SainSmart 8-Channel 5V Relay Module for Arduino DSP AVR PIC ARM Reviews

  • 5V 8-Channel Relay interface board, and each one needs 15-20mA Driver Current
  • Equipped with high-current relay, AC250V 10A ; DC30V 11A
  • Standard interface that can be controlled directly by microcontroller (Arduino , 8051, AVR, PIC, DSP, ARM, ARM, MSP432, TTL logic)
  • Indication LED's for Relay output status
This is a 5V 8-Channel Relay interface board, Be able to control various appliances, and other equipments with large current. It can be controlled directly by Microcontroller(Arduino , 8051, AVR, PIC, DSP, ARM, ARM, MSP430, TTL logic).

Product: SainSmart 8-Channel Relay Module

List Price: $ 18.10 Price: $ 15.80

  • 12V 16-Channel Relay interface board, and each one needs 15-20mA Driver Current
  • Equipped with high-current relay, AC250V 10A ; DC30V 12A
  • Standard interface that can be controlled directly by microcontroller (Arduino , 8051, AVR, PIC, DSP, ARM, ARM, MSP433, TTL logic)
  • Indication LED's for Relay output status
Overview. This is a 12V 16-Channel Relay interface board, Be able to control various appliances, and other equipments with large current. It can be controlled directly by Micro-controller (Arduino , 8051, AVR, PIC, DSP, ARM, ARM, MSP430, TTL logic).Features; 12V 16-Channel Relay interface board, and each one needs 15-20mA Driver Current; Equipped with high-current relay, AC250V 10A ; DC30V 10A; Standard interface that can be controlled directly by microcontroller (Arduino , 8051, AVR, PIC, DS

Product: SainSmart 16-Channel Relay Module

List Price: $ 35.96 Price: $ 25.00

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6 thoughts on “SainSmart 8-Channel 5V Relay Module for Arduino DSP AVR PIC ARM Reviews

  1. Anthony R Bundy
    23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Additional detailed information, January 3, 2012
    = Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:4.0 out of 5 stars 
    This review is from: SainSmart 8-Channel 5V Relay Module for Arduino DSP AVR PIC ARM (Toy)

    When I received my module, it included a card with an email to the makers.
    I asked a few questions and they sent full detail along with schematics and layout information.
    I’m posting the additional detail they sent. The rest of the pin out information seemed pretty straightforward. Overall it is a neat, compact, durable design so far. We are using it in for HW design test purposes.

    Power Supply: 5V DC / 400mA (relay all ON)
    Input control signal voltage:
    0V – 0.5V Low stage (relay is ON)
    2.5V -5V High state (relay is OFF).
    Input control signal LOW state current:
    2.5V: 0.1mA.
    3.3V: 0.18mA.
    5V: 0.35mA.
    JD-VCC or VCC: Power supply input, 5V DC. (JD-VCC RELAY POWER VCC:SYSTEM VCC)
    GND: Power supply ground and control signal ground.
    CH_x: Control signal input, Low: relay ON, High: relay OFF.
    COM / NO / NC: (C1=COM1, C2=COM2)
    Control signal state low, the relay ON, COM – NO disconnected, COM – NC connected.
    Control signal stage high, the relay OFF, COM – NO connected, COM – NC disconnected

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  2. D. Hamilton
    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Excellent and inexpensive, December 7, 2012
    By 
    D. Hamilton (MD) –
    (REAL NAME)
      

    = Durability:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:5.0 out of 5 stars 
    This review is from: SainSmart 8-Channel 5V Relay Module for Arduino DSP AVR PIC ARM (Toy)

    I must say it again – AMAZON, this is not a toy! Why are these types of products always labeled as toys? It’s really not much of a problem until you go to the review and see “How much fun is this toy? How would you rate this toy’s educational value? How durable is this toy? How would you rate this toy overall?”

