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toozie21

Best compiler to get started with?

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I've generally been a PIC man, but I want to branch out into the 430 for some low power battery applications I have been thinking about.  I was eyeing up the MSP430F5529 USB LaunchPad as a starting eval board as it is priced REALLY well, and looks like it should do most everything I need to get started.  I've used a 430 once in the past in a class (about 3 or 4 years ago), and it was OK, but I spent a LONG time futzing with the gcc tools to get it working.

 

So now that I am starting fresh.  What do people recommend?  Go the gcc route again, or maybe pick up one of the freebie crippled ISEs that are out there and go that route?

 

Also (slightly off topic), once I get started, is there a large investment when I move to custom boards (I am thinking of the programming and debugging aspect)?  That won't be an issue while using the LaunchPad, but once I build something up, I don't know how hard it is migrate over (programmer, extra peripherals on the PCB, etc.).

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I've generally been a PIC man, but I want to branch out into the 430 for some low power battery applications I have been thinking about.  I was eyeing up the MSP430F5529 USB LaunchPad as a starting eval board as it is priced REALLY well, and looks like it should do most everything I need to get started.  I've used a 430 once in the past in a class (about 3 or 4 years ago), and it was OK, but I spent a LONG time futzing with the gcc tools to get it working.

 

So now that I am starting fresh.  What do people recommend?  Go the gcc route again, or maybe pick up one of the freebie crippled ISEs that are out there and go that route?

 

Also (slightly off topic), once I get started, is there a large investment when I move to custom boards (I am thinking of the programming and debugging aspect)?  That won't be an issue while using the LaunchPad, but once I build something up, I don't know how hard it is migrate over (programmer, extra peripherals on the PCB, etc.).

All you need is a cap and resistor on reset, and Three/four pins broken out (Vcc [optional],Gnd, Test, Reset). The Launchpad can act as a off chip programmer and debugger.

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Very cool.  So no need to worry about TDI/TDO, etc?  It does it all through the Test and rest lines?  Then external 430s can be programmed and debugged?

 

What are you currently using to build your devices?

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TDI/TDO? Those are for the full jtag programming, which the Launchpad doesn't use. It uses SBW, a two wire series Jtag interface TI developed (Just Rst and Tst). It does the most basic programming most hobbyists would need.

 

As for me, I use IAR. Simply because the laptop I am using doesn't have the harddrive space for CCS (and Energia doesn't have a debugging like IAR afaik).

 

But IAR is pretty much the forgotten middle child. Everyone else uses GCC or CCS.

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Whether you go with CCS or gcc depends entirely on your background and what you want to do.  Are you comfortable working on the command line?  Are you willing to pay big bucks if you want to compile anything larger than 16K?

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Hmmm, lots of good info.

 

I guess for now I will go with one of the free ones which will be more than good enough to make sure I know everything and then move on from there.  At that point I guess I can try to figure out if I am comfortable enough to use the GCC, or if I can talk my work into investing some money into software for a little side, after-hours research project.

 

Thanks guys!

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