AR40B is Robot controller board which is quite famous among robot builder, especially in ROBOCON. Anyhow, the onboard USB programmer is a bit out of date. The drawbacks are:
1. It does not support Window Vista
2. It does not support AMD based system (laptop and desktop PC)
3. It does not support a lot of PIC model (new models)
4. It is not upgradeable
So you maybe asking: “Can I upgrade it using the new UIC00A?”. The answer is “YES!” Since UIC00A is a very low cost (~RM50.00) USB programmer, we should utilize it. Now the question is how to integrate it onto AR40B board? No worry, that’s the reason this blog is created, upgrading AR40B to be UIC00A programmable.
Let’s start with the hardware needed:
1. 1 pcs of box header (2×5) for UIC00A cable connector, you may get it from Cytron online store here. The code is CN-IDC-BOX-10, it would cost you RM0.50 only.
2. 1 pcs of UIC00A, you can get it here with RM49.90 only! Great USB PIC Programmer, I like it very much.
3. Wrapping wire – 1 meter is more than enough, get it here. cost you RM0.80.
4. Finally some soldering tools such as soldering gun, lead, wire stripper and cutter.
If you get those tools ready, we are good to start, so let’s begin! Place the box header as shown in the picture. Please ensure it is a 2×5 box header, the “mouth” of box header should be pointing into AR40B board. This is the expansion area on AR40B board. Solder it.
According to UIC00A User’s Manual, page 27, the hardware connection, we can simply upgrade any PIC board (5V operate) to be UIC00A programmable. You may refer to this diagram to make the connection. What is the minimum connection needed? 4 connection from UIC00A to AR40B board.
So since we have the box header soldered, the next step is to connect the correct pin of box header to AR40B. The connection should be:
1. pin 3 of box header connect to MCLR of PIC (pin 1)
2. pin 4 or 6 of box header connect to AR40B’s system gnd, it can be any ground, or pin 12 of PIC
3. pin 5 of box header connect to RB6 of PIC (pin 39)
4. pin 7 of box header connect to RB7 of PIC (pin 40)
If we look from back of AR40B board, it should be something like this:
Now, 1 more step to enable AR40B UIC00A programmable. The old on board programmer have connection to PIC too, it will interfere UIC00A signal. We need remove two resistors from AR40B. Please cut/desolder the two resistors of 100 ohm (brown – black – brown) from AR40B board. These two resistors are located beside the small green LED left bottom corner of ZIF socket. Here is the photo:
Yup, now AR40B can be programmed using UIC00A. All you need to do is to connect UIC00A IDE cable to the new box header that you have soldered:
But don’t forgot to ON the AR40B before loading program, the board need to be powered!! Yeah, now you can have a AR40B with UIC00A programmable! Besides, this connection can be applied on any PIC board, if it is 5V powered and supported by UIC00A.