WIZnet's W5100S-EVB-Pico Clones the Raspberry Pi Pico — But Adds a Handy Ethernet Port Too

Open source design brings all the features of the Raspberry Pi Pico to bear, while adding a 10/100 Ethernet port as a bonus.

WIZnet, known for its Ethernet connectivity products, has launched a clone of the Raspberry Pi Pico microcontroller board — and, in recognition of its strengths, it offers an on-board Ethernet port.

"The W5100S-EVB-Pico is a microcontroller evaluation board based on the Raspberry Pi RP2040 microcontroller chip and full hardwired TCP/IP controller W5100S chip," WIZnet explains of its latest design. "The W5100S-EVB-Pico has the same role as the Raspberry Pi Pico platform and includes W5100S, so the Ethernet function is basically included."

Launched earlier this year as the first microcontroller product from Raspberry Pi, and the first device built around the RP2040 microcontroller from its in-house application specific integrated circuit (ASIC) team, the low-cost high-performance Raspberry Pi Pico has proven popular. There's one thing that stops it being a go-to device for Internet of Things (IoT) projects, though: the lack of "Internet."

Building on the company's earlier WIZnet Ethernet HAT, which is designed to sit atop an off-the-shelf Raspberry Pi Pico to add 10/100 Ethernet connectivity, the W5100S-EVB-Pico is a one-board solution. It's a near-direct clone of the Raspberry Pi Pico, bar the Ethernet port at the end where the Serial Wire Debug (SWD) header would be, with full pin compatibility — aside from those which have been co-opted to drive the Ethernet port.

"GPIO16, GPIO17, GPIO18, GPIO19, GPIO20, [and] GPIO21 are connected to W5100S inside the board," WIZnet notes. "These pins enable SPI communication with W5100S to use Ethernet function. If you are using the Ethernet function, these pins cannot be used for any other purpose."

Ethernet port aside, the board boasts the same specifications as the original Raspberry Pi Pico: A dual-core Cortex-M0+ processor with 264kB of static RAM (SRAM), two Programmable Input Output (PIO) blocks, 2MB of quad-SPI flash memory with execute in place capabilities, and a design which offers compatibility with both breadboards and surface mounting as a module.

The W5100S-EVB-Pico is listed for sale on WIZnet's store, though currently showing as out-of-stock, at $9.95; schematics and design files are available on the WIZnet GitHub repository under an unspecified open source license.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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