Computing stuff tied to the physical world

Tinker Pico LPC824 board

The LPC824 µC chip is interesting enough to create a little PCB for. Being SMD, this will make it easier to experiment using breadboards and perf-board, even for permanent one-off projects. So let’s turn the tiny TSSOP-20 chip into a pseudo “DIP-20” device, and while we’re at it, also include a voltage regulator and FTDI interface for uploading and serial I/O:

Screen Shot 2015 06 01 at 16 34 09

Here is the corresponding board design, created with EAGLE:

Screen Shot 2015 06 01 at 15 06 59

Note that placing the µC at an angle makes it easier to route all the pins on a 2-layer PCB.

And here is a hand-assembled version of this board:

DSC 5091

The header on the left is obviously the FTDI connector, supporting the usual reset, upload, and two-way serial communication. All it needs is a modified USB BUB, or equivalent.

Note the one unusual aspect of this design: the components were placed on the bottom of the board, leaving the top entirely free. The idea is that in a next revision of this prototype, it gets extended with nice silk-screen labelling on top to clearly identify each of the pins:

DSC 5090

As a result, the pinout of this board is identical to the actual TSSOP-20 chip, just bigger:

Screen Shot 2015 06 02 at 08 47 48

All the design files for the Tinker Pico are available on GitHub.

Let the tinkering with the LPC824 µC begin!