analyzer. I sent in a sample and of course Jason (with AST) came up with a revised version of the clip holder which was better designed than mine in a few minutes.. thankfully I don’t do this for a living! 😀

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