Thrifty & Nifty
The diverse family of STM32 chips from STMicroelectronics are based on a 32 bit ARM processor core. The chips are economical, energy efficient, and suitable for a large variety of projects. This article examines how the STM32 has developed, particularly under Linux.
The 32 Bit micro controllers of the STM32 product line have a small price tag and exceptional performance capabilities. For example, if you go to Amazon's Chinese competitor AliExpress, you will find the STM32F0F4P6 chip clocked at 48 MHz in a solder-ready TSOP package for about 40 cents. For just under US $2.50 , you will also find the STM32F103C8T6 in the form of a compact, Arduino Nano-like module. This chip is clocked at a maximum of 72 MHz and is equipped with USB and CAN support. This very low price tag even includes the costs of delivery
This chip has an additional advantage over the widely distributed 8 bit microcontrollers in its SWD programming interface. This interface requires just three wires for data, clock rate, grounding and if necessary the supply voltage. It also lets you code and test programs easily with the GNU debugger project GDB. Programming adapters are also cheap. AliExpress sells the STLink V2 compatible adapter as a USB stick for under US$3.00.
The hurdles for getting started with this chip are higher than with the Arduino, though. In particular, mobile devices require limited power, meaning you must first activate any components being used such as GPIOs or an A/D converter to supply them with current. The number of lists increases considerably due to the greater functionality.
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