    The board is constructed pretty well and for the price I was surprised to find that every relay (I bought two boards) was working flawlessly. I love that there are two VCC connections – one for the reference voltage to control the circuits, and one to actually switch the circuits. Because each relay takes 15-20mA to switch, this allows you to connect a separate power supply to the switching voltage and use the arduino to control the inputs. The arduino (at least the uno) will not output enough power on its own to physically switch the relays. By default there is a jumper connecting the two voltages, so you will need to pull that off and connect a separate supply. I had both boards connected and tested within 10 minutes. However, I am very familiar with this circuit as I constructed them myself last year. However, when I did it myself it took me a long time to solder it all and it cost more than simply buying these boards. The other thing I love about these boards is that the relay has 3 connections out where you can set up two separate circuits that alternate when the relay switches. When the relay is “off” (it’s resting state) one circuit will be connected and when it is “on” the other circuit is connected. This means you can default your circuits either on or off. The relays I’ve used before didn’t have that feature.

    I only have two complaints. There was one loose solder connection on an output terminal that would cause the light on that relay to flicker. A quick touch-up with the soldering iron fixed it. The other is the lack of documentation, which I didn’t really need because I had worked with this type of circuit before, but I was a little confused by the three outputs for a moment.

    I will also say I wish that the inputs to the board had been female connections (same as the arduino) so that I could use my male-male jumpers, but that’s just a personal preference so I wouldn’t call it a complaint. Overall I am very happy with these boards.

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  3. MrFoobar2U
    4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    It’s not a Toy !!!, April 18, 2012
    By 

    = Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:5.0 out of 5 stars 
    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: SainSmart 8-Channel 5V Relay Module for Arduino DSP AVR PIC ARM (Toy)

    Hey Kids, let’s all play with 110v *sarcasm*
    I ordered the part, as part of my tinkering with a Christmas light display that I’m teaching myself.
    I ordered an Arduino Uno micro-controller and wanted to get this thing to work.

    Anyway, this part came with no instructions.. nothing, nada. So I wrote the folks at Sainsmart a quick e-mail, the did get back to me, and since I can’t find the schematic anywhere, I’ll post it here

    [...]
    NOTE: These are obviously mechanical..so when I’m running through my light sequence, you’ll hear “click click click”..
    As I was working on the light sequence, it occurred to me that they could be used to control sprinkler valves as well..

    Overall, I’m pretty impressed and their support does take days to get back, but they WILL get back :)

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  4. whoknew
    7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Great Relay Controller, January 7, 2012
    By 
    whoknew

    = Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:5.0 out of 5 stars 
    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: SainSmart 16-Channel 12V Relay Module for Arduino DSP AVR PIC ARM (Electronics)

    Received this relay controller a few days ago and it is absolutely amazing. The controller requires 12V of power and I used an older wall wart from a dysfunctional wireless router. It did take me a while to figure out how to get everything properly wired but after a little tinkering.

    A little help for anyone else that purchases this relay controller:

    1. It needs 16 digital pins to independently control all the 16 relays. The Arduino Uno has roughly 10 usable pins so an Arduino Uno is not ideal if you want to control all the pins independently. An Arduino mega would be the ideal choice for getting everything running perfectly.

    2. The female header on the controller has two ground pins and two 5V pins. Once the relay controller is connected to a 12V power source the controller will provide 5V of power on both of those 2 5V pins. Which means you wont need another external power source for the Arduino. One thing to note is that if you connect the USB cable after the relay is giving the Arduino 5V of power the USB will not connect. Disconnect the relay 5V pin from the 5V pin on the Arduino then connect it back to USB to solve the issue.

    3. The relays are loud. If you’re going to use this to control something that will regularly turned on or off you’ll probably want to put it into some type of enclosure to keep it quiet.

    Overall this is a great product, I recommend it to anyone looking to control some Christmas lights or setting up a home automation system.

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  5. Darrell F. Thayer
    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Great product – here are some missing (measured) specifications, January 24, 2013
    By 
    Darrell F. Thayer (PA) –
    (REAL NAME)
      

    = Durability:3.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:4.0 out of 5 stars 
    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: SainSmart 16-Channel 12V Relay Module for Arduino DSP AVR PIC ARM (Electronics)

    I have had a hard time getting accurate (correct) specifications from SainSmart, so I wired it up and took measurements.

    So here are some specifications that we can all use:

    Overview:
    1. The 12VDC input requires > 500mA.
    2. The drive to each control input pin must “sink” 3mA when low (low = relay ON).

    By the way, this is a great product – awesome bang for the buck!

