Electronic Design

Good Things Come In Round Packages

Lots of PIC programmers will want to get their hands on the MPLAB ICD 3 from Microchip (see the figure). It uses the faster USB 2.0 interface to improve chip programming times by a factor of 15. The higher-speed interface also moves data to and from memory quicker, providing a snappier debugging interface. This makes operations like single stepping faster.

The MPLAB integrated development environment (IDE) has been enhanced to take example of new debugging features, including support of up to 1000 software breakpoints. The incircuit debugger (ICD) comes with a PIC10F test-bed module.

This latest version of the ICD is powered by the host’s USB connection, eliminating the old power brick. It can supply a target board with up to 100 mA. Inside, a dsPIC powers the ICD 3. The MPLAB ICD 3 is available for $219.99. The MPLAB IDE is a free download.


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