Date   

Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

Tom, wb6b
 

On Thu, Mar 5, 2020 at 02:59 PM, GM4CID wrote:
NuMaker Uno (Arduino Compatible),
That's cool. These look like 32 bit processor boards. The 24 cent processors are 8 bit. 

However, I'll check the prices of their 32 bit processors. May not be 24 cents but still might be good.

Tom, wb6b


Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

Richard Spohn
 

My bad, mixed up C and F. Still not a good idea, IMHO. - Rich

On 3/5/20, Bill Cromwell <wrcromwell@...> wrote:
Hi,

140 C is far past the boiling point of water. It does not get that hot
in your car. Mighty uncomfortable. Maybe even lethal to living
creatures. But water bottles I have always kept in my car *never*
boiled. So temps below 100 C.

73,

Bill KU8H

On 3/5/20 4:12 PM, Richard Spohn wrote:
This brings up a point worth mentioning: beware of leaving your uBitx
-- or any other project with SMT boards -- in a hot vehicle in the
Summer months! -- Rich WB2GXM

On 3/5/20, Tom, wb6b <wb6b@...> wrote:
On Thu, Mar 5, 2020 at 10:19 AM, AC9NM - Jerry Ponko wrote:


low temperature solder paste
Wow, melts at only 140C. I may have to get some of that. Particularly if
I
start experimenting with some of the conductive inks that claim to be
solderable.

I definitely won't make any automotive projects, engine compartment or
dashboard, projects with this solder paste.

Tom, wb6b





--
bark less - wag more




Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

GM4CID
 

How about their NuMaker Uno (Arduino Compatible), details at 

https://direct.nuvoton.com/en/numaker-uno

Arduino IDE & Board Installation Guide

  1. Download and Install the Nu-Link USB Driver.
  2. Download Arduino IDE from https://www.arduino.cc/
  3. Run Arduino IDE installer to install it on PC.
  4. Run Arduino IDE.
    Go to File → Preferences, enter the following URL to textbox of ‘Additional Board Manager URLs’
    https://raw.githubusercontent.com/OpenNuvoton/NuMaker-UNO/master/package_nuvoton_index.json
  5. Arduino IDE : go to Tools → Board → Boards Manager
  6. NuMaker UNO will show up on the list, select NuMaker UNO and click install.
    After the package download is finished, go to Tools → Board and select NuMaker UNO to use it.

73, Bob GM4CID


Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

Bill Cromwell
 

Hi,

140 C is far past the boiling point of water. It does not get that hot in your car. Mighty uncomfortable. Maybe even lethal to living creatures. But water bottles I have always kept in my car *never* boiled. So temps below 100 C.

73,

Bill KU8H

On 3/5/20 4:12 PM, Richard Spohn wrote:
This brings up a point worth mentioning: beware of leaving your uBitx
-- or any other project with SMT boards -- in a hot vehicle in the
Summer months! -- Rich WB2GXM
On 3/5/20, Tom, wb6b <wb6b@...> wrote:
On Thu, Mar 5, 2020 at 10:19 AM, AC9NM - Jerry Ponko wrote:


low temperature solder paste
Wow, melts at only 140C. I may have to get some of that. Particularly if I
start experimenting with some of the conductive inks that claim to be
solderable.

I definitely won't make any automotive projects, engine compartment or
dashboard, projects with this solder paste.

Tom, wb6b



--
bark less - wag more


Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

Richard Spohn
 

This brings up a point worth mentioning: beware of leaving your uBitx
-- or any other project with SMT boards -- in a hot vehicle in the
Summer months! -- Rich WB2GXM

On 3/5/20, Tom, wb6b <wb6b@...> wrote:
On Thu, Mar 5, 2020 at 10:19 AM, AC9NM - Jerry Ponko wrote:


low temperature solder paste
Wow, melts at only 140C. I may have to get some of that. Particularly if I
start experimenting with some of the conductive inks that claim to be
solderable.

