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PICList Thread
'[PIC] Microchips ridiculous ICD2 connector'
2006\10\24@004631 by Shawn Wilton

picon face
Has anyone found a reasonable solution for dealing with the ridiculous RJ-12
jack on the Microchip ICD2 other than to remove it, add wires and "install"
a new header of sorts?

--

Shawn Wilton (b9 Systems)
http://b9Systems.com  <- New web page

2006\10\24@011457 by Steve Smith

flavicon
face
Easy..
Cut one off and fit a 6 pin kk these go on to the little gold headers you
fit shorting links on

Steve..

Just don't leave an unattended icd for too long somebody will plug in a fone
when you least expect it...

{Original Message removed}

2006\10\24@022226 by Jesse Lackey

flavicon
face
Yeapper, actually you just need 5 pins.

Pick an arrangement - I use power, Vpp, PGD, PGC, Gnd for all my
designs, just b/c the first ICSP PIC board I made, that's what I did,
pretty arbitrarily chosen.  Maybe pick an order such that if the cable
is plugged in backwards it doesn't short though.  (but I haven't blown
anything up the few times I put the cable on the board backwards.)
Like... power, PGC, gnd, Vpp, PGD?  not sure.  Maybe having Vpp on a
programming pin is worse if cable swapped.  Or make a 6-pin and key it.

If you'd rather not cut the microchip original:
H3661R-07-ND
Header that is real convenient!  use this:
S4379-ND

after building and testing a cable, epoxy it.  mark orientation with red
nail polish or dab of whiteout.

also for low-volume production, where you just need to program once, put
the 0.1" header pins in the female socket and just hold 'em to the holes
in the board.  If boards are being contract-assembled, make sure they
leave the holes clear of solder!  else is a big hassle.

and it is nice to give a cable to clients here and there, to program the
board you made for them with an ICD2 you told them to buy for updates
down the road / in the field.

Have fun
J





Steve Smith wrote:

{Quote hidden}

2006\10\24@045945 by Mike Harrison

flavicon
face
On Mon, 23 Oct 2006 21:46:28 -0700, you wrote:

>Has anyone found a reasonable solution for dealing with the ridiculous RJ-12
>jack on the Microchip ICD2 other than to remove it, add wires and "install"
>a new header of sorts?

Yes - I've standardised on a Molex 5-pin header, chopping the RJ off the end of the cable.
Handy hint to save time - write the pin names on the connector.


2006\10\24@051605 by Tamas Rudnai

face picon face
The only thing is that a pin header is not polarized. Also PicKit2 has a 6
pin connector -- it is not a problem as you can use it with the 5 pin one
but...

Anyway, what's wrong with the RJ12? Is that something like a contact problem
or just the bad taste of having a telephony socket on your programmer?

Tamas



On 24/10/06, Mike Harrison <mikespamKILLspamwhitewing.co.uk> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2006\10\24@053125 by Michael Rigby-Jones

picon face


>-----Original Message-----
>From: .....piclist-bouncesKILLspamspam.....mit.edu [EraseMEpiclist-bouncesspam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTmit.edu]
>Sent: 24 October 2006 10:16
>To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
>Subject: Re: [PIC] Microchips ridiculous ICD2 connector
>
>
>The only thing is that a pin header is not polarized. Also
>PicKit2 has a 6 pin connector -- it is not a problem as you
>can use it with the 5 pin one but...
>
>Anyway, what's wrong with the RJ12? Is that something like a
>contact problem or just the bad taste of having a telephony
>socket on your programmer?

I was just wondering the same thing, IMO the RJ12 connector is ideal for the IDC end.  It's cheap, readily available, polarised and latched.  OTOH it sucks as a target connector for anything other than a prototype/evaluation board, but that's a total non-issue as you just buy an RJ12 cable, cop one end off and solder your prefered connector on.

Regards

Mike

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2006\10\24@072025 by olin piclist

face picon face
Shawn Wilton wrote:
> Has anyone found a reasonable solution for dealing with the ridiculous
> RJ-12 jack on the Microchip ICD2 ...

Mine didn't come with ridiculous RJ-12 jacks, and I don't remember them
listed as options.


********************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, http://www.embedinc.com/products
(978) 742-9014.  Gold level PIC consultants since 2000.

2006\10\24@074634 by Tom Sefranek

face picon face
Olin Lathrop wrote:

>Shawn Wilton wrote:
>  
>
>>Has anyone found a reasonable solution for dealing with the ridiculous
>>RJ-12 jack on the Microchip ICD2 ...
>>    
>>
>
>Mine didn't come with ridiculous RJ-12 jacks, and I don't remember them
>listed as options.
>
That's the MICROCHIP default... for everything!

Rediculous is not a MICROCHIP option, it's a feature!

>********************************************************************
>Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, http://www.embedinc.com/products
>(978) 742-9014.  Gold level PIC consultants since 2000.
>  
>

--
 *
 |  __O    Thomas C. Sefranek   WA1RHPspamspam_OUTARRL.net
 |_-\<,_   Amateur Radio Operator: WA1RHP  
 (*)/ (*)  Bicycle mobile on 145.41, 448.625 MHz

hamradio.cmcorp.com/inventory/Inventory.html
http://www.harvardrepeater.org

2006\10\24@075916 by olin piclist

face picon face
Jesse Lackey wrote:
> and it is nice to give a cable to clients here and there, to program the
> board you made for them with an ICD2 you told them to buy for updates
> down the road / in the field.

This may sound like a self-serving suggestion, but you really don't want to
use a ICD2 for field upgrades, especially for customers to use themselves.
The chances of a screwup and resulting phone call when they try to
clickety-click their way thru MPLAB alone make this a bad idea.  But worse
is that the ICD2 is not a production programmer, which Microchip is actually
careful to point out.  Do it right and get a real production programmer that
can be run from a dedicated program that can have all its parameters passed
on the command line.  That allows you to wrap the programming operation into
a larger program, or give them a single BAT file to run that just does the
programming.

Personally I think my ProProg (http://www.embedinc.com/proprog) production
programmer is a good choice for this task, although there are probably
others out there.  At 1/3 the price of the Microchip PM3 and a lot less
clunky, I think it's a good deal too.


