Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by Wendy, Aug 28, 2008.

  1. Wendy

    Thread Starter Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
    I'm trying to figure out who makes 555s (manufacturers), and their part numbers, and any derivitive chips such as CMOS versions.

    The problem I'm looking at is 555 is such a widely used number I'm being swamped on searches on the datasites in the resources forum. It includes everything from diodes to transformers (over 1300 entries returned).

    If someone has a better idea, or perhaps some keywords I'm not thinking of, I'd be interested.

    I'm also interested in researching the history of this chip, who developed it and when. Thanks.


    This site seems to have most of the information I wanted, but I would still be interested in anyone elses take. I'm thinking of writing a short artice.

    Last edited: Aug 28, 2008
    Metalmann likes this.
  2. Voltboy

    Active Member

    Jan 10, 2007
    Here is some history of it and basic stuff about it.
  3. SgtWookie


    Jul 17, 2007
  4. Wendy

    Thread Starter Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
    Thanks guys, exactly what I was looking for. I noticed we all referenced the 555 Tutorial. :)

    The oral interview was especially what I was looking for, there are some numbers there I've never seen.
  5. rezer


    Aug 26, 2008
    I noticed you searched for 555. Try LM555 and you will find what you need.
  6. Wendy

    Thread Starter Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
    Yep, but that is only one family. Last I checked over 12 different companies make this part, all with slightly different part numbers.

    I wasn't after specs, I was after research material, which I now have.
  7. Wendy

    Thread Starter Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
    This is part of a larger project.
    The 555 Projects

    The 555 IC

    The 555 integrated circuit is the most popular chip ever manufactured. Independently manufactured by more than 10 manufacturers, still in current production, and almost 40 years old, this little circuit has withstood the test of time. It has been redesigned, improved, and reconfigured in many ways, yet the original design can be bought from many vendors. The design of this chip was right the first time.

    Originally conceived in 1970 and created by Hans R. Camenzind in 1971, over 1 billion of these ICs were made in 2003 with no apparent reduction in demand. It has been used in everything from toys to spacecraft. Due to its versatility, availability, and low cost it remains a hobbyist favorite.

    One of the secrets to its success is it is a true black box, its symbolized schematic is simple and accurate enough that designs using this simplification as a reference tend to work first time. You don’t need to understand every transistor in the base schematic to make it work.

    It has been used to derive the 556, a dual 555, each independent of the other in one 14 pin package, and is the inspiration of the 558, a quad timer in a 16 pin package. What few weak points the original design has have been addressed by redesigns into CMOS technology, with its dramatically reduced current and expanded voltage requirements, and yet the original version remains.

    Originally conceived as a simple timer, the 555 has been used for oscillators, waveform generators, VCO’s, FM discrimination, and a lot more. It really is an all purpose circuit.


    The 555 Timer IC – An Interview with Hans Camenzind (http://semiconductormuseum.com/Transistors/LectureHall/Camenzind/Camenzind_Index.htm)

    555 Tutorial (http://www.sentex.ca/~mec1995/gadgets/555/555.html)

    555 Timer IC Encyclopedia Article (http://www.nationmaster.com/encyclopedia/555-timer-IC)
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2009
  8. rezer


    Aug 26, 2008
  9. Wendy

    Thread Starter Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
    Just curious, have you clicked on any of the links given? They are pretty definitive, complete with history and comments from the creator of the 555, a comprehensive manufacturers list and more. I was doing research for the short article I wrote on post #7. While it isn't in the major leagues, I've contributed to the AAC eBook in several areas. This is a work in progress for me. I have several 555 experiments I'm working on for beginners, one is finished, one I'm just starting. I also have a medium length article about ESD that has been published. You can find them in the Feedback and Suggestions forum.

    Like I said, research material.
  10. bertus


    Apr 5, 2008
  11. jpanhalt

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
    @Marsden & bertus,

    That is a nice write-up and great links. Thanks to you both. One billion per year...it's hard to imagine.

    Imagine knowing your invention had touched so many lives.

  12. plharby

    New Member

    Dec 3, 2008
    You are asking about the famous timer (one-shot) 555.
    There has been a number of manufacturers through more than 30 years.
    It was first introduced by Signetics who later was bought by Dutch Philips.
    Originally was the name NE555. Later it was produced by National Semiconductor, LM555, and Texas Instrument, TLC555P and NE555P.
    The former Texas component is a CMOS version.

    Good luck!