How to fix bad Chinese Arduino clones

How to fix bad Chinese Arduino clones

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How to fix a bad Chinese Arduino clone in no time?
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Hi my name is Tom Heylen
Have you ever wondered if a cheap Chinese Arduino clone will actually work?
You pay only a few bucks and get the same product. Sounds to good to be true right?
The truth is that some work and some won’t.
Follow the rest of this tutorial and I’ll explain you how to make them all work in no time.

I use an Arduino Uno for this example but it is the same process for most Arduino models.

So here we have an genuine Arduino uno and here a Chinese clone. Let’s do the test.
My Arduino environment has been installed and is working properly.
First I plug in the genuine Arduino. And everything works just fine.
Now I use my cheap chinese copy and…. the computer does not recognise the hardware.

The problem is that the clone does not use the standard serial to usb chip but a chip marked CH340. Your computer will not recognize these CH340 chips on your computer.
To fix this is very easy.
Download the manufacturer software and istall it on your computer. This software will work for all versions of windows. I leave you a link below this video.
I also leave a link for the Mac lovers.

Now plug in your chinese clone and try again. It should work just fine. The board should be visible now in the Arduino IDE and ready to use.
I upload the blink sketch to the board and it all works fine.

In some cases the board might still not work. This is because there is no bootloader installed on the Atmel microcontroller Chip.
To solve this problem we need a working arduino and the clone arduino we want to fix.

First we connect the working Arduino to our computer and open the Arduino IDE.
We go to File – Examples and click ArduinoISP and upload this to the Arduino.
Ones uploaded disconnect the Arduino.

Next we connect the wires from the working Arduino to the clone as follows.
Pin 10 goes to reset
pin 11 goes to 11, pin 12 to 12, pin 13 to pin 13.
5v to 5v and ground to ground.

Next we connect the working Arduino with a usb to the computer.
Go to Tools – Board and select the chinese board that is not working. in my case it’s an Arduino Uno.
Next we go to Tools again – Programmer and select Arduino as ISP.
Go to Tools again and select Burn Bootloader.
Go back to Tools – Programmer and set back to ArduinoISP.
Your clone should work just fine now.

Arduino is great software an completely free to use. If you are buying Chinese copies of the Arduino controller, consider making a donation to support the Arduino software. Here is a link.

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  1. Nickson Mwenda
    Nickson Mwenda 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Thank you very much sir
    You ended my headache

    Reply this comment
  2. Jaco Van der Walt
    Jaco Van der Walt 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Thanks a lot. The solution works perfectly.

    Reply this comment
  3. Stuart Washington
    Stuart Washington 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    First time on the channel, but you are a life saver!!! Hopefully I don't have a bunch of Chinese spyware on my machine now 8|

    Reply this comment
  4. Conor Fenlon
    Conor Fenlon 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Thank you for this. It allowed me to continue with my college project.

    Reply this comment
  5. pavel valdez
    pavel valdez 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Thank youuu very much. I just built my first robot and was disappointed that i was not able to upload the sketch. This solved my issue. I really appreciate it

    Reply this comment
  6. Huis
    Huis 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    i bought 2 times already i ahve used only fews days does not works anymore

    Reply this comment
  7. Chan Qing Yi
    Chan Qing Yi 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    The burning of bootloader needs an extra genuine arduino right? What happens do I don't have one?

    Reply this comment
  8. Henry Pradilla
    Henry Pradilla 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Thank you so much, my Arduino now works fine.

    Reply this comment
  9. Stockmans Philippe
    Stockmans Philippe 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Even 6 years later, this still works, Thanx !!!!!

    Reply this comment
  10. votour agile
    votour agile 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    omg thank you so much, i installed the chinese software and now i can use my board!!!

    Reply this comment
  11. Mustafa Al-Azawi
    Mustafa Al-Azawi 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Hi mr. Tom Can you help me with this please?
    I have [2] Arduino Mega 2560 and one Ramp 1.4 with Lcd 2004 connected Both Arduino working well half working??

    1st Arduino can't see anything on the Lcd, only when I connect it to my Computer using Usb cable

    The 2nd can't deducted when connect the Usb but still can see everything on the Lcd, that's mean I can't upload anything new to 2nd Arduino and can't work with 1st Arduino because nothing on the Lcd

    Sorry it’s complicated and I can't find out the problem

    Hope you can

    Thanks a lot and best regards


    Reply this comment
  12. Karl Jay
    Karl Jay 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    I bought one because I didn't know there was a difference. The $2 saved was enough for a nice case when bought as a combo, but I though the board was broken. Found the loaders online for the Mac and it works. It times out when I have the serial monitor open, but otherwise seems to be working fine. I understand there is another option, you can buy a loader that doesn't use what is on the board. They cost around $10 and some seem to like that option as it bypasses the onboard loader, but I see it as a waste of money when the cheap onboard ones will work and I can buy a good sensor for that money.

