Electronics > Microcontrollers

Microcontroller for students- Suggestions please!

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Hey all,
I'm after some advice to pass on to my microcontrollers teacher- we need a MCU and development board to replace the Motorola/Freescale MC68HC11.
It needs to be cheap in small quantities, and easy to work with in assembler, and probably connect via USB.
 I have suggested the MSP430 Launchpad, but he found the IDE too  complicated for students, and the devices too limited. Others in my class are suggesting ARM based devices, but that sounds to me like using a sledgehammer to open a walnut.

What do people rate for learners?

Have a look at Arduino.



--- Quote from: firewalker on April 18, 2011, 01:54:23 pm ---Have a look at Arduino.


--- End quote ---

The hardware is OK, like all AVRs, but DON'T USE THAT SKETCH PAD!!!

How is the Arduino at assembler? I know it uses its own C-like language but is there an assembler for it too?

Arduinos have Atmel AVR MCUs. There are two main issues here:

1) The whole Arduino environment is made for hand holding artists and similar people who "won't get it". It is totally unusable for teaching engineering students how things really work.

2) Native Atmel tools are also not good, since Atmel released a new IDE called AVR Studio 5.

So with AVRs you have on one child toys catering for the idiots (Arduino), on the other end you have a 0.5 GB IDE (AVR Studio 5), completely out of tune with reality. And not much any more in between.

IMHO this makes AVRs (in the form of Arduinos or otherwise) totally useless for teaching engineering students.


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