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'Magenta ICD - first impressions'
2000\03\24@045433 by Michael Rigby-Jones

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<P><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">I received my ICEBREAKER kit few days back and finaly got round to building it last night.&nbsp; For anyone in the uk at least, this is a real bargain.&nbsp; 35UKP buys you a decent PCB, a pre-pregrammed 16F877, one of those small prototype boards which sticks onto the PCB, a 16x2 LCD display and a stepper motor and all components for the stepper driver etc.&nbsp; Even comes with serial cable for programming, and a bunch of single strand hookup wire to connect up the LCD/stepper/prototype board.</FONT></P>

<P><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">However, I had some problems trying to run the example programs. The LCD test program worked intermittantly, with garbage being displayed frequently.&nbsp; After taking a look at the source code I saw some instances of consecutive bit operations on a port, really pushing your luck doing this at 20MHz.&nbsp; Anyone else seen this?</FONT></P>

<P><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">The debugging software on Windows is..well....adequate.&nbsp; I wouldn't call it professional but it does the job.&nbsp; One point that had me for a while is that opening a HEX file will display the correct source code in a window and a breakpoint can be set etc.&nbsp; However, it dosen't download the program until you choose &quot;Program&quot; from a drop down menu.&nbsp; If you start single stepping with out realising this you get all sorts of bizzare behaviour such as comments in the source code apparently being executed!</FONT></P>

<P><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">There has definately been some cost cutting in the serial interface, no MAX232 etc.. driver is used, instead a bunch of zeners are used to clamp the RS232 swings to 5 volts.&nbsp; Not brilliant, but at least they didn't rely on the PIC's internal protection diodes for clamping.&nbsp; If a proper RS232 interface is important to you, there is enough prototype area to kludge one on.&nbsp; You would however have to deal with the inversion problem which would be tricky as the ICD software is not of the &quot;open source&quot; variety.</FONT></P>

<P><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">On the whole thoroughly recomended.&nbsp; The price is good for the hardware alone, the ICD is a bonus :o)&nbsp; If you want to order one, make sure the kit contains a copy of the contructional details, as mine didn't.&nbsp; They did send it the next day after I used the feedback form on the web site however.</FONT></P>

<P><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">Cheers</FONT>
</P>

<P><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">Mike Rigby-Jones</FONT>
</P>

<P><U><FONT COLOR="#0000FF" SIZE=2 FACE="Arial"><A HREF="http://www.magenta2000.co.uk" TARGET="_blank">www.magenta2000.co.uk</A></FONT></U>
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2000\03\24@080312 by Jinx

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2000\03\24@114450 by Quitt, Walter

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It's like $2000 USD in Ameriaca.
We've got two now,
Foes that mean we can work twice as fast? :-) :-)

Walt...

-----Original Message-----
From: Jinx [spam_OUTjoecolquittTakeThisOuTspamCLEAR.NET.NZ]
Sent: Friday, March 24, 2000 5:04 AM
To: .....PICLISTKILLspamspam@spam@MITVMA.MIT.EDU
Subject: Re: Magenta ICD - first impressions


Hi, had my eye on an ICE2000, now find they've gone up to NZ$3000+ /
UKP1000+

The variety of ICE and ICD products has got me very uncertain what to get -
I need
to have something. I'm assuming that the ICEBREAKER is for 877 not 84.
Correct ?

Jinx

2000\03\24@114700 by Michael Rigby-Jones

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<P><FONT COLOR="#0000FF" SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">Correct.&nbsp; However, if you want to program for the '84 it shouldn't be a problem.&nbsp; AFAIK the '87X has everything the 84 has, and and awflul lot more besides.</FONT></P>

<P><FONT COLOR="#0000FF" SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">Cheers</FONT>
</P>

<P><FONT COLOR="#0000FF" SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">Mike</FONT>
</P>
<UL>
<P><FONT SIZE=1 FACE="Arial">{Original Message removed}

2000\03\25@020316 by Nigel Goodwin

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In message <8A57052B3DF3D311B8D10000F8B82B3F23FFAEspamKILLspamzpgtd00e.europe.norte> l.com>, Michael Rigby-Jones <.....mrjonesKILLspamspam.....NORTELNETWORKS.COM> writes
>    However, I had some problems trying to run the example programs.
>    The LCD test program worked intermittantly, with garbage being
>    displayed frequently.  After taking a look at the source code I saw
>    some instances of consecutive bit operations on a port, really
>    pushing your luck doing this at 20MHz.  Anyone else seen this?

I'm having the same problems with LCD corruption, and know of two other
people with the IceBreaker who also have the problem, I've not managed
to cure it yet. I've tried lengthening the delays, and added NOP's in
various places. I'd be interested to hear how you get on!.

BTW, I also agree it's great value, and goes together easily.
--

Nigel.

