Best MicroPython Boards to Buy – 9 Boards Compared (2024)

Just as Arduino revolutionized the maker movement, MicroPython is now the new tool that fuels innovation and exploration among makers worldwide. With MicroPython, programming embedded systems have become more intuitive.

MicroPython empowers makers to focus on their ideas and prototypes rather than grappling with the complexities of low-level languages. Its compact size and performance optimization allow for smooth execution on resource-constrained devices, making it an ideal choice for a wide range of projects.

Development boards by different manufacturers help us to easily make projects with microcontrollers and SoCs (System on a chip). Prototyping with breadboards and external peripherals can be done quickly using a development board. Here, we discuss some of the best MicroPython development boards that will help you to make awesome projects using MicroPython.

Checklist Before Buying A MicroPython Board

The following points need to be considered before you select a MicroPython development board:

  • Consider the amount of RAM, flash memory, and clock speed of the microcontroller for your project’s computational needs.
  • Check the number of digital I/O pins and analog input pins you require for input and output. The functions of the GPIOs such as PWM capability, ADC, and DAC availability should be considered.
  • The communication interfaces such as I2C or SPI will help you to interface external peripherals to your Micropython board.
  • Check the power usage for your board. If your project needs to be portable, then choose a board with low power usage and battery backup.
  • Wireless communication such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth will be required if you plan to control or monitor your device wirelessly.
  • Check the voltage requirement of the peripherals and development board. For example, if you wish to interface a 3.3 V compatible sensor with a 5 V compatible board, you might need an additional logic level converter.
  • Check for documentation and help available online so that troubleshooting becomes easy.

However, note that the above list is not exhaustive. Your requirements will differ according to the project you have in mind.

Best MicroPython Boards List

1. Raspberry Pi Pico W

Raspberry Pi Pico W is a development board based on the RP2040 microcontroller, a dual-core Arm Cortex M0+ processor. It has 264kB on-chip SRAM in six independent banks and 2MB of onboard flash memory. The board runs at a clock speed of 133MHz.

Digital I/O pins26
Analog input pins3
PWM pins16
Communication InterfacesSPI, UART, I2C
Wireless ConnectivityWi-Fi & Bluetooth
Operating voltage3.3 V

The board can be powered using a Micro-USB port. The GPIOs are 3.3 V compatible and an onboard pin is available with 5 V output. The onboard Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Low Energy makes it an ideal board for IoT projects using MicroPython.

Its predecessor, the Raspberry Pi Pico, lacked Bluetooth & Wi-Fi. You can use the previous variant if you do not need wireless communication.

Also read: Raspberry Pi Pico vs. Arduino – Which Board to Choose?

2. BBC Micro:Bit V2.2

The BBC Micro:Bit is powered by the Nordic nRF52833 processor with 128KB RAM and 512KB Flash ROM.

Digital I/O pins19
Analog input pins6
PWM pins19
Communication InterfacesI2C, SPI, UART
Wireless ConnectivityBluetooth 5.1 with Bluetooth Low Energy, Microbit-radio protocol
Operating voltage1.8V to 3.6 V

The board features an onboard JST connector to supply 3V using external batteries. Two user-programmable pushbuttons are also present onboard. Additional features include a 5×5 LED matrix, a combined accelerometer and magnetometer chip, an onboard core temperature sensor, a PCB-mounted magnetic speaker, and a MEMS microphone.

3. MicroPython Pyboard v1.1

The Pyboard is the official MicroPython board with the STM32F405RG microcontroller as its brains. It is clocked at 168 MHz. The Flash memory is 1024 KB in size and it has 192 KB RAM onboard. Additionally, it has two 12-bit analog-to-digital converters, and two 12-bit digital-to-analog converters available on 2 pins. There is an internal RTC that can be powered with battery backup (1.65V – 3.6V).

Digital I/O pins29
Analog input pins16
Communication InterfacesI2C, SPI, UART
Operating voltage1.8V to 3.6 V

The Pyboard v1.1 comes equipped with a 3-axis accelerometer, Micro SD card slot, 4 LEDs (red, green, yellow, and blue), 1 reset switch, and 1 user configurable switch. Power and serial communication is provided using a Micro USB port.

