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I have some questions before I commit myself into RasPi DYI projects.

  1. What is a breadboard? The usage of it?
  2. Can I connect LEDs or switches (and others), with GPIO pins, without breadboaord, and/or jumpers?
  3. Breadboard is a must, for any projects?
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3 Answers 3

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Welcome to the world of RasPi DYI projects.

1) A breadbord is a solderless board for connecting electronic parts and wires. Have a look here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Breadboard

2) Yes, it is fully possible to connect LEDs and other parts to the RPI without a breadboard. You can use only wires and duct-tape or a soldering iron.

3) I would really recommend buying a breadboard as it makes prototyping a whole lot easier.

Happy DYI-ing BjB

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Thanks for the answer, I have an extra question: I can just simply plug any parts, into the breadboard? Or different holes have different purposes? –  Tan Jia Ming Dec 10 '12 at 12:10
    
@Tan: Breadboards have main protoyping areas where all holes are the same (but connected in separate short strips) and often have rows intended to be used as power and ground buses. In the photo in my answer the white breadboard has columns labelled with numbers and rows labelled with letters, the six holes in each column are connected together, each numbered column is separate. It has no bus strips. –  RedGrittyBrick Dec 10 '12 at 12:20
    
@RedGrittyBrick: Thanks! So if the LED in your photo are in 14A and 14B, it will not light up? What about the LED is position in 13A and 15A? –  Tan Jia Ming Dec 10 '12 at 12:28
    
@Tan: You have to arrange the parts so that there is a "circuit", in my picture, the current flows from the GPIO pin through the white jumper-wire into column 14 of the breadboard and along that column to the anode of the LED, through the LED, down it's cathode lead into column 15, down to row f where a resistor connects to column 30 and a black jumper back to the Pi to complete the circuit. See electronics-sarath.blogspot.co.uk/2010/05/… –  RedGrittyBrick Dec 10 '12 at 12:33
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A Breadboard makes it easier to experiment. Here is a breadboard used to connect a LED (and current-limiting resistor) to a GPIO port on a Raspberry Pi. You'll need male-to-female jumper leads.

Breadboard and pi

You can get by without one if you have a soldering iron and don't mind a lot of extra work.

See also


You have to arrange the parts so that there is a "circuit", in my picture, the current flows from the GPIO pin through the white jumper-wire into column 14 of the breadboard and along that column to the anode of the LED, through the LED, down it's cathode lead into column 15, down to row f where a resistor connects to column 30 and a black jumper back to the Pi to complete the circuit.

For more about breadboards See

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The answer, if you're intending to mess about with LEDs and switches and that kind of thing is YES, it's definitely a must-have. Jumpers will allow you to "transfer" the GPIO pins to the board and then you plug in your LEDs and other components into the breadboard. You can do everything without a breadboard, but you REALLY don't want to. They are cheap and a way of controlling your wiring.

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