Electronics > Microcontrollers

Comments of Fujitsu 8.bit controllers?

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JoannaK:

I was looking for a low end (sub 1$) microcontroller with some 10-20-30 io and realized that Fujitsu makes some really low-price chips, beating Pic.s and AVR.s on features/price.

I have not seen those used on any system that I know, but these seems to be avaiable on big distributors (like farnell etc) and the price seems to be ok. Otoh, I have no knowledge of the hidden costs (like tools/SW) so I can't compare them. So I decided to open a question here, in case someone with experience can tell if those are any good?



mikeselectricstuff:
Unless you are into high volumes where a few cents matters, it's not worth the hassle of designing in relatively obscure micros.
I've lost count of the number of my customers who had in the past been pursuaded  into using some oddball micro by an over-enthusiastic sales guy handing out free devbards, only to regret it when they later find long leadtimes, sudden obsolescence, and the hidden problem of very few people being familiar with it, so when their engineer leaves they can't find anyone who knows about it to maintain their products.
Add to that things like subcontract manufacturers not being able to program unusual devices, or needing to buy expensive programmers, or a much more limited choice of programming service providers.   
You have to look very hard at all the potential costs to decide if it is really worth straying away from mainstream, available, widely supported devices from manufacturers with good track records of support, continued availability, good documentation, stable devtools etc.

senso:
STM8 8 bits micro-controllers are also some pretty cheap and nice micros, they are more or less common and pretty near identical to avr's.

HardBoot:
Any micro that can be easily used with simple open source tools for cheap that gets the job done is a good micro.
I have no brand loyalty since every company is bad in their own way.

Wish I could just design my own micro, there's a dead-zone between 8-bit and higher-end... CPLDs somehow end up fitting in some niches.

JoannaK:
Mike: I agree, and if this was for something even half usefull (or had any money in it) I'd definitely went that way. But I asked this just for my own (stupid) interest. I just like to read and test the cores and systems and see what I can tinker (usually with asm). But quite frankly the price may well be too much for essentially no reward whatsoever with my current income level.


Hardboot: What kind of feature you are looking for? There may be one you have not seen yet?

Also: Designing microcontroller ain't that hard, if you want to try with HLD:s and FPGA.s . Even getting it to produced is possible, but quite frankly it's darn expensive. (seen opencores.org ?)

Generally I tend to like to see odd cores/io:s .. Not most of them are popular or even available for wide masses, but it's interesting to see alternative possibilities alongside these mass-prodced x86 and Arm cores.



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