********************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, http://www.embedinc.com/products
(978) 742-9014.  Gold level PIC consultants since 2000.

2006\10\24@083126 by Herbert Graf

flavicon
face
On Mon, 2006-10-23 at 21:46 -0700, Shawn Wilton wrote:
> Has anyone found a reasonable solution for dealing with the ridiculous RJ-12
> jack on the Microchip ICD2 other than to remove it, add wires and "install"
> a new header of sorts?

I made a small adapter that goes to a 5 pin 0.1" header. Much easier to
deal with in the hobbyist space.

When making a board I just put down the RJ12 connector, it's no big deal
with laying out a board. TTYL

2006\10\24@095105 by Mike Hord

picon face
> Pick an arrangement - I use power, Vpp, PGD, PGC, Gnd for all my
> designs, just b/c the first ICSP PIC board I made, that's what I did,
> pretty arbitrarily chosen.  Maybe pick an order such that if the cable
> is plugged in backwards it doesn't short though.  (but I haven't blown
> anything up the few times I put the cable on the board backwards.)
> Like... power, PGC, gnd, Vpp, PGD?  not sure.  Maybe having Vpp on a
> programming pin is worse if cable swapped.  Or make a 6-pin and key it.

I use Vpp, Vdd, Gnd, PGD and PGC.  The reason for that is simple:
I can plug the header into a breadboard such that the last two pins
go directly into the same rows as RB7 and 6.  Easy.

Mike H.

2006\10\24@095227 by Bob Axtell

face picon face
Shawn Wilton wrote:
> Has anyone found a reasonable solution for dealing with the ridiculous RJ-12
> jack on the Microchip ICD2 other than to remove it, add wires and "install"
> a new header of sorts?
>
>  
Yes. I use a clone which has the RJ12 _AND_ a proper connector. I have
several of the "FULL ICD2" designed
by Kenny Wong. Has these features, eliminates the flakey Cypress chip
(uses Microchip PIC18F4550). Consequently,
almost all of the complaints about ICD2 are fixed. If that wasn't
enough: 2 programming sockets, one dedicated just
to DSPic, are included as well (The ICD2 does a GREAT job as an
programmer, too, and there is NO chance that
it isn't on the "list" like most programmers.

And the whole solution costs less than HALF of the cost of a standard
ICD2. Get 'em from Kenny on Ebay. He ships from
Hong Kong for only $12 USD. I got mine in 10 days. Total cost plus
shipping was $90 USD. Ran right out of the
box. Almost NO manual, but it all makes intuitive sense.

Trust me, I'm an engineer. You WON'T be disappointed. <G>.

--Bob

2006\10\24@095726 by Bob Axtell

face picon face
Tamas Rudnai wrote:
> The only thing is that a pin header is not polarized. Also PicKit2 has a 6
> pin connector -- it is not a problem as you can use it with the 5 pin one
> but...
>
> Anyway, what's wrong with the RJ12? Is that something like a contact problem
> or just the bad taste of having a telephony socket on your programmer?
>
> Tamas
>
>  
One problem is that there are only a few cables that can be used with an
RJ12, and these do not have
enough strands to be flexible. Solder connections made do not last very
long; I rarely got through
a project without needing  to replace the development connector. The
last problem is that the wire
size is AWG#26, which is simply not heavy enough to  provide a decent
ground connection between
the development tool and the project.

With my clone, I make up high-flex #22 as a ground lead, and #24 for all
the other pins.

--Bob



2006\10\24@102709 by Carey Fisher - NCS

face picon face

> On Mon, 2006-10-23 at 21:46 -0700, Shawn Wilton wrote:
>> Has anyone found a reasonable solution for dealing with the ridiculous
>> RJ-12
>> jack on the Microchip ICD2 other than to remove it, add wires and
>> "install"
>> a new header of sorts?
>
> I made a small adapter that goes to a 5 pin 0.1" header. Much easier to
> deal with in the hobbyist space.
>

I also made my own ICSP ICD2 adaptor boards and I have a bunch I'll never
use if anybody wants some.  You can see them at
http://www.ncsradio.com/ICD2Adaptor.pdf.  I'll sell 5 bare adaptor boards for US$1
postpaid via USPS.  The RJ jack and the 5 pin connector are readily
available at Digikey.

Carey

2006\10\24@105457 by Harold Hallikainen

face
flavicon
face

{Quote hidden}

That's what I do too. I have a bunch of cables we made up with RJ on one
end and 2x5 header connectors on the other. Also have a few with single
row connectors for some applications. We recently bent a pin inside the RJ
connector on the ICD, so had to open it up to replace it. I noticed that
it LOOKS like there's a footprint for another connector in there, perhaps
a header.

Harold

--
FCC Rules Updated Daily at http://www.hallikainen.com - Advertising
opportunities available!

2006\10\24@123556 by Wouter van Ooijen

face picon face
> I was just wondering the same thing, IMO the RJ12 connector
> is ideal for the IDC end.  It's cheap, readily available,
> polarised and latched.  OTOH it sucks as a target connector
> for anything other than a prototype/evaluation board, but
> that's a total non-issue as you just buy an RJ12 cable, cop
> one end off and solder your prefered connector on.

What's an IDC and why does an RJ12 suck for the target side? I would
guess it is mated/demated less on the target side, so less chance of
problems there.

Actually my preferred ICSP setup is a Wisp628 (DB15 connector), with a
DB15 contra - to RJ12 cable, RJ12 connector on the target PCB. DB15 on
the target would take much more PCB space.

Wouter van Ooijen

-- -------------------------------------------
Van Ooijen Technische Informatica: http://www.voti.nl
consultancy, development, PICmicro products
docent Hogeschool van Utrecht: http://www.voti.nl/hvu


2006\10\24@131110 by Herbert Graf

flavicon
face
part 1 1077 bytes content-type:text/plain (decoded 7bit)

On Tue, 2006-10-24 at 07:54 -0700, Harold Hallikainen wrote:
> That's what I do too. I have a bunch of cables we made up with RJ on one
> end and 2x5 header connectors on the other. Also have a few with single
> row connectors for some applications. We recently bent a pin inside the RJ
> connector on the ICD, so had to open it up to replace it. I noticed that
> it LOOKS like there's a footprint for another connector in there, perhaps
> a header.

Very interesting... Actually, what's even more interesting is the
Cypress chip isn't used anymore for USB!?

We recently bought a new ICD2 at work, I never opened it up before since
I opened the older one I had at home. But reading this message I opened
it up to look at this header pinout. I then noticed the cypress chip was
gone, replaced with an 18F4550 for USB! Perhaps this was common
knowledge, but I'd never heard of the cypress chip having been replaced
until now.

I've attached a couple small photos.

Maybe I'm the last to have found out, oh well... :)

TTYL


part 2 20582 bytes content-type:image/jpeg; name=ICD2.jpg (decode)


part 3 11046 bytes content-type:image/jpeg; name=ICD2_USB.jpg (decode)


part 4 35 bytes content-type:text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
(decoded 7bit)

2006\10\24@135611 by Shawn Wilton

picon face
Thank you for the suggestions guys, but I think most of you misunderstood my
issue.  My complaint is the RJ-12 ON the ICD2.  Not the other end of the
cable.  I have plenty of custom programming cables, but last couple of days
I've been having to hold the RJ-12 connector on the ICD2.  Lousy design.
Those connectors s***.



On 10/24/06, Tamas Rudnai <RemoveMEtamas.rudnaiTakeThisOuTspamgmail.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2006\10\24@135905 by Shawn Wilton

picon face
Yes, I ordered one.  Wouldn't you know, I'm also an engineer.  :-P

Just very disappointed with the ICD2.  Based on personal preference I think
I may move the design to an ATMega8 after this.

Must say I really like the BoostC compiler.  Works quite well.



On 10/24/06, Bob Axtell <TakeThisOuTengineerEraseMEspamspam_OUTneomailbox.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2006\10\24@140159 by Shawn Wilton

picon face
OOh, I never bothered opening mine up, but I see there is room for another
connector in there!  I think I'll just pull the RJ-12 off there and replace
it with a header or a wire.  That is until my Wong shows up.. :-)



On 10/24/06, Herbert Graf <RemoveMEmailinglist3spamTakeThisOuTfarcite.net> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2006\10\24@154023 by Herbert Graf

flavicon
face
On Tue, 2006-10-24 at 10:56 -0700, Shawn Wilton wrote:
> Thank you for the suggestions guys, but I think most of you misunderstood my
> issue.  My complaint is the RJ-12 ON the ICD2.  Not the other end of the
> cable.  I have plenty of custom programming cables, but last couple of days
> I've been having to hold the RJ-12 connector on the ICD2.  Lousy design.
> Those connectors s***.

As I've mentioned, I long again made a RJ12-5pin 0.1" plug adapter.
Since the RJ12 is never touched I've never had a problem.
TTYL

2006\10\24@160803 by Rolf

face picon face
I posted a note on piclist a while back with a similar issue.... My ICD2
only works if the plug is pushed in further into the jack than just the
"click". You need to push it that extra mm more.

Otehrwise it is an excercise in frustration. I guess the jacks used by
Microchip are slightly non-conformant with standards.

For the record, I figured Olin's pedantic reply about his ICD2 not
having an RJ12 plug was worth investigating, and it appears he is right.

ICD2 s do NOT have RJ12 jacks. There apparently is no such thing
specified. An RJ11 jack is a 6p2c modular plug, an RJ14 is 6p4c, and an
RJ25 is 6p6c.

Thus, the closest "RJ" match is RJ25. But, then, it is not really a
pertinent naming convention since the ICD2 is not telephony equiptment,
thus,  the best descriptor fot the ICD2 would be a 6p6c modular Jack.

Go figure.

See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Registered_jack

Rolf

Shawn Wilton wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2006\10\24@163754 by peter green

flavicon
face
>
> What's an IDC
i presume that was a typo for ICD

> and why does an RJ12 suck for the target side?
for breadboards, stripboard etc its a horrible pin layout, for production
boards its a bit big (smaller than say a molex or sub-d but much bigger than
some surface mount connectors) and depending on the boards purpose possiblly
confusing (connecting a debugging port to a phone line would be *BAD*.

> I would
> guess it is mated/demated less on the target side, so less chance of
> problems there.
provided you use the right connectors for the cable type (make sure you
check manufacturers data sheets and if they don't say if they are for solid
or stranded avoid them) i've found the things to be very reliable.

unfortunaly microchip also screwed up the pinout which causes problems with
the DSPICs (iirc the faster transition time on the dspic data output causes
glitches to be coupled accross to the clock line)


2006\10\24@163757 by Shawn Wilton

picon face
Strange, I have a box of connectors at home that says RJ-12 on it...

Microchip calls it an RJ-12:
http://ww1.microchip.com/downloads/en/DeviceDoc/51265g.pdf

Some more links referring to RJ-12:
http://midondesign.com/TEMP08/P13RJ11vsRJ12.html

Also, the Wiki article does mention an RJ-12.  Just says it's not common.


On 10/24/06, Rolf <RemoveMElearrEraseMEspamEraseMErogers.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

>

2006\10\24@170347 by Rolf

face picon face
Yes, I the RJ12 is mentioned, as a 6p4c jack, which the ICD2 definately
is *not* (it is a 6p5c, I guess).

Apparently the definition of the "Registered jack" type, requires
(twisted) pairs of conductors... and the ICD2 has 5 conductors, which is
non-conformant as well.

<shrug> The references I quote must somehow be wrong ;-)

I will have to be more careful about "common names" and "real names".

Rolf



Shawn Wilton wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2006\10\24@174446 by Jesse Lackey

flavicon
face
Ah, I would agree, except these are a few relatively technical "special
customers", and we're talking about a handful of boards here per design.
 And I've already done the ridic MPLAB + ICD2 install for them.  For
less technical / larger pool of customers this wouldn't fly.  Am about
to get a semicustom bootloader going (run over USB) for the wider audience.

