This is my first venture into Arduino. I am unsure which one to use even for this. As this will be a dedicated unit, and size is a small priority, the smaller the better.

Here is more info on the scheme I am looking for.

Switch 1 on turns on LED groups 1 and 2

Switch 2 on turns on LED groups 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8

Switch 3 on turns on 1 for say 500 ms, then turns 1 off, turns on 3 for 500 ms, then turns off 3, then turns on 5 for 500 ms, then turns off 5, turns on 7 for 500 ms, then turns off 7, then loops back and turns on 1 repeating the cycle.

Switch 4 on turns on 2 for say 500 ms, then turns 2 off, turns on 4 for 500 ms, then turns off 4, then turns on 6 for 500 ms, then turns off 6, turns on 8 for 500 ms, then turns off 8, then loops back and turns on 2 repeating the cycle.

Will I need an Arduino uno, nano or micro? I am hoping this will be an easy to do project in order to learn the world of Arduino

  • 2
    Any Arduino would be able to do this trivially small task. Any of them are capable of way more if you want it. If size is your biggest concern then get a small one.
    – Delta_G
    Mar 6, 2020 at 5:07
  • 1
    nano and uno use the same atmega328p controller, which is the most common "Arduino" type. Nano is more breadboard-friendly. Mar 6, 2020 at 8:51

2 Answers 2


Micheal well easy solution is to use arduino nano as its bread board friendly and easy as it comes with the arduino IDE installed, well if size is what you are looking for then digispark attiny 85 can also do the task and its size is almost equal to a coin but for that youll need to install it in the arduino IDE which is a bit difficult. if you need any help with attiny 85 you can come here

  • The Nano does not come "with the arduino IDE installed", but the Arduino IDE comes with the Nanos board definition installed. Small but important difference in wording.
    – chrisl
    Mar 6, 2020 at 12:23
  • Promini is even smaller. Plug an FTDI Basic onto it for loading code, remove it when done.
    – CrossRoads
    Mar 6, 2020 at 13:27
  • Won't need any more inputs it this as this is the entire project completely. I just have no idea where you start with the coding. I've made circuit boards from bare copper sheets, but never done any coding. Your help and advice is greatly appreciated.
    – Michael
    Mar 7, 2020 at 6:32
  • sorry for my words but i meant arduino IDE comes with arduino nano board definition installed, for size attiny85 is best for this application but code would need to be concise and also youll need to install board definition for the attiny85 Mar 7, 2020 at 9:26

First of all, you need to have an overview over the whole project because you need to know what components you are going to use, how many digital/analog pins do you need, then check the official Arduino website to see if the board fulfills your needs.

If there is no special need, like more EEPROM or more analog inputs, almost most of the board will work for you (because most of them have the same microcontroller: ATMEGA328P), so it is up to what form factor you prefer more.

Personally, I would like to go with the Micro board because it has microusb connector, it is breadboard friendly (which is a big plus when you are prototyping) and it can be recognised as a mouse or keyboard.

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