Author Topic: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8  (Read 12219 times)

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Online IanJ

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #60 on: January 31, 2012, 06:44:54 PM »
It would have been nice with line numers in the code editor window, by the way

Yep, the IDE sucks........so I use UltraEdit (IDE in external editor mode).
In UE you can configure custom buttons on the toolbar (with a bitmap of your own choice). The button simply runs a wee bit of VBS code which sends keystrokes to the IDE to perform the compile/upload (next best thing to command line arguments which the IDE doesn't support).

Net result, once you've opened your sketch in the IDE you just leave it there and never touch it again....everything is done from within UE.

Code: [Select]
Set objShell = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
objShell.AppActivate "Arduino 1.0"
objShell.SendKeys "^u"

Ian.

Online EEVblog

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #61 on: January 31, 2012, 07:51:58 PM »
Something that has occurred to me, and I need to follow up later with a good look at the schematic. Could it be that the offset is being partially imposed with the following op-amp's input offset bias?

Not when it's less than expected result.

Dave.

Offline shebu18

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #62 on: January 31, 2012, 09:16:39 PM »
Dave, what IDE are you using? i recommend 0022 or 0020. They seem more stable and work better.

Online firewalker

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #63 on: January 31, 2012, 10:27:27 PM »
0022, 0020 is not just a different IDE. The API has changed.

Alexander.
Become a realist, stay a dreamer.


Offline Shale

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #64 on: February 01, 2012, 06:09:15 AM »
Dave. Can you explain to me why you went through the trouble of laying out the design and having a board made etc, and then trying to program the board? I am very new to electronics, and I would have put it all on bread board and the cranked out the code to make sure I had everything right while still on the bread board. Is one way preferred over the other?

Online IanB

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #65 on: February 01, 2012, 06:14:04 AM »
I guess Dave felt he could separate the hardware aspects from the firmware/software aspects in the design by keeping things modular. Once you are confident about the hardware part you can fix that into a board layout since the conceptual functions of the micro are already accounted for in the big picture. Developing the program on the micro won't change the overall system configuration.
I'm not an EE--what am I doing here?

Offline PeteInTexas

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #66 on: February 01, 2012, 06:42:43 AM »
I guess Dave felt he could separate the hardware aspects from the firmware/software aspects in the design by keeping things modular. Once you are confident about the hardware part you can fix that into a board layout since the conceptual functions of the micro are already accounted for in the big picture. Developing the program on the micro won't change the overall system configuration.

Yeah, but these pins with "alternative functions" is a " real trap for young players".  Your reading the pin out diagram and thinking that is enough but once you start writing the software it turns out you can't use them that way (or simply not recommended to use them that way) in conjunction with some other choice you made for some other pins; eg that reset pin.  Personally, I would have started with the software since that is the hardest part.  I know, everyone seems to think its the other way around dismissing it as just a "small matter of programming".

Offline Shale

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #67 on: February 01, 2012, 06:43:09 AM »
I guess what I was trying to say is that, How does he know all the hardware is right? the issue he is having with the DAC as an example?

Online IanB

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #68 on: February 01, 2012, 07:00:46 AM »
I guess what I was trying to say is that, How does he know all the hardware is right? the issue he is having with the DAC as an example?

That's probably just a matter of being confident in how things will work out, and finding a circuit board more convenient to work with than a tangle on a breadboard...

(There can always be another board revision to iron out wrinkles.)
I'm not an EE--what am I doing here?

Offline Shale

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #69 on: February 01, 2012, 07:09:55 AM »
I guess what I was trying to say is that, How does he know all the hardware is right? the issue he is having with the DAC as an example?

That's probably just a matter of being confident in how things will work out, and finding a circuit board more convenient to work with than a tangle on a breadboard...

(There can always be another board revision to iron out wrinkles.)

I guess I am from a  way of thinking that once you pay to get a board, or whatever, then you should already  have the wrinkles ironed out. I may be looking at it in the whole wrong way since I am new though. and of course I thinking that from video 241 that the board cost $90. Maybe I am cheep, but seems like a lot of money to me to not be 100% sure. Is this normal in the industry?

Online IanB

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #70 on: February 01, 2012, 08:07:44 AM »
It's called "professional confidence". Once people reach a certain level of experience they can take steps like that and have sufficient confidence the design is going to work. Every now and then there will be a stumble, but on balance overall progress is faster when taking big steps than when taking smaller steps. Experienced practitioners tend to do the same in other fields too. You might also call it "impatience", but "professional confidence" sounds better  ;)

Also remember that in industry $90 is small change, whereas for the hobbyist it is much more significant. I guess Dave is somewhere in between right now...
I'm not an EE--what am I doing here?

