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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Mon 19, 2017 2:48 am 
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Southerner wrote:
Colin Ames wrote:
I ordered some and then realised that they are round hole, which won't work with square pins. Adafruit have them, but their shipping charges are outrageous.

All of my recent orders to/with Adafruit have been small orders and shipped usps for less than $5 each time so it depends on what you order as to how much shipping costs but I requested usps shipment each time and they came quickly and at a reasonable price.
Jim

Jim,
Thanks for pointing this out. When I was to the point of checking out, the only shipping options I saw were UPS, and the charges were high. I will certainly go back to the site and see where I went wrong. I always, where possible, specify USPS, but obviously in this case I overlooked that option.

UPDATE: I went back to their site and tried once more to order. Again, the only shipping options were UPS. When I read their section on shipping it seems that that they don't offer USPS shipping to areas that have previously suffered slow delivery. As I live in the middle of nowhere in central Utah, I am guessing that their site recognizes the ZIP code and decides not to use the US mail. Such is life.

Colin


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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Mon 19, 2017 8:47 pm 
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I've used these socket headers from Digi-Key
https://www.digikey.com/products/en?keywords=ed7150-nd
Even though they are the round hole type, the square pins of the AD9850 modules fit just fine.
The above part number is for a 50 pin strip which you can cut to length. They may also have 10 pin versions, but I didn't check.

Edit: This part number is not the low profile header, and may not sit low enough. With these headers, the top of the AD9850 board will be 5/8" above the main PCB. The highest point is the blue trimmer. On some versions of the module, the LED may sit slightly higher, but that can be fixed with a file.


Last edited by BobWeaver on Jun Mon 19, 2017 10:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Mon 19, 2017 9:56 pm 
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Bob,
Many thanks for the link. I was hoping to find a low profile version in order to use them with the Arduino as well as the AD9850. However, if Steve can't find any more of the ones he used, I may have to have a rethink. Of course, if I am really lucky (which I not, usually), the low profile ones with the round holes that I ordered from Tayda Electronics but have not yet received, will accept the square pins. I know for a fact that the I.C. sockets I got from them will NOT accept square pins, because I tried.

Colin


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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Mon 26, 2017 5:11 am 
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I finally got it built. Modifying the DDS was the most difficult part, as I don't have a bench magnifier, which would have really helped. The other thing I had to modify was the display and two of its mounting screws. The standoffs use a 6-32 screw, and the holes in the display are too small, so I had to drill them out. Then I found that the right hand holes were so close to the display surround that I had to reduce the head diameter. I did this by clamping a file to a table, putting the screws in an electric drill, and rotating them against the file until they were small enough.
Attachment:
Pic 1.jpg
Pic 1.jpg [ 236.69 KiB | Viewed 3877 times ]

Attachment:
Pic 2.jpg
Pic 2.jpg [ 217.02 KiB | Viewed 3877 times ]

I haven't applied power or loaded software yet. I need to read the instructions before I start.

Colin


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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Mon 26, 2017 11:27 am 
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Looking good, Colin. I saw Steve's (azenithnut) board this weekend since he stopped by to sell me a radio. He also used the headers for the generator boards.
As I looked at it, they may now be too high to fit into the case. The led on the generator board may hit the underside of the front cover. Not sure.

I will be cutting the plastic Tuesday for the cases with the laser so those will be able to go out soon.
I am also just about finished with the rewrite of the software. No feature changes, just a reorganization to make it more maintainable.
There is also a newer version of the user guide coming. A wee bit of polish on that and I will release it.

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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Mon 26, 2017 7:50 pm 
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I had been in contact with Steve, and he warned about the possible interference. Looking at my DDS boards, it would not only be the LED but also the trimmer potentiometer, as they are the same height. In fact, on DDS1, the pot is actually higher than the LED. The distance between the top side of the PCB and the top of the pot is 17.7mm as measured with a digital caliper. Not sure if there's a solution or not, but I felt it safer to use the headers rather than solder the modules directly to the PCB.

I will wait for the software update, then load it and see what happens!

Colin


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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Tue 27, 2017 2:42 pm 
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I have been thinking about a name for this thing....
To date, I have called it "the device", "the alignment tool", or "the gadget". I have looked at various acronyms, none of which grab me.
I saw Steve over the weekend and he mentioned an old unit by Simpson called "Genescope" that I looked up.
It was a sweep generator and scope all in one unit. So my idea was surely not original!
After thinking on this, I did get one suggestion - CompuLign, aka "Compu(ter) (a)Lign(ment)
I made a little logo in a nice font that I may engrave on the front cover if folks like it.
Please vote on this or offer another idea!

