Arduino UNO Vs. Mega: Are they both different, or same?


It won’t be wrong enough to say that Arduino UNO and Mega are the most used and famous boards in the electronics world. But still, it puts beginners or kids in confusion about what board you should start with. 

Arduino boards are some of the most popular microcontrollers for individuals, hobbyists, and experienced developers alike. For anyone getting into DIY robotics, choosing a compatible and reliable microcontroller is the first decision they will have to make. With their range of applications from robotics to home automation to complex software development, there is a lot an Arduino can do. 

But the two main boards that everyone talks about in the Arduino world are the UNO and Mega – so how do you choose between them? In this blog post, we’ll discuss what sets these two apart so that you can make an informed decision when choosing which board might be best for your project! To start off with, let’s go over what makes each board unique!

What is the difference between Arduino UNO vs. Mega?

The Arduino UNO and Mega are two popular microcontroller boards. They both have a great set of features and capabilities, but there are some key differences between them. 

Arduino UNO Arduino MEGA
The main difference between the Arduino UNO and Mega is the number of input/output pins each board has. The Arduino UNO has 14 digital input/output pins, 6 analog inputs, a USB A connection, an ICSP header, and a reset button. On the other hand, the Arduino Mega has 54 digital input/output pins (14 of which can be used as PWM outputs), 16 analog inputs, 4 UARTs (hardware serial ports), a USB B connection for power supply or programming, an ICSP header for programming with an external programmer, and a reset button.

The Arduino UNO is great for those who are just getting started with microcontroller boards since it has the basic features needed to get up and running quickly. It’s also the most budget-friendly option of the two boards. The Arduino Mega is best suited for more advanced users as it has more inputs/outputs and additional hardware capabilities that can be used to create complex projects.  

What is Arduino UNO?

Arduino UNO board description

An Arduino UNO is a low-cost, open-source microcontroller board based on the ATmega328P microcontroller chip and developed by Arduino.cc It has 14 digital input/output pins (of which 6 can be used as PWM outputs), 6 analog inputs, a 16 MHz quartz crystal, a USB connection, an ICSP header, and a RESET button. 

The board operates at a 5V power supply and supports different I/O devices such as switches, motors, relays, LEDs, etc. It also contains 32KB of flash memory for storing programs and 2KB SRAM for storing data temporarily. The board comes preloaded with the Arduino bootloader that allows users to program it easily using the Arduino IDE. 

The board also supports Arduino shields, which are boards with additional functionalities such as Wi-Fi, Ethernet, etc. It is suitable for beginners and experienced users alike who want to build interactive electronic projects. The UNO board has been widely used in the maker community because of its low cost and easy interface. It is an ideal platform for building educational and hobbyist projects.

Recommended Reading:

If you want to know or understand in-depth of Arduino UNO. Here’s an excellent guide about Arduino UNO that solves all of your problems. This guide consists of what their pin description does, what projects you can do with it, what is the cost, and whether is it good for beginners.

What is Arduino Mega?

Arduino mega with white background

The Arduino Mega 2560 is a microcontroller board based on the Atmega2560. It has 54 digital input/output pins (of which 15 can be used as PWM outputs), 16 analog inputs, 4 UARTs (hardware serial ports), a 16 MHz crystal oscillator, a USB connection, a power jack, an ICSP header, and a reset button. 

It contains everything needed to support the microcontroller; simply connect it to a computer with a USB cable or power it with an AC-to-DC adapter or battery to get started. The Mega 2560 also supports multiple programming languages such as C and Java. 

It is designed for use in interactive objects, robots, wearable items, 3D printers, and other projects where the user needs a powerful platform to interact with the physical world. With its strong performance and reliable I/O, it is an excellent choice for projects involving complex data processing or communications. 

The Arduino Mega 2560 also includes a range of accessories including shields, jumper wires, and other components that help create new projects such as 3D printers, robotic arms, and more. The board is compatible with a variety of software platforms and IDEs such as Windows, MacOS X, and Linux; making it easy for beginners to learn to program quickly. It can be used in conjunction with popular frameworks like Arduino IDE or Processing.

