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'[PIC] cheap, trusty programmer?'
2005\05\21@014616 by Joseph Pantoga

picon face
I have recently gained an interest in PIC programming, and I was
wondering if there was a cheap (under $100-150 US) PIC programmer that
could program a diverse selection of microchips, but was supported
often and had excellent support.  I am not looking for a kit, unless
it comes from a trustworthy vendor.  I have seen a lot of programmers
on the net, but many seem out of date (even the ones reccamended by
the list) or they just dont have the capabilities to program many
PIC's.  Does such a programmer exist in my price range?  I just want
to get a product that I know will be worth the money I am spending for
it.  Any help would be appreciated, thank you.

                              Joseph

2005\05\21@024411 by Jan Wagemakers

flavicon
face
Joseph Pantoga <spam_OUTjpantogaTakeThisOuTspamgmail.com> schreef:

> I have seen a lot of programmers
> on the net, but many seem out of date (even the ones reccamended by
> the list) or they just dont have the capabilities to program many
> PIC's.

Your question is not very clear to my, but WFIF, I make use of picprog
<http://hyvatti.iki.fi/~jaakko/pic/picprog.html> with a simple serial
JDM-style programmer.

I have writen programs to various pic's without problems.
<http://www.janw.easynet.be/pic1-e.html>
<http://www.janw.easynet.be/pic3-e.html>

I make use of GNU/Linux, but picprog should also work with
MS\Windows/Cygwin.

And there is various other software available that can do there job with
such a simple serial port programmer.

I don't know if this is what you are looking for, if not, just ignore this
answer ;-)


--
Met vriendelijke groetjes         - Jan Wagemakers -

- Debian GNU/Linux 3.1 - Up : 143 days

2005\05\21@030204 by Tomas Larsson

flavicon
face
Hi, Forest Electronics, http://www.fored.co.uk has some excellent programmers
starting from £35:-.

They also have some excellent compilers/IDE for both ASM and C, at very low
prices.
Been using it for a couple of years now, Excellent support. And a very good
forum as well.


With best regards

Tomas Larsson
Sweden

Verus Amicus Est Tamquam Alter Idem

> {Original Message removed}

2005\05\21@032219 by Jose Da Silva

flavicon
face
On May 20, 2005 10:46 pm, Joseph Pantoga wrote:
> I have recently gained an interest in PIC programming, and I was
> wondering if there was a cheap (under $100-150 US) PIC programmer
> that could program a diverse selection of microchips, but was
> supported often and had excellent support.  I am not looking for a
> kit, unless it comes from a trustworthy vendor.  I have seen a lot of
> programmers on the net, but many seem out of date (even the ones
> reccamended by the list) or they just dont have the capabilities to
> program many PIC's.  Does such a programmer exist in my price range?

I don't think you will find such a programmer to fit your requirements
since the number of people actually involved programming PICs isn't
large enough to justify an extremely cheap programmer that is supported
that often.
For example, everyone who owns a computer, needs a video card, so the
likelyhood of selling a video card is in the millions (this allows
cheap and lots of support as well), but people who program are only a
fraction of all computer users (you may note developer tools are
sometimes buggy and not so refined as consumer software), and "embedded
programming" is of interest to only a special FRACTION of programmers
capable of both software and hardware (so it's a real small group) and
the numbers indicate that.... for example piclist is host to a world
audience of about 2000 people specializing in PICs....

...Now just supposing that 1 out of 10 people on this list bought "your"
specific programmer, then that would be about 200 units sold... you
said cheap, okay, let's say $20, but $19 goes into parts, so that's
maybe $1 profit per unit or doing the math, $1x200 is about $200.

If you can find someone willing to do all that work for $200, let us
know who it is so that we can get them to make such a programmer   ;-)

...so, in summary, I think you will either get really cheap programmers
which support a few, or more expensive ones which are going to do them
all and with more comprehensive tests as well, which is exactly what
you are finding out there.

> I just want to get a product that I know will be worth the money I am
> spending for it.

I don't think anyone is making a king's ransom on selling programmers,
so whatever you pay will be well appreciated by whomever you decide to
purchase from. If you are doing this as a hobby, get a cheap one and
live with the fact you simply can't program every available chip. If
you are doing this for business, appreciate the fact, a lot more time
than it was probably worth, may have gone into making you a quality
programmer.

