Sexy-thing (WAS: Re: [sdiy] super cheap synthisizers)

phillip m gallo philgallo at
Tue Jun 18 00:44:14 CEST 2002

Batz wrote:

"Two things here I'm curious about. I'd never seen this new 8051 derivative
but it looks like just the thing I'd want to have children with. Is it
really that expensive? (I bet my device programmer won't touch it with a
ten foot cro probe)"

-->Expensive? Yes you can spend money on this device. Maxim/Dallas is very
generous with samples however.  It's integration eliminates the usual parts
surrounding a micro and so, from my purview, is "cheaper" as you need only
implement this chip, a DAC+output filter, an MIDI OPTO and you are on the

--> Programming the DS89C420 is easy due to the "BootLoader/Debugger"
integrated into the chip. Blowing the 16k of FLASH is done using a serial
link and a PC program. It has a lot of other compelling features.

"Does such an embedded friendly device exist? Or are still at the stage
where we need to hook up a g'zillion pins to a bunch of support chips with
critical timing and cost blow out?"

-->If this is regarding DSP's i think the eval/dev kit is the "most
friendly" environment to date.   I am fond of the ADSP 2181 and it is very
easy to develop for in it's "EzKit" incarnation.

-->As for the DSc420, it is really integrated and very fast. It's internal
1K SRAM is available at full speed and is just large enough for two 256
entry x 16 wavetables.  Like all of the Dallas chips, it wakes up as a
regular 8051 (with one hell of an execution rate) so you can accomodate
features one at a time. This is especially cool due to the ease of using the
integrated Bootloader.


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