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Which uController to learn?

Discussion in 'Electronic Components' started by John E., Mar 15, 2007.

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  1. Eeyore

    Eeyore Guest

    Eh ?

    The various 8051 clones from various manufacturers are completely compatible in
    every respect. That's one of the joys of the part. Such changes as have been
    made are backwardly compatible even with no code change too.

  2. linnix

    linnix Guest

    You can also clock an Avr slowly and runs on uW.
    The butterfly runs in stand-by mode for months on a single button
    But I would not call an Avr fast, not comparing to an Arm.
    I have a 20MHz(50 Mhz max) Arm talking to a 8Mhz(16MHz max) Avr.
    The Arm is around 5 to 10 times faster than the Avr.

    They are roughly the same size, cost and complexity.
  3. On Thu, 15 Mar 2007 18:28:28 -0500, in "Anthony

    years ago I was given a few lines or so of C for an 8051, that has
    never failed me. But then I'm not a real programmer, most of my crap
    is just a few switch statements,

    Boil a FET
    Nuke a motor,
    LCD Prompt" do you need fries with that" etc.

    but good enuff for me, does the job.
    Maybe I should go and have another look at it?

    over and out

  4. mpm

    mpm Guest

    Hey John.

    We're an "8051" Shop mostly.
    And almost everything we do is in Assembler.

    Right now, we're using Atmel and Phillips (NXP or whatever they call
    themselves now).

    What I like about Atmel is:
    A - They're very responsive when you need them (which isn't often
    because their documentation is some of the best I've seen.)

    B - For programming their newer devices, all you need is $25 for their
    AT89ISP adapter (and a target board - which you can make yourself or
    just butcher one of your production boards and dedicate it as your new
    "bench programmer" - which is what we did. No more spending $1,000's
    on EPROM burners!!

    C - Their product mix is varied enough (i.e., A/D conversion, # of
    ports, Serial, etc..) that you can make most designs work. And
    "Yes." it is a fine line between "hobbist" and "serious volume
    production" sometimes. Or so we would all wish.....!!

    For Phillips - I like their smaller stuff. 89LPC90x series.
    They're a little flaky to get programmed (due mostly to poor
    documentation and IMHO too many hobbiest in the mix), but we do use
    them in production volumes.

    The Keil EPM900 board is a good development board for the above, and
    runs about $200.
    Plus the cost of many, many, many phone calls to Keil to get an order
    (Note: This company THRIVES on Voice Mail.)
    But good stuff once you get it, and get it working.

    The EPM900 will come with a 4K code limited Assembler, C-Compiler and
    Debugger (in addition to the hardware emulator). All in all, a pretty
    good value.

    I looked at PIC's a few times and didn't like them.
    Hard to say exactly why, I guess. Their basic stamp stuff seemed
    overpriced and underpowered.
    And really, I think those are out there for experimenters and
    hobbyist, not serious production.
    (Now everyone will beat up on me for saying that..?)

    But I hope this (and the comments of others) gives you something to
    ponder while making your choices. COBOL, huh?! Good for you!

    Eventually all the other COBOL programmers will die out and you can
    name your price!!

  5. Yep I agree, my system (that's a bit of an overstatement) would hang
    if the LCD wasn't present. But if there was no LCD you coudln't use
    the system, so the user was, well.....screwed.

    so just put on another cup of coffee

  6. John E.

    John E. Guest

    I got my Rigol scope today. Oh man this is just way too cool. :)))

    Just looked at their web site. Top of the line is only EUR1800 (how the heck
    do I make a Euro symbol...?), US$2376. Not bad. FInally a DSO the average guy
    can afford. Keep us informed...
  7. John E.

    John E. Guest

  8. John Fields

    John Fields Guest

    Instead of writing about what you've heard, dumb ass, why don't you
    stick with what you know?

    Oh, I get it now... If you did you wouldn't have a whole lot to
    write about.
  9. Not to mention the 64, 68, 80 and 100-pin ones.
    There are several flavo[r]s to PIC assembly.
    That thing is not 'a microcontroller'.

    As to the original question.. it really depends on the application and
    the peripherals you might need. If you need Ethernet and/or USB on
    board, that's one thing (you'll almost certainly want something with a
    decent C compiler and available protocol stack), if you just want to
    diddle some bits fast, or do a relatively slow PID control that's
    another. If you need 10, 12, or 24 bits of ADC, multiple PWMs,
    quadrature input, direct display drive, etc. etc. that may play a
    great role. The choice of core is only one consideration among many.