J

Olin Lathrop wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2006\10\24@174732 by Wouter van Ooijen

face picon face
> Strange, I have a box of connectors at home that says RJ-12 on it...

And you probably call the country you live in "America"?

This is realy a common problem: people start using a term in a way that
is clearly wrong, and gradually more and more people join. At a certain
point you will have to give in (otherwise no-one will understand you any
more), but at which point?

Wouter van Ooijen

-- -------------------------------------------
Van Ooijen Technische Informatica: http://www.voti.nl
consultancy, development, PICmicro products
docent Hogeschool van Utrecht: http://www.voti.nl/hvu


2006\10\24@194034 by Bob Axtell

face picon face
Shawn Wilton wrote:
> Strange, I have a box of connectors at home that says RJ-12 on it...
>
> Microchip calls it an RJ-12:
> ww1.microchip.com/downloads/en/DeviceDoc/51265g.pdf
>  
yep, my stock says RJ-12 too. Its a Bell Systems terminology, pretty old
now. I believe it means the
3-pair (6-pin) part, versus a 2-pin (1 pair) or 4-pin (standard 4-pin
used in millions of households).

--Bob
{Quote hidden}

>

2006\10\25@082713 by olin piclist

face picon face
Rolf wrote:
> For the record, I figured Olin's pedantic reply about his ICD2 not
> having an RJ12 plug was worth investigating, and it appears he is right.
>
> ICD2 s do NOT have RJ12 jacks. There apparently is no such thing
> specified. An RJ11 jack is a 6p2c modular plug, an RJ14 is 6p4c, and an
> RJ25 is 6p6c.

This is not what I was trying to point out.  I said I don't have a ICD2 with
a "ridiculous RJ12 jack" as the OP asked about.  Mine all have regular and
quite reasonable RJ12 jacks.

I didn't like the way the OP was asking for help and at the same time
putting words in anyone's mouth that might help him.  His question was a lot
like "Have you stopped beating your wife?".  Anyone responding to the OP's
question would be implicitly agreeing that the ICD2 connector is
"ridiculous" and that "everyone knows" that.  I thought that was arrogant
and a particularly obnoxious way to make a point, so I responded to his post
in a way that was litterally correct but otherwise useless.

If the OP thought a RJ-12 was the wrong choice for the ICD2 connector he
should have stated that as his opinion and provided some support for his
argument, instead of just calling it "ridiculous" and implying everyone
agrees with that.

For the record, I think RJ-12 was a reasonable choice.  It is quick to
connect and disconnect, locks with a positive feel, can't be plugged in
backwards, cheap, and widely available.  These connectors have proven to
work well in nearly 30 years of telephone use.

The one part of the design I don't like is the pinout.  PGC and PGD are next
to each other.  This invites crosstalk, and I've presonally seen it happen.
At the time of the design, Microchip was vaguely planning the last pin for
PGM, but that was never implemented.  In hindsight it would have been much
better to separate PGC and PGD with a extra ground wire.  All my programmers
have a RJ-12 jack for compatibility, but also a 6 pin header and/or pads
with the extra ground line between PGC and PGD.  For programmers built into
fixtures, I always recommend the 6 pin interface be used instead of the
RJ-12, but not because there is anything wrong with a RJ-12 jack.


********************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, http://www.embedinc.com/products
(978) 742-9014.  Gold level PIC consultants since 2000.

2006\10\25@102941 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Olin Lathrop wrote:

> For the record, I think RJ-12 was a reasonable choice.  It is quick to
> connect and disconnect, locks with a positive feel, can't be plugged in
> backwards, cheap, and widely available.  These connectors have proven to
> work well in nearly 30 years of telephone use.

I don't like that they have this latch exposed. When pushing such a cable
through a bunch of cables, the latches very easily hook up with other
cables and either break or the plug has to be carefully removed from that
location. I also don't think they are particularly good in making contact
when used a lot, and the typical cables available for these plugs don't
work well for a development environment. Neither is very important in
typical telephone use, but that's not really what they are being used for
here.

IIRC, they were first designed for use internal to equipment, but then
became a de-facto consumer telephony standard -- not by design, more by
chance. (No sources, so don't quote me on that :)

Gerhard

2006\10\25@113928 by Ira Burton

picon face
I appreciate the approach Olin took on this.   When I read the original
post, I began to worry that all my designs that use an RJ-12 connector were
somehow flawed.   It took me about 15 minutes of thinking about the jack to
decide my fears were unfounded and that I had temporarily allowed the OP to
anchor me with a negative opinion of the jack.

On 10/25/06, Olin Lathrop <KILLspamolin_piclistspamBeGonespamembedinc.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2006\10\25@121037 by Bob Axtell

face picon face
Ira Burton wrote:
> I appreciate the approach Olin took on this.   When I read the original
> post, I began to worry that all my designs that use an RJ-12 connector were
> somehow flawed.   It took me about 15 minutes of thinking about the jack to
> decide my fears were unfounded and that I had temporarily allowed the OP to
> anchor me with a negative opinion of the jack.
>
>  
Olin is dead right about the connector. It is very reliable, and the
last standard from bell systems was that
the contact point must be gold. I believe it would be hard to find a
better connector. My complaint is from
the wires that must be used with the RJ-12.

I also agree about PGD and PGC being next to each other; a ground
seperating them would not only improve
crosstalk, but it would also halve the GND resistance, a serious
problem. As a result, I always have the cable
VERY short in length (about 6").

--Bob


{Quote hidden}

>> --

2006\10\25@133112 by Shawn Wilton

picon face
On 10/25/06, Olin Lathrop <@spam@olin_piclist@spam@spamspam_OUTembedinc.com> wrote:
>
> I didn't like the way the OP was asking for help and at the same time
> putting words in anyone's mouth that might help him.  His question was a
> lot
> like "Have you stopped beating your wife?".  Anyone responding to the OP's
> question would be implicitly agreeing that the ICD2 connector is
> "ridiculous" and that "everyone knows" that.  I thought that was arrogant
> and a particularly obnoxious way to make a point, so I responded to his
> post
> in a way that was litterally correct but otherwise useless.


