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Futurlec PIC Programmer

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trevor261

New Member
Hi all. I've just started to get into PIC's and I'm currently using PICKit 1 for my experiments. I'd like to upgrade to a more versatile programmer and I am considering the PIC programmer from Futurlec. It seems to have all the features I require (I am currently experimenting with baseline and midrange devices) and may require but I am having trouble finding some information in English for the product. I emailed Futurlec and they sent me a PDF manual for the programmer which is hard to read because it has be translated very poorly from Thai. It did tell me that MPLAB supports the programmer as PICKit 2, which leads me to wonder what the sticker is covering up on the IC in the middle.
Has anyone here had any experience with this programmer (ET-PGMPIC USB), I would like to know before I buy one, or maybe someone could recommend an alternative?

Thanks, Trevor G.
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
Hi all. I've just started to get into PIC's and I'm currently using PICKit 1 for my experiments. I'd like to upgrade to a more versatile programmer and I am considering the PIC programmer from Futurlec. It seems to have all the features I require (I am currently experimenting with baseline and midrange devices) and may require but I am having trouble finding some information in English for the product. I emailed Futurlec and they sent me a PDF manual for the programmer which is hard to read because it has be translated very poorly from Thai. It did tell me that MPLAB supports the programmer as PICKit 2, which leads me to wonder what the sticker is covering up on the IC in the middle.
Has anyone here had any experience with this programmer (ET-PGMPIC USB), I would like to know before I buy one, or maybe someone could recommend an alternative?
Why not just buy the PICKit2?, or the Junebug clone from Bill?.

Presumably the Futurlec is just anothe rPICKit2 clone, but it doesn't seem to mention it does debugging as well?.
 

Sceadwian

Banned
I'd be very wary of anything from futurelec, everything they sell is a cheap nockoff. Good for some stuff, bad for others. I wouldn't buy a programmer from them.
 

BeeBop

Active Member
Hi all. I've just started to get into PIC's and I'm currently using PICKit 1 for my experiments. I'd like to upgrade to a more versatile programmer and I am considering the PIC programmer from Futurlec. It seems to have all the features I require (I am currently experimenting with baseline and midrange devices) and may require but I am having trouble finding some information in English for the product. I emailed Futurlec and they sent me a PDF manual for the programmer which is hard to read because it has be translated very poorly from Thai. It did tell me that MPLAB supports the programmer as PICKit 2, which leads me to wonder what the sticker is covering up on the IC in the middle.
Has anyone here had any experience with this programmer (ET-PGMPIC USB), I would like to know before I buy one, or maybe someone could recommend an alternative?

Thanks, Trevor G.
NO! don't do it. As Sceadwian says, they are good for some things, and programmers is not one of them. I have one of their programmers, and it lives in my junk box...

Take Gramo's advice and get a PICkit2, or Nigel's and look into Bill's Junebug, here:
blueroomelectronics - Smart Kits Build Smart People
 
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trevor261

New Member
Thanks for the advice fellas, I won't be buying this programmer from Futurlec now. I didn't want to get a PICKit2 because it is only for ICSP but I guess I can build a programming board with a ZIF socket for the PICKit2 to plug into. I am also considering the JuneBug although I don't require the 18F1320 Tutor that it includes. Where is the best place to buy a PICKit2 online? I use Farnell for most of my gear and they seem pretty good, are there any cheaper shops? BTW I live in Australia.

Thanks, Trevor G.
 
Use Farnell (i.e. Newark in U.S), they also have the best prices on PIC microcontrollers in 1-10 quantities, although there may be exceptions.

When breadboarding, or using a development board, ICSP is the only way to go. If for production or commercial use, then quite a different beast I suspect.
 

Nigel Goodwin

Super Moderator
Most Helpful Member
Thanks for the advice fellas, I won't be buying this programmer from Futurlec now. I didn't want to get a PICKit2 because it is only for ICSP but I guess I can build a programming board with a ZIF socket for the PICKit2 to plug into.
Yes, you just need a ZIF socket, a piece of veroboard, and the cable to the PICKit2 - or even no cable, just a connector on the veroboard that plugs straight in.
 

lukas.ballo

New Member
Do not ever buy anything from Futurlec! (unless you can wait a few months for your order to be delivered) I have placed my order (about $40) on Feb-22, today is May-6 (approx. 2 and half months later) and I still don't have all the items I've ordered. There are many complaints about this company on the Internet that should be a warning for people attracted by their lower prices.
 

3v0

Coop Build Coordinator
Forum Supporter
It is like this.

A 1 row male 40 pin header is about $1.20 from most any place in the US.

I can get 10 of these from futurlec for the same money.

With that wide of a spread I can afford to loose a few orders. Some of there stuff is not nearly so good a deal. Buy it elswhere.

In the past 2 years I have made a number of orders in the $30 to $100 range. Only once was there a mess up. They said it had shipped but it had not come in the time allowed. We worked with Paypal and they refunded our money. I still needed the parts so I made another order.

The strange thing is that the first Futurlec order came about a week after the second one. They were the sort of part I can always use so I paid for it again.

I was unhappy about the mess and delay but they are still saving me a buck evey time I grab a 40 pin header.

3v0
 

Sceadwian

Banned
lukas keep in mind their bulk resistor/cap/transistor/IC packs are a really good deal for starting hobbyists, shipping time on the more widely bought things on their site are reasonable (I think mine was 2 weeks) But I ordered a USB module which after 2 months still hadn't materialized, kept getting the runaround, finally got the item removed from my shipping list and the money refunded. You just have to be willing to write an e-mail twice a day =)
 

lukas.ballo

New Member
Futurlec and Future Electronics

If you are lucky and all of the parts you ordered are available for immediate shipment, Futurlec can save you a lot of money however their ordering system doesn't have any notification of back orders so it is very likely that you will end up waiting a few months for your items to be delivered. If you are planning to do a large project in far future, however, it is not a problem to wait several months. Btw, I have recently found another store: Future Electronics. They have very good prices (especially microcontrollers and LED's), notification of back orders and the postage seems reasonable. Do you have any experience with this store? Where do you usually buy your electronics components?
 
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