Real or Clone - Nano survivability, any real difference?


OK, since neither ones' choice of motor oils nor the odds on the Eagles vs. Cowboys are controversial enough, here's one:   Have any of my fellow uBitx / Bitx40/20  owners experienced a different life span or robust survival rate between US$22 authentic Arduino processors over their cheap-as-dirt clones out of the Far East?

I've been burning through these things lately.  Once or twice had to do with being stupid with voltage levels or power connections; fair enough.  Other instances have been from who-knows-what, just the result of working of things way too late into the morning without remembering to shut off the 12-v feed to the box or similar reasons.  Then, there is what happened yesterday.  I set up a field radio (the Zombie Apocalypse HF Survival Kit) complete with uBitx-in-a-box, antenna strung up about 3 metres away via RG174 cable to a tree another ~19 metres away, and running off of embedded 4v Li-Po cordless drill battery cells (9 total, series/parallel).  RX was fantastic and the embedded ($11 Chinese) manual tuner did it's job on all bands & was hardly if at all necessary on 40m.  The 4w reduced CW went out just fine.  When I went to a voice band segment and tried the mike, obvious RF intrusion occurred and I had to shut it down to get a CPU reset. The most noticeable symptom was that the Nextion screen showed up the green-ish function mask as if I'd pressed in the Function button. 

This condition appears to be a permanent one.  That is to say that I can turn on the rig and listen until the cows come home but can't transmit in any format without the same thing happening again. Another symptom is that when I press the function button as if to switch bands or set tuning steps, the TX relay closes.  It's as if pressing the PTT or pressing the function now create the same error.

Given that I most certainly didn't re-wire anything just prior to this error, I've got ANOTHER three cheap clones in the mail and also have name-brand ("Arduino") board on the way.  Would the class care to comment upon their own, direct experience using the real thing vs. clones?  Yeah, I get that a thousand users have never burned up their clones and that the cheap boards "should" do the same job..... has anyone noticed the opposite in terms of RF damage, in their journey along the home-build path?

Thanks for your observations.


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