Propeller Platform


[nmcclana] has posted an assembly walkthrough for an Arduino-style prototyping board for the 80 MHz, eight core Parallax Propeller Microcontroller. While not board compatible with Arduino shields like the ARM-based Maple board we covered, it does have that familiar layout, and provides access to all 32 I/O pins, and the 3.8″ x 2.5″ footprint was kept in mind to allow easy creation of shields modules that can be designed using ExpressPCB’s miniboard service. The Platform Kit also has the advantage over other Propeller kits such as SchmartBoard’s offerings, which require soldering of surface mount parts. Kits are available at Gadget Gangster, and ready for your next design that needs a little more sauce than the Arduino can offer.

16 thoughts on “Propeller Platform

  1. It’s probably worth mentioning an especially sweet thing about the platform is that it’s going to be the basis for projects in spin zone’s nuts ‘n volts column. I’m more of a prop protoboard guy myself but I like it that the platform targets the miniboard form factor, which is probably one of the best deals around for custom pcb fab.

  2. what makes this an Arduino-style prototyping board? Cuz it’s blue?
    Don’t get me wrong Parallax Propeller seems like an awesome chip, but why the need to compare it to the arduino.

  3. quote from article: “ does have that familiar layout, and provides access to all 32 I/O pins, and the 3.8″ x 2.5″ footprint was kept in mind to allow easy creation of modules that can be designed using ExpressPCB’s miniboard service.”
    also cos its blue

  4. I like the concept of Propeller. I just wish it had more internal RAM, or better yet a way to add an external memory controller.

    I’m more of a fan of the ST32 ARM based stamps myself. The Cortex M3 core is nice, just wish it had more of them on the chip.

    Can never get the best of everything without being uber expensive I guess, :-/

  5. @hanno: Wow, that is some absolutely amazing stuff.

    Could you explain briefly, or link to, how the debugging is handled. ie is data shared to a second dedicated cog which communicates with the PC?

  6. @jproach,
    Thanks! Developing ViewPort and 12Blocks for the Propeller has been lots of fun. One of the 8 cogs is used to share data with the PC at 2mbps. This allows the PC to monitor and change global variables- without impacting the speed of the other cogs. Besides offering traditional debugging tools (breakpoint, single step, view/change variable, call stack, view memory…) ViewPort let’s you analyze your variables in simulated instruments, analyze communication with other devices with a 80msps logic analyzer, and comes with a fuzzy logic engine, video frame grabber, vision engine, and integration with OpenCV. Check out the 30-day free trial!

  7. My left hand is on Hackaday!

    The only reason I call them modules instead of shields is that they don’t have the same parent-child concept that Arduino has – all the modules can connect to each other.

    I guess it’s like an Arduino because they’re both modular platforms. But you’re right, the Prop is in a whole different league – it’s 32-bit, 160 MIPS, 32 I/O.

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