July 2021

This month’s highlights

ATtiny816 Breakout and Development Board with Capacitive Touch

With Microchip and Atmel joining forces, some great new microcontrollers are now becoming available that combine the best of both worlds. This small breakout board enables hobbyists to use the latest 20-pin ATtiny816 SOIC chip MCU in practical test and development settings. It also offers capacitive touch switch sensing as an alternative to more traditional PCB mounted push switches. You can choose either input method.

Infrared Remote Control Assistant

This deceptively-powerful PIC-micro based project is intended to greatly simplify the use of IR remote controls. It’s programmable and can store complex sequences of IR commands, all available at the touch of a button. Eight buttons are provided, memorising eight sequences of up to 100 remote control codes (up to 2½ minutes’ worth if needed!) plus pauses in sequences if needed. With a multitude of remote control entertainment products now available, this could be just the thing for making life easier .

Touchscreen Wide-range RCL Box (Part 2)


This ‘intelligent’ piece of test equipment will be invaluable for prototyping and testing circuitry. It’s not only a capacitance and resistance substitution box but offers inductance as well, accessible via a colour touchscreen.  Features 1Ω – 10MΩ, 10pF-10µF, 100nH to 3.3mH RCL manual selection and, uniquely, it can automatically sweep through value ranges.  The project is Micromite V3 BackPack with a 3½” LCD colour touchscreen, programmed in BASIC.

This month the project’s construction is shown. (The Micromite V3 BackPack was described in our August 2020 issue.)

0621 Surface mount components are used throughout and good soldering skills are needed to complete this project successfully.

Audio Out – Microphone preamplifier for Vocoder – Part 3

In this instalment, the construction and testing of our microphone preamplifier are described.

Also in this issue:

  • The Fox Report – Barry Fox heaps praise on Google’s Pixel phone, and pours scorn on Xiaomi’s lamentable UK press office
  • Barry Fox’s Tekkiepix pic of the month – Barry reminds us of the early days of 3D TV with another press shot from the past. You can visit the Tekkiepix gallery at https://tekkiepix.com/
  • Techno Talk – the bad news about optical disc longevity
  • Net Work – what eBay’s T&C changes means to sellers, more space program news and the latest from EV brand Polestar. Visit the Net Work blog
  • Practically Speaking – restoring old equipment – the Leak Stereo 30 amp (Part 4)
  • PIC n’ MIX – Part 6 of Mike Hibbett’s PIC18F Development Board builds some programs
  • Make It with Micromite – getting a Micromite online, the WeatherDemo explained
  • Circuit Surgery – Transformers and LTspice (Part 2)
  • Max’s Cool Beans – a fascinating study of multisegment LED displays, with origins dating back to 1898!

In next month’s issue:

Switchmode Replacement for 78xx regulators; low-cost, Wideband Digital RF Power Meter; Ol’ Timer (carried over from July issue); Kickstart Part 4: Introducing the Arduino Pro Mini.

July 2021 files for download - 0721-DL.zip

  • ATtiny816 Breakout Board
  • Cool Beans
  • Circuit Surgery LTspice
  • IR Remote panel a/w
  • IR Remote
  • Touchscreen RCL Box

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