> Any help would be appreciated, thank you.

I hope you found this informative  ;-)

2005\05\21@032546 by Vic Fraenckel

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face
I have had good success with Wouter van Ooijen's Wisp628 programmer which is
an in-circuit serial programmer (ICSP). It is reasonable in price at under
US$25 for a kit and under US$40 assembled. Programming software is free from
Wouter and others. I use a freeware product called XWisp2. I own 2 '628's,
one a kit and one assembled. My advice is to buy the assembled unit. You can
get all the info at Wouter's site http://www.voti.nl . Wouter is very helpful and
responds to emails.

HTH

Vic
________________________________________________________

Victor Fraenckel - The Windman
victorf ATSIGN windreader DOTcom
KC2GUI

     Home of the WindReader Electronic Theodolite
                              Read the WIND

"Dost thou not know, my son, with how little wisdom the world is governed?"
-Count Oxenstierna (ca 1620) to the young King Gustavus Adolphus

"People sleep peacefully in their beds at night only because rough
men stand ready to do violence on their behalf."
-George Orwell

"When a true genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign: that
all the dunces are in confederacy against him."   -Jonathan Swift


{Original Message removed}

2005\05\21@033211 by Philip Pemberton

face picon face
In message <.....c2ec9af905052022467e089e1dKILLspamspam@spam@mail.gmail.com>>          Joseph Pantoga <jpantogaspamKILLspamgmail.com> wrote:

> I have recently gained an interest in PIC programming, and I was
> wondering if there was a cheap (under $100-150 US) PIC programmer that
> could program a diverse selection of microchips, but was supported
> often and had excellent support.

Microchip ICD2. I'm not sure what the US price is, but I paid £80 for mine,
which equates to around $150.

The nice thing about the ICD2 is that it can be used as a debugger as well as
a programmer. I haven't used my Wisp628 for ages :)

Later.
-- Phil.                              | Acorn Risc PC600 Mk3, SA202, 64MB, 6GB,
.....philpemKILLspamspam.....philpem.me.uk              | ViewFinder, 10BaseT Ethernet, 2-slice,
http://www.philpem.me.uk/          | 48xCD, ARCINv6c IDE, SCSI
... Once you understand your computer it is obsolet

2005\05\21@033825 by Denny Esterline

picon face
Several come to mind, many much less than the price range you've given.
Wouter's Wisp (http://www.voti.nl/wisp628/n_index.html), and Olin's EasyProg
(http://www.embedinc.com/easyprog/index.htm) are both designed and supported
by list residents and many have found them very useful. Both are available
fully assembled, but various parts kits are available. They're also open
source so you could build your own without a kit.

But at the $150 price range I'd probably recommend the ICD2 strait from
Microchip (http://buy.microchip.com/productsearch.aspx?Keywords=DV164005)
It's Microchips's "official" development programmer, and usually has support
for all the newest chips before they're even released. For a little cheaper,
there are also some clones of the ICD2, most notably Olimex
(http://www.olimex.com/dev/pic-icd2.html and
http://www.olimex.com/dev/pic-tinyicd2.html) (Olimex products are available
in the USA from Sparkfun http://www.sparkfun.com)

Good luck,
-Denny


{Quote hidden}

> --

2005\05\21@042329 by Wouter van Ooijen

face picon face
> I have recently gained an interest in PIC programming, and I was
> wondering if there was a cheap (under $100-150 US) PIC programmer that
> could program a diverse selection of microchips, but was supported

how diverse? if you can spend $150 and flash-only is OK consider the
ICD2.

> often and had excellent support.  I am not looking for a kit, unless
> it comes from a trustworthy vendor.

Define trustworhy? Embeddedinc, VOTI, kitsrus? I

> but many seem out of date (even the ones reccamended by
> the list)

which ones?

>  I just want
> to get a product that I know will be worth the money I am spending for
> it.

whether it is worth its money for you depends on whether it matches your
needs, so be more specific.

