Texas Instruments' Arduino Alternative for $ 4.30

As you know, competition among manufacturers of microcontrollers is very high. Everyone is trying to lure consumers with a low price and advanced functionality of their stones.

Texas Instruments, to promote the masses of its MSP430 controllers, offers a cheap ($ 4.30) LaunchPad debug board (MSP-EXP430G2) . Outwardly, it resembles an Arduino, but, of course, is not compatible with it. Generous Texans put two of their Value Line series microcontrollers in DIP packages: msp430g2553 and msp430g2452.


Of course, these controllers are quite Spartan in terms of the peripherals on board (for example, compared to the same AVRs in Arduino), but MSP430 are among the leaders among microcontrollers in terms of energy saving. It was low energy consumption that was the fad of the MSP430 when TI first launched them on the market in 1999.

As an IDE for their controllers, TI offers Code Composer Studio (based on Eclipse) and IAR Embedded Workbench KickStart. Both development environments have free downloads.

Recently, another IDE has appeared - Energia . This is a fork of the Arduino development environment for the MSP430 controllers.

Main window Energia

So far, the program supports only three controllers: msp430g2231, msp430g2452 and msp430g2553.

Controller selection

Programming in Energia is no different from that in the Arduino environment. For people who have mastered Processing / Wiring in Arduino, the transition to a cheaper LaunchPad will be inconspicuous.

Download sketch to controller

Having such an easy-to-learn development environment for beginners as Energia and distributing your LaunchPad almost for free (for only $ 4.30 including free FedEx shipping worldwide), Texas Instruments can compete with Arduino (for example, 1290 rubles at Amperka ).


Texas Instruments LaunchPad MSP-EXP430G2
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