Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Geeks: Look, a new STM32F4 ARM thang

Ol' Backwoods likes the ST Microelectronics STM32 family of embedded ARM microcontrollers.  Especially that snazzy new one, the STM32F407, that has Ethernet, cryptography, digital camera interface, and all kinda goodies, in addition to a fast Cortex-M4 core with floating-point math capability.  STM has a very useful little development board, the STM32F4DISCOVERY, that can be had for less than $20.  Ol' Backwoods has 2 of 'em.

So, I was pretty excited when the news finally filtered down to my neck o' the woods that ST had brought out a plug-in breakout board for the STM32F4DISCOVERY that breaks out the Ethernet, digital camera, USART, microSD and several other ports on nice connectors.

Behold, the STM32F4-BB:

It was designed by EmBest, a Chinese outfit which Ol' Backwoods has found over the years to be pretty reliable.

The Ethernet interface (the PHY) on the board has a clock doubler, so you can use the pin-saving RMII interface.  The 50 MHz clock comes through the header into the microcontroller, just like an ol' coon fallin' out of a tree.  Slick.

You can get hold of one of these for $35 from Newark/Farnell.  Ol 'Backwoods has two on order, and will let you know how they work out for me.

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