Wouter van Ooijen

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


2005\05\21@043023 by Vic Fraenckel

flavicon
face
You might want to check out the Olimex ICSD at  http://www.sparkfun.com . I just
bought one of these. Just about US$100. Came yesterday but I haven't fired
it up yet. While visiting the site, look at some of the interesting
tutorials. I have purchased other items from them and have been pleased with
the prices and quality.

HTH

Vic
________________________________________________________

Victor Fraenckel - The Windman
victorf ATSIGN windreader DOTcom
KC2GUI

     Home of the WindReader Electronic Theodolite
                              Read the WIND

"Dost thou not know, my son, with how little wisdom the world is governed?"
-Count Oxenstierna (ca 1620) to the young King Gustavus Adolphus

"People sleep peacefully in their beds at night only because rough
men stand ready to do violence on their behalf."
-George Orwell

"When a true genius appears in the world you may know him by this sign: that
all the dunces are in confederacy against him."   -Jonathan Swift



2005\05\21@052459 by Lindy Mayfield

flavicon
face
I'm really having trouble knowing what to think about paying $400 for a rotary phone that looks just like what my grandmother used to have.  

I have to re-read The Man in the High Castle, I think.

{Original Message removed}

2005\05\21@073403 by John J. McDonough

flavicon
face
----- Original Message -----
From: "Joseph Pantoga" <EraseMEjpantogaspam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTgmail.com>
Subject: [PIC] cheap, trusty programmer?


> I have recently gained an interest in PIC programming, and I was
> wondering if there was a cheap (under $100-150 US) PIC programmer that

You do have a problem.  No matter what you buy, you need to consider it
"throw-away".  You can build a serial or parallel port programmer for next
to nothing that will program a wide variety of parts.  However, serial and
parallel ports are getting scarcer and scarcer, and these programmers do not
work with USB to serial converters, so at some point, you will no longer
have a computer that works with them.

The USB programmers all require proprietary software, and at some point the
vendor will loose interest in the product and your choice of PICs or
operating systems will move along so your programmer will be useless.  We've
seen Microchip's business model obsolete some programmers, and we have seen
scores of small suppliers leave the market for whatever reason.

For these reasons, you need to consider carefully whether you want to spend
a ton of money to get the widest range possible.  Simple Tait-style
programmers are widely supported by all sorts of open-source programs, and
there are probably hundreds of people supplying this software.  Support for
a particular chip, of course, depends on someone getting interested or
rolling your own.  There is a lot of hassle to this approach, but a lot of
flexibility, too.

Small suppliers like Olin and Wouter provide nice, inexpensive programmers
that are supported pretty well.  These are small guys, though, and although
they provide quite good support, you are dependent on them taking interest
in a particular part, and they are probably at fairly high risk of going out
of business tomorrow.

Microchip's ICD2 does seem to have support for a large number of parts and a
price that isn't really obscene, and it adds in-circuit debugging.  But
clearly, at some point Microchip will decide that the latest, greatest, more
expensive thing supercedes it.

So, keep in mind that it's a limited life investment when you decide.

--McD



2005\05\21@074248 by Dave Turner

picon face
> Microchip's ICD2 does seem to have support for a large number of parts and a
> price that isn't really obscene, and it adds in-circuit debugging.  But
> clearly, at some point Microchip will decide that the latest, greatest, more
> expensive thing supercedes it.

<gulp>  Got an ICD2 a few weeks ago.  Do you know how long they
usually support each piece of hardware?  Have I wasted my cash?

2005\05\21@090541 by Bill & Pookie

picon face
The PICKit1 from MicroChipp for about $35 USD is a great "out of the box"
setup for learning pic programming.  Has leds, push button, a/d and
comparator i/o on board.  Chip selection is extremely limited.

And who would have thought that "The Man in the High Castle" was a book of
things to come?

Bill

----- Original Message -----
From: "Lindy Mayfield" <Lindy.Mayfieldspamspam_OUTeur.sas.com>
To: "Microcontroller discussion list - Public." <@spam@piclistKILLspamspammit.edu>
Sent: Saturday, May 21, 2005 2:23 AM
Subject: RE: [PIC] cheap, trusty programmer?