MicroPython Boards By Arduino

4. Arduino Nano RP2040 Connect

Powered by the Raspberry Pi RP2040 clocked at 133 MHz and 264 KB SRAM, this MicroPython development board comes with an onboard accelerometer, gyroscope, RGB LED, and microphone. The onboard Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) also features an embedded temperature sensor.

Digital I/O pins20
Analog input pins8
PWM pins20
Communication InterfacesUART, I2C, SPI
Wireless ConnectivityWi-Fi, Bluetooth
Operating voltage3.3 V

5. Arduino Nano 33 BLE

Arduino Nano 33 BLE comes with a 9-axis IMU which means that it includes an accelerometer, a gyroscope, and a magnetometer with 3-axis resolution each. This makes the Nano 33 BLE the perfect choice for more advanced robotics experiments, exercise trackers, digital compasses, etc. It is powered by Nordic Semiconductor’s nRF52840 SoC clocked at 64 MHz with 256 KB SRAM.

Digital I/O pins14
Analog input pins8
PWM pins14
Communication InterfacesUART, I2C, SPI
Wireless ConnectivityBluetooth Classic & BLE
Operating voltage3.3 V

6. Arduino Portenta H7

The Portenta H7 runs on the dual-core STM32H747 which has a Cortex® M7 running at 480 MHz and a Cortex® M4 running at 240 MHz. The board facilitates connecting to an external monitor as it has an in-built GPU. USB Type-C cable can be used to supply 5 V power to the board.

This MicroPython board also comes with an onboard battery charger and battery connecter. We can easily connect a 3.7 V Li-Po battery to make our projects portable.

Digital I/O pins17
Analog input pins7
PWM pins7
Communication InterfacesSPI, UART, I2C
Wireless ConnectivityWi-Fi, Bluetooth
Operating voltage3.3 V

Best Boards for MicroPython Based On Espressif SoCs

Espressif System manufactures SoCs such as ESP32 and ESP8266 that can be programmed using MicroPython. The mighty ESP32 has become the go-to SoC for IoT projects. Armed with a powerful dual core processor that runs at 160 MHz, it is loved by amateur hobbyists and professionals alike.

7. Adafruit ESP32 Feather V2

ESP32 Feather V2 features an ESP32 dual-core 240MHz Xtensa processor with 8 MB Flash and 2 MB PSRAM.

Analog input pins15
Capacitive touch pins8
Communication InterfacesSPI, I2C, UART, I2S
Wireless ConnectivityWi-Fi, Bluetooth
Operating voltage3.3 V

The board features a RESET pushbutton and a pushbutton connected to pin 38. There is a STEMMA QT port for plug-and-play I2C connections. A NeoPixel RGB LED is also available onboard.

Additional features like built-in battery charging, LiPo battery monitor, and 80~100uA of current draw in deep sleep mode make it an ideal MicroPython board for battery-powered projects.

8. ESP32 CAM

The ESP32-CAM board features an onboard OV2640 camera module, capable of capturing images and streaming video. It also includes an on-board micro SD card slot which allows us to store images and videos locally. This board can be easily programmed using MicroPython to make a surveillance camera.

This board features the ESP32-S microcontroller with a powerful dual-core Tensilica LX6 processor, built-in 520 KB SRAM, and external 8MB PSRAM.

I/O pins10
Communication InterfacesUART, SPI, I2C
Wireless ConnectivityWi-Fi, Bluetooth
Operating voltage3.3 V

The ESP32-CAM needs an additional Micro USB to Serial adapter board to interface it with a computer, called the ESP32-CAM-MB Adapter.

9. Lolin D1 Mini

Wemos Lolin D1 Mini features the ESP8266 board with 4MB of flash memory. Sized at 34.2mm x 25.6mm, this MicroPython board comes with a small form factor. The board can be powered with a Type-C USB port.

Digital I/O pins11
Analog input pins1
Communication InterfacesSPI, I2C, UART
Wireless ConnectivityWi-Fi
Operating voltage3.3 V

Wrapping Up

In this article, we learned about some of the best development boards that can be programmed using MicroPython. Some more boards that you might check out are:

  • Teensy 4.1.
  • LILYGO T-DisplayS3-AMOLED.
  • Seeed Xiao RP2040.
  • LILYGO TTGO T-Display.

Hope this list will help you in selecting a suitable board for your projects. Please leave your suggestions and queries in the comments below.

Suggested article: Arduino vs MicroPython vs CircuitPython: Which One Will You Choose?





Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *