Atmel releases new low power MCUs

Atmel recently announced the release of their next generation of low power 8-bit MCUs. Promising to be pin compatible with previous ATmega family members, these “The Atmel mega168PB, mega88PB and mega48PB are available in 32-pin QFN and QFP packages with additional devices available later this year. All devices are sampling now. Production quantities for the mega168PB devices are available now while the mega88PB and ATmega48PB devices are available in February 2015.”

Atmel is making available a limited of Xplained Mini eval kits using the ATmega168 or ATmega328 available for $8.88 from the Atmel store.

The ATmega328 board’s user guide is available as a 16-page PDF.

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  1. Why don’t they beef up the existing 168? Give it more flash and ram!

    Can someone explain why they don’t do it?

    1. If they gave it more flash then it wouldn’t be a 168 any more (i.e. 16k). Not sure why no more RAM, but presumably it’s because it would add extra cost/dev time and wouldn’t be necessary for most people. You can add on a 1MBit SPI RAM module for a couple of dollars if you need the space.

      1. I’m just clueless and think: WHY?

        I really love the Attiny85 and its family. But 8k flash is a really low limit. Same for the 168, 16k is at its end fast if higher level stuff needs to be implemented (like long long math, some protocol stacks like FAT…). If the name is the only problem, I would suggest the Intel-solution. 168, 2168, 4168, 5168 and so on. :-)

        Coming back to the “why” question: is it that difficult to add more flash and ram? Could someone outpour some chip knowledge? Thank you!

    2. Erm, isnt that the 328? E.g. with 32k of flash (anf didnt it have nore ram aswel) if you want even more, you start looking at the 2560 family …

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