       /--------------------------------------------------------------\
       | Nigel Goodwin   | Internet : EraseMEnigelgspam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTlpilsley.demon.co.uk     |
       | Lower Pilsley   | Web Page : http://www.lpilsley.demon.co.uk |
       | Chesterfield    | Official site for Shin Ki and New Spirit   |
       | England         |                 Ju Jitsu                   |
       \--------------------------------------------------------------/

2000\03\25@024349 by Nigel Goodwin

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In message <026c01bf9591$7ea062a0$68f2a7cb@joec>, Jinx
<joecolquittspamspam_OUTCLEAR.NET.NZ> writes
>    Hi, had my eye on an ICE2000, now find they've gone up to NZ$3000+
>    / UKP1000+
>
>    The variety of ICE and ICD products has got me very uncertain what
>    to get - I need
>    to have something. I'm assuming that the ICEBREAKER is for 877 not
>    84. Correct ?

It uses a 16F877, but the code is fairly compatible with the 16F84 so it
can be used with a few simple code mods. For the price it's a good deal,
however you could always build the MicroChip ICD now the code is
available - as mentioned recently here!.

--

Nigel.

       /--------------------------------------------------------------\
       | Nigel Goodwin   | Internet : @spam@nigelgKILLspamspamlpilsley.demon.co.uk     |
       | Lower Pilsley   | Web Page : http://www.lpilsley.demon.co.uk |
       | Chesterfield    | Official site for Shin Ki and New Spirit   |
       | England         |                 Ju Jitsu                   |
       \--------------------------------------------------------------/

2000\03\27@024216 by Michael Rigby-Jones

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<P><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">In message &lt;KILLspam8A57052B3DF3D311B8D10000F8B82B3F23FFAEKILLspamspamzpgtd00e.europe.norte</FONT>> <BR><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">l.com&gt;, Michael Rigby-Jones &lt;RemoveMEmrjonesTakeThisOuTspamNORTELNETWORKS.COM&gt; writes</FONT>
<BR><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">&gt;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; However, I had some problems trying to run the example programs.</FONT>
<BR><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">&gt;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; The LCD test program worked intermittantly, with garbage being</FONT>
<BR><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">&gt;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; displayed frequently.&nbsp; After taking a look at the source code I saw</FONT>
<BR><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">&gt;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; some instances of consecutive bit operations on a port, really</FONT>
<BR><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">&gt;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; pushing your luck doing this at 20MHz.&nbsp; Anyone else seen this?</FONT>
</P>

<P><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">I'm having the same problems with LCD corruption, and know of two other</FONT>
<BR><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">people with the IceBreaker who also have the problem, I've not managed</FONT>
<BR><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">to cure it yet. I've tried lengthening the delays, and added NOP's in</FONT>
<BR><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">various places. I'd be interested to hear how you get on!.</FONT>
</P>

<P><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">BTW, I also agree it's great value, and goes together easily.</FONT>
<BR><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">--</FONT>
</P>

<P><FONT SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">Nigel.</FONT>
</P>
</UL>
<P><FONT COLOR="#0000FF" SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">I've had a look on the magenta site, and there's an updated set of example programs that fixes the RS and E swap, and has extra delays for the LCD.&nbsp; The original was apparently written for use on a 4 MHz 16F84.</FONT></P>

<P><U><FONT COLOR="#0000FF" SIZE=2 FACE="Arial"><A HREF="http://www.magenta2000.co.uk/kits/ibdisk1.zip" TARGET="_blank">www.magenta2000.co.uk/kits/ibdisk1.zip</A></FONT></U>
</P>

<P><FONT COLOR="#0000FF" SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">Cheers</FONT>
</P>

<P><FONT COLOR="#0000FF" SIZE=2 FACE="Arial">Mike Rigby-Jones</FONT>
</P>

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2000\03\27@194024 by Nigel Goodwin

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In message <spamBeGone8A57052B3DF3D311B8D10000F8B82B3F23FFBCspamBeGonespamzpgtd00e.europe.norte> l.com>, Michael Rigby-Jones <TakeThisOuTmrjonesEraseMEspamspam_OUTNORTELNETWORKS.COM> writes
>    I've had a look on the magenta site, and there's an updated set of
>    example programs that fixes the RS and E swap, and has extra delays
>    for the LCD.  The original was apparently written for use on a 4
>    MHz 16F84.

It was me who informed them about the RS and E swap problem, I got a
nice reply back from them :-). The original was written for a 4MHz
16F84, but the code with the IceBreaker has been modified with longer
delays for running at 20MHz - according to the comments in the file!.
I'll try downloading the update and see what it's like!.
--

Nigel.

       /--------------------------------------------------------------\
       | Nigel Goodwin   | Internet : RemoveMEnigelgspamTakeThisOuTlpilsley.demon.co.uk     |
       | Lower Pilsley   | Web Page : http://www.lpilsley.demon.co.uk |
       | Chesterfield    | Official site for Shin Ki and New Spirit   |
       | England         |                 Ju Jitsu                   |
       \--------------------------------------------------------------/

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