> I'm really having trouble knowing what to think about paying $400 for a
rotary phone that looks just like what my grandmother used to have.
>
> I have to re-read The Man in the High Castle, I think.
>
> {Original Message removed}

2005\05\21@091949 by olin_piclist

face picon face
Joseph Pantoga wrote:
> I have recently gained an interest in PIC programming, and I was
> wondering if there was a cheap (under $100-150 US) PIC programmer that
> could program a diverse selection of microchips, but was supported
> often and had excellent support.  I am not looking for a kit, unless
> it comes from a trustworthy vendor.  I have seen a lot of programmers
> on the net, but many seem out of date (even the ones reccamended by
> the list) or they just dont have the capabilities to program many
> PIC's.  Does such a programmer exist in my price range?  I just want
> to get a product that I know will be worth the money I am spending for
> it.  Any help would be appreciated, thank you.

Check out my EasyProg at http://www.embedinc.com/products.  It is available
as a bare board, kit, and fully built unit, all under your price range.
Also check out Wouter's Wisp628.


*****************************************************************
Embed Inc, embedded system specialists in Littleton Massachusetts
(978) 742-9014, http://www.embedinc.com

2005\05\21@094414 by Wouter van Ooijen

face picon face
> You do have a problem.  No matter what you buy, you need to
> consider it "throw-away".

Which is an economic attitude. The OP stated 'below $100-$150'. Entry
level intelligent programmers can be had for < $60. So the OP can buy
one now, and save the remainder to buy a next one should the need arise.

{Quote hidden}

But both provide the sources too, so there is nothing that prevents you
(or someone else) to extend the software. In fact there is a range of
third-party PC software for my Wisp628, and someone took Olin's firmware
and ported it to the Wisp628 hardware!

Wouter van Ooijen

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


2005\05\21@125245 by Mike Hord

picon face
> > Microchip's ICD2 does seem to have support for a large number of parts and a
> > price that isn't really obscene, and it adds in-circuit debugging.  But
> > clearly, at some point Microchip will decide that the latest, greatest, more
> > expensive thing supercedes it.
>
> <gulp>  Got an ICD2 a few weeks ago.  Do you know how long they
> usually support each piece of hardware?  Have I wasted my cash?

I don't think you have anything to worry about.  They supported the
original ICD for several years, and I think (don't know, though) that a
bit of the reason for changing was USB and firmware upgradablity.

Now that the ICD2 has implemented both of those, there's no reason
they can't continue to upgrade it for many years to come.  Remember,
Microchip isn't in the programmer/debugger selling business, they're in
the chip selling business.  From that perspective, it makes sense to
support what they have as long as it meets the needs of most of their
customers.  Creating a "new" product is more work, and it wouldn't
get them away from the support requirements.

Mike H.

2005\05\21@150309 by PicDude

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face
Not sure if a one-size-programs-all programmer exists, but I bet it wouldn't
be cheap.  "Diverse selection" will vary depending on what you want to
program.  As a newbie to PICs, my recommendation would be to get an
ultra-cheap reliable programmer -- which for me is the trusty ol' Tait
classic programmer (parallel port).  Literally a few dollars, but you do put
it together yourself, and very popular (ie: supported).  If you classify
US$100-$150 as cheap, then the price of this would make it "disposable" :-)

I've got a board layout for this in Eagle if you want, and it's setup to use a
simple jumper to select the type/class of chip to be programmed.

I program with Odyssey under Linux, or ICProg under Win2k.  When you figure
out later what PICs you'll be using, you can look for a programmer that
covers that set.

Cheers,
-Neil.



On Saturday 21 May 2005 12:46 am, Joseph Pantoga scribbled:
{Quote hidden}

2005\05\21@193318 by Joseph Pantoga

picon face
Another thing, I will be using Windows XP, will this pose a problem
when it comes to choosing software? And also, would starting to
program a Parallax Basic Stamp help break me into this new hobby?

2005\05\21@210304 by Charles Linquist

flavicon
face
A Very good (relatively) cheap, trusty programmer is a Microchip ICD2
(about $150), along with a home-made DIP adaptor. This device will
program absolutely anything Microchip makes.

As far as learning to program in a language other than assembler, I
recommend PicBasic Pro.  Powerful, easy to learn, etc.

It doesn't support functions or interrupts (at least not easily), but
you can go a long way before those limitations become problematic.

