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Top 10 Microcontroller Development Boards – 2020

top 10 microcontroller development boards

Weather you are a hobbyist, student or engineer. If you are into building projects, at some point you might have used Arduino development boards. As you know different projects have different requirements and thus require different microelectronics.

Choosing microcontrollers for your project can be confusing. But now you don’t have to spend hours finding the ideal controller as we have got you covered. Here is a list of Top 10 Microcontroller Development Boards in current market. Hope this list helps you find your ideal development board.

Do check out our previous Top10 article where we shared “Top 10 Must have tools for makers.

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1. Arduino UNO.

Arduino uno r3
Arduino UNO R3

UNO is the most versatile development board in market. If you are a beginner just getting started with Embedded systems/robotics/automation etc. This is the board for you. There are tons of shields available for this particular version. Due to its low price and ease of use this is one of my favorite development boards.
You can buy one from Amazon US, Amazon EU or Banggood.

Specifications:

Arduino UNO specifications
Arduino UNO Specifications.

2. Arduino Nano V3.0

Arduino Nano V3.0
Arduino Nano V3.0

Nano is a smaller, more compact version of UNO. It has the same SoC i.e ATmega328P but is much smaller so it is very handy for building projects that we test on UNO. This one is my favorite board from Arduino.
You can buy one from Amazon US, Amazon EU or Banggood.

Specifications:

Arduino Nano Specifications
Arduino Nano Specifications.

3. Arduino Pro Mini.

Arduino Pro Mini
Arduino Pro Mini

Pro Mini is similar to Nano but even smaller in size. This board is smaller and lighter. Weighing just 2g this is great for compact projects. The only down side of this board is that it lacks a USB. To program this board you will need a separate FTDI programmer.
Do note that there are 2 models of Pro mini in the market 3.3V and 5V. You can select the one best suited for your projects.
You can buy one from Amazon US, Amazon EU or Banggood.

Specifications:

Arduino Pro Mini Specification.
Arduino Pro Mini Specification.

4. NodeMCU V3 ESP-12E.

NodeMCU V3 ESP-12E

ESP Boards are more powerful and feature rich compared to the ones mentioned above. NodeMCU V3 ESP-12E is a ESP8266 based development board compatible with Arduino. Basically this board is similar to Arduino but with more storage and faster clock. And on top of that it has on board WiFi! It is a cheap and easy to use development board for your IoT projects.
You can buy one from Amazon US, Amazon EU or Banggood.

Specification:

NodeMCU V3 Specificaiton
NodeMCU V3 Specification

5. NodeMCU ESP32S.

NodeMCU ESP32S
NodeMCU ESP32S

ESP32S is an upgraded version of ESP12E. As it’s predecessor NodeMCU ESP32S is compatible with Arduino. Powered by dual core processor ESP32S development boards are faster and more efficient. Along with WiFi this board also features Bluetooth 4.2 (BLE).
You can buy one from Amazon US, Amazon EU or Banggood.

Specification:

ESP32S Specifications
ESP32S Specifications

6. Arduino Mega 2560.

Arduino Mega 2560
Arduino Mega 2560 R3

Some projects need a lot of Inputs/Outputs and normal development boards like UNO and Nano cannot provide. Arduino Mega comes to the rescue when we need extra I/Os and it has plenty. Arduino Mega is like Arduino UNO on steroids. It has 54 digital and 16 analog pins!
You can buy one from Amazon US, Amazon EU or Banggood.

Specification:

Arduino Mega 2560 R3 Specifications
Arduino Mega 2560 R3 Specifications

7. Mega 2560 Pro Mini.

Mega 2560 Pro Mini

Well sometimes you need more I/Os and compact design. Mega 2560 Pro Mini is an amazing board. I recently found out about it and it has all the features of Arduino Mega 2560 but in a smaller form-factor.
You can buy one from Amazon US, Amazon EU or Banggood.

Specifications:

Mega 2560 Pro Mini Specifications
Mega 2560 Pro Mini Specifications.

8. Teensy 4.0

teensy 4.0
Teensy 4.0

This is probably the fastest and most powerful board among this list. Powered by Cortex-M7 processor and 600MHz clock, teensy can run programs at blazing fast speed. Though a bit expensive, Teensy 4.0 is best for graphical applications with and faster data transfer.
You can buy one from Amazon US, Amazon EU.

Specifications:

Teensy 4.0 Specifications.
Teensy 4.0 Specifications.

9. STM32F103C8T6 Dev-Board.

STM32F103C8T6 development board
STM32F103C8T6

STM32 Development board is another board with 32-bit processor. It is similar to Arduino but more powerful. Comparable to Teensy it runs on 400MHz clock making 2nd most fastest board in this list. This board will be suitable for applications requiring faster calculations.
You can buy one From Amazon US, Amazon EU or Banggood.

Specifications:

STM32F103C8T6 Spcifications.
STM32F103C8T6 Specifications.

10. ATtiny85 Dev-Board.

ATtiny85 development board
ATtiny85

This isn’t the most powerful microcontroller, nor does it have tons of I/Os but yes it is still very popular. Many projects need compact microcontrollers with minimum pins. People have done some amazing things with this tiny board.
You can buy one from Amazon US, Amazon EU or Banggood.

Specifications:

ATtiny85 Specifications
ATtiny85 Specifications.

Final Note.

This article was aimed at providing a list of all the popular Microcontroller development boards in the market as of April 2020. As you noticed there are a lot of Arduino boards on there, there are many I haven’t included. You can check out which is the Best Arduino Board here.
Hope you learnt something new and found this article helpful.

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Stay safe and Stay creative.

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