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» Modulated electric fields for submarine communication in a "heads up" from Harry!
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      david f
      david f
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      Post  david f Mon Sep 25, 2023 1:26 pm

      I have been trying a couple of these "Blue Pill." (Don't laugh.) processors.

      Should be lots of power for very little money compared with Arduinos, but I've had no joy with the Arduino IDE or the ST-Link V2 dongle.

      Not even a blink file can be uploaded.

      I have tried a couple of (genuine) Nucleo-32 Boards which work fine with the official STM32cube software but this software is much less user friendly than the Arduino IDE (For us amateurs anyway.)

      I broke my golden rule of either try it a few times and if it works fine, great. Otherwise if it doesn't work, stick it in the drawer (or the bin.) and get on with ones life. So I have now been (metaphorically) tearing my hair out for a few days.

      Anyone got any favourite guides or links? (As so often happens there are so many online guides which are dated and incomplete.)

      This is beginning to read like something from an Agony Aunt!

      David


      Last edited by david f on Thu Oct 12, 2023 8:53 am; edited 3 times in total
      cat
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      Post  cat Mon Sep 25, 2023 2:25 pm

      I have no help I'm afraid, just a similar note of confusion.

      I have an stm32 running esphome which took me about a metric week to get running, and I still don't know even how I did.
      Not even writing any code for it, just getting an existing app to run on it.

      I feel your pain.

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      tsenecal
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      Post  tsenecal Wed Sep 27, 2023 12:07 am

      I will have to dig through my notes. i messed with this a while ago, like you i thought the price was fantastic, but i discovered that they didn't always work as advertised, and, now that there are stm32 based real arduinos around, 99% of the guides on how to get these running are out of date or wrong.

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      Post  tsenecal Wed Sep 27, 2023 2:21 am

      step one:

      install the arduino sam boards in board manager... that will install all the current stm32 headers.

      step two:

      install this link in the boards manager:

      https://github.com/stm32duino/BoardManagerFiles/raw/main/package_stmicroelectronics_index.json

      that will get you the specific "blue pill" generic stm32 board.


      for more info:

      https://github.com/stm32duino

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      geofrancis


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      Post  geofrancis Wed Sep 27, 2023 9:14 pm

      The stm32 boards are ok, i normally just get the black pill boards with the onboard usb as it saves having to mess with the stm programmer, you just hold a button on startup and flash it in DFU mode from arduino. They are fast, so I used them for things that needed fast data processing like lidar scanners. Another big advantage is that most of the blackpill board's io pins are 5v compatible so it makes interfacing with some sensors a lot easier.


      I have migrated most of my projects to the RP-2040 zero,Its very cheap and its fast enough for most applications but it has some very interesting IO capabilities like reprogrammable hardware that lets softserial ports act like hardware ports and onboard RGB LED. https://arduino-pico.readthedocs.io/en/latest/piouart.html

      For anything that needs wifi connections I use the esp32C3 super mini. its not as fast as a full esp32 or S3 but none of my projects need dual cores so its not something I would notice.


      https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005005967641936.html
      https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005004440063610.html

      for more GPIO and wifi the esp32 S2 is very cheap and has a lot of pins.
      https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005004981201254.html


      Microprocessor choices S-l16011
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      david f
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      Post  david f Wed Oct 11, 2023 12:55 pm

      Thanks for the very useful advice and I've changed the thread title to reflect the now broader topic.

      My order for some Blue Pills, Black Pills and RP-2040 Zeros has just arrived from China.

      On the basis of the "what can you get working in 1 hour" test with the Arduino IDE , the Raspberry Pi 2040 Zero wins hands down, so thanks for the advice geofrancis!

      They are also nice and small. But I still haven't got a "Blink" routine working, mainly because of the different LED configuration, I think. They do seem rather too Python friendly and not Windows-friendly for my liking. It reminds me of my earlier trials with the Pico:

      https://www.theassociationofmodelsubmariners.com/t2002-raspberry-pi-pico-epaper-display-hat

      The Blue and Black pills remain inscrutable with the Arduino IDE. Rather a complex set up process and the com ports are often not recognized. (A boot-loader problem?)

      I am not asking for any help but if you have any links for "sure-fire walk-throughs", I'd be grateful.