Charles Linquist


PicDude wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2005\05\21@211952 by Byron A Jeff

face picon face
On Sat, May 21, 2005 at 06:33:18PM -0500, Joseph Pantoga wrote:
> Another thing, I will be using Windows XP, will this pose a problem
> when it comes to choosing software?

Nope. Most programming software will come with either a driver or a DLL
that interfaces to the appropriate port.

> And also, would starting to
> program a Parallax Basic Stamp help break me into this new hobby?

That's always a debate. I believe the general concensus is that it's
smart to learn PIC assembly first because almost everyone knows it and
can communicate using it.

The issue most see with the BS2 is limited capability and high price.

I never did weigh in on your original issue. I wouldn't bother trying
to get the program absolutely everything programmer. If this is a hobby
it's very likely that you're only going to need a very limited number
group of chips. And the physical programming interface is pretty much the
same for all chips.

Start simple with EasyProg, WISP628, or possibly an ICD2 (or clone). Each
will handle any set of chips you'll need in the near future.

Do your first project or two in assembly with a bare chip. Then you'll have
enough experience to make future decisions.

Be aware that there are a wide variety of languages available for the PIC
including C, JAL, XCSB, Forth, and Pascal among others. So don't lock in
too quickly.

BAJ

2005\05\21@213121 by Lindy Mayfield

flavicon
face
A BS2 costs about 50 bucks, right?  I'm curious to ask people in the know where the cost is.



-----Original Message-----
From: KILLspampiclist-bouncesKILLspamspammit.edu [RemoveMEpiclist-bouncesTakeThisOuTspammit.edu] On Behalf Of Joseph Pantoga
Sent: Sunday, May 22, 2005 1:33
To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
Subject: Re: [PIC] cheap, trusty programmer?

Another thing, I will be using Windows XP, will this pose a problem
when it comes to choosing software? And also, would starting to
program a Parallax Basic Stamp help break me into this new hobby?

2005\05\22@011107 by William Chops Westfield

face picon face
On May 21, 2005, at 6:30 PM, Lindy Mayfield wrote:

> A BS2 costs about 50 bucks, right?
> I'm curious to ask people in the know where the cost is.
>
I would guess "Support."
See sparkfun's custom PCB forum for an interesting tale of what
happens when you offer a service explicitly aimed at beginners...

BillW

2005\05\22@100028 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
Lindy,

On Sun, 22 May 2005 03:30:17 +0200, Lindy Mayfield wrote:

> A BS2 costs about 50 bucks, right?

Depends where you buy them - from Maplin, here in Rip-Off-Britain, they are UK£45 (say US$82 at current exchange rates)...

> I'm curious to ask people in the know where the cost is.
The *cost* was in the development of the language and the interpreter to run it and possibly in user support (if there is any) plus a little for the hardware.  The *value* is in not having to learn PIC assembler and not needing a programmer - the program is sent straight to the BS from the PC serial port.

Whether the price is good value for money is a debate that could run and run!  :-)

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England

2005\05\22@103323 by Dave Turner

picon face
I really don't see why people pay for a basic stamp, when they can buy
a pic for about 50 timer cheaper, and download basic.  Also, basic
stamps only store about 256 instructions, as opposed to a PIC -
several thousand.  I mean, storing the program in a data EEPROM, now
that's just dumn.

</flame>

(I just don't like seeing people getting ripped off)

On 5/22/05, Howard Winter <spamBeGoneHDRWspamBeGonespamh2org.demon.co.uk> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

>

2005\05\22@105534 by Byron A Jeff

face picon face
On Sun, May 22, 2005 at 03:33:23PM +0100, Dave Turner wrote:
> I really don't see why people pay for a basic stamp, when they can buy
> a pic for about 50 timer cheaper, and download basic.

Because there's no setup involved.

>  Also, basic
> stamps only store about 256 instructions, as opposed to a PIC -
> several thousand.  I mean, storing the program in a data EEPROM, now
> that's just dumn.

Agreed. The original BS had external serial EEPROM.

The biggest problem with the stamp is speed, followed closely by cost.

Personally I'm still partial to something like JAL loaded with a
bootloader. It's a stamp style of development, but eliminates all of
the cost and speed issues.

