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PICBasic or BasicStamp -- ?

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by Geir Holmavatn, Nov 26, 2010.

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  1. Hi,

    I want to start playing with programming embedded devices / boards. I
    see from various sites that both BasicStamp and PICBasic compilers are
    widely used.

    Preferably I would like to use PIC products, but what are your advice?
    Does PIC range have most options and the fastest execution speed?

    Which resellers have the widest range of prototyping boards and addon
    cards like LCD display, port interfaces etc...?

    One of my main needs are the ability to communicate to/from these
    devices either via Ethernet (nedds TCP-IP stack) or 1-wire. Have any of
    you been into that, does it exist controller cards with onboard ethernet

    Links to good user forums also highly appreciated

    Thanks for any comments on this

  2. Rich Webb

    Rich Webb Guest

    Nowadays I think that the preferred entry to embedded development would
    be the Arduino family. It is an open platform, hardware and software,
    with a considerable number of daughter boards (known as "shields") to
    implement various auxiliary functions.
  3. Nico Coesel

    Nico Coesel Guest

    There is no decent free C compiler for PIC. Actually the ones you pay
    for are not so good either.
    Stay away from PIC. Its a very obscure and outdated architecture.
    No. Look for ARM controllers from NXP, ST, Texas Instruments, etc.
    They come in many flavours and price ranges. Most new designs are
    based on ARM controllers. The newer ARM Cortex-Mx devices do not need
    a single line of assembly to start the controller. There is also no
    need for 'magic' interrupt routines. Knowledge of the C language is
    all you need.
  4. Nico Coesel

    Nico Coesel Guest

    Yes. The command line options don't work as expected. Try to tell it
    the name of the output file AND the directory where to put the output
    files. And it needs to be told in which memory bank to put the
    Not necessarely. Look at the ARM7TDMI and Cortex-Mx devices. These
    cores are targeted at microcontroller applications without OS.
    Look for Cortex-M0 devices from NXP; these are ultra low power. As a
    bonus: the faster you process, the shorter you need power.
  5. Nico Coesel

    Nico Coesel Guest

    You are not looking properly. Just a few links:
    Putting an ARM controller from NXP on a board is really easy. Keil has
    excellent example diagrams on their website. The only thing you need
    to program NXP's ARM microcontrollers is a serial port and Flashmagic
    Aaaarghhhh! Multi-processor systems are the hardest to program. This
    is where most PIC users take the wrong turn. If a PIC is no longer up
    to the job don't use more PICs but move to another platform!

    If you use the LPC1768 you can download a complete software package
    from for it and get started.
  6. hamilton

    hamilton Guest

    Is this the vDRIVE ??

  7. On Sat, 27 Nov 2010 01:58:11 -0500, Phil Hobbs

    That is one of the main reasons I've stayed with PICs.

    In the past I've had both Philips and Siemens drop me in it by
    discontinuing 8051 family micros without a plug in replacement. I've
    just had to discontinue an early 90s design based on the 80C537
    because of this. The volumes didn't justify reengineering.

    The other thing is I've never known PICs on long lead times. It may
    take a few weeks to get a particular varient but never months. I
    remember, arounfd the mid 90s a rep trying to get me to move from the
    PIC to the ST6. I was tempted until I found out they were on
    allocation and 40+ weeks lead time.

    PICs are crap but reliable, never obsolete and always available. More
    than I can say for Fairchild FETS at the moment, FDD5612s quoted as
    June delivery:( Had to get old non ROHS parts from the US to keep
    production going.
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