Cheap ESP8266 NodeMCU

Seems like a good offer from Banggood – from their China warehouse (the EU warehouse is for some reason more expensive)

And while we’re on – a new board..


27 thoughts on “Cheap ESP8266 NodeMCU

  1. Has anyone been able to buy nodemcu boards without the headers fitted? They would be ideal for a boxed project but will need to mount them upside down with headers fitted….

  2. Hi,
    I’ve this board and an another, more cheaper (4€) but different, there is a AMS1117 and it’s the ESP-13e with the “cloud” on it for the cheap board.
    The expensive works great but not the other, i can’t understand the reason because the esp-13e with no cloud is surly a “fake”(i saw that on a topic about fake and true esp-13e) but works better than the “true”.
    It’s better to buy the board with no AMS1117 because we can go lower on the voltage, the regulator is better.

    Do you know this board: ?
    I just discovered it few days ago, it looks great, close to the esp8266 but better perf and power consumption, i prefer to wait more opinions about it.

    1. Not seen this – but good luck getting support 🙂

      I’m stick with my C and ESP-12…. if I can just crack this multi-SSID without having to resort to using the Arduino version, I’ll be all set as everything works utterly reliably.

  3. Interesting to note : The board from uses an ESP-WROOM from Espressif – which, like a 12 has the SPI memory built in.

    Does anybody know if the ESP8266-12 is actually made by Espressif or if they are made by people using the ESP8266 chip only?

    1. I haven’t been able to find a schematic for it. Why are such basic things so hard to find?

    2. THAT looks interesting Whitehare – lots of extra pins for messing about – could be worth further investigation. If I can ask – I’ve seen these claims of better antenna design – have you actually noticed a difference or done any comparison with, say an ESP-12 or an ESP-01?

      The reason I ask is, as you may know I’ve had my fair share of WIFI issues (now quiet thankfully) and so any improvements if real I’m interested in.


      1. Its a shield so I am expecting that only TX and RX are connected to the host arduino and the rest of the pins are just passthru. Doesnt look like any of the others on the ESP part go anywhere except to the few small components above it. Probably a level shifter and reset circuitry.

      2. Or not. Looking at the back photo seems there are heaps broken out to the lower row of 3 pin headers.

        Makes it a more interesting shield now, but how easy to get the code into the ESP? Thats where the node MCU ones win out by a mile. Plug and click.

  4. Hi all,
    I’ve also got these new smaller nodemcu’s. I had one with soldering problems. The TX of the ESP was not properly soldered to the board. Its a very good size and good price but it does look like quality of build and quality control (if there is any) is at a miss.

    1. Yes Evan – I was thinking about that just now…. power regulators are very important as I’ve found out when using many different kinds of boards.. that one is NOT an actual NodeMCU board. Still it would be nice to hear from someone who’s used it.

      1. I have (I bought 10 to teach a class with) and they work just as expected (same as the actual nodemcu ones) except I have blown the power regulator on one. I may have been feeding it from both the usb port and a 3.3v linear regulator at the same time, my bad, and I’ve now fixed it by strapping a linear regulator to the vin, 3.3v, and gnd pins. Just note that the branded ones do not have very robust power circuits.

        1. Hmm, by the time you’ve done the regulator it’s almost worth paying the extra for the real thing from Banggood (assuming theirs is the real thing)

      2. btw, I really like these mostly because the programming is so much easier considering the control lines on the usb-serial chip set the chip to bootloader mode and reset it for you (I write code in arduino and the IDE has that built in now).

        1. Yes, no question they are easy to use (though temporarily grounding GPIo0 at the moment of power up isn’t that big a dead).

        2. Ive also got a couple of arduino shaped ESP boards off aliexpress. Seems the board addons do not coexist however. I have had to set the arduino shaped ones up on a different PC and not install the rest of the esp8266 boards (from the adafruit url) to have the other one work, but it seems to work well enough so far, not that I have tried anything other than bit-banging on it.

          1. is that the D1 board? I saw that and shot them an e-mail for some add-ons I’d like to see an a newer revision. do you mean to say that you can’t program it through the ch340 like it’s a nodemcu?

  5. There are some boards to carry them and break the headers out too, which are quite handy. All I have mine doing so far is getting the time via NTP from an example sketch and doing some crude output to a LED module. But an automaticly setting clock for the price is a bargain.

    1. Better yet – use the clock software and some serial LEDs….. and you can make a proper clock with automatic setting 🙂

    1. You are absolutely right – well spotted!!! Crumbs that is cheap. I generally don’t like these value-added units but this is quite nice and has the serial interface built in which makes it easy to use.

      1. Given the other responses here, Roman… you might want to let us know how you get on with your cheap board particularly in relation to power…

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