Pokey datasheets incognito arduinos

Circuit Break Podcast #24

Pokey Datasheets and Incognito Arduinos

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July 15, 2016, Episode #24

This week Stephen and Parker rant about terrible datasheets and incognito Arduinos.
  • Parker and Stephen have been working on the Super Simple Power Supply. Parker has the test panel done and working. See Figure 1. Stephen has the Analog “Energon Cube” PCB made. See Figure 2. Should be working by next weeks podcast.
  • The datasheet for the VFD display Parker is using has an ambiguous pinout for the serial interface. Part number CU16025-UW6J. Parker had to bridge some wires to fix the problem.
  • The entire front panel for the SSPS will draw roughly 60W of power. Will have to have its own transformer inside to power it.
  • Stephen is writing a series of BGA footprint and layout articles. Check out the first one.
  • Another datasheet rant. This time about the FX Dev boards breadboards. There was a critical dimension that was 1mm off. 1.54mm VS 2.54mm. See Figure 3.
  • Parker has been working on USB Type C. Will be writing a couple articles in the future about his findings. Parker made a test dev board to experiment on the Type C connector.
  • Intersel made a really interesting buck boost battery charger IC that is perfect for USB Type C Power Delivery. Can boost 5V and buck 12V and 20V to charge a lithium battery pack. Part number is ISL9237 and Parker wants to get his hands on it to make a battery pack for his phone.
  • Pokemon GO goes without saying that it was a huge hit. Sparkfun has a project to build your own Pokédex that has a battery backup to keep you going to catch ’em all.
  • Mike of the Useless Duck Company built an Arduino powered door lock that is activated by opening an incognito window in Chrome on his desktop. He says he uses it for “shopping”.
Figure 1: The Front Panel test board for the SSPS. Much working. Very wire bodge. Such bright LEDs.

Figure 1: The Front Panel test board for the SSPS. Much working. Very wire bodge. Such bright LEDs.

Figure 2: Stephens SSPS Analog PCB for the Energon Cube.

Figure 2: Stephens SSPS Analog PCB for the Energon Cube.

Figure 3: The corrected datasheet for the breadboards that are being used for the FX Dev board.

Figure 3: The corrected datasheet for the breadboards that are being used for the FX Dev board.

About the Hosts

Parker Dillmann
  Parker Dillmann

Parker is an Electrical Engineer with backgrounds in Embedded System Design and Digital Signal Processing. He got his start in 2005 by hacking Nintendo consoles into portable gaming units. The following year he designed and produced an Atari 2600 video mod to allow the Atari to display a crisp, RF fuzz free picture on newer TVs. Over a thousand Atari video mods where produced by Parker from 2006 to 2011 and the mod is still made by other enthusiasts in the Atari community.

In 2006, Parker enrolled at The University of Texas at Austin as a Petroleum Engineer. After realizing electronics was his passion he switched majors in 2007 to Electrical and Computer Engineering. Following his previous background in making the Atari 2600 video mod, Parker decided to take more board layout classes and circuit design classes. Other areas of study include robotics, microcontroller theory and design, FPGA development with VHDL and Verilog, and image and signal processing with DSPs. In 2010, Parker won a Ti sponsored Launchpad programming and design contest that was held by the IEEE CS chapter at the University. Parker graduated with a BS in Electrical and Computer Engineering in the Spring of 2012.

In the Summer of 2012, Parker was hired on as an Electrical Engineer at Dynamic Perception to design and prototype new electronic products. Here, Parker learned about full product development cycles and honed his board layout skills. Seeing the difficulties in managing operations and FCC/CE compliance testing, Parker thought there had to be a better way for small electronic companies to get their product out in customer's hands.

Parker also runs the blog, longhornengineer.com, where he posts his personal projects, technical guides, and appnotes about board layout design and components.

Stephen Kraig
  Stephen Kraig

Stephen Kraig is a component engineer working in the aerospace industry. He has applied his electrical engineering knowledge in a variety of contexts previously, including oil and gas, contract manufacturing, audio electronic repair, and synthesizer design. A graduate of Texas A&M, Stephen has lived his adult life in the Houston, TX, and Denver, CO, areas.

Stephen has never said no to a project. From building guitar amps (starting when he was 17) to designing and building his own CNC table to fine-tuning the mineral composition of the water he uses to brew beer, he thrives on testing, experimentation, and problem-solving. Tune into the podcast to learn more about the wacky stuff Stephen gets up to.

Special thanks to whixr over at Tymkrs for the intro and outro!

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