Microcontrollers

Microcontrollers, also referred to as MCUs (microcontroller units), are embedded semiconductor devices used in circuit board design. They are essentially a computer within an integrated circuit (IC). Microcontrollers are mostly used in single-function embedded applications, unlike microprocessors which are designed for general-purpose work in Personal Computers, Tablets and Smartphones. Microcontrollers are limited in their clock speed compared to microprocessors by the relative slowness of their non-volatile Flash program memory.

What are they made up of?

Microcontrollers contain single or multiple processors (sometimes referred to as CPUs), plus memory and I/O peripherals. These peripherals include timers, ADCs (analogue-to-digital converters) and DACs (digital-to-analogue converters).

What does 8-bit mean?

Microcontrollers have a data bus width which describes the amount of data the MCU can process at a time. For example, an 8-bit microcontroller can process 8 bits at one time. Popular data bus widths include 8-bit, 16-bit and 32-bit MCUs.

What packages are there?

MCUs come in standard chip packages with various pin counts. Package types include:

  • LQFP
  • PDIP
  • QFN
  • SOIC
  • SSOP
  • TQFP
  • TSSOP

What are ARM processor cores?

Microcontrollers often contain an ARM microprocessor core. ARM represents an architecture developed by ARM Holdings, which is used by other companies to manufacture microprocessors and other devices such as System-on-Chip (SoCs).

  • Cortex-M0
  • Cortex-M0+
  • Cortex-M1
  • Cortex-M3
  • Cortex-M4
  • Cortex-M7
  • Cortex-M23
  • Cortex-M33
  • Cortex-M35P

Where are microcontrollers used?

  • Computers
  • Automotive
  • Robotics
  • Automation
  • Medical equipment
  • Home appliances

...
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Description Price Family Name Package Type Mounting Type Pin Count Device Core Data Bus Width Program Memory Size Maximum Frequency RAM Size USB Channels Number of PWM Units ADC Channels Number of SPI Channels Typical Operating Supply Voltage
RS Stock No. 162-8652
Mfr. Part No.MSP430FR5959IDA
$5.513
Each (In a Tube of 40)
units
MSP430 TSSOP Surface Mount 38 MSP430 16bit 64 kB 16MHz 2 kB 0 - 16 3 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 825-4400
Mfr. Part No.MSP430FR5959IDA
$6.49
Each
units
MSP430 TSSOP Surface Mount 38 MSP430 16bit 64 kB 16MHz 2 kB 0 - 16 3 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 162-8651
Mfr. Part No.MSP430FR5949IDA
$5.513
Each (In a Tube of 40)
units
MSP430 TSSOP Surface Mount 38 MSP430 16bit 64 kB 16MHz 2 kB 0 - 16 3 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 825-4393
Mfr. Part No.MSP430FR5949IDA
$6.21
Each
units
MSP430 TSSOP Surface Mount 38 MSP430 16bit 64 kB 16MHz 2 kB 0 - 16 3 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 162-6362
Mfr. Part No.MSP430FG4618IPZ
$19.142
Each (In a Tube of 90)
units
MSP430 TQFP Surface Mount 100 - 16bit 116 kB 16MHz 8 kB - - 1 1 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 732-0730
Mfr. Part No.MSP430FG4618IPZ
$21.04
Each
units
MSP430 TQFP Surface Mount 100 - 16bit 116 kB 16MHz 8 kB - - 1 1 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 162-7268
Mfr. Part No.LM3S1968-IQC50-A2
$24.721
Each (In a Tray of 90)
units
Stellaris LQFP Surface Mount 100 ARM Cortex M3 32bit 256 kB 50MHz 64 kB 0 3 8 2 2.25 2.75 V, 3 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 875-1012
Mfr. Part No.CC2650F128RGZT
$8.84
Each
units
SimpleLink VQFN Surface Mount 48 ARM Cortex M3 32bit 128 kB 48MHz 20 kB 0 1 8 1 1.8 3.8 V
RS Stock No. 709-4241
Mfr. Part No.LM3S1968-IQC50-A2
$30.08
Each
units
Stellaris LQFP Surface Mount 100 ARM Cortex M3 32bit 256 kB 50MHz 64 kB 0 3 8 2 2.25 2.75 V, 3 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 619-5766
Mfr. Part No.MSP430F1232IPW
$6.49
Each
units
MSP430 TSSOP Surface Mount 28 MSP430 16bit 256 B, 8 kB 8MHz 256 B 0 1 8 1 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 162-8278
Mfr. Part No.MSP430G2452IPW14
$2.191
Each (In a Tube of 90)
units
MSP430 TSSOP Surface Mount 14 MSP430 16bit 8 kB 16MHz 256 B 0 - 8 2 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 817-6388
Mfr. Part No.MSP430G2452IPW14
$2.16
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
MSP430 TSSOP Surface Mount 14 MSP430 16bit 8 kB 16MHz 256 B 0 - 8 2 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 121-8943
Mfr. Part No.MSP430F1232IPW
$5.646
Each (In a Tube of 50)
units
MSP430 TSSOP Surface Mount 28 MSP430 16bit 8 kB, 256 B 8MHz 256 B 0 1 8 1 1.8 to 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 819-4948
Mfr. Part No.MSP430G2413IN20
$2.408
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
MSP430 PDIP Through Hole 20 MSP430 16bit 8 kB 16MHz 512 B 0 - 8 2 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 121-9715
Mfr. Part No.MSP430G2553IPW20
$2.003
Each (In a Tube of 70)
units
MSP430 TSSOP Surface Mount 20 MSP430 16bit 16 kB 16MHz 512 B 0 - 8 2 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 436-3024
Mfr. Part No.MSP430F149IPM
$15.57
Each
units
MSP430 LQFP Surface Mount 64 MSP430 16bit 256 B, 60 kB 8MHz 2 kB 0 2 8 2 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 100-3833
Mfr. Part No.MSP430F149IPM
$11.647
Each (In a Tube of 160)
units
MSP430 LQFP Surface Mount 64 MSP430 16bit 60 kB, 256 B 8MHz 2 kB 0 2 8 2 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 817-6372
Mfr. Part No.MSP430G2413IPW20
$1.834
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
MSP430 TSSOP Surface Mount 20 MSP430 16bit 8 kB 16MHz 512 B 0 - 8 2 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 817-6420
Mfr. Part No.MSP430G2553IPW20
$3.35
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
MSP430 TSSOP Surface Mount 20 MSP430 16bit 16 kB 16MHz 512 B 0 - 8 2 1.8 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 145-0955
Mfr. Part No.MSP430G2413IN20
$2.166
Each (In a Tube of 20)
units
MSP430 PDIP Through Hole 20 MSP430 16bit 8 kB 16MHz 512 B 0 - 8 2 1.8 3.6 V