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hilgert

CCS C: use MPLAB IDE or PCW IDE

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I have decided on getting the CCS C compiler PCB and PCM. Should I get the command line version or the Windows IDE version? My only concern is how well CCS integrates with MPLAB (free), and if the PCW IDE is worth the extra money. The PCB and PCM command line would be $250, while the PCW (PCB and PCM) would be $350.

Basically, I think the question is really what is the best IDE - MPLAB or PCW IDE?

Thoughts?

-Hilgert-

Edited by hilgert

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Have you used CCS's IDE? Just curious...

Should I (or, more correctly, would you) just get the command line versions of CCS PCB and PCM? In other words, I am assuming they will integrate with MPLABs IDE?

One thing I liked about the CCS C that came free with the MPLAB 7.41 (just the 12-bit version though) was that it generates assembler code for each C statement - really will help me to learn CCS C (I am fairly proficient at Java, so the syntax is very similar).

Thanks!!!

-Hilgert-

Edited by hilgert

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Yes, I have used CCS's IDE.

You should check with CCS to see which of their packages will integrate with MPLAB. I expect they all do, but it is wise to check.

Every C compiler I have used, even for other processors, has created list files with assy code for the C statements. For sure, you will need it from time to time.

You might also want to consider the cost of their yearly maintenance program. It is nearly mandatory if you use the CCS compiler on anything beyond the basic PIC chip families.

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So, I guess it's worth the extra $100 to just get the IDE version?

Just stick with the 12 and 14 bit versions, or go "all the way"?

Also, are there any decent free (or cheaper) C compilers out there? I am *not* interested in being cheap, just practical. If free or cheaper is less funtional or lower quality, I'll pay for a better compiler package (ie - it's not the money, just don't want to spend it if it's not necessary). I have found that free is not always "free" in the end, and high-cost is not always "high-quality" either. However, I have to say from the little research I have done that the CCS software looks very nice. I guess C is C (almost, right?), but it's really how reliable and efficient the compiler is, along with any included libraries, right?

I was looking at PICBasic Pro, but then I realized that code is REALLY inefficient (played around with the demo version - EESH, it generates a lot of code for some really simple things).

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So, I guess it's worth the extra $100 to just get the IDE version?

That's what I have done. But, I never use their IDE, even though I have it.

Also, are there any decent free (or cheaper) C compilers out there?

Why yes, there are. I hear some work great too. I just don't have any experience with those that support the PIC.

I was looking at PICBasic Pro, but then I realized that code is REALLY inefficient (played around with the demo version - EESH, it generates a lot of code for some really simple things).

The CCS C compiler generates somewhat compact code. However, like any C compiler for any MCU, if you use the library functions for floating point math, or the string functions for formatting text data, then all heck will break loose (read: code space will be eaten up like candy). This is probably similar to the PICBasic Pro compiler, but I suspect the CCS compiler is more compact due to its optimization features.

BTW, there is another solution. You could start with ATMEL processors. The Free GCC WinAVR compiler is dynamite and the AVRstudio IDE is excellent too.

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Why yes, there are. I hear some work great too. I just don't have any experience with those that support the PIC.

That's what I meant - other PIC C compilers (I knew there where other C complilers). CCS seems the way to go then.

Now, how about a recommendation for an inexpensive but decent programmer? Preferably USB (my notebook has no serial or parallel ports at all - very small, fast and light).

Also, where do you buy your PICs? Directly from Microchip? Any online distributors that are good for low quanitities (very low quantities)?

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Our wires are getting crossed. There are indeed free *PIC* C compilers. I have heard that some work quite well. I just cannot offer any specific advice since I have not tried any of them. I believe the "Useful Links" forum has some sites to check: http://www.rc-cam.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=19

For PIC programmers, I can recommend any that are sold by Microchip. They will integrate with the Microchip IDE without any hassle.

My PIC's come from DigiKey. Prices are fair, always in stock. Certainly not the only source for them.

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