Jun 23, 2015

AVR USB Programmers: USBISP and USBASP

If you look for AVR programmers, surely you will find one of those USB sticks, that promises heavens of features for an attractive price. But those cheap USB programmers lost all the enchantment when you try to use it, and if you gave up, maybe you can find a solution here.

Let's start clarifying the things, the cited USB AVR programmer is sold alone (like the image above) or shipped with some other AVR chip based product like multicopters stabilization boards (KK Board 5.5 send regards), with a description similar to this:

  • This programmer is based on Thomas Fischl's USBasp design and connects to your computer's USB port. Not only is it quite compact, but the design is really elegant. The USB interface is achieved by using an atmega processor and the rest is done in firmware.
  • With 500mA over-current protection self-recovery fuse, and complete protection of expensive computer motherboard.
  • Designed for notebook computers, special two 3.6V regulator, a perfect match to level, get rid of the instability of hardware hidden! Target board power mode jumper settings.
  • The well-configured firmware, the speed of the unique adaptive technology, stability and obtain the best balance between speed! Supports firmware upgrade unlimited.
  • List of supported chips:
  • 51 Series: AT89S51, AT89S52,, AT89S53, AT89S8252.
AVR Series: ATTiny12 (L), ATTiny13 (V), ATTiny15 (L), ATTiny24 (V), ATTiny25 (V), ATTiny26 (L), ATTiny2313 (V) , ATTiny44 (V), ATTiny45 (V), ATTiny84 (V), ATTiny85 (V), AT90S2313 (L), AT90S2323 (L), AT90S2343 (L), AT90S1200 (L), AT90S8515 (L), AT90S8535 (L), ATMEGA48 (V), ATMEGA8 (L), ATMEGA88 (V), ATMEGA8515 (L), ATMEGA8535 (L), ATMEGA16 (L), ATMEGA162 (V), ATMEGA163 (L), ATMEGA164 (V), ATMEGA165 (V), ATMEGA168 (V), ATMEGA169 (V), ATMEGA169P (V), ATMEGA32 (L), ATMEGA324 (V), ATMEGA325 (V), ATMEGA3250 (V), ATMEGA329 (V), ATMEGA3290 (V), ATMEGA64 (L), ATMEGA640 (V), ATMEGA644 (V), ATMEGA645 (V), ATMEGA6450 (V), ATMEGA649 (V), ATMEGA6490 (V), ATMEGA128 (L), ATMEGA1280 (V), ATMEGA1281 (V), ATMEGA2560 (V), ATMEGA2561 (V), AT90CAN32, AT90CAN64, AT90CAN128, AT90PWM2 (B) , AT90PWM3 (B), etc.
At least based in my own experience, the USBASP programmer is recognized by Windows drivers with the "usbasp" name or something similar (I had one with the KK Board 5.5). But this model is recognized as a generic USB HID device, and it will only work when recognized without an exclamation point in the USB devices list, if the exclamation remains, re-plug it and try again, otherwise it will not work, doesn't matter the software! I just found a single software that worked flawlessly with it, the "ProgISP 1.72":

The software is for Windows and a little old, as you can see in the image (2009), but it works! that's what matter, you just need the .hex file, generated by any AVR IDE/compiler of any environment, like for example the AVR Studio 6 for Windows. To write the target microcontroller flash memory, load the .hex file and click "Auto"!

About the Versions
  • .HEX file generated with AVR Studio 6
  • Software ProgISP 1.72
  • Target AVR microcontroller ATtiny85

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