    Best regards,
    Spehro Pefhany
  10. Or just put some proper (debugged) delays in there and it'll work
    fine. And the second line of your 2 x 16 doesn't work because the
    memory map has a big frick'n hole in it...

    Best regards,
    Spehro Pefhany
  11. Guest

    Be wary of certitude. PIC's bizarre fscked architecture is abhorred by
    right-thinking engineers (of course, there are no absolutes, but this
    is quite close to one).

    If you have experience as you have enumerated, you will have little
    difficulty learning almost any architecture; the choice of which is
    "useful" depends on the "use" to which you intend to apply this
  12. Bought the DS1102C (100MHz/2-channel) for US$999. So far so good, I like
    it. :)
  13. Things must have changed then. Only the barest parts would be compatible.
    As soon as you start adding extra peripherals (and these _are_ the chips
    that get used in production, not the 8051 true clones) things change allot.
    So it's true that you could probably get away with dropping an Atmel 89c52
    in place of a vintage 8052, it likely wouldn't work the other way around
    since the Atmel part has "extensions". As soon as people utilize the
    extensions, compatibility disappears. no?
  14. Eeyore

    Eeyore Guest

    I don't know about that. Some of the extra functions seem to be implemented both
    by Philips and Atmel for example. Sure you can use an 89C51 with flash memory in
    place of an 87C51 to take the simpler example.

    Manufacturers seem to have been careful about allocating the new SFRs. I've
    never come across an example where a 'new' SFR didn't default to 'plain vanilla'
    operation if left untouched.

  15. Rich Grise

    Rich Grise Guest

    I'm prejudiced against the PIC because bank switching is Evil.

    As a hobbyist: 6502, 6800/02/09, Z80; as a pro, 68HC11, Z80, 80186 ;-)

  16. That's true, but wasn't really my point. I'm saying that people use these
    "special features" and then they narrow (or eliminate) their source options.
    Where parts from different vendors do have similar extensions, they don't
    usually implement the SFRs the same way. It's been a while since I looked
    around, maybe vendors are getting on the same page now (why do I really
    doubt that though ;-).
  17. Mike

    Mike Guest

    In the early days, though I'm sure that has changed, the stack depth was way
    too short for any reasonable level of subroutine coding, this also affected
    the design of systems which needed multiple (flexiblely) prioritised
    interrupt sources...

    Since I had been using the 8051 and atmel variants which had far deeper
    stacks and ease of changing returns and flexible control of interrupt
    response I had never any need to revisit the PIC.

    Oh and the code/data memoru separation I found to be irritating on odd
    From what I recall the 68000 series was the closest to a orthogonal instruction
    set making for great compiler efficiencies, with the later generaton of PICS
    there were, iirc, still many instruction exceptions which didnt allow compilers
    to be as efficient could have been good for assembler writers but you really
    dont want to stay in assembler as generally projects get more complex and we
    do want to have a social life dont we ?

    * VK/VL Commodore FuseRails that wont warp or melt with fuse failure indication
    and now with auto 10-15 min timer for engine illumination option.
    * VN, VP, VR Models with relay holder in progress.
    * Twin Tyres to suit most sedans, trikes and motorcycle sidecars
  18. Eeyore

    Eeyore Guest

    Well.... yes if you do use those very specific features you will be stuck with a
    single source but you're still no worse off than you would be with a PIC.

  19. John E.

    John E. Guest

    I'm prejudiced against the PIC because bank switching is Evil.

    I'm beginning to hear a lot of that (c;
    I think I should clarify that my desire isn't to go in the direction of
    microprocessors, but in the direction of microcontrollers. I distinguish
    those that have data and memory bus pins from those that are self-sufficient,
    memorywise. The latter may have I/O such as analog inputs and/or outputs, but
    not necessarily; they may interface with outboard converters.

  20. Since you're starting, the 18F PICs may be more in line with what you want.
    Not even any bank switching till you're ready for it. Plus Microchip has a
    decent C compiler for them (I never used it, but that's what I keep hearing)
    that has something like a 90 day trial. After the trial, uninstall and
    reinstall. is a good treatise on the 18F PICs.

    Don't let anyone fool you, all microcontrollers have their quirks and
    problems. IMO, the 8052 is the pits.
    You won't regret it.
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