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Protostack ATmega32A Development Kit Review

By: Charles Gantt | Development Boards in Maker & DIY | Posted: Dec 10, 2013 10:31 pm
TweakTown Rating: 98%Manufacturer: Protostack



Programming the ATmega32A Development Board is quite easy if you know a few things about AVR programming. As I mentioned earlier, the board can be programmed via the included 10-pin ISP connector and an USBASP AVR Programmer, or you could use something like an Arduino to program the board via the unpopulated six-pin ISP port located directly behind the 10-pin port. I like both methods, and prefer using the 10-pin port as it helps reduce clutter on the board.




I won't go very deep into how to program the board as that could represent an entire article on its own. Instead, I will cover the basics and lightly detail what I consider to be the easiest way. While it is completely possible to install the Arduino boot loader onto the ATmega32 U, sticking with IDEs like AVR Studio or Eclipse and using AVRDude to upload the code to the microcontroller is the easiest.




Once you have code written, the USBASP drivers and AVRDude installed, you must connect the board to the USBASP Programmer. This is accomplished by connecting the 10-position ribbon cable to the board's ISP port and to the programmer's ISP Port. Then all you need to do is plug the programmer into a free USB port on your PC. Actually uploading the code to the device takes a little command prompt magic and is done by following these directions:


To download the firmware to your microcontroller, enter the following command:


avrdude -p -P usb -c usbasp -U flash:w:


  1. is the filename of the precompiled binary file , and
  2. is the micro controller type you are programming (eg ATmega32U2).

The full list of device codes is listed here.



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