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The Bus Pirate, created by Ian Lesnet and featured on Hack a Day, is a troubleshooting tool that communicates between a PC and any embedded device over most standard serial protocols, which include I2C, SPI, and asynchronous serial - all at voltages from 0-5.5VDC. This product eliminates a ton of early prototyping effort when working with new or unknown chips.
Working with the Bus Pirate is simple and effective - type commands into a terminal on your computer, those commands are interpreted by the Bus Pirate and sent via the proper protocol. The Pirate will also interpret data sent from your embedded device back to your computer terminal. A big bonus is the bootloader installed on the PIC, which allows you to easily update the firmware and change the functionality of the board.
The main components of the Bus Pirate are PIC24FJ64 processor and an FT232RL USB-to-Serial chip. A Mini-B USB connector is populated on the board, and when you plug it into your computer it will come up as a virtual COM port. The pinout of the 2x5 I/O header is documented here.
Order now! We are setup to build these in house regularly. Lead times should remain less than a week.
Note: This product is a collaboration with Ian Lesnet. A portion of each sales goes back to them for product support and continued development.
If a board needs code or communicates somehow, you're going to need to know how to program or interface with it. The programming skill is all about communication and code.
Skill Level: Rookie - You will need a better fundamental understand of what code is, and how it works. You will be using beginner-level software and development tools like Arduino. You will be dealing directly with code, but numerous examples and libraries are available. Sensors or shields will communicate with serial or TTL.
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If it requires power, you need to know how much, what all the pins do, and how to hook it up. You may need to reference datasheets, schematics, and know the ins and outs of electronics.
Skill Level: Noob - You don't need to reference a datasheet, but you will need to know basic power requirements.
See all skill levels
Based on 8 ratings:
1 of 1 found this helpful:
They could have called this product the Babelfish, for everything it does. From serial to SPI, if it has a digital communication protocol, chances are the Bus Pirate supports it well. Using the Pirate is fast and easy on whatever platform you like, since all of the processing is handled on the board. You only need a serial terminal to use it fast and effectively.
The Bus Pirate also includes a lot of macros for a variety of purposes. One macro reads voltage from a pin, another one detects serial speed, and there are several for behaving as a completely transparent bridge between your protocol of choice and the serial console.
Finally, avrdude supports the bus pirate natively, so you can use it to flash firmware/fuses/whatever onto AVR chips, such as the Arduino.
Cons: The plastic surround on this Bus Pirate is backwards, so if you buy the colored cable for it, the colors will be backwards.
should have a simple GUI that also does scripting, etc. all built in. it is not very user friendly to learn and start with. I've looked at the 3 or 4 GUI's out there and they all suck except for one and none of them appears to read in scripts or anything. This thing is kind of time consuming to learn all the commands and stuff. command line prompting kind of sucks now a days. It would be nice to have a more Saelae logic type analyzer GUI that interprets whats going on on the I2C or SPI bus and dumps the data for you too.
Everyone who does serial communication troubleshooting or design should have one of these. By far the easiest piece of test gear to set up and use. Make sure you get high quality test hooks. Most available are adequate but do not work if you try to hook up to an SMD IC.
I love this thing. during my first few years it has helped me greatly in various debugging. it helps to have a device you know is talking correctly.
I especially like to use in combination with OLS as a simple slow logic analyzer to check wether my own microcontrollers are indeed talking in the protocol i want them. without this i would never guessed that my xmega was failing to send anything except for ACK over SPI due to a code error!
Item performs as described and offers one many features that are easy to implement in software. Would purchase again.
i use eeprom read and write work's good but Oscilloscope not work for me
0 of 2 found this helpful:
I bought this instead of logic analyser 'cause I didn't wanna spend the major bucks for that just yet. I haven't had the time to try this out as yet, but like all things I've ordered from Sparkfun I imagine this one'll be awesome as well:)
The Bus Pirate is a great product. I've just been having trouble finding good official documentation. Maybe this is all beyond my skill set, but I've been having trouble figuring out how to interface my Microchip 24AA256 EEPROM(specifically reading and writing to). If anyone could point me in the right direction it would be greatly appreciated.