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Programing an AVR

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I've never used any AVR MCU,but I would like to upgrade to it in the coming semester.I know an AVR can be programed through a serial download cable,but don't know whether all AVRs can work that way.Is there an AVR programer that can program the entire AVR family?I'd like to buy a programer for AVRs,could anyone give me some helpful advice?Thanks!
 
Thanks for your replies

jem said:
You will have to build different adapters for the different chip packages, or else you can program in-circuit if you have access to the SPI ports.
Thanks for the 2 replies. :)
Adapters are okay,I can easily build them whenever I need to.
The last thing I need to be sure of is the SPI ports.Do all AVRs have SPI ports?If I can always get access to the SPI if there is one,does that mean I can program the whole AVR family?I've seen a programer which is in-system-simulation compatible for ATtiny,is that function available for all AVR MCUs?I've hear of it,that most AVR programers use the SCK provided by the PC,and because the PC is sometimes running other applications,the SCK may be broken and the AVR damaged.Does it occur frequently?
 

jem

Member
A couple of the ATtiny processors do not have SPI, but all others do. Note that if you do use the in-circuit programming capability of the controllers, you will lose the other functionalities of the pins. The other alternative is to program them externally using adapters. The PonyProg is an overall good programmer, an dit has a list of supported microcontrollers.

Another alternative (simpler programmer HW) is the SP12. Just do a Google search for SP12. I have used it as well, and it works!
 

crust

Member
You can still use the pins even if you use the in-system programming capability, you just need a few resistors on the board to take care of that situation.
 
Thanks for your replies.Your info did help a lot.

Now,few questions left:
jem,thank you for your suggestions :) .You said several ATtiny MCUs don't have SPI,does that mean I will have to desolder them from the PCB while reprograming?Or should I build a connector and some sort of isolation mechanism to make the product PCB an adapter to avoid desoldering?
And crust,I will try your method,thank you too. :)
As to the simulation function,how do I apply a simulation on an AVR system? :?:
 

crust

Member
AVRStudio has the simulator built in. Because the parts dont have an SPI does not mean they cannot be programmed in-circuit. Many of the AVRs do not have an SPI (particularly the tiny), but still support ICP. The tiny11 and tiny28 dont support ICP, the rest of the AVRs do.
 
You were really helpful.

Thanks for all your help!With the information provided,I can now do some specialized web seach and find out which programer I shall go with.
 
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