ESP32, Wemos or not to Wemos

luca 22/07/2017 2

Wemos is a chinese manufacturer of IoT products, well known for its D1 Mini family, that includes boards based on the ESP-8266EX chip and expansion shields.

Some weeks ago, Wemos announced a board based on the new ESP32 chip, named LOLIN32. This board hosts an ESP-WROOM-32 module and can be powered by a single cell (1S) LiPo battery. The board can also recharge the battery thanks to a circuit based on the TP4054 chip.

I brought a LOLIN32 board from Wemos’s official store on Aliexpress. The board is shipped inside an anti-static bag, with a label with your name:

lolin-01

The bag also include some pin headers:

lolin-02 lolin-03

Curiously I noticed that other Aliexpress stores sell boards named “lolin”. I brought one of them:

lolin-04 lolin-05

Although this board has the “wemos” logo printed on it, it actually looks like a clone of the D-duino-32 project by Travis Lin: unlike the LOLIN32 indeed this board does not include the LiPo battery connector and the charging circuit while it adds a 0.96″ OLED display.

Here’s a visual comparison between the two boards:

lolin-06 lolin-07

The advantage of purchasing an original Wemos card is the availability of the electrical schematic, some tutorials and a support forum… all that is missing for the clone board (how is the OLED display connected?). My suggestion is therefore that if you want to buy a Wemos board, you should get it from the original store.

If instead you are interested in a board with a OLED display, why not buy it directly from the designer’s tindie page, to support its development?

2 Comments »

  1. WJCarpenter 09/08/2017 at 17:35 - Reply

    Thanks for pointing out the bit about the Wemos logo on the OLED boards. I bought one of those via Amazon in the US. Now that I realize it’s probably a clone, I made a purchase from Travis Lin’s Tindie store (thanks for the link).

    BTW, both the clone and the original are about equally well/poorly documented, though not too hard to figure out if you are used to working with this Espressif stuff.

  2. Daniel 15/08/2017 at 11:38 - Reply

    Hello. The clone board uses I2C bus to communicate with the screen. You can use the SSD1306 library with it.

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