As a kid, I used to build AM radios but never quite managed to build FM radios. They were just too complicated. Nowadays, you can get a complete FM radio tuner on a chip but these chips are surface-mount components and difficult for a hobbyist to work with. Fortunately, Sparkfun makes a breakout for the Silicon Laboratories Si4703 FM radio tuner chip (datasheet), which breaks out all pins. I will show you how you can build a complete FM radio around this breakout and use an Arduino to control the tuner functions over the built-in two-wire control interface. Sparkfun provides a complete library making this easy to program.
At the same time, I added a cool little OLED display to the project with very high contrast and very low power consumption. Last but not least, I will show you how you can build a great-sounding mono audio amplifier from a minimum of parts. The finished radio runs on three AA-batteries for many, many hours.
Make a robot friend with Adafruit’s CRICKIT – A Creative Robotics & Interactive Construction Kit. It’s an add-on to our popular Circuit Playground Express, FEATHER and other platforms to make and program robots with CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. Start controlling motors, servos, solenoids. You also get signal pins, capacitive touch sensors, a NeoPixel driver and amplified speaker output. It complements & extends your boards so you can still use all the goodies on the microcontroller, now you have a robotics playground as well.