Understanding Fundamental Electronic Parts Including Specs, Hints and Examples

Breakout boards and microcontrollers are an efficient way of quickly plugging together working electronic devices. There’s only very little need to understand the fundamentals of electronics.

Why should I dig deeper?

There’s no need for you to visit this section unless you’re hungry for more.

In this section I look at the discrete parts of electronics like transistors, resistors, capacitors and coils. Understanding these building blocks of breakout boards and ICs can be awesome, and sometimes even necessary.

Do More With Less

What if you just want to have a latched push button to power on and off your device? What if your button needs to switch a much bigger load than it could handle or would be safe to do?

That’s what you can put together with a few transistors and resistors. Yes, there may be even breakout boards for latched buttons and switching MosFETs. Using discrete parts gives you more flexibility, cheaper cost and smaller form factors.

Discrete Components

Discrete components are the most basic electronic parts that cannot be divided any further, like transistors or resistors.


Please do leave comments below. I am using utteran.ce, an open-source and ad-free light-weight commenting system.

Here is how your comments are stored

Whenever you leave a comment, a new github issue is created on your behalf.

  • All comments become trackable issues in the Github Issues section, and I (and you) can follow up on them.

  • There is no third-party provider, no disrupting ads, and everything remains transparent inside github.

Github Users Yes, Spammers No

To keep spammers out and comments attributable, all you do is log in using your (free) github account and grant the permission to submit issues on your behalf.

If you don’t have a github account yet, go get yourself one - it’s free and simple.

If for any reason you do not feel comfortable with letting the commenting system submit issues for you, then visit Github Issues directly, i.e. by clicking the red button Submit Issue at the bottom of each page, and submit your issue manually. You control everything.


For chit-chat and quick questions, feel free to visit and participate in Discussions. They work much like classic forums or bulletin boards. Just keep in mind: your valued input isn’t equally well trackable there.

  Show on Github    Submit Issue

(content created Feb 27, 2024)