Date   
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

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

Mike WA0YCN
 

Mike,

Great and valuable assembly of informaion. I wish I had that five months ago when I started on my v5.

Perhaps the most dramatic and satisfying mod I've made is to add CAT control with a waterfall.  I took Iain's (www.hamskey.com) approach one step further and used a HupRF tap board to tie into the first IF so I could have a wider spectrum.  It works great - I use it almost exclusively when I operate my uBitx.

Enjoy the rig.  I've found it reinvigorating to my hobby.

Regards,

Mike

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

Ken Hansen
 

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

Re: CEC 1.2 memory manager error Receive length 1/1027

Evan Hand
 

My personal experience with Memory Manager is that you need to close the port in Memory Manager before power cycle or disconnect of the ubitx.  That seems to keep the programs happy.

FWIW
73
Evan
AC9TU

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

Mike G4GOU
 

Hi,

Thanks for the comments, I might investigate the extra filtering for CW - thanks Erich.

Quickly unpacked the package yesterday evening


Got it working with factory settings a couple of hours later (would have done it in half the time but had to make a BNC to PL259 cable to connect it to my antenna).


Then replaced the display and software.


Looking good so far - glad I did some research in the 3 weeks between ordering and it arriving.

73 Mike
EA7KIP/G4GOU

Re: CEC 1.2 memory manager error Receive length 1/1027

Mike G4GOU
 

Hi Dean,

After powering it on a few times this morning, I would agree with you on that. 

I will do some experimenting and post any conclusions I might come to.

Re: Lna #ubitx

 

Allison,

The higher sensitivity is useful when one operates on a mobile antenna which
is short and inefficient.

Raj

At 05/03/2020, you wrote:
For lower bands it would degrade the radio due to overload.

For higher bands 15/12/10M it can be of some value but requires a
bandpass filter to keep out broad cast signals that will degrade the receiver.
Even then you may need an attenuator for strong signals.

Allison

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

HB9FIH
 

Hi Mike

additional for Filtering (I need them especially for CW)

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

I am in EA8 and have all here (also Nextion, AGC..) for assembling the V5 - soon starting.

---
73 de Erich

HB9FIH

HS0ZLS

Very cheap, 24 cent microprocessors. #firmware #i2c

Tom, wb6b
 

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: RTC07S Si531 DDS VFO

Dean Souleles
 

Vule -

I know it is not what you are asking but I would suggest you consider a replacement NANO and SI5351 - total cost less than $10 if you look around. Easy to put together, drop in replacement. Reload the FW and go.

Good luck,

Dean
KK4DAS 

Re: CEC 1.2 memory manager error Receive length 1/1027

Dean Souleles
 

Hi Mike - 

If your experience is like mine you will likely find it is not the cable.  I have come to the conclusion that there is a timing bug in the CEC SW that I have not yet figured out.  Sometimes it will not connect in memory manager or other CAT I/f software but if I cycle power the next time it connects perfectly.

Keep notes and figure out what works for you.

73,
Dean
KK4DAS