Electronics > Microcontrollers

How do you search for a microcontroller ?

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I am thinking of a project.  It would be best if done with an FPGA but that is way beyond my skill set (30+ year retired EE), but I could do a reasonable prototype with a FAST microcontroller.

* Preferably ARM based
* 32 bit
* No MMU
* SPI (preferred) or I²C
* >16 output pins w/latches
* Needs to be FAST (>100MHz; >500MHz even better)
* Because of this, it needs to execute from onboard static RAM/cache; boot Flash can be external.
* prefer Harvard architecture
* >8K of I memory; 4K of D memory   I am not looking so much for the "perfect" solution, but a method of searching for what is available !

Kim Christensen:
I'd just go to a supplier like DigiKey and do a parametric search using those parameters.

These specs fit almost any kind of ARM Cortex M MCU these days, except maybe for the very bottom range. So there's like thousands of matching references.
Although you need to define what you want to do with "FAST", because without context, that requirement may not be very helpful.

*As to Harvard", you also need to tell us more about the rationale. Most CPU these days are some kind of hybrid Harvard which allows them to transparently read data from "instruction" memory and even execute code from "data" memory, while they may internally have separate busses and separate caches.

Step 1: Start with a uC that you are already familiar with, already own the programmer for, and have previous code projects to start from.
Step 2: See what's in stock at Digikey.
Step 3: ...
Step 4: Profit!

Sounds like the job for a Cortex M7-based MCU
- ST has the STM32H7 line https://www.st.com/en/microcontrollers-microprocessors/stm32h7-series.html
- Microchip has the SAME7x/V7x/S7x https://www.microchip.com/en-us/products/microcontrollers-and-microprocessors/32-bit-mcus - working with serial protocols in this one can be disorienting because everything is control by SERCOM peripheral and the mux tables are huge
- NXP has the i.MX RT series https://www.nxp.com/products/processors-and-microcontrollers/arm-microcontrollers/i-mx-rt-crossover-mcus:IMX-RT-SERIES

You can look for more in digikey as pointed out by others. If you were looking for a devboard, Teensy 4.1 and Nucleo-144 boards could be options to consider, here's a list:https://www.digikey.com/short/bzp43qtr

Teensy boards seem to have a nice reputation. I have not used one yet so I couldn't share my personal experience with them, but many people swear by them. More info on the 4.1 can be found here: https://www.pjrc.com/store/teensy41.html

EDIT: forgot to mention, Teensy is based on i.MX RT


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