Electronics > Microcontrollers

Why do people not like Microchip?

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--- Quote from: Nominal Animal on August 16, 2021, 12:01:45 pm ---As to Allwinner, their business model is odd.  They ignore copyright laws with gay abandon, which makes no sense –– unless they know they'll never expand outside China.  And they are utter shit when it comes to the software side.  Comparing their operations to e.g. RockChip (which is a very similar company), especially their software efforts, means I will definitely focus on RockChip-based SBCs instead of Allwinner-based ones, for my tinkering/development devices.  (The other companies that I like for Linux SBCs are Amlogic and Samsung, since I can use fully open source upstream vanilla Linux kernels for these.)
For tablets running vendor-provided software anyway, who cares?  Not I; I choose my Android tablets mainly based on their display properties anyway.

--- End quote ---

Allwinner pricing is great for the features you get. Unfortunately they're only willing to provide tech support to customers ordering huge quantities. I suspect that a person's view of the company would depend a lot on if they're just a hobbyist or a small quantity customer vs a huge quantity customer. Regardless though, their ignoring copyright laws is still an issue.

RockChip is much better, though in my case it was due to having an inside track in order to get proper documentation that I couldn't for Allwinner. Price-wise, I think Allwinner is better though.

For Samsung, I've had terrible luck. Their documentation has been very poor, and their product life cycle is very short. Though it's been over 10 years now since I last touched their CPUs, so things might have changed, but I'm definitely not willing to risk spending months of my time ever again on developing for a Samsung CPU only to trash that time and need to switch to a different CPU with proper documentation. For Samsung memory chips though, I have no issues.

My comments are based on my experience with using the bare chips inside a design, not with SBC's designed by the chip maker or a third party. So comments about pricing is for CPU pricing, not SBC pricing.

I have used most of the brand out there ST, Ti, Atmel, Renessas, NXP...

And to be honnest the C drivers library offered by Microchip were the worst one maybe with the exeption of NXP.
From my experience PIC programing tools are shockingling bad (PICKit 3/4 or watever they call it nowdays). Where I worked there used to be around 10 of those dead units in a basket.

Other than that their prices in europe are good but ST microcontrollers (which are better in almost every way) are cheaper. So for me Microchip micros are used for maintening old projects never on new one.

My rating of Microchip 8 bits microcontrollers is as follow:

Price: 9/10
Availibility: 10/10
Ultra Low Power: 7/10
Functionalities: 2/10
Programing tools: 1/10
Free IDE: 1/10
Drivers: 0.5/10


--- Quote from: Nominal Animal on August 16, 2021, 11:16:48 pm ---
--- Quote from: nctnico on August 16, 2021, 10:24:41 pm ---
--- Quote from: Nominal Animal on August 16, 2021, 08:51:29 pm ---That's a difficult question to answer, though, because humans extrapolate, and brands are the marketing tool that targets that human behaviour precisely: "if you liked that thing, here is another thing from the same brand that you'll like too!".  It is very difficult to analyze oneself and even accept that some decisions are based on emotive reasons like good marketing, instead of objective comparisons or such.  Mainly, this means it is difficult to separate what one considers "good experience" and what is the result of marketing and not finding any fault yet to bring one down from the high of having a yet another tool one feels one likes.  Myself very much included.

--- End quote ---
Does marketing actually work on engineers?
--- End quote ---
Marketing that is appropriately directed at engineers, yes.  Things like samples, journals/articles by their engineers and hardware designers, access to higher-tier support, and so on.

My point is that even people who are thing-oriented rather than people-oriented, (specific types of) marketing still works.  When it is done effectively, thing-oriented people don't even notice it; they just find that "I've somehow always had a suitable device at hand".

Note that I am including everything that is done to increase sales that does not modify/affect the product sold, as marketing; not just advertisements.

Do you really believe you are immune to everything companies do to increase sales (excluding actual modifications to their products)?
I know I am not (immune).

--- End quote ---
If a product really is better and/or cheaper then I like to know about it OTOH if it is just a load of BS then I discard it. It is all about the numbers.

For example: where is comes to connectors and inductors I use quite a bit from Wurth. But that is because they are competitively priced, their quality is OK and they usually have a lot of stuff in stock locally. I do enough volume for Wurth to send a sales rep to me once a year. Still that doesn't prevent me from looking somewhere else; Wurth parts are not always the best fit.

I am in a love/hate relationship with Microchip. I am a hobbyist and program 8 bit PICs in Assembler. I think MPASM is great and now they have stopped supporting it. So now if I send code to someone I have to explain download MPLAB X 5.35 to compile it. Then there is the problem of programming. My latest effort I decided I would make a bootloader that worked with Tera Term Xmodem. Then the program can update itself. Not quite there yet - Xmodem protocol works OK, reading and decoding the hex formats works OK, now have to do some defensive stuff to stop the bootloader overwriting itself.
As an aside, There's a lot of reading hex characters and converting two characters into one byte. I came up with a bizarre way of doing it, I haven't seen it anywhere else. It doesn't check the data and alpha hex (A-F) has to be in upper case. It reads the hex output of MPLAB just fine:

--- Code: --- SWAPF CHAR1,W
ADDLW 0x55
BTFSS CHAR1,6 ; test if letter
ADDLW 0x71
; 2nd hex char
BTFSS CHAR2,6 ; test if letter
ADDLW 0x07
--- End code ---

Jan Audio:
Microchip offers all the DIP.
I cant imagine starting this hobby with STM32 and a microscope.

Yes the software sucks, could have been much better if i was the boss of microchip.
They was thinking we could integrate online so we can have microtransactions also.
Just add java depency because everybody have the latest computer and the latest windows and a good internet-connection.

Next step : like everybody does, sell your personal info.
They start asking for your email already if you want to download the latest compiler.
They denie, i see right trough, why else they ask info for something free ?
Info-data is the new gold, dont forget.


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