Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Microchip launches its smallest, lowest-cost PIC32 microcontrollers


First PIC32s to offer on-board peripherals for audio playback and capacitive touch 

By Nick Flaherty www.flaherty.co.uk

Microchip has launched a new series of low pin-count 32-bit PIC32 microcontrollers (MCUs) that provide 61 DMIPS of performance, in packages as small as 5 mm x 5 mm, for space-constrained and cost-sensitive designs. The PIC32 ‘MX1’ and ‘MX2’ MCUs are the company's smallest and lowest-cost PIC32 microcontrollers, and are the first PIC32s to feature dedicated audio and capacitive-sensing peripherals. These new MCUs include a host of additional features that make them suitable for applications in the consumer, industrial, medical and automotive markets.
The parts are rated for operation up to 105°C and the MX1 and MX2 include up to 32 KB of Flash, and 8 KB of SRAM; two I2S interfaces for audio processing; Microchip’s Charge Time Measurement Unit (CTMU) peripheral for adding mTouch capacitive touch buttons or advanced sensors; and an 8-bit Parallel Master Port (PMP) interface for graphics or external memory. 
As you would expect from Microchip the devices also feature an on-chip 10-bit, 1 Msps, 13-channel Analogue-to-Digital Converter (ADC), as well as USB 2.0 and serial-communications peripherals. The MCUs introduce eight new packages, from 28- to 44-pins, with sizes down to 5 mm x 5 mm and a 0.5 mm pitch, to the PIC32 MCU product line. Microchip’s Peripheral Pin Select feature further eases design effort by allowing developers to ‘remap’ most of the chip’s digital-function pins to significantly simplify layout and design modifications. 
For easy migration, the PIC32 MX1 and MX2 devices are compatible with Microchip’s 16-bit PIC24F product line, and are supported by the MPLAB X IDE development environment.
The parts are available in 28-pin SPDIP, SSOP, SOIC and QFN packages; a 36-pin VTLA package with a .5 mm pin pitch; and in 44-pin QFN, VTLA and TQFP packages.
  • Microchip has also launched the MPLAB Starter Kit (DM320013), priced at $109.99, for the new MCUs. The USB-powered kit features a PIC32MX220F032 with 32 KB of Flash and 8 KB RAM, as well as a 2-inch colour TFT display (220 x 176 pixel), capacitive-touch slider and buttons, SD-card storage, and 24-bit audio playback. In addition, there is a new $25 Evaluation Board (AC323027)


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