I definitely won't make any automotive projects, engine compartment or
dashboard, projects with this solder paste.

Tom, wb6b




Re: automatic magnetic loop adjustment

Murray Wills (ZL2IQ)
 

This looks fantastic Jack. Can’t wait to see the article. Murray ZL2IQ


From: BITX20@groups.io <BITX20@groups.io> on behalf of Jack, W8TEE via Groups.Io <jjpurdum@...>
Sent: Friday, March 6, 2020 9:58:36 AM
To: BITX20@groups.io <BITX20@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [BITX20] automatic magnetic loop adjustment
 
Al Peter (AC8GY) and I have an article in the Feb. 2020 issue of Rad Com that describes our Double-Double Mag Loop:

Inline image

It is a 3' diameter loop, but the double configuration raises its efficient from about 10% to 50% on 40M and over 90% on 20M. We tested the remote control unoit at Field Day last year using 100' of cable and it worked fine. Tuning is done by Fast Tune (i.e., previously-stored values in EEPROM) and then fine tuned if necessary. All bands can get the SWR to 1.2 or less. The control unit uses the STM32F103 ("Blue Pill"). The cap can be air or vacuum (high power).

It's probably not a good choice for pedestrian mobile use, but those who face HOA restrictions might find it useful.


Jack, W8TEE






On Thursday, March 5, 2020, 1:48:26 PM EST, Mark Muller <markvmuller@...> wrote:


Excellent Project!

For some reason, the link above did not work in my browser, and perhaps others might have the same problem. Hopefully this link is operational: https://www.qsl.net/py2ohh/trx/loopauto/loopauto.html

There seems to be some improvement to the original work here: https://www.qsl.net/py2ohh/trx/loopauto2/loopauto2.html 

Parabéns Miguel! 73 de N5KNG (Mark Muller)

--
Jack, W8TEE


Re: automatic magnetic loop adjustment

Jack, W8TEE
 

Al Peter (AC8GY) and I have an article in the Feb. 2020 issue of Rad Com that describes our Double-Double Mag Loop:

Inline image

It is a 3' diameter loop, but the double configuration raises its efficient from about 10% to 50% on 40M and over 90% on 20M. We tested the remote control unoit at Field Day last year using 100' of cable and it worked fine. Tuning is done by Fast Tune (i.e., previously-stored values in EEPROM) and then fine tuned if necessary. All bands can get the SWR to 1.2 or less. The control unit uses the STM32F103 ("Blue Pill"). The cap can be air or vacuum (high power).

It's probably not a good choice for pedestrian mobile use, but those who face HOA restrictions might find it useful.


Jack, W8TEE






On Thursday, March 5, 2020, 1:48:26 PM EST, Mark Muller <markvmuller@...> wrote:


Excellent Project!

For some reason, the link above did not work in my browser, and perhaps others might have the same problem. Hopefully this link is operational: https://www.qsl.net/py2ohh/trx/loopauto/loopauto.html

There seems to be some improvement to the original work here: https://www.qsl.net/py2ohh/trx/loopauto2/loopauto2.html 

Parabéns Miguel! 73 de N5KNG (Mark Muller)

--
Jack, W8TEE


Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

Wayne Leake
 

 RE soldering stations.
 I use a very old Weller station that uses different tips to change temp.
 Not sure how well that works, bit it has served me well for decades now.
 Same for my Weller soldering guns.
 I can do reasonably well with the soldering station by changing what tips I do have. Bought a few tips last year or before.
 But I hesitate to try soldering smd's as they are used today.
 I'm a bit on the old fashioned side, think 1970s mostly.
 Unlike the bulky irons I used in the 50s. Those can kill many of the parts we use now, though might be great for things that need more heat.
 I have one that my dad said was mine from way back, though the tip is not good looking, and I am not sure how good the power lead is.
 For now I'll stick with my soldering station, and guns for heavier soldering, like some coax connectors.

