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QCX firmware upgrade instructions for USBASP and Extreme Burner #qcx #firmware


Ted 2E0THH
 

I've just successfully upgraded to 1.02b. I couldn't find definitive instructions for my particular setup so before I forget here they are. I hope someone else gains benefit from them. The only cost was the USBASP which totalled just over £2!

MY SETUP
  • QCX 40
  • Win10 (32 bit)
  • 10 Pin Convert to Standard 6 Pin Adapter Board+USBASP USBISP AVR Programmer USB
    Extreme burner
  • Zadig USB driver for above
  • Latest QCX firmware
SOURCES
10 Pin Convert to Standard 6 Pin Adapter Board+USBASP USBISP AVR Programmer USB
Extreme burner
Zadig USB driver 
QCX 1.02b Firmware

METHOD
Preparation - PC
  • Install Extreme Burner
  • There is an extra .xml file in the zip called chips.xml which contains the support for the QCX ATmega328 chip. Copy this file to the program files/extreme burner - AVR/data and overwrite the existing chips.xml file in there
  • Open Extreme Burner and select the ATmega328 from the top menu "chip"
  • Plug the USBASP into a USB port (I used a USB extension lead so I could easily connect it to the QCX) The USBASP  red LEDs should light up
  • Install the Zadig software and install the driver
  • Download and extract the QCX firmware .hex file onto your desktop or somewhere you can easily find it, don't load it yet. 
Preparation - QCX
  • Power off the QCX
  • Expose the 6 way ASP header (if the QCX is in a case), it is situated next to the power connector on the top of the PCB
  • Insert the 6 to 10 pin converter onto the header, the 10 way header keyway slot should face into the middle of the PCB
  • Carefully connect the ribbon cable between the USBASP  and the 6 to 10 pin converter 
The firmware upgrade
  • Power up the QCX
  • Firstly, check Extreme Burner is communicating with the ATmega328 chip by pressing the READ ALL Icon in Extreme Burner, this action should successfully download the current contents of the ATmega328 chip
  • Now load the QCX firmware .hex file using the OPEN icon in Extreme Burner, you will see all the addresses populate as it loads 
  • You should not have adjusted any other parameter in Extreme Burner, the Flash tab should still be displayed
  • Press the WRITE ALL icon and wait until Extreme Burner indicates success
  • Power off the QCX
  • Power on the QCX and 1.02b (or which ever firmware you uploaded) should display during boot - you are done!
Notes
  • During Read and Write, Extreme Burner always displayed the message "Incorrect chip found, continue?" which I did. It could be just my setup or ignorance but it did not affect either read or write.
  • This was performed on a 32 bit PC. I started on a 64 bit machine but I found that I had to disable a security element regarding unsigned drivers. If you only have a 64 bit machine this is easily done, I just happened to have a 32 bit machine available.
I hope this is of some help to others, this was my first upgrade attempt and frankly very easy indeed.

73s Ted
2E0THH


Mikael Dagman
 

This is a good guide, Extremeburner is the best program looking at its intuitive interface for avrdude compared to others , thats in imho ofc :)

one essential piece of information to ge the usbasp running under win10 is to get the correct driver installed using zadig, use the lib-usbwin32(v1.2.6.0) driver - se picture

also drop this chips.xml in (unrar first) "C:\Program Files\eXtreme Burner - AVR\Data"  or just ad this to the chips.xml
 
-<CHIP>
 
<NAME>ATmega328P</NAME>
 
<FLASH>32768</FLASH>
 
<EEPROM>1024</EEPROM>
 
<SIG>0x000F951E</SIG>
 
<PAGE>64</PAGE>
 
<LFUSE layout="2">YES</LFUSE>
 
<HFUSE layout="5">YES</HFUSE>
 
<EFUSE layout="4">YES</EFUSE>
 
<LOCK>YES</LOCK>
 
<CALIB>YES</CALIB>
 
<PLACEMENT>.\Images\Placements\ZIF_DIP_40.bmp</PLACEMENT>
 
</CHIP>
 
 
-<CHIP>
 
<NAME>ATmega328PB</NAME>
 
<FLASH>32768</FLASH>
 
<EEPROM>1024</EEPROM>
 
<SIG>0x0016951E</SIG>
 
<PAGE>64</PAGE>
 
<LFUSE layout="2">YES</LFUSE>
 
<HFUSE layout="5">YES</HFUSE>
 
<EFUSE layout="4">YES</EFUSE>
 
<LOCK>YES</LOCK>
 
<CALIB>YES</CALIB>
 
<PLACEMENT>.\Images\Placements\ZIF_DIP_40.bmp</PLACEMENT>
 
</CHIP>


Ivan Rogers
 

I upgraded the Firmware to rev 1.05 as to the first post. Extreme burner seemed to program the chip with no errors but I am still getting 1.00g on the LCD when QCX is powered up. I cannot see where I am going wrong. I opened the correct hex version file in extreme burner.


