ISP/Programmer ?

Hi !

I'm looking for an ISP/Programmer for Atmel µC to be able to make my own PCBs for projets I initially prototyped on the Arduino. The problem is that most of them are for DOS/Windows, and I don't have any Windows computer, only MacOS and Linux ones (no flames here, it's just a matter of taste ^_^)

If I understand correctly, programmers requires the removal of the µC from its board, while ISP can program it directly on the board if it have been developed with them in mind (like adding the required pins)... I think my choice would go for a programmer, or an hybrid product if they do exist (I hope they do)

I mostly need avrdude compatibility on Darwin (OSX)/Linux, USB if possible or the ability to work with USB>DB9 adapters (I think most do), and the ability to program the high-range Atmel controllers, like the 128 (not using it yet, but I think I'll have too very soon) which use different connectors, IIUC.

I'm in France, and retailers don't seem to have a lot of choice, but I think I can have something ordered for me if I give precise references. I'm not looking for too expensive stuff – not the 350? ($280) universal programmers with the nice translucent box some retailers have.

Thanks !

(crossposted with the French section)

Atmel's avrispmkII works fine with avrdude on OS X - that's what I use.

I suspect LadyAda's USBTinyISP would work as well (since it's advertised to work with OS X), and it's cheaper than Atmel's.

Sometimes a "programmer" will refer to an ICSP, since the ICSP is just a special case of a programmer (the "P" in ICSP is programmer).


Ok, thanks ! I've been suggested this one (the AVRISPmkII) in the french section, too. I'll give a closer look to it and the AVR Dragon, too.

I've had great success with using Lady Ada's USBTinyISP on my Mac.

(By 'great', I mean that all my attempts have been successful. I have not accomplished great things with it.)

If you're only looking for hobbyist functions, suggest either the AVRISP MKII (about $35 from reputable places) or LadyAda's USBTinyISP, both are great programmers. If you can find one I'd even suggest the original (serial) AVRISP, these are cheap and just as good as the MKII.

If you're looking to move beyond just tinkering, the AVR Dragon is an excellent middle ground, it can debug a selection of smaller chips (ATmega168s included, IIRC) and can do high voltage programming for the smaller ATtinys or parallel programming for quicker throughput or for rescuing micros with incorrect fuses.

Thank you too. As I said, I'll first have a look at the AVR Dragon, whose possibilities seems quite interesting, even if it's known as being quite fragile.