 Wayne WA2YNE




Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

AC9NM - Jerry Ponko
 

Yes, it works very well. If you do have solder bridges, just heat up a solder wick strip over the pins with a soldering iron will wick up the excess solder or using a fine tip soldering pencil just reheat and drag the excess solder away if it's just across two pins. You probable already use one, but nothing beats a temperature controlled soldering pencil with a fine point tip. I bought a Zeny ESD 937D+ on ebay for about $35 two years ago - works great. I used to be a Luddite when it came to soldering pencils/irons because I was out of the hobby electronics scene for a long time until I got my Amateur Extra class license in 2016 and started building stuff again and learned about soldering stations.

Jerry, AC9NM

On 3/5/20 1:19 PM, Tom, wb6b wrote:
On Thu, Mar 5, 2020 at 10:19 AM, AC9NM - Jerry Ponko wrote:
low temperature solder paste
Wow, melts at only 140C. I may have to get some of that. Particularly if I start experimenting with some of the conductive inks that claim to be solderable. 

I definitely won't make any automotive projects, engine compartment or dashboard, projects with this solder paste. 

Tom, wb6b
-- 
Jerry AC9NM


Re: uBitX v6 arrived today - information I found while waiting.

Dean Souleles
 

Mike WA0YCN,

That sounds really interesting. Can you provide a few more details? I took a quick look HubRF page and couldn't quite get oriented.  Which tap board did you purchase and where did you hook in in to the V5?  I'm also curious as to which SDR and software you are using to for the pan display and CAT control.

Thank you,

Dean


Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

Tom, wb6b
 

On Thu, Mar 5, 2020 at 10:19 AM, AC9NM - Jerry Ponko wrote:
low temperature solder paste
Wow, melts at only 140C. I may have to get some of that. Particularly if I start experimenting with some of the conductive inks that claim to be solderable. 

I definitely won't make any automotive projects, engine compartment or dashboard, projects with this solder paste. 

Tom, wb6b


automatic magnetic loop adjustment

Mark Muller
 

Excellent Project!

For some reason, the link above did not work in my browser, and perhaps others might have the same problem. Hopefully this link is operational: https://www.qsl.net/py2ohh/trx/loopauto/loopauto.html

There seems to be some improvement to the original work here: https://www.qsl.net/py2ohh/trx/loopauto2/loopauto2.html 

Parabéns Miguel! 73 de N5KNG (Mark Muller)


CW Filter

Reg
 

Hi,
I finished my uBitX V5 sometime ago and it works well. I am impressed with it, all I needed was a good CW filter.
Having obtained and fitted one of these I am amazed at just how good it is.

https://www.sotabeams.co.uk/dual-bandwidth-filter-modules-ssb-cw/

I bought the dual bandwidth CW version and fitted into the line to the input of the volume control. I double pole, double throw switch allows the filter to be by passed or put into line where it is then in it's wider setting.. A separate, simple on off switch, then selects the narrow filter mode.

Performance of the filter is very good and when in it's narrowest settings a signal is peaked and just pops right out in the clear. A brilliant addition to the uBitX.

Reg             G4NFR 


Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

AC9NM - Jerry Ponko
 

If you get some low temperature solder paste (such as Maker Paste https://www.adafruit.com/product/3217 ) and a hobby/craft heat gun and most multi-pin surface mount parts shouldn't be a problem.  At $6.95 for a little tube, it may seem expensive but you'll be using tiny dabs of it with a pin. Another way to deal with them is to either buy or make some breakout to 8, 16 dip pcbs and you can then use 2.54mm pin sockets headers on your circuit boards.

