ATtiny13/13a/25/45/85 Programming Shield


This is a great beginner soldering and prototyping board project. The ATtiny is a very capable microcontroller. This shield allows us to program it quickly and conveniently.

The ATtiny doesn’t come in the modular package that the Arduino UNO does. As the microcontroller comes bare, there is no immediate means of programming it. A standard USB’s data lines use a serial communication protocol that is not recognized by the ATtiny. Converting the serial communication to the UART protocol allows us to program the ATtiny via TX and RX pins. That is where the Arduino UNO comes into play. The UNO contains an ATmega16U2 (CH340 if it’s a clone board) to act as a Serial to TTL chip. Tapping into the TX and RX pins allows us to program our ATtiny.

This isn’t a full guide where I will walk you through every connection; instead, I show you my creation process as that part is often undocumented or left open to interpretation based on a user’s skills/available tools. I assume you have basic electronics knowledge such as using a multimeter, checking for correct polarities on an electrolytic capacitor/LED, or how to follow pins on a schematic. You had to have some experience with microcontrollers to get here!”