NEW – RASPBERRY 2 PI B+

Hi all,

now it is time to release the new Raspberry 2 Pi B+ pictures. The new Raspi comes with a quad core processor 900MHz and 1Gig RAM. The processor comes with a ARMv7 command set. This is really a step forward. Microsoft sees that also and is now in dev state with Windows 10. Be aware that some distributions won’t work and that you use an updated version of Raspberrian or the new NOOBS which you can download from the www.raspberrypi.org page. HAVE FUN :-) You will love the four cores !

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The new BitScope

Hi all,

I saw at the Electronica 2014 the new BitScope. I ordered it accordingly and received it today :-) The Bitscope is a micro analyzer and scope, 20 MHz, capture SPI / CAN / I2C /UART, multi-channel recorder, real time spectrum analyzer. It comes with 10 clamps and the board semself. You can install the free software which you can download from www.bitscope.com. The Bitscope runs on a Raspberry Pi as well as on a MAC, Linux or Windows. Have a look and have fun !

Bitscope3

Bitscope2Bitscope

Waveform Counter with ARM mbed and the NXP LPC

I played around a bit with my new prototyping board LPC1768. I programmed a waveform generator and a counter. The counts will be displayed on a LCD display and the waveform steps will be shown in my oscilloscope. I used as ever the mbed program and compiler. Firstly I generated a new project and added the standard mbed library to it. After that I added a main.cpp to the project where I typed following code to it :

#include “TextLCD.h”

TextLCD lcd(p19, p20, p21, p22, p23, p24);

AnalogOut Aout(p18);

float i;

int main() {

lcd.locate(0,0);

lcd.printf(“Stufenzaehler”);

while(1)  {

for (i=0;i<1;i=i+0.01)  {

Aout=i;

lcd.locate(3,1);

lcd.printf(“%1.2f V”, i*0.3);

wait(0.05);

}

for (i=1;i>0;i=i-0.01) {

Aout=i;

lcd.locate(3,1);

lcd.printf(“%1.2f V”, i*0.3);

wait(0.05);

}

}

}

If you play a little bit with the code (wait and the Aout) you can generate a good waveform. I made a small video from my test ( see Wave )

Wave

NXP LPC1768 Prototyping Board

Got the NXP LPC1768 this week and tried to make it run with a LCD display 1602. The programming platform and compiler I used was mbed from ARM which you can find on http://developer.mbed.org

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Arduino Uno and a LCD

Hello all,

my new small “project” was to connect a LCD display to a Arduino Uno board and try to get it to work. My personal goal was to display two lines on the LCD. The first line should be “Guten Morgen” and second line “Juergen”. Well, my first touch to connect a display was a small disaster as it looks like that I broke the first LCD. Anyway I bought myself a new one at Farnell Element14 which is the part number : 1218634. You will find everything else in the data sheet to connect the LCD to the Arduino. Be sure that you connect it right and that you write the code for the LCD correctly. Here is the code snippet :

#include <LiquidCrystal.h>
LiquidCrystal lcd(12, 11, 5, 4, 3, 2);

void setup() {
lcd.begin(16, 2);
lcd.print(” Guten Morgen”);
}

void loop() {
lcd.setCursor(0, 1);
lcd.print(” Juergen “);
}

To upload the code I used the AVR MKRII but you can also use the normal USB connection for.  That works :-) I will play now a bit with the code and increase it.

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Have fun if you like to rebuild the stuff.

Broken rectifier

My Dad has a model railway with a digital system from ECOS. There is a relay circuit board which he needs. The board is for AC power and with a rectifier it converts it to DC power. Well, something went wrong and the rectifier breaks ( with a lot of smoke :-) )

Now I cleaned up the circuit board and soldered cables to it with a new rectifier. It cost a bit of time to repair it but hopefully it works again and that my Dad is happy.

Schaltung1Schaltung2

Gertboard for Raspberry Pi

Today I assembled a Gertboard which was laying around in our office. The Gertboard is version 1.1 and is an expansion board for the Raspberry Pi. The nowadays Gertboards comes completely assembled and ready to use. Mine now must be assembled from scratch which I did as you can see in the pictures below.

