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The Race - Microchip vs Atmel - Wich one is the best ?

Discussion in 'Microcontrollers' started by TiagoSilva, Apr 25, 2004.

  1. TiagoSilva

    TiagoSilva Member

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    Hello all :).

    I have this problem :lol: , i've compared both brands with the following subjects :

    PIC 18F6720 - Microchip :lol:
    and
    ATmega128 - Atmel :lol:

    i've reached an conclusion, the PIC is faster but it is more dificult to develop it's software, the Atmel is slower but has some Hardware improvements such as the JTAG and is easier to develop the software.

    :lol: They are both equally good, i can get the same support from both
    The Atmel as the http://www.avrfreaks.com/ page dedicated to the AVR's and Microchip we can find almost everything everyewre :lol: , so i am confuse on wich one i will use to develop a small PDA project i have :) (kind of hobby for the free times).

    The project includes these features :
    1-wire Temperature sensor
    1-wire RTC (Real Time Clock)
    Serial Memory Access
    (Parallel Memory Access, if i get one :wink: )
    Graphical LCD (I will try to get one color with Touch Screen)
    RTOS (that i will try to create)
    (Expantion Connector, not very important thou)
    ...
    and probably more things, but for now i have these.

    Well share your vast and incredible knowlage with me.
    And if you know how or were i can get some schematics abouth ICSP for both uControllers tell me i am with some troubles finding one for these huge memory devices :lol: .

    Bye Bye 8) .
     
  2. Exo

    Exo Active Member

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    If you plan to use C then a AVR would be better. They have a larger instruction set wich allows for far better C support...
     
  3. Oznog

    Oznog Active Member

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    I've not used Atmel's stuff, but by the selection chart it looks like they've got far less SRAM. I guess from your memory requirement that you're using external serial? This will make things slower still, unless you do parallel.

    PICs are easier to prototype since some of the more powerful chips still come in PDIP pkgs (though not your PIC18F6720).

    The PIC18 series does have a C-friendly command set, much more so than other series. I don't know how it compares with the Atmel for efficiency, but it's better than it used to be.
     
  4. dave

    Dave New Member

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  5. TiagoSilva

    TiagoSilva Member

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    The Pic's C compiler the one from Microchip itself still rely on some Assembler to work out the most complex actions that the pic is capable of, and Exo is right Atmel is much more well supported on the C language it even has an GCC version (wich means that it is more used than the rest of the devices that use C language too) to compile for Atmel uC's :lol: , still i can't find an easy to build and low component Serial (PC RS232) - to - ATmega128 ICSP (In Circuit Serial Programmer) so that i can built with the PDA itself, so that it doesn't need any other external devices :lol: making it very practical to everyone, yes i intend to make the project public when i finish it :lol: .

    I could use much more powerfull processors like the motorola ones that support PowerPC operative system, but what would be the fun of developping something that allready exists :lol: just not to mention the costs that are involved.

    Well help me with the programmer for the Atmel, if you will, ok, bye and thank you all.
     
  6. jem

    jem New Member

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    Take a look at the PonyProg. Here is the link: http://www.lancos.com/prog.html

    I use mostly Mega8's, and never had any problems with the programmer.

    Hope that helps,

    Jem
     
  7. bmcculla

    bmcculla New Member

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    AVR is a much more modern archetecture. AVR has a 1 clock per instruction core compared to the PIC's 4 clock per instruction core. This makes the AVR aproximately 4 times faster with the same clock speed.

    If you're serious about making a PDA you should look into 32 bit processors. There's a reason that there are no PDAs that use 8 bit processors. Displaying graphics on even a small color display requires a large amount of memory and processor time. (4bit x3color x 320x240 = 115kB) You might be able to do it but you would definately need a hardware graphics controller. Digikey has a 75MHz ARM processor made by Sharp that is in a QFP package that can be hand soldered with a bit of practice (only about $15 + memory) LH79520N0M000.

