AntzyP @ instructables.com writes:
What’s with mint boxes and electronics? Beats me, but they are somehow made for each other. I had built ladyada’s USBtinyISP v1.0 circuit on a breadboard which I used every other day. It worked sporadically(and never at hour of need), used up half of my breadboard and looked ugly. So I decided to try my hand at home PCB fabrication and build it in, of course, a tiny tic-tac box. Since I was a beginner, the circuit is easy and single-sided and uses crystal instead of ceramic oscillator.
Tic-Tac USBtinyISP Programmer - [Link]
AntzyP @ instructables.com writes:
Cap’n ArrDrownHo! is the lovechild of Ardweeny and Boarduino and he’s here to commandeer your AVR ships. ArrDrownHo! inherits pros of both and cons of neither. Pick up an AVR chip and start prototyping instantly on a breadboard! Want to replace that costly Arduino in your project with a cheap AVR, but don’t know how? Use the simple plug-and-play ArrDrownHo! piggybacked onto the AVR to act as interface for programming and provide power.
ArrDrownHo! – Easily convert AVR to Arduino - [Link]
Alberto Maccioni posted an update on his multi-chip opensource programmer based on a PIC18F2550. It supports PIC, I2C-SPI-MicroWire EEPROMs, some ATMEL AVRs, and (soon) other devices:
In the last few years, as serial and parallel interfaces have almost disappeared, electronics enthusiasts find even more difficult to program microcontrollers; old time programmers don’t work any more; common solutions include using USB to serial adapters (which can’t accept direct access but only slow API calls), or add-on interface chips, like FTDIxxxx, which appear substantially as serial interfaces and require custom or proprietary drivers. So why not use PIC controllers and their native USB interface? After searching a while I couldn’t find an USB programmer which was at the same time functional, free, and open source, so I decided to design one.
Open Programmer v0.8.x - [Link]
Pedantite built his own Little Wire AVR programmer/tool:
The Attiny 85 has a neat feature that I had overlooked until I built this in that it has a built in PLL that lets you run the system off the internal RC oscillator at around 16Mhz. Many other AVR’s lack that PLL, and can only run at 8Mhz maximum without an external crystal.
Little Wire AVR-ISP - [Link]
Leonardo just started a new blog where he will talk about electronics including Atmel MCU (ATMega, XMega,..) and ASF (Atmel Software framework) with articles and examples. Blog is in Italian but also a computer-translated version is available. Check it out…
New blog about Atmel MCU and Atmel Software framework - [Link]
Jaromir shared his AVR programmer:
Just from pure passion to see how low-end PIC exercises AVR, I made this programmer.
Basically it is STK500 port on PIC16F1825. I took this tuxgraphics.org one, did some clean-up, wrote new hardware layer for PIC16 and voila – new programmer is born. It was done in one evening and night, ready to work in the morning. I didn’t bother with USB (though there is a lot of DIP USB MCUs from microchip), as It would contain extreme amount of ICs – probably one more than this implementation – and I wanted to keep it simple and transparent. One can use FT232RL instead of MAX3232.
AVR programmer on PIC - [Link]
Philip Peter writes:
I always like a challenge, so when I saw [simpleavr]s vusbtiny programmer, I started to wonder how small I could make an AVR programmer. All in all I’m pretty pleased with the result.The schematic is almost the same as the original one. I only added a LED an resistor to indicate a proper power supply.
Minimalist AVR programmer - [Link]
Umair Mukati build the ULTI-ISP USB key programmer which supports programming for AVR & 8051 microcontrollers:
The ULTI-ISP can be used to program a wide range of AVR microcontrollers as well as 8051 series. The device can be used to read, write and erase flash memory, EEPROM, Fuse Bits. The product has two programming speed modes. It can be self-programmed by any other AVR Programmer or by another ULTI-ISP using 6pin IDC Cable. Another external header can be used to supply power to the target device. The ULTI-ISP includes an on-board AVR ATMega8 which deals with all the USB transactions and provides the data to the target device needed to program it. A standard 6 pin IDC ISP cable can be used to program the target device. The two indicators are used to reflect the ULTI-ISP status, one is for power and another is for programming status.
ULTI-ISP USB programmer for AVR & 8051 - [Link]
This AVR-based Frequency Meter is capable of measuring frequencies from 1Hz to 10MHz with 1 Hz resolution. The hardware of this project consists of seven 7-segment displays, AVR ATtiny2313 uController, and a few transistors and resistors. The AVR counts input pulses for a precise 1 second interval (generated using the built-in Timer) and displays the result on the multiplexed seven segment LED displays. [via]
1Hz to 10MHz frequency meter using ATtiny2313 - [Link]
Zak Kemble build an AVR based PWM fan controller. He writes:
So this is a bit of a continuation on my 555 timer based PWM controllers, but now using microcontrollers and MOSFETs instead of 555 ICs and transistors. I made 2 versions, one with switches for speeding up and down and the other with a potentiometer like the previous controllers. I used ATtiny25 controllers running at 31.25KHz (8MHz internal RC / 256 prescaler) with a 3.3V supply, the MOSFETs I used are STP36NF06L with 0.045Rds and 2.5Vgs max, perfect for 3.3V, the MOSFETs only generate ~180mW of heat at 2A ((0.045Rds * (2A * 2)) = 0.18W) so no heatsink needed, you can barely feel them getting warm.
AVR microcontroller based PWM fan controller - [Link]