Programming Atmega328 with Uno?

This may well seem like a dumb question, if so sorry, but. I've seen several articles regarding using an Arduino Uno as a programmer for using the Atmega328 IC in a standalone project all of which seem to be overly complicated. Given the availability of IC's with bootloader already on, is it not possible to just plug the IC into the socket on the Uno board and program in the usual way for Arduino then simply remove the IC from the Uno and use it in your standalone circuit. If so I'll just fit a ZIF socket to my Uno board and hey presto, there's my programmer! Or am I missing something?

Yes. What you describe is perfectly possible. The only downside is that a PC is required

For me, a downside of that method is that you can only use 5V 16MHz processors in your projects. Without the ability to burn the bootloader and set fuses you can't change the clock to 8MHz or 1MHz in order to take advantage of the lower power and supply voltage (ie. 3.7V LIPO batteries) that the lower clock speeds allow. If all you will ever use is 5V power then that method is fine.

Ah that makes sense, thank you for clarifying this for me. gF, love your avatar, I still have one of those set up as an eprom programmer for 2708 and 2716 chips, takes me back a few years tho :slight_smile:

I haven't shopped around for pre-bootloaded chips a lot, but the ones I've seen had a pretty steep markup for such a simple operation.

Please make sure that you get 328P MCU's, the ones without the "P" (picopower) requires some extra mending to get working. If you have a 28pin DIP socket (and some pins) lying around, you can glue it onto some wood, solder some wires and "hey presto", you've got your own home made "programmer" shield for your Uno :slight_smile:

I accidentally bought some non P 328 processors a while back and thought "big mistake", but found the MiniCore core and that makes it easy to program the non P chips. Now I just have to remember to label them so that I know which core option to use to serial program them. With that core, if you don't use the crystal, you get 2 more digital IO pins.