    ***** Input Power (12 VDC input)*****
    - About 8 mA is required with all relays off.
    - Each relay requires about 30 mA when on.
    - So max supply current is 8 mA + (16 x 30 mA) = 488 mA (actual measured was 500 mA)
    - Because one may use the board’s +5 VDC output (2 pins) to power an Arduino/PIC circuit, use a 12V power supply that can provide MORE than 500mA (depending on your circuit’s requirements).
    - Note that the switching regulator on the Relay Board should somewhat efficiently (say 70%?) convert the board’s 5V power usage to 12 V power input requirements. For example: 200mA at +5VDC (1 Watt) does NOT mean the +12V supply needs to supply an additional 200 mA also. This is because 1 W of power from the +12V supply only requires about 83 mA ( 12 V x 83 mA = 1 W ); however at say 70% efficiency of the 5 V regulator, this goes up to about 120 mA (83 mA / 0.7) but NOT the full 200 mA.

    NOTE: The best way to discover what 12 V supply is needed (its max current rating) is to ACTUALLY MEASURE the 12 V input current while using a “test supply” that can more than handle worst case (with all relays ON) then buy the supply that meets your needs. Always use a modern “switching” supply (wall wart) because they are smaller, way more efficient, generate little heat, and normally use much less “vampire power”.

    - The baord’s LM2576 (+5V) voltage regulator is rated at 3 Amps; however, one should not push it this hard. The circuits powered by the 5 V supply on the Relay Board appear to only be the LED side of the opto-isolators. Driving an input control line low turns on an opto-isolator LED … turning on its relay. Each opto-isolator LED seems to require about 3 mA (for a total of 3 mA x 16 = 48 mA). This should leave you with at least many hundreds of mA available to power your circuits off of the relay board’s 5V output pins (two of them on the connector).

    ***** Input control pins *****
    – Grounding an input control pin (logic low) turns on the associated relay.
    – The circuit driving the input control pin must be able to “sink” (drive logic low) about 3 mA of current (easy for most PIC/Arduino output pins).
    *** CAUTION *** When a pin is NOT driven low, it “floats” to nearly the +5 V that drives the opto-isolators. This means that the driving circuit (Arduino/PIC) must either be also powered by +5V, or if powered by the now common 3.3V (or less!), its output pins must be “5 Volt Tolerant” (see your micro-controller pin specs). Another option is use of a “5V tolerant serial port expander” chip like an MCP23018 (I2C interface) or MCP23S18 (SPI interface) … where just a few micro-controller pins give you 16 I/O pins. These can be powered by 3.3 V or 5 V. They are a bit complex, but a simple “software bit banged” I2C or SPI interface can be used to control them. Finally, one could use little signal transistors (2N3904) for this isolation from the 5 V (MCU pin -to- a say 2.7K resistor -to- transistor base, emitter to ground, collector to relay board input control pin).

    Darrell Thayer

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  6. bisticles
    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    High quality. Wish it came with ANY documentation, November 9, 2012
    By 
    bisticles (New Paltz, NY) –

    = Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:5.0 out of 5 stars 
    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: SainSmart 16-Channel 12V Relay Module for Arduino DSP AVR PIC ARM (Electronics)

    Ok, I admit it, it took me way too long to figure out how to hook this thing up. In case anyone else is looking at this and wondering how it works, here’s how it gets hooked up:
    1) The header pins on the bottom of the main picture get wired directly to the Arduino board. Connect one of the 5v pins to a 5v header on your Arduino and connect one of the Gnd pins to a ground header on the Arduino. Each one of the relays has a corrosponding header down there, too, which get connected to a digital output on your Arduino. You can run each wire individually or run over a ribbon cable to a project board and break it out from there. Either way, getting the header pins hooked up allows the logic to fire, and makes the lights work so you can at least diagnose/debug your program.

    2) Next, the relay board needs a 12v dc input wired up to the blue terminals on the bottom. These are wired to the relays, which make the relays actually fire. The voltage magnetically pulls a piece of metal away from one pole to the other. This action makes a noticeable clicking noise, which is a little annoying, but also lets you know it’s working.

    3) Each relay has 3 terminals located along the sides. One side is normally opened, the other is normally closed. Use this to either make or break the circuit that you have wired up for your lights, motors, or whatever else is involved in your project that draws more than 5v or needs to be kept isolated from the Arduino board.

    So yeah, keep in mind that you’ll need a 12v power source to actually make the relays fire. All in all, it’s a very well put together board, and would make a great control hub for something like say… a model train set or robot.

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