Jerry, AC9NM

On 3/5/20 9:38 AM, Jack, W8TEE via Groups.Io wrte:
Mornin' Ken:

I agree with your statement, and that's really sad because most hams could easily do SMD parts. Farhan uses 1206 parts and even my 76 year old eyes and hands can work with them. They should invest $1.25 in an SMD practice kit (e.g., eBay 283799161850) and give it a try. I'll bet they would be surprised at how easy it is, plus kits using SMD parts are likely less expensive than a thru-hole equivalent.

Jack, W8TEE

On Thursday, March 5, 2020, 9:27:21 AM EST, Ken Hansen <ken@...> wrote:


Interesting, but from what I saw these are surface mount parts, many hams are put off by projects that rely on such parts.

Ken, N2VIP

On Mar 4, 2020, at 23:05, Tom, wb6b <wb6b@...> wrote:

Hi,

I stumbled upon these microprocessor chips at just $0.24 each. What is really compelling about these chips is they have an 8 channel A/D converter with 12 bit resolution. That is better than the Nano at 10 bits. And the A/D is many times faster.

Seems great where you would want to measure things in your radio, be able to digitize them and send the readings to other parts of the system, such as the Raduino. With a little bit of control functionally mixed in. 

https://direct.nuvoton.com/en/ms51fb9ae

Looks like the old time 8051 processors did not die, they still live on in inexpensive yet faster processor chips. I suppose there must be a warehouse of assembly code and possibility C code piled up on-line or elsewhere for these 8051 and derivative chips.

The chip has a built in factory trimmed 24mhz RC clock oscillator and a 10Khz RC oscillator for a low power mode. And a UART, assorted timers, GPIO and such. Looks like a battery (or other power supply) and maybe a small power bypass cap and you are good to go. 

Looks like a great chip for things that could be cobbled together with a few lines of code and seemed so trivial that using a microprocessor chip seems overkill. (Although it will handle way more than just a few lines of code.)

Too bad it does not have a built in temperature sensor (I guess they have to leave something out for 24 cents). You could have used it to control your cooling fan and it might have been cheaper than a thermistor. I might make a dimmable red led light for the spotter scope graticule on my telescope. Hard to think of a much more trivial and previously though to be overkill project for a microprocessor. 

I ordered some for my parts box along with a $25 development board, with a built-in programmer, that looks like I can use to develop and program the chips with.

Hopefully there will be open source and manufacture supplied tools to develop and upload the programs, without needing expensive commercial development tools. I believe that is the case. It should be possible to cobble together a free toolchain if it does not already exist. If anyone else has done development with the various recent 8051 derivative chips, it would be interesting to hear about your thoughts. 

It will be fun to go back in time and visit to the good old days of very simple chips and instruction sets; but at the same time be modern.

I discovered this chip because I bought one of the WiFi relay modules on eBay and besides the WiFi module (ESP-01), this chip (actually the older version) was used to turn the relays on and off based on hex codes sent over a serial link.

I'll know more when everything arrives and can play with the development board.

Tom, wb6b

--
Jack, W8TEE
-- 
Jerry AC9NM


Re: Other Arduino look-alike boards

Tom, wb6b
 

Those are interesting boards, especially the ST one. 

I've noticed that many of the development boards from the chip manufactures are several year old designs. Most cases that is OK, but for some of the more complex demo/development boards that makes a difference. Worst yet, sometimes the demo/example software has not kept up with the software tools and requires a lot of work to get going, when you are just trying to learn about the processor and what it can do. 

Maybe the chip manufactures are back in a tools refresh stage for dev boards and software, now.

The 8051 type processors may be best as added functionally controlled by one of the other processors, like the Nano, Blue Pill or Teensy. Or small stand alone projects, where they would just be another chip on the board. Rather than, themselves, a plug-in processor module. At least that was how I was envisioning using them. 

A minimal (low cost) PC board with the chip and header pins is not a bad idea, though. Would make hacking together little test projects easier. 

