Author Topic: Microcontroller choice  (Read 687 times)

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Offline vitalik53Topic starter

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Microcontroller choice
« on: March 13, 2012, 12:23:54 PM »
hey ye all, i'm trying to choose a micro controller board that i can program in C or PBASIC, $50 or less, and one that can hold sizable programs, has a timer, I/O ports, ... please give some suggestions... they will be greatly appreciated  :)

Offline newInRobotics

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Re: Microcontroller choice
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2012, 01:28:27 PM »
Why not to build Your own board? It's the cheapest way to learn the most  ;) Moreover, for starters You don't even need a board to do stuff. I simply use prototyping board (board with many small holes which are used as sockets for components) and ATmega48  :)
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Offline vitalik53Topic starter

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Re: Microcontroller choice
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2012, 01:50:18 PM »
yeah that's true.. but what if i want to control servos, recieve sensor information, i wold need to add a timer with other stuff... and Atmega 48 has limited memory space and processing power

Offline joe61

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Re: Microcontroller choice
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2012, 02:14:26 PM »
hey ye all, i'm trying to choose a micro controller board that i can program in C or PBASIC, $50 or less, and one that can hold sizable programs, has a timer, I/O ports, ... please give some suggestions... they will be greatly appreciated  :)


http://www.adafruit.com/products/296

Joe

Offline vitalik53Topic starter

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Re: Microcontroller choice
« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2012, 03:02:15 PM »
how about the ATmega328P? is it the best in the series? or are there better ones?

Offline joe61

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Re: Microcontroller choice
« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2012, 04:06:22 PM »
how about the ATmega328P? is it the best in the series? or are there better ones?

Better for what? You have to know what you want to do, then pick something that let's you do that within whatever other criteria you have. We don't know what any of that is, so your question is a little too vague to answer.

Joe

Offline vitalik53Topic starter

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Re: Microcontroller choice
« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2012, 04:25:10 PM »
sorry about that... the ATmega8 used for the $50 robot requires all the add-ons.. voltage regulator, resistors, capacitor, led, etc.. thus, for every project i'm gonna do, if i use a prototype board i'm gonna have to buy different parts, i want a micro-controller that can be used universally for various projects...

thanx

Offline newInRobotics

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Re: Microcontroller choice
« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2012, 04:48:50 PM »
yeah that's true.. but what if i want to control servos, recieve sensor information, i wold need to add a timer with other stuff... and Atmega 48 has limited memory space and processing power
How many servos do You want to control? How many sensors are You going to use? You wouldn't need to add a timer as there are 3 timers already. Other stuff? Are we talking magic mushrooms?  ;D
"Computer games don't affect kids; I mean if Pac-Man affected us as kids, we'd all be running around in darkened rooms, munching magic pills and listening to repetitive electronic music." - Kristian W

Offline joe61

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Re: Microcontroller choice
« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2012, 04:52:59 PM »
Well, the link I gave is one possibility. It has the same flash size as the ATmega328p, but it has peripherals the 328 doesn't (built in USB, more ADC, a second USART, etc), and is $20 vs $30 or so for an Arduino. Any board you buy like that is going to have voltage regulation, capacitors, probably a crystal or ceramic oscillator, et al.

Lots of people like the Arduino, it's easy to use, comes with lots of libraries, and so forth. The Axxon is great if you need a lot more stuff (more USARTS, ADC, pin headers for interfacing with servos, regulated and unregulated power, ...).

Pololu makes some really nice boards too, most have built in motor drivers, and are pretty small. There are a lot of possibilities, so I'd recommend you first decide what kind of stuff you're interested in doing, and go from there.

Joe

Offline vitalik53Topic starter

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Re: Microcontroller choice
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2012, 04:55:23 PM »
if i buy an arduino, what would be the best board to get? for there are multiple ones.. is there like a single 'generic' board

Offline joe61

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Re: Microcontroller choice
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2012, 04:58:43 PM »
Not really. See here for the official versions.

Seriously, there is no best board. You have to decide what kind of thing you're interested in doing, and look for boards that fit.

Joe

Offline vitalik53Topic starter

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Re: Microcontroller choice
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2012, 05:08:35 PM »
i'm interested in having a lot of sensors, around 5 servos, and be able to navigate through obstacles-- respond to sensors,
and have a lot of subroutine cases.. meaning sizable memory, maybe remote control, and be able to perform infrared 2D mapping of the surroundings.. i guess that's it ..

sorry for the stupid questions.. i'm just a novice, freshmen in college doing electrical engineering, looking forward to do certain projects.. thank you for your time :)

Offline Daanii

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Re: Microcontroller choice
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2012, 07:26:11 PM »
As you are just starting out with microcontrollers, you ought to get an Arduino Uno for starters. That is a pretty powerful board for a beginner, and will do a lot of what you want to do. If you outgrow it, by then you will probably know what board you need next.

If you make too big a leap to an advanced board at the beginning, that may frustrate you and waste a lot of your time.

For example, I bought one of the Adafruit 32u4 breakout boards Joe suggested. There was a lot of trouble with the bootloader that Adafruit was unable to solve. I spent a lot of time trying to deal with that, and finally ended up just tossing the board.

I second Joe's suggestion about Pololu boards. They make some good ones.

 


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