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Thread: Learn to program micro controllers really cheap

  1. #1
    Just add ice & water plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma's Avatar
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    Learn to program micro controllers really cheap

    TI is selling a simple development platform for only 4,30$ including shipping. You can get free development software for it and example programs.
    MSP430 LaunchPad (MSP-EXP430G2) - Texas Instruments Embedded Processors Wiki

    With this you can try to program your own HUD or PO2 meter

    Learning C is not much harder than Basic and there's many good tutorials and guides for it.

    TI microcontrollers are not as popular among hobbyists as Atmell or Microchip brands. It's not hard to change to an other brand after you learn the C basics and understand registers and bit manipulation.
    Last edited by plazma; 24th June 2010 at 14:19.

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    RBW Member DeepB is an unknown quantity at this point DeepB's Avatar
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    Re: Learn to program micro controllers really cheap

    although this is a very good deal, if you are starting i would suggest starting with an Atmel Microcontroller, like the ATmega16 or an ATtiny, because there is much more information on these available (especially tutorials), because they are much more used.

    And yeah, C Programming language is C Programming language. But in microcontroller programing a HUGE part is register access, interrupts and other hardware-based stuff, which can change dramatically from one Microcontroller brand to another.

    All in all: if you want to start i would suggest starting with a device that is used by many people. Even if this is a bit more expensive (i pay approx 20€ for an arduino board).

    regards
    DeepB
    Last edited by DeepB; 24th June 2010 at 16:06.

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    Re: Learn to program micro controllers really cheap

    Nice Plazma,

    I have a large experience with Microchip PIC16 (mainly with assembly), I already played a lot with oxigen sensors and ADC.

    I'll order one development kit from TI.

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    RBW Member M_Bipartitus will become famous soon enough M_Bipartitus will become famous soon enough M_Bipartitus will become famous soon enough M_Bipartitus's Avatar
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    Re: Learn to program micro controllers really cheap

    I've had good experiences with TI's high-end MSP430 series, so I'd recommend this kit. I might even pick up one or two for miscellaneous projects.

    Edit, Looks like they are Back-orderd, but Mouser lists them shipping in 10 days.
    Last edited by M_Bipartitus; 24th June 2010 at 16:24.

  5. #5
    Just add ice & water plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma's Avatar
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    Re: Learn to program micro controllers really cheap

    I have mostly used Atmell AtMega and ARM7 based AT91SAM7 chips before. They have great support forums and community.

    Pic chips with assembly is also familiar.

    4,30$ is however a very cheap price for a introduction to the world of microcontrolers.

    I first ordered from Mouser but canceled it after I got the shipping cost via email. It was 28€. Shipping is free from TI shop.

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    RBW Member DeepB is an unknown quantity at this point DeepB's Avatar
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    Re: Learn to program micro controllers really cheap

    i jsut ordererd 3 sets, and the shipment is also free to europe.

    regards
    DeepB

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    Re: Learn to program micro controllers really cheap

    I think I'll get them from Mouser, as I've been waiting for a reason to buy some of these for testing:

    605-00010 Parallax Air Quality Sensors

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    Talking Re: Learn to program micro controllers really cheap

    I've been playing with MCUs etc and wondering how I am going to house my new dive computer.

    And then my eyes landed on a large metallic block, formerly known as the VR£...

    Step forward, the VR4!!!!

    (/sound effect = "dan dan DAAAAH!")

  9. #9
    Just add ice & water plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma is a name known to all plazma's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Re: Learn to program micro controllers really cheap

    Hmm... what could be the first project?

    Maybe a 3-cell led display. The input pins are just enough for 3 cells, 6 leds (3 green & 3 red) and one button. With 2 alkaline or 1 lithium primary you get the right voltage. The chip looks to be very low power in standby or power save modes.

    The led could be a two colour led with green and red. Green and yellow for blinking the PO2 and red for warnings.

    Battery voltage can be internally routed to the ADC and measured at startup. The voltage can then be blinked to the user.

  10. #10
    RBW Member M_Bipartitus will become famous soon enough M_Bipartitus will become famous soon enough M_Bipartitus will become famous soon enough M_Bipartitus's Avatar
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    Re: Learn to program micro controllers really cheap

    Well, these guys finally showed up for me. I guess it's time to see what they can handle.

    As an aside, I'm interested how many of you have seen this

    Horray! | András Fekete's blog

    It could be a useful read for anyone building a monitor or dive computer.
    Last edited by M_Bipartitus; 9th September 2010 at 18:08. Reason: Found link

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