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Xbee Adapter Boards - Putting it Together

So in this kit, there are two different adapters.  One is the USB Adapter board and one is the 5V/3.3V Microcontroller Adapter board.  Now this is all fine and dandy but we still need to figure out how to actually work with it and connect it. 

Here’re some handy pictures.  In the first, is what you get out of the kit that pertains to the Adapter Boards.  There should be two 2mm hole socket things, and an uncut header.  Looking at the second picture and third picture, you want to put the hole socket things into the PCB and solder from underneath.

Now using an E-xacto knife or blade, cut two 11-pin headers.  Put them into the PCB from the bottom and solder them to the PCB from the top.  If you wanted to solder wires to the pads themselves you could do that too.

USB Adapter Board:

To connect this to the computer, you can use one of those USB A to Mini B cables:

Microcontroller Adapter Board:

We’ll cover a bit of this in the next post where I go over the pin connections.  Essentially, instead of using USB power, you can use power from a power supply that goes to VDD.

Indicator Lights:

The LEDs on the adapter board itself indicate:

  • Yellow: ON/Not Sleeping — This will typically be on unless you configure the XBee for one of the low-power sleep modes.
  • Blue: Power — Indicates 3.3V power is available.
  • Green: Associate — This LED will typically be blinking unless you are using the associate mode of joining a network or by changing the pin configuration.
  • Red: RSSI indicator — The XBee PWM output indicates the strength of the received RF signal. This LED will light for several seconds anytime the XBee receives RF data addressed to it. A slight dimming at low power levels may be noticeable.


And once you’ve got it connected, you’ll want to go to Digi (I’m assuming their website) to get the X-CTU software.  This is where you can configure the adapter.

  • Functions of some of the I/O lines on the adapter can be configured

As long as the USB port is providing power the XBee Adapter Board is powered on. The I/O signals are 3.3V level and should not be connected to a 5V system without proper buffering. The XBee I/O pins are not 5V tolerant.

Next, looking at its pin connections!


Filed under electronics parallax xbee wireless kit tymkrs usb adapter board xbee xbee usb adapter board xbee microcontroller adapter board