I wonder if it is reasonable to replace atmega1280-16PU of a bricked arduino mega board?

If yes, does soldering in there a bigger uC make sense? i.e. atmega2560 ?

What microcontroller would fit there best?

I will not have problems with soldering. But a new mega1280 is half the cost of a new arduino.

I need this board for RepRap Mendel Prusa, so I think the 2560 version would be better...

Any suggestions?
Thanks, Martin.


We now know that the pinouts are the same. But the old version of arduino MEGA which i have has an FTDI chip for communication and the newer ones have an atmega8 or atmega16. The schematics also differ.

So there is a possibility that the new bootloader will not work in the old board. So I would have to use the old 1280 bootloader which is pointless.

It is not worth the time to investigate it further. I will simply stick to the ATmega1280 chip.

Thank you all for participation.


The ATMega1280 and ATMega2560 are pin for pin equivalents, with what I can tell the only difference is the ATMega2560 has twice the flash size of the ATMega1280. You should be able to do a drop-in replacement without any problems, in theory. Newer Arduino Megas use the AtMega2560 chip, you can try looking at the schematics to see if there are any significant differences which would suggest the two are not interchangeable. The only possible downside would be cost.

Before attempting this, though, I would check to make sure everything else on the Arduino board is working, and that the original ATMega chip is indeed bricked beyond repair. As you said, it's not a particularly cheap chip so it would be counter-productive to plug in a new chip to find the board still doesn't work.

  • \$\begingroup\$ That is a good point. \$\endgroup\$ – drzymala Mar 29 '13 at 0:33
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @martini: Just chiming in on the pin-to-pin equivalence. I've used both chips. \$\endgroup\$ – boardbite Mar 29 '13 at 10:14

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