Microcontroller projects

Since 2004 I have built more than 100 circuits. Not all of them survived, but I gained a lot of experience. Not all circuits were completed- for instance I made 6 or 7 prototypes for 68000 computers, but in the end, cost and effort was too high (including software) to make it working. The last prototype is using one large PIC, a plain 68000 chip, and one 8bit RAM. All the bus driving is done in software, and the board has two serial LED modules on board.

See also http://hitechworld.org

Circuits which still exist or which are currently maintained, and which are suitable for Microcontroller project ideas, are shown below on seperate pages each.

The lists below only give an idea of the circuits I have built.


Display driving

  • LED matrix. Some years ago I used resistors and transistors, later I changed to shifting registers, and currently I drive them directly with PICs.
  • 7 segment LCD. These can be driven directly with microcontrollers
  • Hitachi character LCDs. At first I used assembler and small 8bit PICs, later I changed to C language and using them in 4-bit mode
  • GLCD/TFT. I used 18F PICs for 128×64 GLCD, and also for a small color TFT.

Power supply

  • PWM converter. I built a 10 Amp TL494 PWM converter, using one large VGA cooler (cost effective).
  • Chip based buck converter. I built various prototypes with VGA coolers, including using an external MOSFET.
  • Single cell dc/dc converter. I used such a chip on one PCB- a very small SMD component.
  • High frequency dc/dc converter.
    I made a prototype with a 4 MHz chip and 1uH coil for 5v -> 3.3v
  • Joulethief. I made various joulethief circuits, including to use two coils, PNP transistors, germanium transistors, and ferrite cores from core memory.
  • Lithium technology. I made one PIC circuit with Lithium battery and charger Ic included.

LED matrix

  • One early circuit only had 4×4 LEDs- it is just on the margin possible to display numbers.
  • I built 5×5 and 5×10 matrix with direct drive
  • 17×7 LED matrix with serial buffers
  • 768 LEDs (32×24) with 8 refresh controllers and PIC32
  • Scrolling badges 10×5 and 12×5 with 16f57
  • Improved scrolling badge with 14×5 and 16f884 controller
  • 12 LEDs binary clock (this was just a toy circuit, including using a small 8×2 LCD with booster for the glass supply)
  • A 16×4 matrix clock. This was built 2007, and the circuit board does no longer exist.




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