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USB2UART Solutions other than FT232 | Makerfabs

Posted by Sammaker 11/12/2018 1 Comment(s)
USB2UART Solutions other than FT232

A very detailed& Professional Analysis of the FT232 fake IC:


Makerfabs encountered this problem some years ago, that the FT232 stopped work as the windows driver updates… after that, we purchase all our FT232 IC only from mouser, to ensure they are original brand, which is expensive (>$3) but not lead to us further troubles.

But by now, we have some more choice than the FT232:

1. CP2102/CP2104:

This is my prefer solution. All Makefabs IOT boards use this solution. The price less than $1, this is what we suggest. 

The datasheet at: https://www.silabs.com/documents/public/data-sheets/CP2102-9.pdf 

2. CH340G/CH340C:

There plenty of Chinese-made Uno board with CH340G IC, this chip really cheap, but not so stable. As MF experience, the CH340G has strict request on the load capacitance, that 20% not works in every production …bad…

Lucky is that the new generation of CH340C released, this CH340C with internal oscillator, works much better. 
The datasheet at: https://www.mpja.com/download/35227cpdata.pdf 

3. PL2303

Also a cheap choice, very cheap

Datasheet: http://www.prolific.com.tw/UserFiles/files/ds_pl2303HXD_v1_4_4.pdf
Ref board: https://www.amazon.com/Prolific-PL2303-USB-TTL-Module/dp/B008958S7A

4. Atmega16U2

This is the official Arduino solution. Arduino use a programmed 16U2 to act as a USB2UART convertor but not FTR232, it should be because the 16U2 much cheaper than FT232 Solution, but by now, there so much other cheaper solutions, this solution not popular , at least we do not have even 1 customer using this solution, in the past 3 years.

Summary: Makerfabs suggest the solution_1 CP2102 solution, or solution_2 CH340C, the PL2303 not stable& popular, and the Atmega16U2 , I do not know, anyway, it is not so cost-effective.

1 Comment(s)

Jerry Skene:
20/10/2022, 01:37:23 PM

I have just bought your ESP-32 S3 TFT board and would like to know which USB driver to install on my Apple iMac USB port so that I can talk to it. Can you tell me where I can get the correct driver? Thank you.

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