Okay, i know some of you think i'm mad, but if you have an Arduino at home, and want to buy some blank AVR chips on Ebay and bootloader/program them, DON'T! Instead, why not get them totally FREE from the manufacturer themselves? All you need is to do sign up at the Manucfaturer : Atmel website and you are good to go.
Go to the Atmel website and look at the categories at the left side. Go ahead and click on megaAVR or tinyAVR according to your choice. Then choose a model from the numerous varieties of avr chips. Once the page is loaded, click on Request Samples in the box on the top right corner. Then fill in all the details required. I used a fake company name : DanTech and company url : DanTech.blogspot.com. The rest is pretty simple, and i'd be happy to help if you have any hard parts like the notes page. I ordered 10 ATMega328P-PUs and 20 ATTiny85-PUs.
Then, i placed the order and a submition e-mail was sent to me. A few hours later, i got a confirmation e-mail stating that the chips have been shipped out and are on their way. A tracking number was added, as well.
Have fun with your chips!
P.S. "LETS GO FREE SAMPLE CRAAZY TANIGHT!"
!!!!WARNING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!PLEASE REMEMBER THESE ARE BLANK CHIPS THAT NEED BOOTLOADERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!WARNING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
To look under the Buy tab on the home page and select request a sample. That’ll bring you up to a page where you’ll have to select between a registered user or new user. Proceed as is necessary with the common sense you’ve got in excess (as all of us, me included, are talented :P) and you’ll be fine.
That happened with me. I used both my GMail accounts but they didn’t work, then tried yahoo.com and it didn’t work. Finally, I tried Rocketmail by yahoo and it worked. Make a new email on Rocketmail and it’ll work…
Patience is the key… It takes done time for them to send the confirmation email if you don’t have a valid corporate email. Keep calm. If you ordered it this morning, it should be there in your inbox by this evening or night. Keep checking the atmel site for updates on the status of your shipment. They have to confirm your order too.
That wasn’t asked for in my case. Maybe the chinese have some restrictions in import so that they keep their economy under control. I’m not sure. I have been asked to fill a form for the earlier shipment of motors that I will have to collect today. Maybe it’s something similar.