This is the complete package :

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My first step was to soldering the SMD components. These are very small and I need to be careful as those SMD components can be overheated very fast. But all went fine as you could see. Well the parts are very very small !! :-) :

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After I placed all SMD parts onto the board I started to solder all other parts onto. Finally here is the complete assembled board :

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Couple of hours of work but was real fun.

BeagleBone Black with LCD 4.3 Cape

I was getting a Beaglebone Black with LCD 4.3 cape for testing purposes.

Well I want to stay with Debian which was already installed on the eMMC. At my first try to install the LCD cape I failed completely and crashed the system. Can’t get on it anymore. Important to know here is that you can connect in two ways to the Beaglebone. One is to use a USB cable which comes with the Beaglebone Black. You can connect then via Putty and the IP address 192.168.7.2 to the system. The second way is to connect via a network cable ( DHCP ) to the Beaglebonean. Use also Putty for the connection.

Back to my broken system. I gave the TI system a try. For this I used a Micro SD card which I formated with the HP Tool to FAT32 first. Second step was to unpack the downloaded file to get the ISO. With the Win32bitDiskImager I brought the image onto the SDcard. That was really easy and the outcome was brilliant because I plugged the LCD cape into and booted the system up with success ( to boot from the SDcard you have to press the button near the SDcard and hold it till you plug in the power  ). The cape was up and running + the touchscreen works. The TI OS is a demo software which shows you how capable the system is.

Anyway I want to get the Debian system up and running on the eMMC. So I downloaded the Debian image, formatted a 4GB SD card and imaged the card with the same tools as I did with the TI system before. Then I plugged in the SDcard and hold down the ucard button near the SDcard as I plugged into the power parallel. As the four LEDs ( User1,2,3,4) lid up I released the button and wait till the system went down. That shows me then that the system finished the transfer process to the eMMC. So …. the system was up and runnning again :-)

That part was really not a big deal at all.

Now to the cape driver etc.. There is a lot of information on the Internet how you can install the cape to the system but I was getting this to work as follows.

Connect a network to the Beaglebone. Log into the system via Putty and as root ( anyway with a DHCP address or the USB cable and the 192.168.7.2 ). The first step was to do a : apt-get update

Afterwards I did a reboot of the system. Log into again as root. Then I copied with FileZilla “zImage” over from my laptop to the Beaglebone folder “/boot/uboot/”. You have to overwrite the original ( or you can rename it ). Then edit the uEnv.txt which you can find on /boot/uboot/. I did that with VI : vi /boot/uboot/uEnv.txt

I edited the line :

optargs=capemgr.disable_partno=BB-BONELT-HDMI,BB-BONELT-HDMIN  capemgr.enable_partno=BB-VIEW-LCD4-01

Save the file. Then I have to edit the conf file. Otherwise you will have ( as I learned myself ) a blurring LCD screen as well as a not fully screen. Edit the following file : vi /usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/10-evdev.conf

Put following lines at the end of the config file :

Section “Screen”

Identifier “Builtin Default fbdev Screen 0″

Monitor “Configured Monitor”

Device “Configured Video Device”

DefaultDepth 24

EndSection

Now, save the file and reboot the system. That was working fine for me. Anyway the hole setup costs me a lot of working hours as well as couple cups of coffee :-) but I learned a lot.

Debian

PS: One small hint if your LCD cape is not working and you have no clue anymore why. Take a look at the FPC cable in my picture above. Can see the BLUE end ?! On all pictures in the documentation for the LCD cape is the BLUE side not to see which means normally the cable needs to be plugged the other way around. Believe me ! Thats wrong. If you read the small piece of letter which comes with the LCD cape you will read “keep the blue side of the FPC cable up”. But who is reading “Quick Start Guides” ;-)

Beaglebone

 

Elektor Amplifier Replica

Builded an amplifier replica from Elektor on a prototyping board. Works like a charm. Next, I will create an Eagle electrical plan and a printed circuit board for. But before … I will test the amplifier further on.

Elektor Amplifier Replica