March 4, 2024

Pimoroni Inventor 2040 W Review: The Spark of Invention

The Raspberry Pi is synonymous with invention. Just look at the tens of thousands of…

Pimoroni Inventor 2040 W Review: The Spark of Invention

The Raspberry Pi is synonymous with invention. Just look at the tens of thousands of projects which use the credit card-sized computer. The $4 Raspberry Pi Pico continued this tradition, and now the $6 Raspberry Pi Pico W is following suit with low-cost, Wi-Fi-enabled embedded projects.

The Raspberry Pi Pico W release day also saw new boards from UK Raspberry Pi reseller, Pimoroni. The new “Pico W Aboard” range of kits spans small citizen science platforms for weather and air quality sensors, to large full-color ePaper displays and the mysterious “Galactic Unicorn.” Right in the middle of this range is the $32 Inventor 2040 W, the spiritual successor to Pimoroni’s Explorer HAT (which features on our Best Raspberry Pi HATs) addon for the Raspberry Pi. Inventor 2040 W is a place where we can test out new project ideas. We can build robots and science experiments with relative ease, linking them to the Internet using service such as IFTTT, Anvil or MQTT.

(Image credit: Tom’s Hardware)

Will the Inventor 2040 W claim a spot in our Best RP2040 Boards? The short answer is yes, but we’ll qualify that by putting it through its paces, and by building a project which takes advantage of the Pico W’s Wi-Fi, and Inventor 2040 W’s range of functions.

Inventor 2040 W Specifications

SoC Raspberry Pi Pico W
  RP2040 Arm Cortex M0+ Dual Core at 133 MHz
RAM 264KB SRAM
Storage 2MB Flash
Connectivity Infineon CYW43439 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi with onboard antenna
  Connected via SPI
GPIO 2 x JST-SH connectors (6 pin) for attaching motors
  Audio connector
  6 x Servo headers
  6 x GPIO pins (including 3 analog inputs)
  12 x WS2812B  NeoPixels
  2 x QwST (Qwicc / Stemma QT compatible) ports
  User button
  Reset button
  Breakout Garden headers (unsoldered)
Power / Data Micro USB for data and power
  JST-PH (2 pin) connector for attaching battery (input voltage 2.5V – 5.5V
Dimensions 51 x 66 mm
Price $33 (£34.50)

Using Inventor 2040 W