      I find my usual Arduino Nano clones rather comforting but maybe they are as old and slow as I am?! Microprocessor choices 1f636

      David

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      tsenecal
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      Post  tsenecal Wed Oct 11, 2023 4:13 pm

      I too gave up very quickly on the STM32 based devices, because they basically ran about as well as the cheap $3 knockoff arduino clones. many had odd issues like no analog ground, so trying to get pots or hall sensors to be stable as inputs was aggravating. I quickly moved to Teensy based products. their inclusion into the Arduino IDE was painless, and they used to offer a specific model "Teensy LC" that was $12. at that price point they worked well, their only real "gotcha" was their need to be 3.3v. The pandemic killed off the $12 model, and now their cheapest is twice that at $25... which sent me searching for alternatives... I too then have settled on the raspberry pi pico and its clones. I have not yet exhausted my inventory of Teensy LCs, so i have not yet started writing/adopting code to the pico based boards, but i have looked at them enough to know they will work well for my next generation of hardware... and they are also cheaper than the Teensy LC was, averaging about $8 a piece for the more expensive ones, and $5 for the original.
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      Post  geofrancis Wed Oct 11, 2023 4:44 pm

      you need to use this library to get the onboard RGB led on the RP2040 to work, also I found some have red and greed reversed.

      https://github.com/MrYsLab/NeoPixelConnect

      there are 2 RP2040 board libararies and they are not totally compatible with each other, one is the "Arduino Mbed OS RP2040" thats the offical Arduino one and there is the "rasperry Pi Pico/RP2040" by Earle F. Philhowser each one has some obscure issues like one supports dual i2c and the other doesnt so I tend to go between them depending on what im doing and also any code that you get online for the 2040 is usually made for one or the other.


      have you used zadig to install the DFU driver for the blackpill board?


      Last edited by geofrancis on Wed Oct 11, 2023 8:28 pm; edited 4 times in total
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      Post  geofrancis Wed Oct 11, 2023 4:45 pm

      tsenecal wrote:their only real "gotcha" was their need to be 3.3v.
      my understanding is that the 2040 gpio is kind of 5v compatible, it works to just 5v but 5.5v will cause damage so they never certified it for 5v, or at least thats what i read.

      Its got to the point where I have stopped buying 8bit controllers unless its to run some specialised code thats wrote for AVR hardware. the rp2040 is just better in every way than an arduino nano or promini.
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      Post  tsenecal Wed Oct 11, 2023 8:41 pm

      geofrancis wrote:have you used zadig to install the DFU driver for the blackpill board?

      I don't have to mess with any drivers...  100% of my dev work is in linux...  specifically ubuntu 22.04.   Connecting to the rp2040 and Teensy are via their built-in usb ports, connecting to the STM32s was via an FTDI.

      Although, i did have to edit udev rules, and add my user account to the appropriate group(s) to gain access to the usb/serial port associated with each device.

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      Post  geofrancis Thu Oct 12, 2023 2:29 am

      tsenecal wrote:
      geofrancis wrote:have you used zadig to install the DFU driver for the blackpill board?

      I don't have to mess with any drivers...  100% of my dev work is in linux...  specifically ubuntu 22.04.   Connecting to the rp2040 and Teensy are via their built-in usb ports, connecting to the STM32s was via an FTDI.

      Although, i did have to edit udev rules, and add my user account to the appropriate group(s) to gain access to the usb/serial port associated with each device.

      I am slowly moving development over to linux,  I'm starting to dabble in AI and its almost all done under linux. im currently building a ryzen 7600pc to replace this one as my main windows gaming/desktop and this old one will be dedicated to linux and GPU compute as it has dual xeon 2699v3 18 core chips, 128gb ram and soon an nvidia tesla p40 24gb so should be ideal for training.Microprocessor choices 38760110

      https://www.seeedstudio.com/AMB82-MINI-RTL8735B-IoT-AI-Camera-Dev-Board-p-5584.html
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e9myAKa7MV0

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      david f
      david f
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      Post  david f Sat Oct 14, 2023 1:10 pm

      That's very impressive!

      I haven't made any headway with my attempts to communicate with Blue/Black Pill under a Windows environment (Interesting to hear that Linux makes life easier.) Thanks also  for the Zadig suggestion but my problem is that I seem to have too many ways of setting these devices up. So into the "spares" box they go, for now.

