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Most popular ESP32 development boards with USB type C

Guide on the ESP32 Development boards with USB C port. Different options with technical specs comparisons. From the original ESP32 chip to the newest ESP32C6

In recent years, the USB type C has become the new standard for charging and data transfer. It is no surprise, that many new devices are being equipped with USB-C ports, as it provides reversible connection, power and data transfer, including audio, video, etc.

With all the different ESP32 Development Boards, it is hard to find the ones that have a USB C port and even harder to compare the options.

There are several companies nowadays, that provides the ESP32 Development boards with USB-C port. We will go through the most popular and less popular options, but keep in mind that the ESP32 ecosystem is growing faster and faster and there are many new boards released from time to time, therefore this guide will not include all the available options. But we will try our best to help you find the best esp32 dev board.

If case you didn't find the suitable ESP32 Development Board with USB-C, consider the recently released Arduino UNO R4, which comes with the ESP32 chip built-in and has a USB-C port.

ESP32 #

Here is a list of the popular ESP32 development boards with USB C ports, that are based on the original ESP32 version.

From the cheaper options, we have the popular DFRobot FireBeetle 2, which provides a very low power consumption in deep sleep mode and costs around 9 USD.

In the range of 20 - 30 USD boards with USB type C, we have the TTGO T-Display, which has the onboard 1.14" IPS LCD Display, but consumes way more power than the FireBeetle 2, but comes at around 20 USD. Both boards have built-in battery charging and a few options from Adafruit, such as Feather V2 and Pico V3 and both of them provide built-in battery charging. Next, we have two boards from SparkFun - Thing Plus and IoT RedBoard. While the Thing Plus is more compact and similar to the boards you used to see more often, the IoT RedBoard provides a similar layout to Arduino UNO.

Finally, we have the M5Stack Core 2, which is priced at around 50 USD. While the price is higher, it is an all-in-one system, meaning it comes with a case, that has a touch screen, some buttons, an SD Card slot and more. Imagine it as a board, where you would develop your own smart clock in a box, for example.

Let's look at these options in more detail.

Based onPriceDeep-sleep consumptionBuiltin ChargingLEDOther featuresSizeWeight
TTGO T-Display Development Board
TTGO T-Display
ESP32350uAYesBetteryOnboard 1.14" IPS LCD Display51.52 x 25.04mm8g
Adafruit Feather V2 Development Board
Adafruit Feather V2
ESP3280uAYesLED + NeoPixel52.3 x 22.8mm6g
SparkFun Thing Plus Development Board
SparkFun Thing Plus
ESP3220uANoRGBMicroSD card slot64.77 x 22.86mm
SparkFun IoT RedBoard Development Board
SparkFun IoT RedBoard
ESP3220uAYesCharge/Power/Rx/Tx/User + NeoPixelArduino Uno Layout68.58 x 58.42mm
M5Stack Core2 Board
M5Stack Core2
ESP32260 uAYesPowerAll-in-one System54 x 54mm52g
DFRobot FireBeetle 2
ESP32-E10uAYesRGB25.4 x 60mm23g
Adafruit Pico V3
ESP32-PICO-D420uAYesRGB21 x 17.5mm

ESP32-S2 #

If you don't need the dual-core processor, that the original ESP32 provides and would better save power instead, the ESP32-S2 based development board might be an option for you. Here we have a list of the popular development boards with USB-C port, based on the ESP32-S2 microcontroller.

First, we have the popular and cost-effective boards from Wemos, such as the S2 Mini and S2 Pico. The Mini version is exactly what the name suggests, it comes in a small package and costs only around 5 USD, while the Pico version is a bit bigger board, but it comes with an onboard OLED display and still costs only around 8 USD.

Next, the Adafruit again offers several options with USB C port. The QT Py is an extremely small board, which weights only 2g, while the TinyS2 is still tiny, comes in a little bit bigger package, in case you would need more GPIOs. And if you need a full-sized version of the development board, there is the ESP32-S2 Feather, which comes in the "standard" size of ESP boards, and the ESP32-S2 Metro, which comes in the layout similar to Arduino UNO.

Let's see these options more closely.

PriceDeep-sleep consumptionBuiltin ChargingLEDOther featuresSizeWeight
20uA-Power34.3 x 25.4mm2.4g
Wemos S2 Pico Development Board
Wemos S2 Pico
20uA-PowerOnboard OLED Display50 x 23mm4g
Adafruit TinyS2 Development Board
Adafruit TinyS2
YesRGB17.8 x 41mm
Adafruit ESP32-S2 Feather Development Board
Adafruit ESP32-S2 Feather
80uAYesOn/Charge/User + NeoPixel52.4 x 22.8mm
Adafruit QT Py
70uA-NeoPixel21.8 x 17.9mm2g
Adafruit Metro ESP32-S2
YesUserSimilar layout to Arduino UNO53.2 x 72mm23g

ESP32-S3 #

In case your project requires neutral network computing or signal processing, the ESP32S3 might be just the microcontroller you need, as it comes with the AI Acceleration Support.

