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. 821-0545
Mfr. Part No.PIC18F66K80T-I/PT
BrandMicrochip
£2.625
Each (On a Reel of 1200)
Units
PIC18F TQFP Surface Mount 64 PIC 8bit 64 kB 64MHz 3.648 kB 0 2 11 1 1.8 → 5 V
RS Stock No. 715-4202
Mfr. Part No.PIC18F66K80-I/PT
BrandMicrochip
£3.11
Each
Units
PIC18F TQFP Surface Mount 64 PIC 8bit 64 kB 64MHz 1.024 kB, 3.648 kB - 2 11 1 3.3 V
RS Stock No. 887-7164
Mfr. Part No.PIC12F675-I/P
BrandMicrochip
£0.928
Each (In a Tube of 60)
Units
PIC12F PDIP Through Hole 8 PIC 8bit 1024 x 14 words, 128 B 20MHz 64 B 0 - 4 0 2 to 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 544-1692
Mfr. Part No.PIC12F675-I/P
BrandMicrochip
£1.014
Each (In a Pack of 5)
Units
PIC12F PDIP Through Hole 8 PIC 8bit 1024 x 14 words, 128 B 20MHz 64 B 0 - 4 0 2 to 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 121-4232
Mfr. Part No.PIC12F683-I/P
BrandMicrochip
£1.114
Each (In a Pack of 5)
Units
PIC12F683 PDIP Through Hole 8 PIC 8bit 3.5 kB 20MHz 128 B 0 0 4 - 2 → 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 887-7151
Mfr. Part No.PIC12F683-I/P
BrandMicrochip
£1.114
Each (In a Tube of 60)
Units
PIC12F PDIP Through Hole 8 PIC 8bit 2048 x 14 words, 256 B 20MHz 128 B 0 1 4 0 2 to 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 623-0803
Mfr. Part No.PIC18F4550-I/P
BrandMicrochip
£4.77
Each
Units
PIC18F PDIP Through Hole 40 PIC 8bit 32 kB, 256 B 48MHz 2.048 kB 1 x Device 2 13 1 4.2 to 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 887-7142
Mfr. Part No.PIC18F4550-I/P
BrandMicrochip
£4.503
Each (In a Tube of 10)
Units
PIC18F PDIP Through Hole 40 PIC 8bit 32 kB, 256 B 48MHz 2.048 kB 1 x Device 2 13 1 4.2 to 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 746-8217
Mfr. Part No.STM32F405RGT6
£9.03
Each
Units
STM32F LQFP Surface Mount 64 ARM Cortex M4F 32bit 1.024 MB 168MHz 4 kB, 192 kB 1 x Device, 1 x Host, 1 x OTG 1 16 3 1.8 → 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 792-6013
Mfr. Part No.STM32F405RGT6TR
£9.03
Each
Units
STM32F LQFP Surface Mount 64 ARM Cortex M4 32bit 1.024 MB 168MHz 192 kB 2 2 16 3 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 623-0213
Mfr. Part No.PIC16F54-I/P
BrandMicrochip
£0.51
Each
Units
PIC16F PDIP Through Hole 18 PIC 8bit 512 x 12 words 20MHz 25 B 0 - - 0 2 to 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 920-6456
Mfr. Part No.STM32F405RGT6
£6.752
Each (In a Tray of 160)
Units
STM32F LQFP Surface Mount 64 ARM Cortex M4F 32bit 1.024 MB 168MHz 4 kB, 192 kB 1 x Device, 1 x Host, 1 x OTG 1 16 3 1.8 → 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 911-5836
Mfr. Part No.PIC16F54-I/P
BrandMicrochip
£0.513
Each (In a Tube of 25)
Units
PIC16F PDIP Through Hole 18 PIC 8bit 512 x 12 words 20MHz 25 B 0 - - 0 2 to 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 919-6302
Mfr. Part No.STM32F405RGT6TR
£5.11
Each (On a Reel of 1000)
Units
STM32F LQFP Surface Mount 64 ARM Cortex M4 32bit 1.024 MB 168MHz 192 kB 2 2 16 3 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 159-7451
Mfr. Part No.PIC32MX250F128B-50I/SO
BrandMicrochip
£2.084
Each (In a Tube of 27)
Units
PIC32MX SOIC Surface Mount 28 PIC 32bit 131 kB 40MHz 32 kB 1 1 9 2 2.3 → 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 799-0348
Mfr. Part No.PIC32MX250F128B-50I/SO
BrandMicrochip
£2.15
Each
Units
PIC32MX SOIC Surface Mount 28 PIC 32bit 131 kB 40MHz 32 kB 1 1 9 2 2.3 → 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 792-5934
Mfr. Part No.STM32F030R8T6
£1.43
Each (In a Pack of 5)
Units
STM32F LQFP Surface Mount 64 ARM Cortex M0 32bit 64 kB 48MHz 8 kB 0 1 18 2 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 111-6470
Mfr. Part No.STM32F767ZIT6
£11.81
Each
Units
STM32 LQFP Surface Mount 144 ARM Cortex M7 32bit 2.048 MB 216MHz 512 kB 2 - 24 - 1.7 → 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 166-0970
Mfr. Part No.STM32F767ZIT6
£10.424
Each (In a Tray of 60)
Units
STM32 LQFP Surface Mount 144 ARM Cortex M7 32bit 2.048 MB 216MHz 512 kB 2 - 24 - 1.7 → 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 919-6270
Mfr. Part No.STM32F030R8T6
£1.018
Each (In a Tray of 160)
Units
STM32F LQFP Surface Mount 64 ARM Cortex M0 32bit 64 kB 48MHz 8 kB 0 1 18 2 3.6 V
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