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'Choice of a Microcontroller'
2005\12\16@123008 by der Finch (sent by Nabble.com)

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G'day all..

I'm pretty new to the whole buying-my-own microcontroller and I'm not sure what will be suitable for my application. So I'm looking for some ideas or pointers (or even someone to yell "What the hell? You can't do *that*" ;) )

I've got a small C program prepared that does some image recognition. Naturally, this is pretty intensive stuff, and I need a pretty meaty device in terms of processing power. The other thing is that it needs to be able to buffer in the memory two images that will be wored on - each a monochrome 300 by 300 bitmap, which fits nicely in about 200kbits - which is significantly more that most devices I've seen (with only a few hundred bytes). These images are delivered via the BT656 video interface, a 8-bit serial communicator. The output ideally would be 16-bits parallel but I'd settle for something serial if we're lacking pins.

Lastly, what sort of device would I need to load my program on to such a device? I'm guessing I'd get it from the microcontroller manufacturer?

Thanks a load!
Mr. Alex

--
Sent from the MicroControllers - PIC forum at Nabble.com:
www.nabble.com/Choice-of-a-Microcontroller-t756734.html#a1977738

2005\12\16@130212 by Rolf

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The memory limitations you face with PIC Microcontrollers will be your
biggest issue. You really should be looking at a larger environment.

Have a look at SBC's (Single board computers). Even the Fastest PIC
chips are only designed to handle streamed data, not large buffered volumes.

With a C program, I think you would do well to see
http://www.gumstix.com/ or equivalent (runs Linux,etc). Would be able to
use a PIC Micro to maybe re-stream the data in a more managable gormat
for the GumStix.

Rolf

Alexander Finch (sent by Nabble.com) wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2005\12\16@215826 by Russell McMahon

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> I've got a small C program prepared that does some image
> recognition. Naturally, this is pretty intensive stuff, ...

ARM !


       RM

2005\12\17@053449 by der Finch (sent by Nabble.com)

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Wow loads of replied, thanks guys!

Anyway, I'm looking into all the options you've suggested, it'll take me a while to look at them all, but some look promising

This is a proof-of-concept application for a robot football team. The final devices, if ever built, have to be pretty small and low-power. At the moment I'm not worrying too much about this but I have to keep it in mind that I haven't got an indefinate amount of space nor power, which unfortunately rules out using a desktop..

Budget is relatively small - I could probably stretch to about $200 for a suitable device. Some device I've seen are as low as $10, other up to $1000, so my fingers are crossed that what I want lies in my budget..

Anyway, let me check up on these leads and I'll get back to you.
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Sent from the MicroControllers - PIC forum at Nabble.com:
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2005\12\17@121802 by Dave Lag
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Didn't the MSP430 line have a video demo board and canned programs to do
security stuff - recognize movement etc?

2005\12\17@154241 by Peter

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On Sat, 17 Dec 2005, Russell McMahon wrote:

>> I've got a small C program prepared that does some image recognition.
>> Naturally, this is pretty intensive stuff, ...
>
> ARM !

MIPS!

P.

2005\12\17@210158 by Xiaofan Chen

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On 12/18/05, Peter <spam_OUTplpTakeThisOuTspamactcom.co.il> wrote:
>
> On Sat, 17 Dec 2005, Russell McMahon wrote:
> > ARM !
>
> MIPS!

There are many ARM based Microcontroller. Any MIPS based
MCU in the class of LPC2xxx? I do not know of any general
purpose MIPS based MCU.

Regards,
Xiaofan

2005\12\18@155923 by Peter

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On Sun, 18 Dec 2005, Xiaofan Chen wrote:

> On 12/18/05, Peter <.....plpKILLspamspam@spam@actcom.co.il> wrote:
>>
>> On Sat, 17 Dec 2005, Russell McMahon wrote:
>>> ARM !
>>
>> MIPS!
>
> There are many ARM based Microcontroller. Any MIPS based
> MCU in the class of LPC2xxx? I do not know of any general
> purpose MIPS based MCU.

The op needs at least 400kBytes of external ram to hold his data and
presumably a few tens of FLOPS to do the calculation. This is too much
for a microcontroller, it will have to be done by a microprocessor imho.
The MIPS boards available fit this description nicely, along with x86
embedded boards (gumsix, micro-itx, pc104 etc).

Peter

2005\12\21@160907 by der Finch (sent by Nabble.com)

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Hello again

I've been thinking about what you're all saying. From what I've found, a small, low-power device with the desired computation speed and memory capacity is hard to come by. I've thus reworked my problem, now I understand these things sightly better. I reckon it might actually be possible to work on the incoming data stream, doing away with the buffers altogether. Obviously, this removes a huge constraint: the memory requirement drops to perhaps a couple of KB, easily met. The processing power required probably is reduced also, but how much less depends on what my new program looks like, it might even be more. Indeed, I'm not sure working on the data stream itself will even work effectively...

So, now I'm looking for some alternate devices. I'm going to say I need about 8KB RAM, a relatively compact size (ideally no more than 20x20mm). Other than that it needs to be relatively fast and have ideally 24 I/O digital pins. It would also be great if it was a relatively generic and simple device.. I've discovered over the course of this project there are alot of ill-documented components out there!

Lastly, once I've chosen a device, what do I need to program it? I'm guessing I'll need to order some manner of interface board from the manufacturer?

Thanks a load!
--
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