Offline Short Circuit

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #71 on: February 01, 2012, 08:28:31 AM »
I guess what I was trying to say is that, How does he know all the hardware is right? the issue he is having with the DAC as an example?

He doesn't... EEVblog #17 – I hope your next project DOESN’T work!   8)

Quote
I guess I am from a  way of thinking that once you pay to get a board, or whatever, then you should already  have the wrinkles ironed out. I may be looking at it in the whole wrong way since I am new though. and of course I thinking that from video 241 that the board cost $90. Maybe I am cheep, but seems like a lot of money to me to not be 100% sure. Is this normal in the industry?

Of course this is normal practice in industry; $90 is less than an hour worth of work.
Also prototyping and breadboarding does not eliminate errors. Build 2 or 3 real prototypes, and you can easily seperate stupid accidental mistakes from the real design errors.

Offline ejeffrey

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #72 on: February 01, 2012, 08:28:58 AM »
Another thing to consider is that breadboards suck :)  They are hard to use, harder to debug, and unreliable (wires that look like they are in sometimes don't make good contact.  They are hard to use for SMD, and get ugly quickly for a moderately complicated design.  The worst part is that once you get your circuit working, it is very hard to see what you have, and very easy to make mistakes when converting it to a PCB.

If you can afford it, it is much nicer to make a PCB that you know is 95% correct, make some layout choices to facilitate debugging and repair, and then fix it up with bodge wires until it works.  Once you get all the bugs worked out, it is much easier to make the handful of changes to your PCB and send it out for a second spin.  Considering there is a good chance you will make errors in your first PCB even if it is based on a working breadboard, it isn't necessarily much more expensive on average.

In the professional world, if it saves an engineer a couple of hours of swearing at a breadboard, $90 is cheap.  For a hobbyist that may or may not be the case. You can also etch your own boards to save money.  This also takes some time, but has the advantage over a professional PCB of instant gratification.

Online EEVblog

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #73 on: February 01, 2012, 08:42:09 AM »
Dave. Can you explain to me why you went through the trouble of laying out the design and having a board made etc, and then trying to program the board? I am very new to electronics, and I would have put it all on bread board and the cranked out the code to make sure I had everything right while still on the bread board. Is one way preferred over the other?

Because to me it's important to have something real in my hands to play with, I prefer that to mucking around with a breadboard, as other have explained.
A real board let's you play with the case and physical aspects early in the design process, and gives you a better sense of project being on track and keeps your enthusiasm up for the project.
Most of my designs are SMD, so going to a PCB early is practically essential. That thinking just naturally follows over to through-hole projects.

Dave.

Offline asgard

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Re: EEVblog #240 - Power Supply Design Part 8
« Reply #74 on: February 01, 2012, 08:47:29 AM »
Well, this is where I get to put my two cents worth (Yup, that's U.S. money, so that, and a banana will get you lunch for a monkey  :)

On the matter of the rolling/unrolling of loops:  After more than a decade in the RTOS business (MIPS/68xxx/PPC) it always amazes me that in a memory-constrained architecture it is the time component that is consumed first.  On the x86 and 68K the branch predictors are total shite.  No matter that the pipeline "knows" in advance where the branch is going to be, and the prefetcher knows to start working even before the branch is taken, the lookaside cache gets flushed for _any_ passage through a conditional branch instruction, even if the branch is not taken.  Believe me when I tell you that re-filling a flushed cache just sucks micro-ops, especially when the compiler optimizes nicely and ensures reference locality.  You might also note which real-estate on the CPU die represents the cache manager, as you can put an LC film over the die and see which parts are heating up the most.  Sometimes I have found out the bottlenecks in the application code that way.  It also might reduce the design-life of the part. :)

On the matter of the MCP DAC.  I had a good and hard look through the datasheet and really don't have any idea of the internal architecture of the DAC.  Is it successive approximation?  Is it some kind of screwy Sigma-Delta method?  How about double-buffered?  If the output is going to a R-2R resistive ladder just how good is the trimming process?  Hellifino.  I too can remember the day when _really_ accurate 8-bit DACS (Burr-Brown comes to mind) required great chunky bricks of epoxy with hand-trimmed resistors with an actual eyeball making laser decisions for every single part.  My brain curdles at the though of that job.


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