Maximum Voltage Arduino Nano Can Take

Arduino Nano uses an ATmega328 chip to process code. Arduino Nano can be powered up using different sources. Working voltage of Arduino Nano is 5V. This article will guide on the maximum voltage an Arduino nano can take. In this article we will discuss whether Arduino nano gives 5V or not.

Maximum Voltage Arduino Nano Can Take

Maximum voltage the Arduino Nano can take is all dependent upon the source through which we are powering our board. Operating voltage of Arduino Nano is 5V. However, using the USB, VIN and 5V pin Arduino Nano can be powered at a wide range of voltage starting from 5v and goes up to 12V.

Before we can conclude we must know the power sources of Arduino Nano. Because each of the power sources has separate voltage requirements.

Arduino Nano Power Options

The Arduino Nano board has support for different power sources. More than one power source can increase board working and compatibility. Below 3 sources can be used for input power:

1: USB Mini Cable

The USB mini port provides us with constant 5V which can be applied directly to the Arduino Nano board and its peripherals.

Using the USB port Arduino Nano can only take a maximum of 5V. As all USB ports work over 5V that is the standard voltage. Here is the voltage and current limits of Arduino Nano:

Board Maximum Voltage Maximum Current
Arduino Nano 5V 500mA*

*When the Arduino Nano is powered using the USB port current is limited to 500mA at the PC port. However, using the external chargers or power supply current may vary.

2: VIN Pin

The VIN pin in Arduino has dual functionality. VIN pin can power Arduino board as well as output constant 5V that can be given to the sensor as a power source. Maximum of 12V can be applied to the VIN pin.

Don’t give more than 12V to the VIN pin as most of the voltage will be lost as heat after passing through the LDO voltage regulator.

3: External regulated 5V

Arduino Nano features an on-board 5V pin. There is no doubt that this is the most complicated way to power a Nano board. Main reason for this is that the 5V pin on the Nano board bypasses the voltage regulator and It is possible to permanently damage the Arduino with even the slightest increase in voltage. This is due to reverse current flow on regulator terminals.

Using the 5V pin Arduino Nano can only take a maximum of 5V voltage; any slight increase will damage the regulator permanently.

Arduino Nano Voltage Regulator

Maximum voltage which Arduino Nano can take highly depends upon the on-board voltage regulators. As any voltage input to Nano will have to pass the 5V LDO regulator except the USB voltage.

Arduino Nano main voltage regulator is LM1117 that provides Arduino Nano with constant 5V. Arduino Nano also has a 3V3 pin which means Arduino Nano also has a secondary regulator that can output 3.3V using the 5V from LM1117.

The Arduino Nano 3.3V pin is connected with FT232RL UART chip. The UART chip has an input of 5V coming from the USB mini port or from LDO main regulator output and converts it to regulated 3.3V.

Arduino Nano voltage regulators can be divided into 2 categories:

1: LM1117 Voltage Regulator

LM1117 takes input from VIN. It can take a voltage between 7V-12V. The LM1117 regulator converts VIN voltage to 5V. Do Not apply more than 9V at VIN pin as maximum voltage will be lost as heat during conversion from 9V to 5V.

Schematic of LM1117 in Arduino Nano:

LM1117 regulator specifications:

Regulator Output Voltage Max Input Voltage Max Output Current
LM1117 5V 12V 800mA

2: FT232RL 3V3 Regulator

FT232RL is a USB interface chip that helps Arduino Nano to serially communicate with devices. The USB interface chip takes 5V from LM1117 output and converts it to 3V3.

Schematic of FT232RL UART chip that outputs 3V3.

FT232R specifications:

Voltage Regulator Output Voltage Max Input Voltage Max Output Current
FT232R USB UART 3.3V 5.25V 100mA

Maximum Voltage Arduino Nano Can Take

In conclusion we can say that following is the maximum voltage Arduino Nano can take using three sources:

Power Source Maximum Voltage
USB mini 5V
VIN 6-12V
5V Regulated 5V


Arduino Nano is a small microcontroller board. Arduino Nano can take a maximum of 12V using the VIN pin. However maximum voltage Arduino Nano can take depends upon which power source we are using. For detailed description of all three-power sources read the article.

About the author


I am an Electrical Engineer. I love to write about electronics. I am passionate about writing and sharing new ideas related to emerging technologies in the field of electronics.