Microchip Technology recently announced the release of MPLAB X integrated development environment (IDE) version 5.05, which beta supports the majority of AVR microcontrollers (MCUs).
This release will allow designers who traditionally used PIC microcontrollers and developed with the MPLAB ecosystem to easily evaluate and incorporate AVR MCUs into their applications. Microchip says support for additional AVR MCUs and enhancements will be added in future MPLAB versions, while AVR support will also continue to be added to Atmel Studio 7 and Atmel START for current and future AVR devices.
MPLAB X IDE version 5.05 provides a unified development experience that is both cross-platform and scalable, with compatibility on Windows, MacOS and Linux operating systems, allowing designers to develop with AVR MCUs on their hardware system of choice.
The tool chain has been enhanced with support for Microchip’s code configuration tool, MPLAB Code Configurator (MCC), making it easy for developers to configure software components and device settings such as clocks, peripherals and pin layout with the tool’s menu-driven interface. MCC can also generate code for specific development boards, such as Microchip’s Curiosity ATMega4809 Nano (DM320115) development board and existing AVR Xplained development boards.
More compiler choices and debugger/programmer options are also available when compiling and programming AVR MCUs using MPLAB X IDE 5.05. Compiler choices include the AVR MCU GNU Compiler Collection (GCC) or the MPLAB XC8 C compiler, providing developers additional advanced software optimisation techniques to reduce code size. Designers can also accelerate debugging and programming using the MPLAB PICkit 4 programmer/debugger tool or the newly released MPLAB Snap programmer/debugger tool.
The majority of development boards available to evaluate and program AVR MCUs are supported by the MPLAB ecosystem and MCC. Xplained development boards are compatible with START and are now compatible with MPLAB X IDE.
Xplained development boards are cost-effective, fully integrated MCU development platforms targeted at first-time users, makers, and those seeking a feature-rich rapid prototyping board. The Xplained platform includes an integrated programmer/debugger and requires no additional hardware to get started.