Alan G4ZFQ
 

Ivan,

Ted put a PDF in the Files section with more detail (June 13).
Did you read the chip first? Is the QCX communicating?
No error messages?

73 Alan G4ZFQ

I upgraded the Firmware to rev 1.05 as to the first post. Extreme burner seemed to program the chip with no errors but I am still getting 1.00g on the LCD when QCX is powered up. I cannot see where I am going wrong. I opened the correct hex version file in extreme burner.
_._,_._,_
------------------------------------------------------------------------


Ted 2E0THH
 

Hi Ivan

Alan has been really helpful and I have modified these instructions since this first post you trawled up.

Everything you need is here
Including the latest instructions 

Have a good read through before you start and as Alan suggests, do make sure that you are successfully reading the chip before writing.
Very happy to help out.

Good luck!

73s Ted
2E0THH


Ivan Rogers
 

Hi Ted
That's a very good updated document. I load the hex file and then READ in the QCX software to check the usb was working. I did read about that on AVRDUDE if you read in the firmware form QCX it would overwrite the existing hex file.

I unzipped the hex ZIP file again and loaded that into burner and the QCX got programmed sucessfully.
I think reading in the the firmware from the QCX overwrote the hex file.

Following the exact instruction order on the PDF should work with no problem.


Ted 2E0THH
 

Brilliant Ivan
Very pleased it all worked for you.
73s Ted 2E0THH


HL Serra
 

Hi Ted-
I've spent two days on this, trying to get my ARCELI USBISP AVR USBasp_H6 Programmer + 6 pin Cable Ideal Support WIN& WIN 10 for ATmega 328P <https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0785RQ766/ref=ppx yo dt b asin title o01 s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1> in order to load a T1.05.hex file.

I explicitly followed all your instructions in the QCX IO Files section and got all the Extreme Burner and Zadig USB Drivers software, the new chips.XML file, and the QCX+ T1.05.hex file ready for loading, but Extreme Burner could not "talk to" or load the existing .hex file from the QCX+ nor the load the new .hex file because there was no communication between the computer and USBasp unit or the Extreme Burner software.

When I plugged the USBasp unit into my WIN 10 computer's USB port (either with the QCX powered or not), WIN 10 would not recognize the USBasp device or assign it a COM port.
Does this sound like a hardware problem with the USBasp device? Or does it sound like the Zadig drivers were not properly installed? Shouldn't WIN 10 recognize the USBasp device and assign it a COM port? 

73, Larry N6NC


Alan G4ZFQ
 

it sound like the Zadig drivers were not properly installed? Shouldn't WIN 10 recognize the USBasp device and assign it a COM port?
Larry,

My notes here, I had to look! https://sites.google.com/site/g4zfqradio/progrock_update

The USBasp should appear as a USBasp, no COM port involved. Did you use the correct driver with Zadig?
Khazama, of whatever has to be set to use a USBasp. (Khazama does anyway?)
I've used Khazama but now use Avrdudess because that is the more popular software and known well by members of this group.

73 Alan G4ZFQ


Ted 2E0THH
 

Hi Larry
Really sorry you are having problems with this.

When I plugged the USBasp unit into my WIN 10 computer's USB port (either with the QCX powered or not), WIN 10 would not recognize the USBasp device or assign it a COM port.

From this info, I would say this is not related to the firmware upgrade process but more just a general IT issue. If the PC is not recognising the USBasp, nothing beyond that is going to work. 

Is it possible to plug the USBasp into any other computer if you have one or know someone with one (no need for the QCX to be connected)?

- If it is still not recognized then the USBasp is faulty. 
- If it is recognized, then something on your PC is preventing it from being found

I will have a quick look at the latter to see what the causes might be.

73s Ted
2E0THH
 


HL Serra
 

Hi Ted- I think we corrected the WIN 10 computer recognition issue of the USBasp. It is recognized by my WIN 10 64bit computer as a "USB Device" in Device Manager.
I've reloaded everything per your guide, but Extreme Burner (EB) will not comm with the QCX+, and I get error screens when I try to load the present QCX+ hex file into EB, or try to download the new hex file to the QCX+. EB will populate its matrix when I "Open" the new hex file, but EB cannot send it to the QCX+.
Any ideas?
73, Larry N6NC
 


Ted 2E0THH
 

Thanks for the update Larry
Just to confirm, yours is a QCX+?
I am just going to to check that the header is oriented the same way as the QCX.
73s Ted
2E0THH


Ted 2E0THH
 

Hi again Larry
That was worth checking as I made these notes for the original QCX.

On the QCX+ the ISP header is at the non dimple end of the 328P (IC2).
That means the 10 way header keyway slot (marked here) should be facing towards the 328P. 

I've got a few more ideas if that's not it!

73s Ted
2E0THH