Tom, wb6b


Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

Tom, wb6b
 

On Thu, Mar 5, 2020 at 08:41 AM, Arv Evans wrote:
And they even have a dev board that looks a little like the Arduino Nano...
This is the dev board I purchased:
https://direct.nuvoton.com/en/nutiny-ms51fb9ae

It looks like you can snap the board in half, add a header to make a in-circuit programmer/debugger that you can use with your various projects, rather than just with the development board.

I've Googled around and found this complier:
http://sdcc.sourceforge.net
https://ftp.heanet.ie/mirrors/fosdem-video/2015/devroom-embedded/8bit_compiler.mp4

Now as long as there is a free driver and software for their programmer/debugger interface, things look good.

Maybe someone could port this to the Arduino platform. I wonder if the 8051 type processors would be able to run many of the libraries that make using the Arduino ecosystem so popular? None-the-less at least it would make the build/program process familiar. 

It could turn out using the above C complier and tools bundled with it, is simple enough for most folks to use it directly, rather than ported to the Arduino.

Amazingly, I've found the fact that SMDs pull themselves onto the correct position on the PC board pads, when the solder melts, makes them in some ways easier to use than through hole parts. Also, just using a lot of liquid flux and brushing your soldering iron tip across the pins of the SMD will usually suck up enough excess solder to clear any shorted pins. 

It took me a while to get used to the idea that you can bake (in actual toaster ovens), cook the whole SMD parts with heat guns (within limits) and such without damaging the parts. This is so much different than what I was used to about not overheating parts from days gone by. 

For some trivial projects, like the dimmable led, I might just bend every other pin away from each other and just solder everything together without a circuit board. (Maybe a little glue to hold the parts together.) Just to have the fun of being a minimalist.

I'll have to wait until everything arrives to know for sure.

Tom, wb6b


Other Arduino look-alike boards

Arv Evans
 

Recently there seem to be several companies making Arduino look/work-alike boards.  As of
this date they seem to be a bit pricey, but the designers have also provided libraries for using
the Arduino IDE with their products.  This could open the door for 3rd party developers to
make available some less expensive and higher performance Arduino boards.



The future for small microcomputer controlled ham radio equipment looks very interesting.

Arv K7HKL
_._


Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

Arv Evans
 

Tom

And they even have a dev board that looks a little like the Arduino Nano...


But at $20 each the are not going to sell many.  My guess is that with the low
price per CPU someone will come up with a pin-compatible Arduino version.

Thanks for the pointer to this product. 

Arv
_._



On Wed, Mar 4, 2020 at 10:05 PM Tom, wb6b <wb6b@...> wrote:
Hi,

I stumbled upon these microprocessor chips at just $0.24 each. What is really compelling about these chips is they have an 8 channel A/D converter with 12 bit resolution. That is better than the Nano at 10 bits. And the A/D is many times faster.

Seems great where you would want to measure things in your radio, be able to digitize them and send the readings to other parts of the system, such as the Raduino. With a little bit of control functionally mixed in. 

https://direct.nuvoton.com/en/ms51fb9ae

Looks like the old time 8051 processors did not die, they still live on in inexpensive yet faster processor chips. I suppose there must be a warehouse of assembly code and possibility C code piled up on-line or elsewhere for these 8051 and derivative chips.

The chip has a built in factory trimmed 24mhz RC clock oscillator and a 10Khz RC oscillator for a low power mode. And a UART, assorted timers, GPIO and such. Looks like a battery (or other power supply) and maybe a small power bypass cap and you are good to go. 

Looks like a great chip for things that could be cobbled together with a few lines of code and seemed so trivial that using a microprocessor chip seems overkill. (Although it will handle way more than just a few lines of code.)

Too bad it does not have a built in temperature sensor (I guess they have to leave something out for 24 cents). You could have used it to control your cooling fan and it might have been cheaper than a thermistor. I might make a dimmable red led light for the spotter scope graticule on my telescope. Hard to think of a much more trivial and previously though to be overkill project for a microprocessor. 