Recommended Reading:

A definitive guide and an in-depth guide about Arduino Mega where you can learn everything in detail about what projects you can do with it, how important this board is for engineers and a detailed discussion on each pin, and many more.

Arduino UNO Vs. Mega Pin Description:

The Arduino UNO board has 14 digital input/output pins–6 of which can produce pulse width modulated outputs (PWM) and 6 analog inputs, as well as a USB connection, a power jack, a reset button, and an ICSP header. These digital pins are 0-13 while the analog pins are A0 – A5. The PWM output on digital pins 3, 5, 6, 9, 10, and 11.

The Arduino Mega board has 54 digital input/output pins – 14 of which can produce pulse width modulated outputs (PWM) and 16 analog inputs. These digital pins are 0-53 while the analog pins are A0 – A15. The PWM output on digital pins is 2 to 13 and 44 to 46. It also includes a USB connection, a power jack, a reset button, and an ICSP header. 

S.No Pin Type Arduino UNO Arduino Mega
1 Digital I/O 14 (6 PWM) 54 (15 PWM)
2 Analog Input 6 16
3 UART (Serial) 1 4
4 I2C 1 4
5 SPI 1 4
6 External Interrupts 5 7
7 Total 20 70

The major difference between the Arduino UNO and Mega is that the Mega has more pins and memory capacity than Uno. The amount of digital I/O and analog input pins on both boards is different. In total, the Arduino UNO has 14 digital pins and 6 analog inputs while the Arduino Mega has 54 digital pins and 16 analog inputs.

Comparison Arduino boards: Arduino UNO Vs. Mega Specs:

The Arduino UNO and the Arduino Mega have some notable differences that should be taken into consideration when deciding which board to work with. 

The Arduino UNO is based on the Atmega328P microcontroller whereas the Arduino Mega is based on the Atmega2560 microcontroller. The difference between these two lies in their memory capacity, I/O pins, SROM (flash) memory size, speed and ADC resolution.

The Arduino UNO has 14 digital input/output pins (6 of them can be used as PWM outputs), 6 analog inputs, a 16 MHz crystal oscillator, a USB connection, and a power jack. It has 32KB of Flash Memory (2 KB used by bootloader), 2KB of SRAM and 1KB of EEPROM.

On the other hand, the Arduino Mega boasts 54 digital input/output pins (14 of them can be used as PWM outputs), 16 analog inputs, a 16 MHz crystal oscillator, a USB connection, an ICSP header, and a power jack. It has 256KB of Flash Memory (8KB is used by Bootloader), 8KB of SRAM, and 4KB of EEPROM. 

S.No Specification Arduino UNO Arduino Mega
1 Microcontroller ATmega328P ATmega2560
2 Operating Voltage 5V 5V
3 Input Voltage (recommended) 7-12V 7-12V
4 Input Voltage (limits) 6-20V 6-20V
5 Digital I/O Pins 14 (6 PWM) 54 (15 PWM)
6 Analog Input Pins 6 16
7 DC Current per I/O Pin 40 mA 40 mA
8 Flash Memory 32 KB (2 KB used by bootloader) 256 KB
9 SRAM 2 KB 8 KB
10 EEPROM 1 KB 4 KB
11 Clock Speed 16 MHz 16 MHz
12 Length 68.6 mm 101.52 mm
13 Width 53.4 mm 53.3 mm
14 Weight 25 g 45 g

The UNO’s ADC resolution is 10 bits while the Mega’s is 12 bits along with faster processing speed which allows it to perform faster calculations and complex algorithms than the UNO board. The main advantage that the Arduino UNO has over the Arduino Mega is its smaller form factor and lightweight. This makes it easy to carry around for prototyping purposes. 

Overall, the primary trade-off between the UNO and Mega boards comes down to how much memory you need and how many I/O pins you require for your application. Each board provides advantages in different areas so it’s important to consider individual requirements before deciding which one is best suited for a project.   