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Tue 27, 2017 3:21 pm 
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Sounds good Lou.
My TFT screen just came in the mail yesterday.
My wife opened the package and asked me if it was for my " alignment thingy". :lol:
I think your name sounds a lot better!
Even though I can't get started right now I have been trying to keep up with what's been going on.
Glad to see Colin got his board assembled.
I will keep checking in to see how everybody is progressing.

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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Tue 27, 2017 4:22 pm 
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Lou - CompuLign sounds good. Or you could use AlignDuino (only joking :D )

Fauxtech - You are lucky that your wife even knows the term "alignment thingy". Mine just classes it as more radio junk.

Colin


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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Tue 27, 2017 4:26 pm 
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Lou - One question. For those of us who decided to use headers to mount the DDSs and Arduino, is there any chance that the laser cutter could relieve the underside of the case top, above these three devices, to prevent interference? Or is that not a viable proposition? Just wondering.

Colin


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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Tue 27, 2017 5:32 pm 
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Colin, by "relieve" do you mean etching out or cutting a hole on the front where the LED is?
I think that would be difficult to position carefully without making a mess of a hole on the front and just not looking right.
If you think about it, that LED on the DDS boards serves no real function other then to burn power.
Looking at the schematic, the LED is not used to bias anything or serve another purpose.
SO, if it were me, I would just remove it if it gets in the way of the top cover.

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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Wed 28, 2017 2:36 am 
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Lou,
That's kind of what I had in mind, but I was thinking more of a recess that encompassed the entire modules, as the trimmer potentiometers are very, very close to the same height as the LEDS. Having not ever used a laser cutter, I didn't know if it was precise enough to use as a router. Probably not, so my idea wouldn't work.


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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Wed 28, 2017 3:44 pm 
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More progress....
I went to do the laser cutting for 4 more cases last night. I also etched the new name on the front panels and it looks pretty sharp in my humble opinion. ;-) I swapped out my case for one of the new ones so I could have the fancy front and also make a set of photos for the instructions on assembly that I added to the User Guide. So now I can ship out 3 cases for now. I believe I had 3 of you say you wanted one - Steve, Southerner, and Fauxtech. Please PM me again with confirmation and address for mailing.
As I mentioned before, given the costs for material and laser time, the price is $15 plus $3 shipping = $18 for a case. PayPal to lou@louhaskell.com preferred.
The new case is shown below. Also, I completed the next version of the User Guide and that can be downloaded here:
http://louhaskell.com/data/generator/compulign-user-guide-v2.pdf
This version is referenced to the new V2.0 software which will be released very shortly. I completely rewrote the software to make it more maintainable.I used an object-oriented method so that parts like display used and all drivers are located in one spot in the code. This allows for swapping different displaysor other hardware items if that becomes necessary, i.e. all the display code is now in one place. The functionality is not any different.The only thing you may notice is a new "splash screen" that comes up for 2 seconds when the device turns on so that the version number can be displayed.

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Wed 28, 2017 5:25 pm 
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It looks really good with the logo. Nice job!


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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Wed 28, 2017 11:29 pm 
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I wholeheartedly agree! :D

-Steve

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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jun Fri 30, 2017 7:37 pm 
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OK, the new version 2.0 is now available. I have tested it for functionality and all seems well. Included in the zip file are all files needed to compile and download as well as a ".hex" file to upload directly using the XLoader tool if you wish to go that way.
In keeping with the new name, the folder is now called "compulign-v2.0". Note that the libraries are all included. Only one has changed. Instead of "rotary", there is now a "rotary2".
I decided to use a new name so there is less chance of confusion. This release works like the last one for the most part. Only change you will likely see is the 2 second "splash screen" announcing the version when the device turns on.

Get it here -->> http://louhaskell.com/data/generator/compulign-v2.0.zip

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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jul Sat 01, 2017 10:10 pm 
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Success! I haven't calibrated the DDS modules yet, or tried any of the functions, but the fact that it powers up and I get a display is a good start.
Attachment:
Success.jpg
Success.jpg [ 213.01 KiB | Viewed 3774 times ]


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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jul Sun 02, 2017 1:11 am 
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That's great Colin!
I know how it feels to populate a board and hold your breath waiting for it to power up.
I hope it continues to go well for you.
Good luck!

Bill

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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jul Sun 02, 2017 2:25 am 
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I just got the case today from Lou.
Fitted things together for a trial and there is PLENTY of space with the plug-in headers! :D

No, I haven't uploaded the firmware. I'm not sure how to do it, so I will have to read up on the procedure.

-Steve


Attachments:
compulign1.jpg
compulign1.jpg [ 98.72 KiB | Viewed 3769 times ]
compulign2.jpg
compulign2.jpg [ 69.68 KiB | Viewed 3769 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: Microcontroller Based Signal Generator
PostPosted: Jul Sun 02, 2017 12:08 pm 
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Good to see the case still works with the DDS modules up on headers. Be sure to get the latest software I just posted.

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