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I have an Arduino Uno and an ArduCAM-mini 2MP camera:

http://www.arducam.com/tag/arducam-mini/

Is it possible to connect this camera, or similar cameras, to the arduino without a shield? The only tutorials I've found use a shield.

edit - here is what my cam looks like: enter image description here

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  • The first picture on that page shows it connected without a shield.
    – Majenko
    Jun 7 '16 at 19:55
  • I see the photo, but with no supporting information I won't get far. It looks like the vcc and gnd pins from the camera are connected to the wires. It wasn't clear to me that I should bend the camera pins as such (mine has 8 pins pointing downward). Sorry, complete novice. Any help is appreciated.
    – betitall
    Jun 7 '16 at 20:23
  • Hey! This looks like an awesome piece of hardware! It can definitely work without a shield since it communicates using the SPI interface which the arduino can handle.... I might be able to help you further if you take a picture of the labels on it :p (i can't find a decent one :/)
    – Mero55
    Jun 7 '16 at 20:41
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Judging by the photo (below) it is specifically designed to plug into the SPI ports on a Uno or similar (that is, pins 10 to 13). The other two wires are going to the ICSP header, presumably to pick up +5V and ground.

Arducam

So yes, most certainly you can use it like that. With the pins done like that it even points horizontally.

It wasn't clear to me that I should bend the camera pins as such (mine has 8 pins pointing downward).

You can buy pins with a 90° angle. If yours are not already soldered on, I would use the bent connector. If the pins are already soldered on, then the camera would lie flat, so just rotate the Arduino itself to point to where you want it to.

However you would need to do something with the +5V and Gnd pins, so that they can be rerouted to the correct place.


Looking at another photo on that site.

Arducam pins

The pins would match most of the pins on a Uno, like this:

Uno pins

The only one that is wrong is AREF - you need +5V into that pin, not AREF, which is why they bent those two pins outwards (+5V and Gnd) and ran wires to the ICSP header.


If you mean all your pins are at right-angles already, then you really only need to fix the +5V one (you can probably bend it up). This is the pin-out for the ICSP header (view from above):

ICSP header

As you can see, you can pick up +5V from pin 2 (Vcc). Alternatively, run the +5 wire over to where +5 is marked on the Uno on the other side.


Another possible approach would be to not bend anything, but solder on a wire to the +5V pin and leave it plugged into AREF. AREF is just an input (analog reference voltage) and it won't hurt to have it left at +5V.

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    Note that some people choose to just connect 5V direct to the AREF pin since connecting 5V to AREF is perfectly valid (though pretty pointless) so you then don't need to bend any pins. See this other recent question pertaining to a similar device: arduino.stackexchange.com/questions/24528/what-is-vref-pin
    – Majenko
    Jun 7 '16 at 21:59
  • Yep, I realized that and made yet another edit. Nice to know I wasn't the only one with that idea. :)
    – Nick Gammon
    Jun 7 '16 at 22:00

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