The FTDI Friend is a tweaked out FTDI FT232RL chip adapter. Sure, like the well-known FTDI cable, it can provide power to your project and there are 4 signal lines for sending data back and forth. But the Friend can do much more! For example, you can change the signal and power lines to be either 3.3V or 5V. Arduino-derivatives and XBees use the RTS line for programming but what if you need that DTR line? It's there for you.
By default, Adafruit sets it up so that it matches standard FTDI cables. The 6th pin is RTS (as of Arduino IDE v18 this will work perfectly for uploading to unos), the power wire is +5V and the signal levels are 3.3V (they are 5V compliant, and should work in the vast majority of 3.3V and 5V signal systems).
There are also 2 red & green LEDs already on the board that pulse when serial is sent or received. The USB port on the breakout is a Mini-B type, by the way.
Adafruit has a full tutorial page about the FTDI friend and you can peruse the FTDI cable datasheet, FTDI FT232RL chip datasheet or the schematic/layout files at GitHub
- Length: 38.07mm
- Width: 17.89mm
- Height: 7.7mm
- Weight: 3.4g