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What is the best proggramer for AVR Atmel?

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Kingdom Man

New Member
Hello, I am new to all this and would like some help picking a programmer for the AVR Atmel processors. If you have suggestions that would be great!
 

HarveyH42

Banned
I've only had one programmer, the AVR Dragon. Works fine, USB, under $50, programs most 8-bit chips under 32k. Does ISP, HV, JTAG, and Debug. Seemed like the best value.
What you get in the box... Just the basic circuit board. You get no cables, jumpers, Ziff socket, only the minimum of headers installed, no manual or documentation. Keeps the cost and clutter down, you configure it to best suit your needs. Most of the stuff is easy to find, might have on hand. Documentation comes with AVR Studio, a free download, and the programming software.

There are some USB ISP programmers I've seen on the web, that look good, and can be built cheap, if price is a concern. Can dig up a link or two.
 

krich

New Member
Note that while the Dragon is an excellent and low cost solution, it has proven to be very a very sensitive device and can be easily ruined.

For a beginner, the AVR-ISP MKII is probably best. It doesn't have JTAG, but the price is right, and it's not as sensitive to beginners abuse. Once you gain some experience you may want JTAG support, so you would upgrade to the Dragon or better.
 

Salgat

New Member
AVR-ISP MKII for $35. It is amazing, works great, has all kinds of protections in place and is sold by Atmel, the same company that makes the AVR. Don't go with the Dragon unless you don't mind the chance of it dying, this is a serious issue and effects quite a few users.
 
I highly reccomend the AVRISP MKii. Perfect price. Does exactly what you need. So easy to work with. Or if you like soldering there is the USBtinyISP from Ladyada. can be found here
USBtinyISP - Inexpensive USB AVR Programmer

The only difference between the 2 are
A Price.
B The USBtinyISP can provide power to the circuit.

Good luck!
David
 

Sceadwian

Banned
Did the ISP go up? I payed like 27 dollars for my last one. A good robust solution is the STK500, but it's a bit complex for a beginner, and more expensive than the Dragon, but still a very nice broad specirum programmer and lots of headers built in. The big problem with the Dragon is you have to solder on your own headers to do anything so you do need a bit more experiance than with a simpler device.

I wouldn't recommend the pony prog programmers they're more of a hassle for many people than they're worth, and the AVRISP programmers are solid reliable devices and inexpensive.
 
Did the ISP go up? I payed like 27 dollars for my last one. A good robust solution is the STK500, but it's a bit complex for a beginner, and more expensive than the Dragon, but still a very nice broad specirum programmer and lots of headers built in. The big problem with the Dragon is you have to solder on your own headers to do anything so you do need a bit more experiance than with a simpler device.

I wouldn't recommend the pony prog programmers they're more of a hassle for many people than they're worth, and the AVRISP programmers are solid reliable devices and inexpensive.
I second the STK500 but it is a little complicated but it does come with a few micros with it. Another problem is it uses the serial port for programming. And most modern OS's and computers don't have them or don't handle them very well. MKii is perfect for the bigginer but if you are willing to spend a little extra dough than the MKii
 

Sceadwian

Banned
All modern OS's fully support the serial port, and legacy free machines that don't have the hardware ports installed can easily have them added via a decent quality serial to USB adapter.
 

Sceadwian

Banned
One warning with the STK500... The reason it looks so intimidating is it has so many sockets, mind you only one can be used at a time... NEVER switch sockets and forget to remove the old chip when you start programming on a new one... I've lost at least two hours of debug time trying to figure out why my code wouldn't program until I realized I had TWO chips on the board at the same time.
 

Sceadwian

Banned
I have to HV program some of the Tiny's I have, which aren't compatible with the running circuit so I have to program the chips out of circuit, which is where things get a little sticky =)
 
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