BAJ

2005\05\22@152447 by Joseph Pantoga

picon face
I was looking at the ICD2, but apparently you need header boards for
some PICs., I was also looking at the PICStart plus, and although it
is a little above what I was hoping to spend, I think it might be my
best option.  Thoughts?

2005\05\22@155317 by Wouter van Ooijen

face picon face
> I was looking at the ICD2, but apparently you need header boards for
> some PICs., I was also looking at the PICStart plus, and although it
> is a little above what I was hoping to spend, I think it might be my
> best option.  Thoughts?

You are the best judge of your own needs, but I would never consider
buying a PS+. ICSP is what I like best, and the ICD2 is cheaper too. But
why not buy a Wisp628/Easyprog/DIY-150 now, and save the money for when
you realy need to program a chip that can not be done with that progger?

Wouter van Ooijen

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


2005\05\22@160958 by Michael Rathbun

flavicon
face
On Sun, 22 May 2005 14:24:46 -0500, Joseph Pantoga <TakeThisOuTjpantogaEraseMEspamspam_OUTgmail.com>
wrote:

>I was looking at the ICD2, but apparently you need header boards for
>some PICs., I was also looking at the PICStart plus, and although it
>is a little above what I was hoping to spend, I think it might be my
>best option.  Thoughts?

The ICD2 with the Universal Programming Module has worked out very well
here; in addition to programming loose parts in the ZIF socket, the wires
that plug to pins on the UPM will also plug on header pins I put on a
prototype, allowing ICP without exotic connectors.  The debug capabilites
are a plus, as well.  Apparently there are devices that this combination
will handle that the PICStart won't.

mdr

2005\05\22@180329 by John J. McDonough

flavicon
face
Take a hard look at the ICD2.  There aren't a lot of parts that need the
header, and most of them are parts you would be unlikely to use, anyway.
And besides, you want to program in-circuit, anyway.  But I can't disagree
with Wouter, either.  Get a Wisp or an EasyProg for next to nothing, program
a huge range of parts with the thing, and then when you run across the need
to program something else, you will have a much better feel for the
tradeoffs.

In fact, I would suggest you sit down right now, toss a coin, heads
EasyProg, tails Wisp.  Put the check in the mail in the morning, and get on
with working with the PIC.  In a couple, three, four years, you will need to
program something else, and then you will have learned a lot more, and
everything will have changed by then, anyway!

--McD

{Original Message removed}

2005\05\22@183745 by Tomas Larsson

flavicon
face
In my opinion, the best thing you can do is to get the PICKey from FED,
together with their marvelous C-compiler WIZ-C, starting at £35:- for the
compiler.

The PICKey is an USB in-circuit programmer and debugger, it supports
virtually all PICs, except fo a few strange ones.

WIZ-C is a ANSI C-compiler with built in debugger and simulator, capable of
handeling virtual external equipment such as a terminal, I2C device LCD's
and much more. Together with the "Key" it will do debugging in real HW
within the C-Source.
The Pro version can simulate multi-PIC projects with communication between
them.
The compiler comes (in the Pro-version) with virtually all libraries you
need such as Floating point and more. WIZ-C also incorporates the
"App-Designer" that is a function that creates necessary code for some
common functions

WIC-C Pro Lite starts at around £35:-, supports three PIC's, and can be
upgraded to the full version for a low cost.

They also have a very good C-Tutorial to start off with.
Have look on their website http://www.fored.co.uk


With best regards

Tomas Larsson
Sweden

Verus Amicus Est Tamquam Alter Idem

> {Original Message removed}

2005\05\22@185343 by William Chops Westfield

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On May 22, 2005, at 7:33 AM, Dave Turner wrote:

> I mean, storing the program in a data EEPROM, now that's just dumn.

At the time, it was very clever.  The basic stamp I is a 16C54, and came
out LONG before large program memories, EEPROM, or flash.  The basic
stampII
uses a similarly primitive chip.  At the time, it was close to
brilliant (IMO.)
At the time, you got to make the decision between the $39 stamp, and a
$12 UV
erasable chip, plus a UV eraser, plus a parallel programmer of some
kind (no
ICSP back then, either), and the state of compilers for PICs was dismal.
By the date it was possible to functionally replace a stamp with a
flash chip,
jdm-style programmer and basic compiler, the stamp was well-established.