Hilarious.  Thank you for the "useless" post, as you put it.  :-)


--

Shawn Wilton (b9 Systems)
http://b9Systems.com  <- New web page

2006\10\25@133211 by Shawn Wilton

picon face
You can't be serious?  Reeds in the wind...

On 10/25/06, Ira Burton <spamBeGoneira.burtonspamKILLspamgmail.com> wrote:
>
> I appreciate the approach Olin took on this.   When I read the original
> post, I began to worry that all my designs that use an RJ-12 connector
> were
> somehow flawed.   It took me about 15 minutes of thinking about the jack
> to
> decide my fears were unfounded and that I had temporarily allowed the OP
> to
> anchor me with a negative opinion of the jack.
>
>
--

Shawn Wilton (b9 Systems)
http://b9Systems.com  <- New web page

2006\10\25@133610 by Shawn Wilton

picon face
> Olin is dead right about the connector. It is very reliable, and the
> last standard from bell systems was that
> the contact point must be gold. I believe it would be hard to find a
> better connector. My complaint is from
> the wires that must be used with the RJ-12.



I have to figure that with the number of complaints this connector has
received, it is not a good choice.  Sure, it's cheap, available at any
hardware store and keyed.  But, I'm not the only person complaining about
the longevity of the connector or it's ability to maintain a good
connection.  A standard keyed header of some sort would IMO been a much
better choice.

--

Shawn Wilton (b9 Systems)
http://b9Systems.com

2006\10\25@141627 by Herbert Graf

flavicon
face
On Wed, 2006-10-25 at 10:36 -0700, Shawn Wilton wrote:
> > Olin is dead right about the connector. It is very reliable, and the
> > last standard from bell systems was that
> > the contact point must be gold. I believe it would be hard to find a
> > better connector. My complaint is from
> > the wires that must be used with the RJ-12.
>
>
>
> I have to figure that with the number of complaints this connector has
> received, it is not a good choice.  Sure, it's cheap, available at any
> hardware store and keyed.  But, I'm not the only person complaining about
> the longevity of the connector or it's ability to maintain a good
> connection.  A standard keyed header of some sort would IMO been a much
> better choice.

It is a well known fact that complainers tend to be MUCH more vocal then
those happy with something. As such, saying the connector is not a good
choice simply because of the complaints received on this list is simply
pointless and without any evidence.

That said, the RJ12 chosen for the ICD2 was a matter of trade offs (as
almost every engineering decision is). A "standard keyed header" is MUCH
larger footprint wise on a PCB then the RJ12. Also, the cables are more
expensive to make. It does have the longevity element, and is more
hobbyist friendly. They made the choice to use the RJ12, and that's
done.

Of the two choices, I would have probably chosen the keyed header since
PCB space during development isn't much a concern. Longevity also isn't
much of a concern for me since I don't regularly plug and unplug boards
from the ICD2. A project is plugged into the ICD2 until it works to the
point I can move to the next project, so it can be weeks before the ICD2
is moved to another board. However, in my opinion, calling the keyed
header a "much better choice" is not true, both options have their
benefits.

TTYL

2006\10\25@143128 by Shawn Wilton

picon face
> That said, the RJ12 chosen for the ICD2 was a matter of trade offs (as
> almost every engineering decision is). A "standard keyed header" is MUCH
> larger footprint wise on a PCB then the RJ12. Also, the cables are more
> expensive to make. It does have the longevity element, and is more
> hobbyist friendly. They made the choice to use the RJ12, and that's
> done.


According to the pictures posted earlier of the ICD2, the board does in fact
have a provision for a 6p header.  To what cables are you referring when you
say more expensive?  There are a plethora of choices that could have been
persued with regard to cable style.  Personally, I would have gone with the
6p 3x2 .1" header and a "3m" style plug-in keyed connector as were used on
the IDE interface of hard disk drives.

Of the two choices, I would have probably chosen the keyed header since
> PCB space during development isn't much a concern. Longevity also isn't
> much of a concern for me since I don't regularly plug and unplug boards
> from the ICD2. A project is plugged into the ICD2 until it works to the
> point I can move to the next project, so it can be weeks before the ICD2
> is moved to another board. However, in my opinion, calling the keyed
> header a "much better choice" is not true, both options have their
> benefits.


That was my opinion and was stated as such.  Opinions are not fact and
accordingly can't be considered true or false.

Perhaps I should have made an argument about the quality of the connector
instead of the design of the connector.  I have had my ICD2 for only a few
weeks and already the 6p connector does not maintain a quality connection to
the cables I have.  That's my basis for declaring the 6p connector on the
ICD2 as "ridiculous" and a poor choice.  In the beginning I was in favor of
the RJ-11/12 style connector, but seeing as how it no longer works reliably
I fail to see the benefit of the design choice.

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=ridiculous&db=*


--

Shawn Wilton (b9 Systems)
http://b9Systems.com  <- New web page

2006\10\25@154436 by Wouter van Ooijen

face picon face
> I have to figure that with the number of complaints this connector has
> received, it is not a good choice.

I disagree, I like it. And I don't think the number of complaints is a
good indication: it must be scaled with the number of units in use, and
you must remember that a dissatisfied person is more likely to complain
that a statisfied user.

Wouter van Ooijen

-- -------------------------------------------
Van Ooijen Technische Informatica: http://www.voti.nl
consultancy, development, PICmicro products
docent Hogeschool van Utrecht: http://www.voti.nl/hvu


2006\10\25@193539 by Herbert Graf

flavicon
face
On Wed, 2006-10-25 at 11:31 -0700, Shawn Wilton wrote:
> > That said, the RJ12 chosen for the ICD2 was a matter of trade offs (as
> > almost every engineering decision is). A "standard keyed header" is MUCH
> > larger footprint wise on a PCB then the RJ12. Also, the cables are more
> > expensive to make. It does have the longevity element, and is more
> > hobbyist friendly. They made the choice to use the RJ12, and that's
> > done.
>
>
> According to the pictures posted earlier of the ICD2, the board does in fact
> have a provision for a 6p header.  To what cables are you referring when you
> say more expensive?  

