Getting Started with the PICmicro Nigel Gardner Bluebird Electronics

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Nov 2, 2013 (3 years and 5 months ago)

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Getting Started with the PICmicro

Nigel Gardner

Bluebird Electronics


Origin of the PIC


PIC stands for Programmable Interface Controller and was originally designed in 1978
with an NMOS (power hungry) process by General Instruments as a device to ‘mop up’

external functions for their larger 16 bit microprocessors. A venture capital group bought

the rights and Microchip Technology was formed in 1989. The product was converted
into CMOS, development tools produced and the product released onto the open
mar
ket as the first OTP production device. The story from then is reflected by the
success of the PICmicro as one of the leading 8
-
bit microcontroller’s and the range of
products being designed and manufactured.


Uses

The uses of the PIC are extensive but as

examples:
-


Consumer
-

TV/VCR equipment, Stereo receiver, CD player, Remote controls, Cable
TV converter, Video games, Camera, Garage opener, Microwave oven, Washer/dryer,
Kitchen appliances, Cordless tools, Vacuum cleaner, Electric blanket


Automotive

-

Auto security system, Keyless entry, Radar detector, Cruise control, Anti
-
lock braking, Speedometer, Climate control, Turn signals, Active suspension, Fuel
pump control, Fuel injection, Sun roof control, Air bag sensor, Power seats, Emission
control


Offic
e Automation

Computer mouse, Laptop trackball, Computer keyboard, Handheld
scanner, Laser printer interface board, PC LAN system, X/Y plotter, Copier, Bar code
reader, Disk drive, Tape back
-
up unit, Serial bus, Facsimile machine


Telecom

-

Cellular telepho
ne, Cordless telephone, Feature phone, Answering machine,
Pay phone, Pager, Modem, Credit card verification


Industrial

-

Motor control, Compressor, Thermostat, Security system, Postage meter,
Utility meter, Robotics, Process control, Gas pump, Smoke detec
tor, Carbon Monoxide
detector, Electronic highway


Advantages of the PIC over other microcontroller’s




Low cost and easy to use development tools



Extensive range of application notes & code examples



No mask charge unless the user moves to a ROM based produ
ct



Inventory kept to a minimum
-

the same product could be used for a wide variety of
applications



Better security than competitors devices



Lower operating frequency (to produce same code speed) resulting in lower emitted
radio interference



Accessible tech
nical support





Microchips position in the Microcontroller market





Die size comparison of some 8 bit microcontrollers


Current products

-

See Microchip’s databook, product selection guide or Web page
for full range and availability


16C52, 54, 55,
56, 57, 58
-

devices aimed at the low cost end of the market

16C710, 711, 715, 73, 74
-

the 7xx range have a/d capability

16C63, 64, 65
-

similar to above but without the a/d

16F84
-

EEPROM memory for program and non volatile data area

16C621, 622, 623
-

brown out (power dip) detect + comparator’s + d/a

12C5xx
-

8
-
pin version of 16C5x series aimed at compact low I/O products

12C67x


8
-
pin PICmicro with A/D and EE memory

16C92x


in
-
built LCD driver

17C4x 17C75x
-

comparable performance with 68HC11


non
standard pinout

16F87x


flash memory based PICmicro

18Cxxx


latest technology PICmicro’s for high end applications


What do I need to start development ?


The minimum items required to start PIC development work are :
-

An IBM compatible PC
-

preferably w
ith Windows

A data sheet on the chosen PIC

The book
-

A Beginners Guide to the Microchip PIC

MPLAB
-

free from the Microchip web site


If you then wish to take the development from paper to a hardware design, you will need:
-

A programmer
-

for reliability

and support get the PICSTART Plus, which covers all the
devices.

A development board or hardware starter kit
-

to save time trying to debug software and
hardware.

Some EPROM (windowed) versions of the PICmicro’s to be used
-

say 3 to 5 to save
time when t
hey are being erased.

