It seems that many others have gotten D1 mini to flash, but there are a million different variations (wemos, wemos-compatible, a pro version that doesn't even have a normal ESP chip, etc.) and I don't want to make the same mistake I made last time and get a board that requires more boards or components to flash or run.
As much as I love soldering, another thing I'd rather not do is add or remove resistors on a board I purchased, because that speaks very poorly of the manufacturing or testing quality. So not this one please.
And if possible, please provide a link to Amazon so I know I'm getting the right one. (noone seems to use model numbers properly, they just name a couple of chips on their board)
The board that you linked to isn't a D1 mini; it's just an ESP-12E (an 8266 chip with some conveniences like having castellated edges and an spi flash).
The D1 Mini looks like this: https://docs.wemos.cc/en/latest/d1/d1_mini.html
Having to add or remove resistors doesn't necessarily mean that the board was poorly manufactured nor tested. Linear regulators frequently require you to add a couple of smoothing capacitors and yet they are not considered low quality because of those requirements. Many dev boards are sold like this to give the engineer the freedom to design their circuits and make a call on what kind of characteristics their product would have vis-a-vis cost.
Sorry for the non-amazon link; I live in an area of the world where Amazon doesn't operate in.
I know that one of the boards I linked to was simply an ESP-12-E. That was the "mistake I made last time". The other two boards I linked to claim to be D1 mini's, however.
I'm still looking for a recommendation of a particular D1 manufacturer that makes an easy-to-flash d1 mini. Or if there is another small dev board I should look into.
The original manufacturer of the D1 mini https://docs.wemos.cc/en/latest/d1/d1_mini.html sells the D1 mini. They have a link to their own official aliexpress store.
I wonder though if you'd be better off getting an official board? I myself use the EPS8266 for some hobby work, but for actual installations I very much prefer the official boards (the Puck.js is especially nice). The nrf52 boards are also very power efficient and can run on coin cell batteries; I have yet to get an ESP8266 to lessen its power consumption.
There are also a number of other ESP8266 boards like the NodeMCU devkit but they're not as small. If you don't mind an ESP32 then the TTGo store in aliexpress also sells a number of custom chips that are already flashed with micropython (which usually means all the hardware necessary for flashing and using Espruino is already present). And of course there's the m5 stack line of products; the m5stickc is nice and small: https://github.com/m5stack/M5StickC
...it's called an Espruino-Wifi...
You just get yourself into worse time waste with the single ESP8266EX mcu board solution than dealing with an iron and some Rs and Cs... Therefore, go for the optimized solution that gives you max in application freedom with the STM32 and and communication focused coprocessor ESP-12X - all in one tested, supported and ready to use package!
NB: How about https? - only w/ Espruino-Wifi if you still want to have some decent space left for your application and being able to write in JS.
The boards you linked as "not this one please" are ONE HUNDRED PERCENT FINE and DO NOT NEED ANY RESISTORS ADDED OR REMOVED! THEY WORK WITHOUT ANY MODIFICATIONS!!!!
THOSE ARE THE BOARDS YOU WANT TO USE!
His suggestion was (unnecessary, inappropriate) debugging advice as I tried to fumble through a problem I was having because I was trying to flash the Espruino firmware in QIO mode, when the D1 mini modules only support DIO mode. That was my mistake, and his debugging advice wasn't even good advice. "Take your head out of your ass and go learn how flashing an ESP8266 works" would be what he should have said to me there, because that's all I needed to do.
I sincerely apologize for starting a thread which led people to the mistaken conclusion that those boards were bad. They are perfectly fine. Unless you happen to need to performance of QIO mode, of course.
As it happens, DIO mode did not meet my performance requirements (the project in questions's performance is right at the limit of espruino-on-esp8266 performance - losing QIO mode imposed a nearly 2:1 penalty, and since in QIO mode I had already done every trick I knew, plus some Gordon tipped me off to, in order to boost performance and still wished it were faster - so DIO mode was a total non-starter), leading me to take a torch to those boards to remove the module from the top so I could solder in an ESP-12 module with QIO support on a few of them, before I found a listing on AliExpress for D1 mini boards without the ESP module mounted on them, so I could just buy those, and put the good ESP-12 modules on them, and leave the torch in the closet. It didn't really save much money to do it that way, surprisingly, but definitely saved time.
I have added some boldface clarification to the start of that thread to make it clearer that the fumbling around in that thread was entirely due to user error on my part, and that there is absolutely nothing wrong with those boards (other than the decision to not support QIO in order to save money - but that's a decision that WeMos made, and the clones just copied it - which I can't fault them for, since if everyone is treating it just like an official wemos board, nobody would get any benefit from the fancier flash chip. And no clone maker is going to spend money for a feature their customers wouldn't be able to use)
I wholeheartedly recommend buying any old clone WeMos D1 mini, and would have absolutely no reservations with recommending that.
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