I'm a bit disappointed that parallax hasn't driven the cost down by
using newer
chips; all of a basic stamp I should fit on something like a 16F88
(including
the on-board eeprom, which should be faster (having parallel access.))  
On the
other hand, the fact that they haven't is part of the reason I'm led to
believe
that their major "cost" these days is "support" rather than the HW
itself.

BillW

2005\05\22@212752 by Tony Smith

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Since you're in the UK, you should have mentioned http://www.picaxe.co.uk!  A Basic
Stamp on a single chip, several varieties (8-40 pin, if I recall).

Put it in a white breadboard, download a program via RS-232, have a play.
If you get bored of the Basic, wipe it and you're left with a real PIC.

Peter Anderson - http://www.phanderson.com sells them in the States.  Quick, he's
going on holidays in a few weeks!

Tony



{Quote hidden}

>

2005\05\23@014453 by Chen Xiao Fan

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Chip selection of PICkit 1 is not that limited after all. Most
of the 8/14/18/20pin flash parts will be supported. Please
refer to the other post titled "RE: [PIC] Using pickit 1
to program other picmicros".

It will support 10F200/202/204/206, 12F508/509/510,
12F629/675/635/683, 16F505/54/57/59, 16F630/676/684/636/688,
16F685/687/689/690, 16F627A/628A/648A (confirmed) and possibly
16F785, 16F913/914/916/917 and 16F873A/874A/876A (not confirmed).

It can support even more chips with better PC host
program. If we can change the firmware, support for the other
16F and 18F will be okay as well.

Of course for the OP, the best choice is ICD2 since he can
afford US$150.

Xiaofan

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill & Pookie [RemoveMEreddxspamTakeThisOuTcomcast.net]
Sent: Saturday, May 21, 2005 9:06 PM
To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
Subject: Re: [PIC] cheap, trusty programmer?


The PICKit1 from MicroChipp for about $35 USD is a great "out of the box"
setup for learning pic programming.  Has leds, push button, a/d and
comparator i/o on board.  Chip selection is extremely limited.
...
Bill

2005\05\23@084959 by Howard Winter

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Joseph,

On Sun, 22 May 2005 14:24:46 -0500, Joseph Pantoga wrote:

> I was looking at the ICD2, but apparently you need header boards for
> some PICs.,

Only if you want to use the Debug function - programming is a question of either using ICSP (you may need to
make your own cable to connect to your target board) or getting the Universal Adaptor, basically a ZIF socket
with connections for the ICD2, if you want to do drop-in programming.

I was also looking at the PICStart plus, and although it
> is a little above what I was hoping to spend, I think it might be my
> best option.  Thoughts?

No!!!!  The PICstart+ is getting old, and Microchip are aiming their latest tools at the ICD2, which will
already program some PICs that the PICstart+ won't.

If you are trying to be future-proof, then the ICD2 is the way to go.  If you want minimum cost, WISP628 or
EasyProg are the choices.

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2005\05\23@085759 by Howard Winter

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Tony,

On Mon, 23 May 2005 11:27:47 +1000, Tony Smith wrote:

> Since you're in the UK, you should have mentioned http://www.picaxe.co.uk!  A Basic
> Stamp on a single chip, several varieties (8-40 pin, if I recall).

I didn't want to muddy the waters any further!  :-)

> Put it in a white breadboard, download a program via RS-232, have a play.
> If you get bored of the Basic, wipe it and you're left with a real PIC.

I admit it's something that I have always been meaning to play with - I don't know how they do it for the
price, which is not much more than the cost of the PIC itself (and you're right, they have offerings using
several PICs across the range).

> Peter Anderson - http://www.phanderson.com sells them in the States.  Quick, he's
> going on holidays in a few weeks!

But for those Right-Ponded among us, they're cheaper to buy direct (which makes a nice change :-)  
http://www.picaxe.co.uk

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2005\05\23@104112 by Alan B. Pearce

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> I was also looking at the PICStart plus, and although it
> is a little above what I was hoping to spend, I think it might be my
> best option.  Thoughts?

The Picstart+ is a programmer only, where the ICD2 is both a programmer and
debug interface for all but the smallest PICs. At about the same cost for
each, the ICD2 will be a more useful tool.

