If you are into electronics or microcontrollers, you must have heard of or used breadboards at least once in your life. A breadboard acts as a staple in every person’s life who wants to get a hang of building electric circuits. Nonetheless, things can be pretty confusing, especially if you do not know what is breadboard. Luckily, this article covers numerous things one should know about breadboards, such as the types, uses, and working.
What are the Types of Breadboard?
If you are in your initial days of working with devices and building new stuff, you might also be struggling with using breadboards. It is crucial to understand how they work and what are their uses before moving on to the more technical aspect of the process. But if you are taking your first steps in the world of microcontrollers, let’s learn about breadboards in detail in this article.
What is Breadboard?
Think of it as a construction base that you can use to build semi-permanent prototypes of an electric circuit. Unlike a stripboard or perfboard, breadboards do not require soldering, and hence, they are reusable. Instead, the holes in the breadboard help in keeping all the components intact and connect them inside the board.
However, breadboards are not considered ideal for the long term. They are only great if you are a beginner who is still getting used to the speed and use. Apart from this, breadboards come in various sizes. Some are even equipped with binding posts which help to attach them to the power supply. Continue reading further to know about the different parts of the breadboard.
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What are the Parts of Breadboard?
Breadboards have different sections that carry out necessary functions and make it easier for you to build a temporary circuit. Here are the parts of the breadboard:
- Bus strips: The bus strip on your breadboard has two long lines of spring clips across the board. These are usually denoted as + or – signs. All these clips are connected to each other inside the breadboard. Now the breadboard uses these lines to provide supply voltage (VCC) and ground (GND) to the circuit.
- Terminal strips: The terminal strip is the actual ground where you can place your circuit components. It is separated into two different sides using a notch that runs through the middle of your breadboard. Now each side has numerous lines and is 5-holes long which are connected internally.
- DIP support: It refers to the small ravine which runs along the middle of your breadboard.
What are the Types of Breadboard?
Before we get down to the uses of breadboards, here are the types of breadboards you need to know about:
1. Solderable Breadboard
As the name suggests, a solderable breadboard offers the base for a permanent circuit. It is more durable and efficient than a solderless breadboard since soldering keeps everything intact and provides a stronger setup. Moreover, a solderable breadboard comes with holes to hold electronic components and a copper tracing.
Nonetheless, there are a few disadvantages to using solderable breadboards, such as:
- You cannot repurpose the board to test another electric circuit.
- Soldering is irreversible and de-soldering the components on the breadboard can cause potential damage to them.
- It is more expensive than a solderless breadboard.
- Soldering requires more time and effort.
2. Solderless Breadboard
This is the most commonly used breadboard type ideal for creating small-scale prototypes. Many people use solderless breadboards to test electric circuits without actually soldering the components and making them permanent. You can get these in different sizes according to your requirement at the moment.
However, there are various drawbacks of a solderless breadboard such as:
- This type of breadboard is restricted to or below 10 MHz frequency.
- Components can be loose since they are not soldered.
- It usually has high parasitic capacitances.
What are the Uses of Breadboard?
As mentioned earlier in the article, breadboards are a handy tool for building circuits. You can use them as a temporary measure to run and test the circuit before investing your time, energy, and resources in a permanent one. There are great uses for breadboards for people who love experimenting and creating new projects.
The best part about breadboards is their range of sizes which fits different requirements. They are also inexpensive and equally efficient as standard permanent circuits. You can easily use the breadboard as a prototype model and move on to bigger projects once everything starts to run smoothly. But do you know how does a breadboard work?
How does a Breadboard Work?
As mentioned earlier, a breadboard has three components, a bus strip, a terminal strip, and the DIP.
- If you plug in some power source, like a battery or a power supply plug in any of the bus strip holes (+ terminal), it will be available throughout the column in other holes as well.
- Similarly, if you plug it in the ground (- terminal), it will be available in other holes of the same column.
- In the terminal strips, each horizontal row is a single connection. So, if you plug something in one hole, the same connection will be available in the other four holes as well.
- The DIP support in the middle helps you to put integrated circuits across the board and still have them separated from one side to another.
What are the Advantages of Breadboard?
Now that you know the types of breadboards, let us understand what makes them advantageous to use:
- It offers a flexible approach to building circuits.
- You can easily amend the circuit if something goes wrong.
- It is inexpensive as you do not have to bear drilling and soldering expenses.
- Breadboards are reusable since they are temporary.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q1. What are the different sizes of the breadboard?
Ans. Breadboards come in different sizes among which three are the most common ones. The list includes the largest 830 tie-point, half-size with 400 connections and 30 rows, and the smallest with 17 rows and 170 connections in total.
Q2. What is a breadboard called?
Ans. A breadboard is also known as a protoboard and solderless breadboard.
Q3. Why is it called breadboard?
Ans. The term breadboard comes from the early days when people used to drive screws or nails into a wooden board to connect circuits which were also used to cut bread.
Q4. Is breadboard a PCB?
Ans. No, a breadboard is not a PCB.
Q5. What wires are used in the breadboard?
Ans. The most commonly used wire in breadboards is the solid core wire.
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We hope this article helped you in understanding the types of breadboards. Feel free to reach out to us with your queries and suggestions via the comments section below. Also, let us know what you want to learn about next.