Which is better Arduino UNO or Mega?

When it comes to choosing between the Arduino UNO and Mega, it depends on what you need. For beginners, kids, and hobbyists Arduino UNO is the best choice. It is relatively simple to use with a basic set of features that are easy to understand and work with. The UNO also has fewer pins than the Mega, making it easier for users to get up and running quickly without having to worry about connecting extra components.

Which board is the right choice for beginners: Arduino UNO vs Mega?

The Arduino UNO is the right choice. It is slightly less expensive than the MEGA board and works faster than the Mega, making it easier for users to get up and running quickly without having to worry about connecting extra components. 

Additionally, the Arduino UNO has a strong community built around it that can help answer questions and provide support as you learn. The UNO is also widely used in industrial applications which makes it a great choice for those looking to eventually move into professional work with Arduino boards. All in all, the Arduino UNO is an excellent option for beginners who want an affordable yet powerful board. 

Arduino Mega Price vs. Arduino UNO Price

Price varies from country to country, but the price of Arduino Mega lies between $40-$60, and Arduino UNO’s price lies between $20-$23. It is easily available on Amazon, eBay, AliExpress, and Walmart. You can have it within two-three days

What projects you can do with Arduino UNO VS. Mega?

Arduino UNO and MEGA are both powerful boards capable of powering a variety of projects. With Arduino UNO, you can create projects such as:

  • IoT (Internet of Things) connected devices
  • Motion sensors
  • Voice-controlled systems
  • Blink LED
  • Line Following Robot

On the other hand, Arduino MEGA is great for larger projects like:

  • 3D printing and robotics

It is equipped with additional features that allow you to connect multiple devices together and control them simultaneously. With this board, you can also produce more accurate data readings due to its increased memory capacity. 

Other applications include creating home automation systems, making interactive art installations, controlling industrial machinery, and more.  Both boards have their own set of advantages and it is up to you to decide which one suits your project best.  

If you are a complete beginner and you are just starting out in electrical engineering, then the beginner Arduino project’s guide would do the best for you. Not only this makes you fall in love with the microcontrollers, and you learn how to troubleshoot your problems within no time.

Arduino UNO vs. Mega kits?

The Arduino UNO and Mega Kits are both popular options for those looking to start their journey in electronics and programming. The UNO is the classic board, with a smaller form factor, while the Mega offers more memory, I/O pins, and other features that make it a better choice for bigger projects. 

Here are some of the most popular Arduino kits available on the internet: 

  • The Arduino Starter Kit Plus from Elecrow contains an Arduino UNO R3 Board, USB cable, 3 LEDs, 3 resistors, 1 photocell as well as several other electrical components. This kit is ideal for beginners as it includes instructions for 15 different projects which can be completed with the included components. 
  • The Elegoo Mega 2560 Project Super Starter Kit is perfect for those looking to upgrade from the UNO. This kit contains an Arduino Mega2560 development board, servo motor, breadboard, jump wires, IR receiver, and more components that are needed for bigger projects. The included instructions give step-by-step directions on how to complete 16 different projects using the provided components.
  • The Vilros Ultimate Starter Kit comes with both a UNO R3 Board as well as a Mega2560 Board so you can switch between the two depending on your project needs. The kit also includes tutorials and sample code for 15+ different projects as well as multiple electronic components such as LEDs, a DC motor, a potentiometer, and more! 

These starter kits are the perfect way for beginners to start their journey in electronics and programming. They provide all of the basic components needed to get started and include helpful instructions, tutorials, and sample codes that can be used as a guide.

With these kits, you can easily complete projects with confidence while learning more about how to work with Arduino boards. So make sure to check out these popular starter kits before starting your next project!

Mataf Khan

An electronics enthusiasts from childhood became an electrical engineer, I've been playing with Arduino and other electronics gadgets like raspberry pi since when I was 14. and have a passion of troubleshooting Arduino problems.

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