A cable that plugs into an RJ12 style jack is VERY cheap to make since
it's just a piece of very cheap plastic with some non critical in
dimension metal bits in it, crimped to form the connection in one shot.
A 1x5 header OTOH is magnitudes more complicated to make and assemble.
That said, we are talking about differences in cents, not a big deal for
you and me, but it becomes a big deal when volumes go up (although I
don't think MChip has made enough ICD2's for that difference to really
have much of an impact).

> There are a plethora of choices that could have been
> persued with regard to cable style.  Personally, I would have gone with the
> 6p 3x2 .1" header and a "3m" style plug-in keyed connector as were used on
> the IDE interface of hard disk drives.

In my experience the 3x2 header is rare, compared to sizes bigger then
that (yes, you can get them without a problem, but compared to other
larger sizes they are relatively rare. The AVR programmer I have uses a
2x3 header, I couldn't find a keyed header at my local parts places so I
had to use a 2x5 and extract 4 of the pins, annoying). Rare usually
equals more expensive. Again, we're only talking a few cents probably.
As a hobbyist I'd choose 1x5 before I'd even consider using a 2x3. In
the prototype world PCB space isn't very important IMHO.

Let me just mention that I've had my ICD2 for a few years now and
haven't experienced a single problem with the connector. Yes, I'm a
sample of one, but there it is anyways.

TTYL


2006\10\25@194938 by Shawn Wilton

picon face
On 10/25/06, Herbert Graf <.....mailinglist3spam_OUTspamfarcite.net> wrote:
>
> Let me just mention that I've had my ICD2 for a few years now and
> haven't experienced a single problem with the connector. Yes, I'm a
> sample of one, but there it is anyways.
>
>
I wish I could duplicate your good fortune.  :-)

--

Shawn Wilton (b9 Systems)
http://b9Systems.com  <- New web page

2006\10\25@213322 by Herbert Graf

flavicon
face
On Wed, 2006-10-25 at 16:49 -0700, Shawn Wilton wrote:
> On 10/25/06, Herbert Graf <TakeThisOuTmailinglist3.....spamTakeThisOuTfarcite.net> wrote:
> >
> > Let me just mention that I've had my ICD2 for a few years now and
> > haven't experienced a single problem with the connector. Yes, I'm a
> > sample of one, but there it is anyways.
> >
> >
> I wish I could duplicate your good fortune.  :-)

Well, perhaps it's something as simple as they changed the suppliers of
the RJ12 jacks at some point and the result was some ICD2's went out
with sub standard jacks.

The one thing you could do is contact MChip. I have heard (on this list)
that they are EXTREMELY willing to rectify any problem with a dev tool,
usually with very little prodding. If you contacted them reporting the
RJ12 jack contacts are causing you problems I wouldn't be surprised if
they just shipped you a replacement.

TTYL

2006\10\25@223713 by Sean Schouten

face picon face
On 10/24/06, Bob Axtell <TakeThisOuTengineerKILLspamspamspamneomailbox.com> wrote:
>
>
> Get 'em from Kenny on Ebay. He ships from
> Hong Kong for only $12 USD. I got mine in 10 days. Total cost plus
> shipping was $90 USD. Ran right out of the
> box. Almost NO manual, but it all makes intuitive sense.
>
> Trust me, I'm an engineer. You WON'T be disappointed. <G>.
>


Bob,

Would kenny's programmer be the following?
http://cgi.ebay.com/Full-Speed-USB-Microchip-ICD2-Debugger-and-Programmer_W0QQitemZ120044671027QQihZ002QQcategoryZ4661QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem


Sean.

2006\10\25@230244 by Bob Axtell

face picon face
Sean Schouten wrote:
> On 10/24/06, Bob Axtell <.....engineerspamRemoveMEneomailbox.com> wrote:
>  
>> Get 'em from Kenny on Ebay. He ships from
>> Hong Kong for only $12 USD. I got mine in 10 days. Total cost plus
>> shipping was $90 USD. Ran right out of the
>> box. Almost NO manual, but it all makes intuitive sense.
>>
>> Trust me, I'm an engineer. You WON'T be disappointed. <G>.
>>
>>    
>
>
> Bob,
>
> Would kenny's programmer be the following?
> http://cgi.ebay.com/Full-Speed-USB-Microchip-ICD2-Debugger-and-Programmer_W0QQitemZ120044671027QQihZ002QQcategoryZ4661QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
>
>
> Sean.
>  
Yep, that's him.

--Bob

2006\10\26@001115 by Shawn Wilton

picon face
An excellent point Herbert, I will see if I can dig up a contact number and
give them a ring.


On 10/25/06, Herbert Graf <RemoveMEmailinglist3spamspamBeGonefarcite.net> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2006\10\26@040927 by Pearce, AB (Alan)

face picon face

>> I appreciate the approach Olin took on this.   When I read the
>> original post, I began to worry that all my designs that use an
>> RJ-12 connector were somehow flawed.   It took me about 15
>> minutes of thinking about the jack to decide my fears were
>> unfounded and that I had temporarily allowed the OP to
>> anchor me with a negative opinion of the jack.
>>
>>  
>Olin is dead right about the connector. It is very reliable, and
>the last standard from bell systems was that the contact point
>must be gold. I believe it would be hard to find a better connector.
>My complaint is from the wires that must be used with the RJ-12.

It seems to me that these connectors are not made for regular mates and
demates. They are designed for a small number of uses, such as they
would normally get when used in telephony service. They do generate
problems with regular usage, one problem I have heard of is the wire
contacts coming out of their slots in the body of the connector, and the
back end coming free and going into an adjacent slot. There is also the
problem noted elsewhere in this thread where with continual matings the
contacts seem to work their way back into the socket body, so that the
plug has to be pushed in past the latch click point to get reliable
operation.

2006\10\26@041744 by Pearce, AB (Alan)

face picon face
>According to the pictures posted earlier of the ICD2, the board does
>in fact have a provision for a 6p header.
...  
>Personally, I would have gone with the 6p 3x2 .1" header and a "3m"
style
>plug-in keyed connector as were used on the IDE interface of hard disk
drives.