An EPROM eraser.

If developing with the 16F84 (EEPROM) or flash PICmicro’s, you don't need an eraser
as the device is electrically erasable
-

i.e. no window.


Development Path


Zero Cost

MPLAB
-

Assembler and Simulator foc from Microc
hip Web Site
-




http://www.microchip.com

Starter


PICSTART Plus
-

Programmer + MPLAB (assembler, simulator, editor) +
PIC sample. No trace or emulation function

Intermediate

Mcrochip ICD


ideal for development with 16F87x devices

Serious


ICE PIC In
Circuit Emulator
-

allows debugging of hardware and software
at same time. You need a programmer to go with the ICE
-

see catalogue
for part numbers

Advanced


C compilers
-

again see catalogue or Microchip product list for
description and order codes.


S
upport Products

See Bluebird Electronics website for current range




8/18 pin PICmicro

Hardware Starter Kit

-

PCB, 8 leds, regulator, 4MHz crystal,
reset components.



16C55/57 Hardware Starter Kit

-

PCB, 8 leds, regulator, 4MHz crystal, reset
components.



Project Board 1 (18 pin PIC's)

-

PCB, leds, regulator, push buttons, speaker,
thermistor, dip switch, PP3 battery holder, 4MHz crystal, reset switch
-

ideal starter
kit for students or engineers.



16C64/74 Hardware Starter Kit

-

PCB, leds, regulator, push

buttons, RS232
interface, EEPROM socket, 200 hole patch area, PIC Soft disk.



PIC Converter

-

A pin conversion adapter to allow 16C63/73 devices (28 pin) to be
used with the above 16C64/74 Hardware Starter Kit.



PIC Soft

-

Project board software source c
ode, application source code from
Microchip Embedded Control Handbook plus MPLAB



PIC in a Box

-

A complete starter kit for those intending to work with the PIC. PIC in
a Box comprises PICSTART Plus, Beginners Guide to the PIC, PIC Cookbook Vol
1, Project

Board, PIC Soft with additional projects aimed at the absolute beginner
and starter guidance notes.


Pointers to get started




Start off with a simple program
-

don’t try to debug 2000 lines of code in one go.



Use known working hardware
-

Bluebird starter

kits for example
-

for the initial
design phase to save debug time.



Have a few windowed PIC’s to hand when developing to save time waiting for
erasure



If using the PIC Start (programmer only) you will need to use the program
-

test
-

modify process
-

allo
w extra development time.



An ICE will speed up development and save the company money
-

if an engineer
costs his company £200 per day, 3 days wasted trying to sort out a bug without an
ICE, and the ICE would have paid for itself, and met a deadline!



Use so
me form of I/O map when starting your design to speed up port identification
and function



Draw a software functional block diagram to enable modular code writing



Comment the software as it’s written. It is meaningless the following day or if read by
anoth
er



Write, test and debug each module stage by stage



Update documentation at the end of the process


How do I program a PIC ?




Run MPLAB software on the PC



Power up the programmer



Build the project


without errors



Set the defaults for product, Watchdog, O
scillator, POR, Brownout and Code
Protection



Check you have the correct PIC to program



Check it’s blank



Program



Verify



Test in the product


How much will it cost me ?


The programmer
-

PICSTART Plus



circa

£125

Microchip CD ROM







A Beginners Guide

to the Microchip PIC


£19.95

PIC Cookbook Vol 1 and 2






£19.95

PIC C an introduction to C on the PIC



£19.95

PIC's
-

a few windowed devices




£12
-

£25 each

PIC's
-

for the finished project
-

less than 25


£0.75
-

£17 each

ICE PIC in circuit
programmer




approx. £550

CCS C Compiler






£99.00


What about PIC designs for manufacture?


