The PIC microcontrollers are one of the most popular 8-bit microcontrollers. Microchip has hundreds of different microcontrollers - from the tiny SOT23 package to 100-lead PLCC. They can run up to 80 Mhz and they can have up to 512 kByte internal flash memory.
The PIC microcontrollers are one of the most popular 8-bit microcontrollers. Currently there are also a wide range of 16-bit and 32-bit PIC microcontrollers available.
Microchip has hundreds of different PIC microcontrollers in their rich portfolio - from the tiny SOT23 package to the 100-lead PLCC.
- The prices are very good! The low end devices (PIC10Fxx) cost $0.30/ea in volume.
- A free MPLAB integrated development environment is available for programming in assembler and C. There are plenty of low-cost development hardware tools available - a lot of options for debuggers, programmers etc.
- A great variety of devices are available with minor differences in memory sizes and in variety and number of peripherals
- The GPIO ports source good amount of current and can drive LEDs directly, etc.
- PICs are famous for their reliability. The old OTP 'C' parts are one of the most reliable controllers available on the market. PICs are also available in the automotive temperature mode in the range of -40+125C.
- The software support and the documentation are very good!
- There is no compatibility between different PICs and you have to re-write your code every time you move from one PIC to another.
- Some lower-end microcontrollers require writing in assembler (though the new PIC compilers work fine with C) which is the art of programming as there is no software stack, or paging, and GPIO read modify doesn't work on the early PIC16Fxxx series.
- Some newer PIC16 and PIC32 flash devices introduced hardware bugs (which unfortunately applies to all other vendors as well) and are not as reliable as the old OTP devices.