Programmers, debuggers, tools and development kits
The quickest way to learn and deploy a new microcontroller or PLD is a starter kit. A standard starter kit includes:
- the hardware – usually a small board
- a programming adapter (the cheap ones are embedded in the hardware board)
- programming software, compiler and maybe an IDE
- some reference designs and software examples and datasheets
Some chip manufacturers are offering a large palette of boards bundled with software with different names as Evaluation Boards, Starter Kits, Demo Kits, Rapid Prototyping Kits, Development Kits. The main difference between those kits can be seen in the Development Software licensing option as the Starter Kit usually has a code-size or time limited demo version and the Development Kit may include a full “per seat” license or something more useful in production work.
Open-source software can be also bundled in the cheap kits but is not a cheap solution, if you don’t need hard optimisation, if you have enough space and if you know exactly what you need to do, it can turn to be a very cost-effective business option.
Compiler differences can be observed in the code optimisation, one example can be found at http://www.ghs.com/products/compiler.html.
Companies like IAR SYSTEMS (http://www.iar.com) and Keil(http://www.keil.com/) are providing some of the best integrated kits for architectures like ARM, 8051, ColdFire, Renesas R8C / RX / RL78 and AVR / AVR32.
Here we are trying to bring you some hints in choosing “the right kit” or maybe only a small review.
- The EFM32 Development Kit - Gecko, G890F128
- HVSP: Reviving on old ATtiny13
- Microchip PICkit 3 Debug Express Deal - July
- Wolverine in a FR5969LCD Bundle - Is this THE Wolverine?
- Microchip Development Tools Deals - November
- The new TI Launchpad: MSP430F5529
- BeagleBone SUBARCTIC issue
- The amazing small board - NXP LPC800 by NGX
- Microchip Development Tools Deals – June 2013
- 4/30 for MSP430
- The new Tiva Launchpad EK-TM4C123GXL
- 2.7 inch E-Paper Display Module by EmbeddedArtists
- Microchip Development Tools Deals - March 2013
- A new TI Deal is coming...
- Energia, something between TI Launchpad series and Arduino/Wiring
- Microchip Development Tools Deals
- The Stellaris LaunchPad from Texas Instruments, ARM development made easy.
- C2000 demo program modification
- J-Link Lite for Cortex-M debug probe included in IAR KickStart Kit for Kinetis K70F120M
- IAR Systems I-jet - JTAG Debug Probe
- Atmel AVR JTAG-ICE mkII
- mbed - ARM Rapid Prototyping Tool
- ST-LINK & ST-LINK/V2