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Writes an analog value ( PWM wave) to a pin. Can be used to light a LED at varying brightnesses or drive a motor at various speeds. After a call to analogWrite(), the pin will generate a steady square wave of the specified duty cycle until the next call to analogWrite() (or a call to digitalRead() or digitalWrite() on the same pin). The frequency of the PWM signal is approximately 490 Hz.

On most Arduino boards (those with the ATmega168 or ATmega328), this function works on pins 3, 5, 6, 9, 10, and 11. On the Arduino Mega, it works on pins 2 through 13. Older Arduino boards with an ATmega8 only support analogWrite() on pins 9, 10, and 11.

The Arduino Due supports analogWrite() on pins 2 through 13, plus pins DAC0 and DAC1. Unlike the PWM pins, DAC0 and DAC1 are Digital to Analog converters, and act as true analog outputs.

You do not need to call pinMode() to set the pin as an output before calling analogWrite().

The analogWrite function has nothing to do with the analog pins or the analogRead function.


analogWrite(pin, value)


pin: the pin to write to.

value: the duty cycle: between 0 (always off) and 255 (always on).



Notes and Known Issues

The PWM outputs generated on pins 5 and 6 will have higher-than-expected duty cycles. This is because of interactions with the millis() and delay() functions, which share the same internal timer used to generate those PWM outputs. This will be noticed mostly on low duty-cycle settings (e.g 0 - 10) and may result in a value of 0 not fully turning off the output on pins 5 and 6.


Sets the output to the LED proportional to the value read from the potentiometer.

int ledPin = 9;      // LED connected to digital pin 9
int analogPin = 3;   // potentiometer connected to analog pin 3
int val = 0;         // variable to store the read value
void setup()
  pinMode(ledPin, OUTPUT);   // sets the pin as output
void loop()
  val = analogRead(analogPin);   // read the input pin
  analogWrite(ledPin, val / 4);  // analogRead values go from 0 to 1023, analogWrite values from 0 to 255

See also

* analogRead() * AnalogWriteResolution


arduino/analog_io/analogwrite.txt · Last modified: 2013/02/15 20:45 (external edit)

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