    You could use a black and white display with a built in controller with an 8 bit processor. I'd recommend the AVR in that case because it is available with an external memory interface - This lets you use parallel sram which will make things much faster. Another problem with 8 bit processors for a PDA is that they are mostly Harvard archetecture. This makes them fast but means that there is no way to add more code space so you're stuck with what you can get on chip (so get a bunch to start with). This setup would be quite capable of keeping track of your contacts apointments etc.

    Hope this helps
    Brent
     
  8. TiagoSilva

    TiagoSilva Member

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    It helps yes it seems that the AVR are much more "well thinked" still i have little experiênce with it, and when i said PDA i didn't mean to do the same things that they do, but to have the same architecture style, but i intend to use it mainlly to control other devices/periperals, that is more as Digital Control Assistent :lol: , so that i can control all other kind of devices, without the need to reprogram the uC, do you see my point ? Its more like having an Operative System that as operands specially developed to aquire data from toher devices and comunicate with them, but of course that it won't do everything, i get the idea of PDA from the Graphical interface, as the PDA has one, so easy to use, i intend to make one to control other gadjets :lol: .

    Bye :) and thanks
     
  9. thekid

    thekid New Member

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    Hi, people, I'm new here.

    I see everybody is talking about software in this help for making decision.
    I'm in automatiom business for last 4 years and mostly use PIC in my devices.
    I'm not using AVR just because I started with PIC by "accident".
    But, this is my expirience with AVR/PIC based equipment.

    My company has developed few devices (about 15) based on PIC (from PIC16 tp dsPIC30). These are some interfaces for incermental encoders, liquid level contrilers, pneumatic valve controlers , DMX controlers and many others. In all 4 years not one device has been returned for malfunction reclamation.
    OK, once the guys forgot to close liquid level controler's cap and sea water filled it, so you all know what happened after.

    But, every time I got some other company's equipment to fix, form my investors, it always has AVR in it especially if it is French.

    I'm not on PIC side I scan see AVR has some great development tools and great new devices but my expirience is sadly as menioned above.

    One other thing, US military is using Microchip products in their equipment.

    The point is that software is not the quality subject when we are deciding which device to use.

    Sorry for my English, I'm not native English speaker.
     
  10. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    That seems a completely meaning less comment?, what did you mean?

    PIC's and AVR's (and all other processors) only run machine code, and it's normal for a compiler to first create assembly, then generate the machine code from that.
     
  11. JimB

    JimB Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    The resurectionists strike again!

    This thread is over six years old.

    JimB
     
  12. csaba911

    csaba911 Member

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    And your point ?
    I don't remember reading it before, did not even look at the date, was reading the info was provided by others.
    I guess with my reply both of us improve this tread big time, not like "thekid" :)
     
  13. prab

    prab New Member

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    Hi, I have been thinking of making own PDA. Although it is originally old thread, as csaba911 said, we can start discussing about making PDA. The technology is more advanced than 5 or 6 years ago.

    Atmel provides powerful components which can be used to make PDAs. With Atmel touch screen, microcontrollers and other components, we can build our own PDA. There are some design from Atmel which also support open sourced operating systems like Android, and embedded linux.

    I am doing more research on it.

    prab
     
  14. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    Use an ARM or something similar.
     
  15. prab

    prab New Member

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    Do we have to develop a board ourselves?

    Thanks Nigel
     
  16. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    I've never used one, but I imagine there are plenty of development kits available?.
     
  17. prab

    prab New Member

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    Thanks again Nigel,

    I have 6 months experience programming in C for AVR/ATMEL EVK1101/UC3B0256ES Evaluation Kit. I've implemented Modbus Master and Slave communication in C/C++, with GCC compiler. But I am sure, ATMEL also produce similar kit but is it a good idea to use evaluation kit. Here you also mean these evaluation kit are actually development kit right?

    What I am thinking is cheap and customized PDAs. I think of is a PDA that has wireless connection, open sourced/free OS like Android, embedded linux or also WinCE is ok.

    prab
     
  18. 3v0

    3v0 Coop Build Coordinator Forum Supporter

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    I am curious what features you would like on the PDA ?
     
  19. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    What's wrong with all the many existing such devices?, I would imagine you're going to struggle competing with their prices?.
     

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