RP2040 Thing Plus Hookup Guide

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Introduction

Introducing the SparkFun Thing Plus - RP2040, featuring the RP2040 microcontroller (MCU) on a Feather (Thing Plus) form-factor. Additionally, this development platform also provides an SD card slot, 16MB (128Mbit) flash memory, a JST single cell battery connector (with a charging circuit and attached fuel gauge sensor), a WS2812 RGB LED, JTAG (PTH) pins, and our signature Qwiic connector.

SparkFun Thing Plus - RP2040

SparkFun Thing Plus - RP2040

DEV-17745
$17.95
2

The Raspberry Pi RP2040 (the first MCU from the Raspberry Pi Foundation) is a low cost, dual-core Arm® Cortex® M0+ microcontroller with 264kB of SRAM, running at 133MHz. It includes USB host functionality, a timer with 4 alarms, a real time counter (RTC), six dedicated IO pins for Quad-SPI flash (supporting execute in place), and thirty multifunction GPIO (*18 of which are broken out on the board), with the following capabilities:

  • Four 12-bit Analogue to Digital Converter (ADC) channels
  • Two UART buses
  • Two I2C buses
  • Two SPI buses
  • Up to 16 PWM channels
  • Can emulate interfaces such as SD Card and VGA

Required Materials

To get started, users will need a few items. Now some users may have a few of these items, feel free to modify your cart accordingly.

  • SparkFun Thing Plus - RP2040
  • USB 3.1 Cable A to C - 3 Foot - The USB interface serves two purposes: it powers the board and allows you to upload programs to it. (*If your computer doesn't provide a USB-A slot, then you will need to choose an appropriate cable or purchase an adapter as well.)
  • Computer with the an operating system (OS) that is compatible with all the software installation requirements:
    • Windows 10
    • Mac OSX
    • Raspberry Pi OS
SparkFun Thing Plus - RP2040

SparkFun Thing Plus - RP2040

DEV-17745
$17.95
2
USB 3.1 Cable A to C - 3 Foot

USB 3.1 Cable A to C - 3 Foot

CAB-14743
$4.95
3

Click the buttons above to toggle the additional materials based on the tasks you
wish to perform. Feel free to modify the items in your cart to fit your needs.


Li-Po Battery

For mobile applications, users will want to pick up a single-cell LiPo battery from our catalog. Below, are a few available options:

Lithium Ion Battery - 1Ah

Lithium Ion Battery - 1Ah

PRT-13813
$9.95
7
Lithium Ion Battery - 2Ah

Lithium Ion Battery - 2Ah

PRT-13855
$12.95
7
Lithium Ion Battery - 400mAh

Lithium Ion Battery - 400mAh

PRT-13851
$4.95
9
Lithium Ion Battery - 110mAh

Lithium Ion Battery - 110mAh

PRT-13853
$4.95
2

Jumper Modification

To modify the jumpers, users will need soldering equipment and/or a knife.

Solder Lead Free - 100-gram Spool

Solder Lead Free - 100-gram Spool

TOL-09325
$8.95
7
Chip Quik No-Clean Flux Pen  - 10mL

Chip Quik No-Clean Flux Pen - 10mL

TOL-14579
$7.95
4
Weller WLC100 Soldering Station

Weller WLC100 Soldering Station

TOL-14228
$67.95
2
Hobby Knife

Hobby Knife

TOL-09200
$2.95
2

Qwiic Example

If you would like to follow along with the examples below to interact with the physical world, you will also need the following items:

SparkFun Qwiic 12 Bit ADC - 4 Channel (ADS1015)

SparkFun Qwiic 12 Bit ADC - 4 Channel (ADS1015)

DEV-15334
$10.50
1
Qwiic Cable - 100mm

Qwiic Cable - 100mm

PRT-14427
$1.50
Magnetic Screwdriver Set (20 Piece)

Magnetic Screwdriver Set (20 Piece)

TOL-15003
$6.95
1

Headers & Accessories

Headers are great for development purposes, letting users swap parts with just a set of jumper wires. If you would like to add headers to your board, check out some of the options for the Thing Plus or Feather form factor boards:

Break Away Headers - Straight

Break Away Headers - Straight

PRT-00116
$1.50
20
SparkFun Beginner Tool Kit

SparkFun Beginner Tool Kit

TOL-14681
$57.95
Feather Stackable Header Kit

Feather Stackable Header Kit

PRT-15187
$1.50
Header - 8-pin Female (PTH, 0.1")

Header - 8-pin Female (PTH, 0.1")

PRT-11895
$0.50
Photon Header - 12 Pin Female

Photon Header - 12 Pin Female

PRT-14321
$0.50

Below is a sample selection of our other headers and soldering tools in our catalog. For a full selection of our available Headers or Soldering Tools, click on the associated link.

Raspberry Pi GPIO Tall Header - 2x20

Raspberry Pi GPIO Tall Header - 2x20

PRT-14017
$2.50
Photon Stackable Header - 12 Pin

Photon Stackable Header - 12 Pin

PRT-14322
$0.50
Extended GPIO Female Header - 2x20 Pin (16mm/7.30mm)

Extended GPIO Female Header - 2x20 Pin (16mm/7.30mm)

PRT-16763
$1.95
Stackable Header - 2x23 Pin Female

Stackable Header - 2x23 Pin Female

PRT-12790
$2.95
1
Weller WE1010 Soldering Station

Weller WE1010 Soldering Station

TOL-14734
$129.00
4
Insulated Silicone Soldering Mat

Insulated Silicone Soldering Mat

TOL-14672
$9.95
9
Soldering Iron - 60W (Adjustable Temperature)

Soldering Iron - 60W (Adjustable Temperature)

TOL-14456
$14.95
14
Solder Lead Free - 100-gram Spool

Solder Lead Free - 100-gram Spool

TOL-09325
$8.95
7

JTAG Functionality

Users interested in JTAG applications (i.e. programming and debugging the RP2040) will need an Arm® Programmer and need to solder on a JTAG header. We recommend these programmers from our catalog:

J-Link BASE Compact Programmer

J-Link BASE Compact Programmer

PGM-15347
$475.95

J-Link EDU Base Programmer

PGM-15346
2
Header - 2x5 Pin (Male, 1.27mm)

Header - 2x5 Pin (Male, 1.27mm)

PRT-15362
$1.50
J-Link EDU Mini Programmer

J-Link EDU Mini Programmer

PGM-15345
$18.00
1

Suggested Reading

Here are a few tutorials that may help users familiarize themselves with various aspects of the board.

How to Solder: Through-Hole Soldering

This tutorial covers everything you need to know about through-hole soldering.

Serial Communication

Asynchronous serial communication concepts: packets, signal levels, baud rates, UARTs and more!

Serial Peripheral Interface (SPI)

SPI is commonly used to connect microcontrollers to peripherals such as sensors, shift registers, and SD cards.

Battery Technologies

The basics behind the batteries used in portable electronic devices: LiPo, NiMH, coin cells, and alkaline.

Pulse Width Modulation

An introduction to the concept of Pulse Width Modulation.

Logic Levels

Learn the difference between 3.3V and 5V devices and logic levels.

I2C

An introduction to I2C, one of the main embedded communications protocols in use today.

Analog vs. Digital

This tutorial covers the concept of analog and digital signals, as they relate to electronics.

Qwiic Connect System

One of the new, convenient features of the board is that it takes advantage of the Qwiic connect system. We recommend familiarizing yourself with the Logic Levels and I2C tutorials. Click on the banner above to learn more about Qwiic products.