Getting started in PIC, PIC32 options

Discussion in 'Embedded Systems and Microcontrollers' started by cravenhaven, Feb 9, 2012.

  1. cravenhaven

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Nov 17, 2011
    I have been researching for some time now the various PIC processors and trying to decide which one/family to start with. I would like to "futureproof" myself and have struggled with trying to justify jumping straight into PIC32 with all the complexities of surface mount components for an amateur. Today I discovered the PIC32MX1/2 series which are available in SPDIP and SOIC formats from 28 pins upwards. This solves the hardware problem.
    My question is: what is the difference between the MX1/2 series and the MX5/6/7 series in terms of the processor core. Some of the documents I have read imply that the MX1/2 are based on the DSPIC core, though microchip seem to say that it is the MIPS core as per the bigger MX32 chips. Also are the development tools different between these variants.
    Are there other Gotcha's to watch out for in choosing this path.

  2. ErnieM

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 24, 2011
    You would be best served to ask this on the Microchip forum for PIC32, as this is sort of a meta question one knows after being familiar with the whole PIC32 line. I've seen a similar post there a few months back.

    There is some relationship of the order MX4 is USB, MX7 is USB and ethernet but I don't know it off the top of my head.

    AFAIK the PIC32's all use the same ARM based core. Microchip gives away a C compiler and tons of libraries to support these things. They are actually pretty simple to program; the complexity comes from them being able to do so much.
  3. cravenhaven

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Nov 17, 2011
    thanks for the reply Ernie.
    There is not a lot of information around on these chips. I think beginners like me have traditionally started with 16xxx or 18xxx and the more skilled have done complicated work with the PIC32xxx and the divide has been static. However I think the MX1/2 range will change that, but its a lot steeper hill for a rank amateur like me because there is not much information around on these chips (in beginners format).
    I decided to download MPLAB and PIC32c and struggle through the learning phases, rather than struggle through with the PIC16/18 and then have to do it again with the PIC32.