I ordered some for my parts box along with a $25 development board, with a built-in programmer, that looks like I can use to develop and program the chips with.

Hopefully there will be open source and manufacture supplied tools to develop and upload the programs, without needing expensive commercial development tools. I believe that is the case. It should be possible to cobble together a free toolchain if it does not already exist. If anyone else has done development with the various recent 8051 derivative chips, it would be interesting to hear about your thoughts. 

It will be fun to go back in time and visit to the good old days of very simple chips and instruction sets; but at the same time be modern.

I discovered this chip because I bought one of the WiFi relay modules on eBay and besides the WiFi module (ESP-01), this chip (actually the older version) was used to turn the relays on and off based on hex codes sent over a serial link.

I'll know more when everything arrives and can play with the development board.

Tom, wb6b


Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

Jack, W8TEE
 

Mornin' Ken:

I agree with your statement, and that's really sad because most hams could easily do SMD parts. Farhan uses 1206 parts and even my 76 year old eyes and hands can work with them. They should invest $1.25 in an SMD practice kit (e.g., eBay 283799161850) and give it a try. I'll bet they would be surprised at how easy it is, plus kits using SMD parts are likely less expensive than a thru-hole equivalent.

Jack, W8TEE

On Thursday, March 5, 2020, 9:27:21 AM EST, Ken Hansen <ken@...> wrote:


Interesting, but from what I saw these are surface mount parts, many hams are put off by projects that rely on such parts.

Ken, N2VIP

On Mar 4, 2020, at 23:05, Tom, wb6b <wb6b@...> wrote:

Hi,

I stumbled upon these microprocessor chips at just $0.24 each. What is really compelling about these chips is they have an 8 channel A/D converter with 12 bit resolution. That is better than the Nano at 10 bits. And the A/D is many times faster.

Seems great where you would want to measure things in your radio, be able to digitize them and send the readings to other parts of the system, such as the Raduino. With a little bit of control functionally mixed in. 

https://direct.nuvoton.com/en/ms51fb9ae

Looks like the old time 8051 processors did not die, they still live on in inexpensive yet faster processor chips. I suppose there must be a warehouse of assembly code and possibility C code piled up on-line or elsewhere for these 8051 and derivative chips.

The chip has a built in factory trimmed 24mhz RC clock oscillator and a 10Khz RC oscillator for a low power mode. And a UART, assorted timers, GPIO and such. Looks like a battery (or other power supply) and maybe a small power bypass cap and you are good to go. 

Looks like a great chip for things that could be cobbled together with a few lines of code and seemed so trivial that using a microprocessor chip seems overkill. (Although it will handle way more than just a few lines of code.)

Too bad it does not have a built in temperature sensor (I guess they have to leave something out for 24 cents). You could have used it to control your cooling fan and it might have been cheaper than a thermistor. I might make a dimmable red led light for the spotter scope graticule on my telescope. Hard to think of a much more trivial and previously though to be overkill project for a microprocessor. 

I ordered some for my parts box along with a $25 development board, with a built-in programmer, that looks like I can use to develop and program the chips with.

Hopefully there will be open source and manufacture supplied tools to develop and upload the programs, without needing expensive commercial development tools. I believe that is the case. It should be possible to cobble together a free toolchain if it does not already exist. If anyone else has done development with the various recent 8051 derivative chips, it would be interesting to hear about your thoughts. 

It will be fun to go back in time and visit to the good old days of very simple chips and instruction sets; but at the same time be modern.

I discovered this chip because I bought one of the WiFi relay modules on eBay and besides the WiFi module (ESP-01), this chip (actually the older version) was used to turn the relays on and off based on hex codes sent over a serial link.

I'll know more when everything arrives and can play with the development board.

Tom, wb6b

--
Jack, W8TEE


Re: Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

 

I am interested, can u suggest a simulator for it for firmware dev. on a windows PC?
--
AncelB, MIT EE6002