For those embarking on product development with a deadline or a complicated design
for their company, invest in the ICE PIC In Circuit Emulator. It will save

time and money
in product development and, the engineer from loosing their sanity. The ICE enables the
programmer to step through a program, set breakpoints, trace what is happening within
the PIC
-

to list a few of the features. The ICE will pay for it
self on the first major project.


What happens when my program won't run?


Check the following:
-



Has the oscillator configuration been set correctly when you programmed the PIC?



Was the watchdog enabled when not catered for in the software?



Have all the po
rts been initialised correctly.



On 16C7x devices, check if the ADCON1 register is configured as analog or digital.



Ensure the data registers are set to a known condition.



Make sure no duplication of names given to variables, registers and labels.



Is the re
set vector correct, especially if code has been moved from one PIC family to
another?

Refer to the debug flowchart on page 100 of Beginners Guide to the PIC



Microchip Approved Training Workshops

Get your project off to a flying start!


What are Training
Workshops?


PIC Training workshops are designed for those who want to know the practical aspects
of using the PIC in their product design. Small class sizes (up to a maximum of 8
delegates) ensure individual needs are met.


Why a Training Workshop will he
lp your Company


Typically an Engineer will spend a few weeks getting a reasonable understanding of a
new microcontroller. The time spent on this learning curve is costly for the Company and
delays product development. The workshop assists in getting the
Engineer over the
initial hurdle in a fraction of the time normally taken with the guidance of a Microchip
Consultant.


In just one day you'll learn...




How the PIC operates
-

internal and external needs



Hardware interfacing
-

the ins and outs



Software p
reparation
-

flowcharts, code writing, assembler directives



Debugging Code
-

with and without an ICE



Development Tools
-

hands on use of ICE PIC and PICSTART PLUS



The EMC directive
-

software techniques to assist in product reliability


How is the day org
anised?


The workshop is in two parts. The morning is spent working through the theoretical
aspects of the PIC and product development. Following lunch, the afternoon is allocated
to work on customer specific projects. Delegates are encouraged to bring
along some
hardware from their intended project to help get the project started. Some equipment is
provided for project construction, debugging and programming including ICE PIC and
PICSTART PLUS development tools for hands on experience.


What does eac
h delegate receive?


Each delegate will receive a copy of “The Beginners Guide to the Microchip PIC”, 'PIC
Cookbook', a PIC Project Board to continue the learning process together with any
software developed during the day and some goodies.


Where are th
e Training Workshops held?


Workshops are held at Urchfont Manor, Wiltshire, where the isolation from on
-
site
interruptions results in a truly intensive training session.


When are the Training Workshops held?


Workshops are held on a mutually agreed dat
e giving flexibility in arranging training
around staffing levels and project deadlines.


How much does a Training Workshop cost?


Contact june@bluebird
-
electronics.co.uk for information.


What about large organisations?


For larger companies, the Corporat
e workshop is intended for engineers involved in PIC

based projects to work to a common set of standards. It can also form part of an
ongoing training package for new members to the engineering department or existing
engineers needing an understanding of
the products being used by their team. Course
content and duration is completely flexible, please call us to discuss your needs.


What about large projects


If you need to get a large project under way or a number of smaller ones, an extended
course is av
ailable, covering 2, 3 or 4 days. These extended workshops have proved to
be successful for clients needing more than a jump start.


Previous clients


CAA, British Gas, Scottish Nuclear, Trinity House, Scottish Constabulary, AC Deco, MK
Electric, Foxguard
, IMI Pactrol, Unitek, Cranfield Institute, Loughborough College,
Lancing Linde and Army
-

Technical Support to list a few.


Booking a Training Workshop


To book or discuss your training requirements, phone Nigel or June on 01 380 827080.


Happy PICing


Ni
gel Gardner
-

Bluebird Electronics

Microchip Registered Consultant and Trainer


Tel
-

01 380 827080

Fax
-

01 380 827082

Email info@bluebird
-
electronics.co.uk

Internet http://www.bluebird
-
electronics.co.uk