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skrag

PIC Programmer and Parts

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OK, I have been reading and wondering about the RC-Cam project, specifically relating to the Aiptek Camera (http://www.rc-cam.com/camman.htm) and PIC chips for using it. I have a little electronics background, but would consider myself a novice, and I am a parkflyer R/C type, with average flying skill. My reasons for starting this thread is that I love building electronic gadgets that are as cool as this is, and plan to use all the info I have found to create a transmitter controlled camera system. Since I already have an Aiptek camera, I am going to focus on working with that, but I hate spending money in the wrong places and need some advice to get me off in the right direction so I don't feel like I am throwing money at the wrong places.

First, I have looked at the PIC programmers listed on the RC-Cam site and I like the looks of the EPIC system (http://www.melabs.com/products/epic.htm) even though it costs more, but would like to know if this is what some of you use, or if you would recommend a different one. I just want to buy something that I know will work and can get help with making it work and is fairly user friendly.

Secondly, I am a little dense I guess but when I go to the Digi-key site to order the PIC12C508 chip, there are SKADS of them and they all end with different numbers and some are EPROM and some are OTP, and I don't know what all of that means. I have surmised that I need to get the 8 DIP chip I think but is that right? And do I get the EPROM kind or OTP? If I do a search on their site for 8 DIP and EPROM I get no hits, but a 8 DIP and OTP and Bulk, it gives all kinds of choices which is my next question... which PIC12C508 do I buy? They have more numbers on the end that I don't know what they mean like the PIC12C508-04/P-ND and the PIC12C508-04E/P-ND and the PIC12C508A-04I/P-ND with the P, E and I being the difference but I am just confused by all this. The memory size is the same on them, the speed is the same, so I am just trying to get the right one.

So if anyone can get me started here, I would appreciate it.

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1) I can't offer any real advice, other than to say that programming system has an external power supply. This should help.

2) The projects usually include a detailed bill of materials, with Digi-Key part numbers. No guessing needed. :)

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1) I can't offer any real advice, other than to say that programming system has an external power supply. This should help.

2) The projects usually include a detailed bill of materials, with Digi-Key part numbers. No guessing needed. :)

Actually I think you answered both my questions. I feel pretty good about the EPIC programmer and having the external power should be a plus, but you showed me that I hadn't been as thorough in my reading as I had thought because it never dawned on me to just open the doc files and look at the parts list. DOH! Right there were the exact part numbers. Well, here I go. Maybe I'll actually have something to contribute soon on my outcomes. Thanks for the reply, and I still welcome any advice and help from anyone. This should be a lot of fun to try and do.

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Just by way of possibly finishing off this thread (unless someone wants to continue to add to it and keep it alive), I will comment on the results of my purchase of the EPIC programmer (the $99 one with Serial Interface). This programmer worked just fine for the Aiptek Cam project, and I was sucessful on the first try with the PIC chip used. There were no real surprises with this programmer other than the terminology in the configuration window as it relates to the description given in the RC-Cam project. About the only term that just didn't make sense was the MCLR function in the programmer. The directions for the RC-Cam project called for a Disable on MCLR, but the EPIC programmer only shows Reset and Input Pin as options. Input Pin did the trick thanks to input from Mr. RC-CAM.

Anyway, I am sure cheaper programmers will work just fine also, but just in case anyone was like me and just unsure and wanted an affirmation, well this programmer worked right out of the box for me, so I hope you have the same successes. Now it is on to other projects using these wonderful little chips.

Thanks Mr. RC-CAM for some wonderful adventures. Cool stuff!

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