I’ve had to make the hard decision as to what type of capacitors to use in a power supply I’ve been designing. I need a 5.0v, 3.3v, 1.9v and 1.2v rails powered by a 12v adaptor. The 5.0v and 3.3v rails use a DC/DC switching regulator while the 1.9v and 1.2v use a LDO regulator feed from the 3.3v rail. Both require bypass/filtering capacitors and I’ve traditionally used 10uF 16V 20% Tantalums — for some reason the “Case B” end up being cheaper than the 2010 sized equivalent of the X7R MLCC (ceramic).
I purchased the Saleae Logic16 a few months back to “sniff” a SPI bus and since then I keep on using it as my default Logic Analyzer — that’s when you know it’s money well spent. Saleae offers two models — a 8 channel ($149) and a 16 channel ($299). I went for the 16 channel version because it offers a bit more bandwidth (sample 2 channels at 100MHz, 4 channels at 50MHz, 8 channels at 25MHz, or all 16 channels).
The hardware is solid and well made and ships with everything you need — a nice hard case, USB cable and color coded wiring harness with micro-hook probes. The best part, however, is the software — I use a MacBook Pro (also running WindowsXP via VMWare) with 16gb ram and it’s always better to run native apps as much as possible but most companies don’t provide native apps for OSX, hence VMWare. Saleae actually offers ports of their software that runs on all major platforms (Windows, OSX, Linux). The software offers almost endless sample captures but the most useful feature is the protocol analyzer. It currently supports I2C, Async Serial, SPI, 1-Wire, CAN, I2S, PCM, UNI/O, Manchester, and MP Mode — making it easier to see the decoded results along with the waveform So far I have used I2C, SPI, I2S/PCM and Async Serial with it working flawlessly.
- Saleae Logic 16 [ Buy Now @AMAZON ]
I currently have a Weller WES51 Soldering Station that I’ve owned for about 10 years. While it have served me well all these years — I feel like the thermal recovery time can be a lot better. Hand soldering prototype boards with many different types of footprints is the latest challenge my WES51 is having a harder time with. It feels like it cannot keep up and I have to pause a few seconds while the temp recovers — I believe this is caused by the LEAD FREE solder I’m using that requires higher temp than the old LEAD based 60/40.
So I’m asking the readers of Mavromatic for their recommendations of “Best Soldering Iron”. I’m leaning towards the JBC CD-1BC (or the 2012 JBC-CD-1BB) — what do you think?
Progress! These last few weeks have been very productive; finalized the boards and received the custom stainless steel name badges — each one is uniquely struck with a number. As we will be initially only producing 100 units, numbers 1-100 have been made. Soon you will be able to reserve your unit — email email@example.com and you will be notified when the site launches.
What is myro:air? An audiophile grade AirPlay streamer featuring the highly regarded Wolfson WM8741 DAC as well as 2-way control of the AirPlay device via RS232 & Russound RNET interfaces, this is a custom integrators dream come true. Two long years in the making and we’re almost ready!
What’s next? I will be getting sample production boards in a couple weeks.
I’ve been meaning to organize my garage and turn a section into a place where I can work on my Myro Control stuff. I have been researching and looking at all sorts of “Garage Systems” and everything I have seen is either VERY expensive or VERY cheaply made using flimsy metal or thin wood/melamine.
My dream garage would be filled with Lista Cabinets (as seen on American Chopper) as they offer both of my requirements: American Made and modular cabinets on casters. The only drawback being cost.
Sears Craftsmen’s popped into my mind — thinking everything Craftsmen’s would be American made, right? Uh, nope. Then right next to the Craftsmen benches was this product called Gladiator Garageworks by Whirlpool Corporation. Modular cabinets on casters, check. Made in the U.S.A.? YES! Apparently all their “premium” welded case products are made in the U.S.A. That includes the benches and the gearbox. The ones you need to assemble are not so keep that in mind.
The only design element I’m not too big on is the “tread” or “diamond plate” texture on the doors. I would have liked a smooth finish or options for different colors (silver, red, black, blue, etc) like the Lista Cabinets offer. Not a huge deal and the pattern is growing on me.
Overall, I dig them! The price, the quality and the fact they are Made in the U.S.A. — I couldn’t be happier.
Off to finish organizing the garage!