Beginner Parts Kit Identification Guide

Contributors: jimblom, bboyho
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Voltage Regulators

The Voltage Regulators - 3.3V and 5V

Working behind the scenes in most circuits are the voltage regulators, ever-toiling to convert those unfriendly, unstable, high-voltage signals to something that keeps everything in the rest of the circuit happy.

Voltage Regulator - 3.3V

Voltage Regulator - 3.3V

Voltage Regulator - 5V

Voltage Regulator - 5V


The voltage regulators included in the Parts Kit are of the linear variety, they can be used to drop a large voltage down to either 5V or 3.3V. In exchange for this energy transfer, they'll produce anywhere from a slight warmth to searing, painful heat on the bottom, metal tab.

Each regulator has just three pins: an input voltage, an output voltage, and a common ground. The pinouts of the two regulators are annoyingly not the same, so take note of the picture below.

Voltage Regulator Annotated