2005\05\23@110709 by Tony Smith

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I brought a bunch of 8 pins ones to play with (Australia).  They're quite
popular here, the local electronics mag (Silicon Chip) has run many
articles.

Of course, you don't get much program space, 40 lines in the smallest, and
slow speed compared a PIC using assembler.  They're perfect for little jobs,
like running bilge pumps, sunset switches etc.

Tony



> {Original Message removed}

2005\05\23@123801 by S Bakaletz

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Again I recommend the Olimex PG2C programmer  http://www.olimex.com
They have resellers all over the world.

In the USA I recommend Prof Peter H Anderson
www.phanderson.com/ordering_1.html#olimex
He charges 12.95 + 1.25 shipping (You can't go out to lunch for less than
that), and if it doesn't work
he'll refund your money.

For the programming software http://www.ic-prog.com/index1.htm  it's free.

I've used this programmer on my Dell Laptop without any problems

It gives you that diverse selection of microchips you want, and will serve
you
well until your ready to step up to a more professional programer.

----- Original Message -----
From: "Joseph Pantoga" <jpantogaEraseMEspam.....gmail.com>
To: <EraseMEpiclistspammit.edu>
Sent: Friday, May 20, 2005 22:46
Subject: [PIC] cheap, trusty programmer?


> I have recently gained an interest in PIC programming, and I was
> wondering if there was a cheap (under $100-150 US) PIC programmer that
> could program a diverse selection of microchips, but was supported

2005\05\24@142540 by Herbert Graf

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On Sat, 2005-05-21 at 00:46 -0500, Joseph Pantoga wrote:
> I have recently gained an interest in PIC programming, and I was
> wondering if there was a cheap (under $100-150 US) PIC programmer that
> could program a diverse selection of microchips, but was supported
> often and had excellent support.  I am not looking for a kit, unless
> it comes from a trustworthy vendor.  I have seen a lot of programmers
> on the net, but many seem out of date (even the ones reccamended by
> the list) or they just dont have the capabilities to program many
> PIC's.  Does such a programmer exist in my price range?  I just want
> to get a product that I know will be worth the money I am spending for
> it.  Any help would be appreciated, thank you.

Unless your looking for a production programmer the answer, to me at
least, is clear: MChip's ICD2. You won't get better chip support from a
third party programmer then the ICD2, and it gives you in circuit
debugging capabilities which are VERY handy IMHO.

$150USD last I checked, can often be found for less, WELL worth it. TTYL


-----------------------------
Herbert's PIC Stuff:
http://repatch.dyndns.org:8383/pic_stuff/

2005\05\24@142955 by Herbert Graf

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On Sat, 2005-05-21 at 18:03 -0700, Charles Linquist wrote:
> A Very good (relatively) cheap, trusty programmer is a Microchip ICD2
> (about $150), along with a home-made DIP adaptor. This device will
> program absolutely anything Microchip makes.

I'm sure this has already been mentioned, but while the ICD2 does
program alot of chips, it doesn't support all chips.

That said, it's VERY unlikely a hobbyist will ever even here of one of
the parts it can't program. TTYL

-----------------------------
Herbert's PIC Stuff:
http://repatch.dyndns.org:8383/pic_stuff/

2005\05\24@161242 by Charles Linquist

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I have found it programs anything I use, and you get a decent In-Circuit
Debugger for free.
As a programmer, it is quite fast as well.

Charles Linquist



Herbert Graf wrote:

{Quote hidden}

2005\05\24@225931 by Denny Esterline

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> I'm sure this has already been mentioned, but while the ICD2 does
> program alot of chips, it doesn't support all chips.
>

Since we're kicking this around anyway - care to clarify which parts it will
*not* program?

As I understand it, it will program ALL the flash parts, but doesn't provide
enough Vpp current to handle the EEPROM and OTP parts. Though it wouldn't be
the first time I was wrong. :-)


-Denny

2005\05\24@232641 by Chen Xiao Fan

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It seems for the existing and active flash parts, only
the special rfPICs and a few old PICs (eg 16F84, is it
active now?) are not supported (but 16F84A are supported).
I just did a fast check on MPLAB IDE 7.10.

Xiaofan

{Original Message removed}

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