Again, lets start from the most cost-effective options. We have the Speed Studio XIAO ESP32S3 and Wemos S3, which both provides an ultra low power consumption in deep sleep mode and comes under 10 USD.

Next, we have the options from Adafruit. The QT Py comes in a very low package, with a stunning weight of only 1.2g and only at around 13 USD. Following, we have the popular option Adafruit Feather, which comes with the ESP32S3, TinyS3 in a small package and the ProS3, if you would need the more powerful option.

Finally, we have the option from ESP32 manufacturer - Espressif Systems. With the ESP32S3, they provide the All-in-one System - ESP32-S3-Box and ESP32-S3-Box-Lite, which provides the full system with casing.

PriceDeep-sleep consumptionBuiltin ChargingLEDOther featuresSizeWeight
Seed Studio XIAO ESP32S3 Development Board
Seeed Studio XIAO ESP32S3
14uAYesUser/Charge21 x 17.5mm
Adafruit ESP32-S3 Feather (Feather S3) Development Board
Adafruit ESP32-S3 Feather (FeatherS3)
100uAYesOn/Charge/User + NeoPixel52.5 x 22.8mm8.2g
Lilygo T-Display-S3 Development Board
LILYGO T-Display-S3
300uA1.9" LCD Touch Screen Display62 x 26mm
Espressif ESP32-S3-BOX Development Board
Espressif ESP32-S3-BOX and ESP32-S3-BOX-Lite
YesPower/MuteAll-in-one System61 x 66mm292g
Wemos S3
10uA-Power65.3 x 25.4mm9g
Adafruit QT Py
70uA-NeoPixel21.7 x 17.8mm1.2g
Adafruit TinyS3
YesPower/Charge + RGB
Adafruit ProS3

ESP32-C3 #

You don't like the Espressif designed architecture and would better use RISC-V? The ESP32-C3 is the first ESP32 chip, that comes with the single-core 32bit RISC-V.

First, we have some popular, small and cheap boards, such as Seeed Studio XIAO ESP32C3 and C3 Mini/Pico from Wemos. Next, we have the updated version of DFRobot Beetle, the Beetle ESP32C3 and TTGO T-OI PLUS from LillyGo. Following, we have an option with the LCD Display - LillyGo T-PicoC3.

Also, Espressif has its own development board with ESP32-C3 chip - Espressif ESP32-C3 DevKit-RUST-1.

From the less popular options, that are not very widely known, we have the Olimex ESP32-C3-DevKit-Lipo and Heltec ESP32-C3

PriceDeep-sleep consumptionBuiltin ChargingLEDOther featuresSizeWeight
Seed Studio XIAO ESP32C3 Development Board
Seeed Studio XIAO ESP32C3
44uAYesCharge21 x 17.5mm
Wemos C3 Mini Development Board
Wemos C3 Mini
10uA-NeoPixel34.3 x 25.4mm2.6g
LilyGo T-Pico-C3 Development Board
LillyGo T-PicoC3
-RGB1.14" IPS LCD Display25.5 x 51.6mm
Espressif ESP32-C3 DevKit-RUST-1 Development Board
Espressif ESP32-C3 DevKit-RUST-1
10uAYesStatus + NeoPixel
Heltec ESP32-C3 Development Board
Heltec ESP32-C3
5.5uAYesPower20.3 x 40.6mm
Adafruit QT Py ESP32-C3 Pico Development Board
Adafruit QT Py ESP32-C3
300uA-NeoPixel22 x 17.8mm2.1g
Wemos C3 Pico
10uA-NeoPixel25.4 x 25.4mm2.6g
DFRobot Beetle ESP32C3
10uAYesUserComes with expansion board for easy display connection25 x 20.5mm12g
YesPower/ChargeBattery Holder25.5 x 47mm
Olimex ESP32-C3-DevKit-Lipo
65uAYesStatus48 x 28mm

ESP32-C6 #

From the newer releases of ESP32, specifically the ESP32C6, released in 2021, currently we have only one option - the official Espressif Espressif ESP32-C6-DevKitC-1. To have a clearer view, lets put it in the same table as previously.

PriceDeep-sleep consumptionBuiltin ChargingLEDOther featuresSizeWeight
Espressif ESP32-C6-DevKitC-1 Development Board
Espressif ESP32-C6-DevKitC-1
7uA-Power + NeoPixel

Conclusion #

Overall, there are many options available when it comes to ESP32 development boards with a USB Type-C port and more are being released from time to time. Whether you're looking for the original ESP32, the newer ESP32S2 and ESP32S3, or the latest ESP32C3 and ESP32C6, there is a board that will meet your needs. Each board has its own unique features and capabilities, making it important to carefully consider your specific requirements before making a purchase. With so many options to choose from, you can easily find the perfect ESP32 development board to help you bring your project to life. Especially with USB type C port, it is a convenient option nowadays, as many devices are already using USB-C port and probably you have at least one or more USB type C cables.