      The reason for my investigation was that I have been very happy using Arduino Nano clones for all my sub applications recently but I felt that they may be a bit of a technological dead-end.

      It has just occurred to me that I originally came to Arduinos (A suggestion by Tim G as I recall} by way of Microchip PICs, which provide a lot of choice and have a lot of support from amateurs.

      I just "dusted-off" my PiCkit 4 programmer and updated the MPLAB X IDE software and it worked straight away!

      Maybe this is the way for me to go on?

      David
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      Post  geofrancis Sat Oct 14, 2023 1:38 pm

      david f wrote:That's very impressive!

      I haven't made any headway with my attempts to communicate with Blue/Black Pill under a Windows environment (Interesting to hear that Linux makes life easier.) Thanks also  for the Zadig suggestion but my problem is that I seem to have too many ways of setting these devices up. So into the "spares" box they go, for now.

      The reason for my investigation was that I have been very happy using Arduino Nano clones for all my sub applications recently but I felt that they may be a bit of a technological dead-end.

      It has just occurred to me that I originally came to Arduinos (A suggestion by Tim G as I recall} by way of Microchip PICs, which provide a lot of choice and have a lot of support from amateurs.

      I just "dusted-off" my PiCkit 4 programmer and updated the MPLAB X IDE software and it worked straight away!

      Maybe this is the way for me to go on?

      David

      have you got the backpill to show up un DFU mode? you need to hold the boot button while you plug it in and it will show up as a STM32_BOOTLOADER device, use Zadig to install the WinUSB  driver then you should be able to flash it from arduino when its in DFU mode, you will need to select the exact chip model in arduino, there are a few different variants of blackpill board.

      Microprocessor choices Screen10


      pics are good for low level basic tasks, but they lack the large software library of arduino. so you will need to program everything. you cant just pull functions from a library if you want to interface a sensor.


      https://www.hanselman.com/blog/how-to-fix-dfuutil-stm-winusb-zadig-bootloaders-and-other-firmware-flashing-issues-on-windows

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      Post  geofrancis Sun Oct 15, 2023 6:03 am

      I have found these boards to be a good replacement for anything that needs to be avr, they are clones of the 328 with some extra features, and a much lower price. You can flash them as a nano and it should just work but your best to install the native board library as it its not a straight clone but more of an evolved one so it has some extras like 80ma high current outputs, DAC, 32mhz support at 3.3v. I have found it 99% compatible, the only times I had issues was when running it at 32mhz as I think it messes with the timing in a lot of libraries, if you set the clock divider to 1/2 it will run at 16mhz and you shouldnt have any issues. I use them for single tasks that I never need to change, like converting RC protocols or sensor adapters.


      Microprocessor choices Lgt8f310


      https://github.com/dbuezas/lgt8fx

      https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005005078356180.html
      https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005005216975059.html

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      Post  david f Tue Oct 17, 2023 12:57 pm

      Just got the RP2040 Zero working with Blink using the Arduino IDE as shown here:

      https://github.com/josemariamendezruiz/Arduino-IDE---RP2040-ZERO/commits?author=josemariamendezruiz

      (Boards are: RP2040-Zero RP2040 For Raspberry Pi Microcontroller PICO Development Board Module Dual-core Cortex M0+ Processor 2MB Flash

      From "Tie Long" from Aliexpress.)

      Very fancy tri-colour LED ! Thanks for the advice and help.

      David
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      Post  geofrancis Wed Oct 18, 2023 3:56 am

      david f wrote:Just got the RP2040 Zero working with Blink using the Arduino IDE as shown here:

      https://github.com/josemariamendezruiz/Arduino-IDE---RP2040-ZERO/commits?author=josemariamendezruiz

      (Boards are: RP2040-Zero RP2040 For Raspberry Pi Microcontroller PICO Development Board Module Dual-core Cortex M0+ Processor 2MB Flash

      From "Tie Long" from Aliexpress.)

      Very fancy tri-colour LED ! Thanks for the advice and help.

      David

      I use it for diagnostics, I can see if something is working by what colours are showing rather than needing to connect a usb serial or some other tool.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sl5DlCEfrUM

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