    Reply this comment
  13. Arnold Szathmary
    Arnold Szathmary 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Why bad Chinese? Do you think that Chinese clones are worse than clones from other countries? Your title has a bias. Are you aware of?

    Reply this comment
  14. Cypa_ 09
    Cypa_ 09 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    thanks suka

    Reply this comment
  15. DuckyPolice
    DuckyPolice 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    THANK YOU!!!!!!!

    Reply this comment
  16. ViniGame
    ViniGame 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    I didn't knew I had a fake one, I'm gonna buy an original one immediately xD

    Reply this comment
  17. Foreign Dude
    Foreign Dude 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    ma man. Thank you!

    Reply this comment
  18. Mm Hu
    Mm Hu 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    is there a way to install the bootloader without a working arduino? thank you in advance

    Reply this comment
  19. Pro Noob
    Pro Noob 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    thank you very much

    Reply this comment
  20. Glyptodon
    Glyptodon 1 January, 2022, 19:33
  21. Ed Diaz
    Ed Diaz 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    My clone works fine except A4 and A5 inputs, I can't use I2C interface that is my first need to work with sensors, any ideas?

    Reply this comment
  22. Scott Chan
    Scott Chan 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Holy fuck this actually worked thanks so muchhhh I love you I can't believe this Ive tried so many different things.ive probably tired things which let me down for over 100 hours thanks so muhhhcxhchx

    Reply this comment
  23. Natjimo
    Natjimo 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    wat een topper deze kerel

    Reply this comment
  24. ReiCrafted
    ReiCrafted 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    For my fake UNO the serial chip where you had CH340G written, doesn't have any writing at all, and installing the CH341SER drivers doesn't do anything at all. Is it then a problem with the bootloader? Also when I plug it in the USB the 'power LED' lights up but another LED label 'L' blinks very fast, thought that it might be relevant.

    EDIT: some MVP down in the comments found this: , go to that link and follow the tutorial for installight FT232 drivers, that might just work for you, did for me

    Reply this comment
  25. hpept
    hpept 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    I downoaded the file from the chinese site and it says "Driver Install Failure!" What Should I do? installing on Win10.

    Reply this comment
  26. bebder
    bebder 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    thanks a lot

    Reply this comment
  27. DJ C.M
    DJ C.M 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Thank you thanksss god bless you😘😘😘😘

    Reply this comment
  28. Andrey Aristov
    Andrey Aristov 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Very nice video, solved my problem!

    Reply this comment
  29. P M
    P M 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Hi from New Zealand. Great video, really help me, even 5 years after you uploaded it. Keep up the great videos!

    Reply this comment
  30. Technical Funda Dharuhera
    Technical Funda Dharuhera 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Direct connect then Uknown deivce show please help sir

    Reply this comment
  31. richardnanis
    richardnanis 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Hmmm , you need a real arduino uno to fix a non-working clone? So you have to invest for the real and the clone? Or what is the workaround here?

    Reply this comment
  32. joe28704
    joe28704 1 January, 2022, 19:33


    Reply this comment
  33. Big Chunggles
    Big Chunggles 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    thanks so much it works

    Reply this comment
  34. Sidney Kapuskar
    Sidney Kapuskar 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Good video but unfortunately it did not work out for me. Nothing is written on my usb chip and only after thorough search on the net I have found another usb chip model as the commonly used CH340. Do a search on "FTDI FT232R driver" you'll be orientated to the manufacturer website with win/mac installers. My Arduino compatible clone now works perfectly πŸ™‚

    Reply this comment
  35. Haim Haina
    Haim Haina 1 January, 2022, 19:33


    Reply this comment
  36. Doug Landers
    Doug Landers 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    Thanks for your video, much appreciated, I had no idea I received or was ordering a counterfeit board or kit(s), until I went to order housings and I was trying to figure out which Rev board I had, but none of them had the giant microcontroller (non-surface mount)! I will go directly to Arduino since they are the ones who developed this and the rest of these counterfeit fakes can go to hell!

    Reply this comment
  37. KaivitiSingh
    KaivitiSingh 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    I Hate these BULLSHIT type of clips, actually the CH340 chips are much better and faster than other such chips. The Chinese cloned Arduino are GR8 and costs just few dollars where as the Arduino (marketed) from Italy costs heaps. The processing chips in both are Atmega… After all both are made and assembled in China.

    Reply this comment
  38. Yucheng Zang
    Yucheng Zang 1 January, 2022, 19:33

    I don't know where you get it, but if you get it from tao-bao, the seller will tell you that this board needs extra drivers to run.

    Reply this comment

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