I would have thought using a standard 10 pin header with ribbon cable
would make as cheap an interface cable as any - and then there are
enough conductors to have every second one an earth, reducing crosstalk
in the cable, and allowing the clocking to run faster. I would also
classify such a cable as more rugged than an RJ12 cable.

2006\10\26@044626 by William Chops Westfield

face picon face

On Oct 26, 2006, at 1:09 AM, Pearce, AB (Alan) wrote:

> It seems to me that these connectors are not made for regular mates and
> demates. They are designed for a small number of uses...

Read the specs and you'll find that this is the case for most of
the "alternate" connectors that people have been suggesting as well.

BillW

2006\10\26@064723 by Michael Rigby-Jones

picon face


>-----Original Message-----
>From: Herbert Graf [TakeThisOuTpiclist-bouncesspamspammit.edu]
>Sent: 26 October 2006 00:35
>To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
>Subject: Re: [PIC] Microchips ridiculous ICD2 connector
>
>
>Let me just mention that I've had my ICD2 for a few years now
>and haven't experienced a single problem with the connector.
>Yes, I'm a sample of one, but there it is anyways.

We've had a couple of ICD's since they were first released, and have been in almost daily use since.  The only snag we have ever had is blowing up the output buffers, through carelessness rather than any fault of the ICD.  I ordered the parts overnight and fixed it myself rather than send it back and it's been fine since.  We also have a variety of different programming cables so the RJ12 socket has certainly been given a good workout.

Regards

Mike

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2006\10\26@072544 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Wouter van Ooijen wrote:

> [...] and you must remember that a dissatisfied person is more likely to
> complain that a statisfied user.

I know what you meant, but I still put this up for the "duh" price of the
month :)

Gerhard

2006\10\26@082006 by olin piclist

face picon face
Pearce, AB (Alan) wrote:
> It seems to me that these connectors are not made for regular mates and
> demates. They are designed for a small number of uses, such as they
> would normally get when used in telephony service.

But how often do you change cables on the ICD2 itself?  The target end of
the cable gets a lot of use, but the ICD2 end?  I try to avoid giving mine
any use at all, but when I'm stuck using a ICD2 I rarely plug/unplug the
cable at the ICD2.


********************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, http://www.embedinc.com/products
(978) 742-9014.  Gold level PIC consultants since 2000.

2006\10\26@085036 by Pearce, AB (Alan)

face picon face
>Pearce, AB (Alan) wrote:
>> It seems to me that these connectors are not made for regular mates
and
>> demates. They are designed for a small number of uses, such as they
>> would normally get when used in telephony service.
>
>But how often do you change cables on the ICD2 itself?  The target end
of
>the cable gets a lot of use, but the ICD2 end?  I try to avoid giving
mine
>any use at all, but when I'm stuck using a ICD2 I rarely plug/unplug
the
>cable at the ICD2.

I agree Olin, but the OP sounded like they unplug it often. I may be
wrong here, but that was the way the posting came across to me.

If they don't then it does sound like unit should get a repair, possibly
because a substitute connector was used in it.

2006\10\26@090950 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
On Wed, 25 Oct 2006 19:35:24 -0400, Herbert Graf wrote:
>...
> Let me just mention that I've had my ICD2 for a few years
now and
> haven't experienced a single problem with the connector.
Yes, I'm a
> sample of one, but there it is anyways.

And I'm another one, so 2 satisfied customers and counting!  
:-)

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2006\10\26@130126 by peter green

flavicon
face


{Quote hidden}

i wonder if there was a bad batch of ICD2s with lower quality connectors.

they certainly change parts over the lifetime of thier products (for example
they now put a tougher diode in a critical position in the pickit 2).

2006\10\26@134940 by Shawn Wilton

picon face
I've had my unit for a couple of weeks and has been plugged/unplugged no
more than 20 times.  Hence my degree of frustration.  I took mine apart last
night and also noticed however that I have one of the older units with the
Cypress chip in it.  Completely different looking than the pic posted
earlier.  So I'm going to try and get ahold of Microchip and see if they
will exchange it.


On 10/26/06, Pearce, AB (Alan) <EraseMEA.B.Pearcespam@spam@rl.ac.uk> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2006\10\26@153421 by Dwayne Reid

flavicon
face
At 12:31 PM 10/25/2006, Shawn Wilton wrote:

>Personally, I would have gone with the
>6p 3x2 .1" header and a "3m" style plug-in keyed connector as were used on
>the IDE interface of hard disk drives.

Just a quick comment here.  Rest assured that I do *NOT* want to
start a major discussion about this and the following comment is NOT
intended to be a flame <grin>.  But . . .

Have you tried to find any 6-pin 2x3 (.1" spacing) female ribbon
cable connectors?  The folks on the JP1 remote control mailing lists
would VERY much like to know where they can purchase such an
item.  I've searched and been unsuccessful as well.

I made some of the ones I needed by cutting down IDC ribbon-style
connectors, soldering wires to the pins, then covering with
epoxy.  I've also taken a pair of 1x3 connectors and glued them back-to-back.

dwayne

--
Dwayne Reid   <@spam@dwaynerspam_OUTspam.....planet.eon.net>
Trinity Electronics Systems Ltd    Edmonton, AB, CANADA
(780) 489-3199 voice          (780) 487-6397 fax

Celebrating 22 years of Engineering Innovation (1984 - 2006)
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2006\10\26@174133 by Mark Rages

face picon face
On 10/26/06, Dwayne Reid <spamBeGonedwaynerEraseMEspamplanet.eon.net> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

Like digikey #A3047-ND?  Photo:
http://rocky.digikey.com/WebLib/Amp/Web%20Photo/New%20Photos/102393-1,%20102398-1,%20102694-1.jpg

Regards,
Mark
--
You think that it is a secret, but it never has been one.
 - fortune cookie

2006\10\26@182611 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Mark Rages wrote:

>> Have you tried to find any 6-pin 2x3 (.1" spacing) female ribbon
>> cable connectors?  

