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Old 20th October 2013, 07:01 PM   #1
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Default I want to learn about micro-controllers, kindly help me.

First, kindly allow me to tell you some of my skills that I've acquired so far, so that I can get a better advice from all of you.

I can solder and make very good quality PCBs at home with precision and without any problem.

I can design PCBs too with Eagle, Design Spark etc.

I understand codes and already wrote some simple to moderately complex programs in various languages ( mainly in LSL ) earlier with my rudimentary programming knowledge.

I planning to work with Arduino in the near future to carry on my Hobby-electronics craze.

But for many simple yet interesting hobby projects, Arduino can be a serious overkill as I read on the web.

So I want to learn about microcontrollers at first with which my current level of knowledge is zero.

I googled to some extent and got confused with where to start and how to start and more, what are the things/ hardware peripherals as well as the programming software ( an open source freebie would be nice) that are needed for an absolute beginner.

Could you kindly help me with your experience and valuable, much-needed guidance mentioning what would be the best way to go for me?


Eagerly awaiting your wise words....

Thank you.
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Last edited by csom; 20th October 2013 at 07:11 PM.
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Old 20th October 2013, 10:30 PM   #2
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I learnt about microprocessors many years ago but still recommend reading the 8080 manual. It contains a fair amount of Basic and of course Visual Basic allows for easy programming.
Have a look at; http://bitsavers.trailing-edge.com/p...nual_May81.pdf
It is 222 pages long, a little basic (pardon the pun) and very informative.
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Old 25th October 2013, 06:14 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JonSnell Electronic View Post
I learnt about microprocessors many years ago but still recommend reading the 8080 manual. It contains a fair amount of Basic and of course Visual Basic allows for easy programming.
Have a look at; http://bitsavers.trailing-edge.com/p...nual_May81.pdf
It is 222 pages long, a little basic (pardon the pun) and very informative.
Thank you so much, sir.
I will definitely give it a try.
Much appreciated!
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Old 25th October 2013, 06:34 PM   #4
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I learned on 8080 as well, but it was MANY years ago and those parts and technology are VERY obsolete!

You seem to be a practical sort of guy who may benefit from doing rather than just reading. I would recommend a modern (i.e. available) PIC kit which will allow you to write code on the pc and immediately run and debug it on the chip.

One starts with simple stuff like "traffic light controller" - any thing that gets one into state-machine mentality.

Unfortunately I am at not all up to date with this! Perhaps someone can recommend easily available 16 bit PIC environments?

Good luck - I am sure there are lots of DIYers here who could help.
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Old 25th October 2013, 06:41 PM   #5
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So I could not resist searching what is available!

Welcome to microchipDIRECT

Seems a good a start as anything. 8bit to 32 bit kits with compilers and prototype boards. Amazing!

Cliff
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Old 25th October 2013, 06:52 PM   #6
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overkill can be good - unless you're designing consumer mass market equipment where pennies savings are important

for low volume specialized products or hobby use your development time is the biggest expense/most limited resource in any project - hardware cost is trivial

and a common fail even in professional product development is to underestimate the required uC speed, memory, I/O pin requirements


yes I would still use a 8-bit PIC where it fits - but I've already spent hundreds of hours with the tools, more debugging programs, hardware

but I can't recommend 8-bit micros today when 16 bit devices with instruction sets well matched to higher level C programming only cost a few hours of minimum wage
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Old 25th October 2013, 07:02 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cliffforrest View Post

You seem to be a practical sort of guy who may benefit from doing rather than just reading. I would recommend a modern (i.e. available) PIC kit which will allow you to write code on the pc and immediately run and debug it on the chip.

.....

Good luck - I am sure there are lots of DIYers here who could help.
Quote:
Originally Posted by cliffforrest View Post
So I could not resist searching what is available!

Welcome to microchipDIRECT

Seems a good a start as anything. 8bit to 32 bit kits with compilers and prototype boards. Amazing!

Cliff
Thank you so much for your valuable input and help!


Quote:
Originally Posted by jcx View Post
overkill can be good - ...............- hardware cost is trivial

.......
Thank you so much for the prompt reply.
I needed a starting point. And both of your posts are very informative and encouraging as well.

I'll read more following your direction and report back to both of you.
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