Xplaining Atmel’s ATmega1284P

Atmel’s high-performance ATmega1284P 8-bit AVR RISC-based microcontroller combines 128KB ISP flash memory with read-while-write capabilities, 4KB EEPROM, 16KB SRAM, 32 general purpose I/O lines, 32 general purpose working registers and operates between 1.8-5.5 volts.


Additional key specs include a real time counter, three flexible timer/counters with compare modes and PWM, two USARTs, a byte oriented 2-wire serial interface, an 8-channel 10-bit A/D converter with optional differential input stage with programmable gain, programmable watchdog timer with internal oscillator, SPI serial port, a JTAG (IEEE 1149.1 compliant) test interface for on-chip debugging and programming and 6 software selectable power saving modes.

“By executing powerful instructions in a single clock cycle, the device achieves throughputs approaching 1 MIPS per MHz, neatly balancing power consumption and processing speed,” an Atmel engineering rep told Bits & Pieces.

To accelerate development with the ATmega1284P, Atmel offers the MEGA-1284P Xplained, a hardware-based platform that allows engineers to more easily evaluate the device.

The MEGA-1284P Xplained includes one QTouch button sensor, three mechanical buttons, four LEDs, three analog sensors and a UART to USB bridge. The AVR Xplained expansion headers provide easy access to analog and digital I/O pins, while the board is powered by the USB cable and equipped with the standard 10-pin JTAG header that connects to the full range of AVR debuggers. The board controller routes data from the ATmega1284P UART to the PC via USB and the kit can be programmed via bootloader or an Atmel programmer. As expected, the board can also be expanded with Xplained top modules.

“It should be noted that the MEGA-1284P Xplained can be used to evaluate the ATmega164/324/644/1284 microcontrollers and the A, P and PA versions of these devices. These devices share the same peripherals – differing only in memory size electrical characteristics such as power consumption,” the engineering rep continued.

“The peripherals are in general functionally compatible with other megaAVR devices, and the MEGA-1284P Xplained can thus be used as a general evaluation platform for other megaAVRs as well. Alternatively the STK600 can be used if specific devices need to be evaluated.”

The MEGA-1284P Xplained can be purchased from Atmel’s official store here.

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