> Like digikey #A3047-ND?  Photo:
> http://rocky.digikey.com/WebLib/Amp/Web%20Photo/New%20Photos/102393-1,%20102398-1,%20102694-1.jpg

Search for "CONN RECEPT .100 IDC GOLD" at Digikey. They carry a number of
options, it seems.

Gerhard

2006\10\26@220437 by Dwayne Reid

flavicon
face
At 03:41 PM 10/26/2006, Mark Rages wrote:
>On 10/26/06, Dwayne Reid <dwaynerspamBeGonespamplanet.eon.net> wrote:
> >
> > Have you tried to find any 6-pin 2x3 (.1" spacing) female ribbon
> > cable connectors?  The folks on the JP1 remote control mailing lists
> > would VERY much like to know where they can purchase such an
> > item.  I've searched and been unsuccessful as well.
> >
> > dwayne
>
>Like digikey #A3047-ND?  Photo:
>http://rocky.digikey.com/WebLib/Amp/Web%20Photo/New%20Photos/102393-1,%20102398-1,%20102694-1.jpg

Beauty!  Stephen Forrest also provided links to some actual IDC
ribbon connectors as well.

I'm happy to see them available now - I last looked a couple of years
ago (back when I was into making OneForAll universal remotes do what
I needed) and hadn't looked since.  There are places where they would
indeed be useful.

<carefully removing foot from mouth>

Thanks, all!

dwayne

--
Dwayne Reid   <RemoveMEdwayner@spam@spamspamBeGoneplanet.eon.net>
Trinity Electronics Systems Ltd    Edmonton, AB, CANADA
(780) 489-3199 voice          (780) 487-6397 fax

Celebrating 22 years of Engineering Innovation (1984 - 2006)
 .-.   .-.   .-.   .-.   .-.   .-.   .-.   .-.   .-.   .-
    `-'   `-'   `-'   `-'   `-'   `-'   `-'   `-'   `-'
Do NOT send unsolicited commercial email to this email address.
This message neither grants consent to receive unsolicited
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2006\10\26@230709 by John Chung

picon face
The are a few reason why the RJ connector fails. One
is the clip from the connector breaks off. Easily
fixed. The other one is the pins in the female
connector bends in too badly until it does not connect
well to the ICD2 connector. Both can be fixed... As I
see it any cable fails with frequent meddling.

John

--- "Pearce, AB (Alan)" <.....A.B.Pearce@spam@spamEraseMErl.ac.uk> wrote:

{Quote hidden}

> --

2006\10\26@230841 by John Chung

picon face
I am *okay* with the connector... Sometimes the female
connector fails on me.

John

--- Howard Winter <.....HDRWRemoveMEspamH2Org.demon.co.uk> wrote:

{Quote hidden}

> --

2006\10\29@224920 by Charles Craft

picon face
My problem is the similar style connector used for UTP ethernet on laptops.

Ever had the pins get hosed up in your laptop ethernet connector?
Pretty much have to swap out the motherboard to resolve that one.  %-)


{Original Message removed}

2006\10\31@202226 by Sean Schouten

face picon face
On 10/30/06, Charles Craft <.....chuckseaSTOPspamspam@spam@mindspring.com> wrote:
>
> My problem is the similar style connector used for UTP ethernet on
> laptops.
>
> Ever had the pins get hosed up in your laptop ethernet connector?
> Pretty much have to swap out the motherboard to resolve that one.  %-)
>



I actually haven't experienced that specific problem firsthand yet, and
neither have I heard of anyone I personally know experiencing it. I do
however know that in the case of my 6 or 7 year old HP Omnibook 6100, it
would be cheaper to buy a new laptop than it would be to replace it's
motherboard if you where to include labour costs, which reminds me that I
still have to order a new cooling module for it. I have been operating it
the past two or three years without any active cooling... I am amazed that
it's survived the things that I have put it through!

Sean


'[PIC] Microchips ridiculous ICD2 connector'
2006\11\01@035516 by Alan B. Pearce
face picon face
>> My problem is the similar style connector used for UTP ethernet on
>> laptops.
>>
>> Ever had the pins get hosed up in your laptop ethernet connector?
>> Pretty much have to swap out the motherboard to resolve that one.  %-)
>>
>
>I actually haven't experienced that specific problem firsthand yet, and
>neither have I heard of anyone I personally know experiencing it. I do
>however know that in the case of my 6 or 7 year old HP Omnibook 6100, it
>would be cheaper to buy a new laptop than it would be to replace it's
>motherboard if you where to include labour costs, which reminds me that I
>still have to order a new cooling module for it. I have been operating it
>the past two or three years without any active cooling... I am amazed that
>it's survived the things that I have put it through!

You should have seen what these bods were doing to a couple of Toshiba
laptops (one of them an unprotected toughbook) on the gadget Show last
Tuesday ...

http://gadgetshow.five.tv/jsp/5gsmain.jsp?lnk=401&section=Consumer&show=s5e7&featureid=233&description=Laptops:%20banged,%20chilled,%20dunked%20and%20blown%20up.

The Toughbook still worked after the explosion ...

2006\11\01@045241 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
Alan,

On Wed, 1 Nov 2006 08:55:01 -0000, Alan B. Pearce wrote:

>...
> You should have seen what these bods were doing to a couple of Toshiba
> laptops (one of them an unprotected toughbook) on the gadget Show last
> Tuesday ...
>
>
gadgetshow.five.tv/jsp/5gsmain.jsp?lnk=401&section=Consumer&show=s5e7&featureid=233&description=Laptops:%20banged,%20chilled,%20dunked
%20and%20blown%20up.
>
> The Toughbook still worked after the explosion ...

Wasn't the Toughbook a Panasonic?

I was amazed to see what the explosion did to the one in the padded bag - the shockwave produced a domed dent that looked as if they'd dropped a
bowling ball on it from a very great height!

They do have some fun on that programme - I wonder how you get a job there?  I'm sure I could replace Jon or Jason...

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2006\11\01@053543 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>They do have some fun on that programme - I wonder how you get a job there?
>I'm sure I could replace Jon or Jason...

You just want to be on screen with Suzy ...

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