Total beginner with a PIC question

Right so Im a trainee at the university as a technician..


Work's have provided me with a University made microcontroller board with a PIC18F4520 on it...


Im a total newb with electronics and Im finding it hard getting to grips with this board, I really want to follow the tutorial with the 85$ robot and for that it requires a PICAXE board...


What I want to know is, for a first timer would it be hard to do it using the 18f4520, bearing in mind I have nearly zero programming experience or would it be easier to just follow the pre written code and just buy the PICAXE, money isnt so much of an issue up to a point..


Any advice by the way for a first timer would be great


I love the videos and the site and hope to become a part of your community!


Sam -UK robot newb!

True PIC microcontrollers
True PIC microcontrollers are typically programmed in Assembly or C, which aren’t easy to figure out for a new programmer.
I’d suggest starting with the PICAXE, which can be programmed in BASIC (very easy to program in) without the need for special programming gear. This makes the jump from a pile of parts to a working robot comparatively short, after which you can start increasing your skills.
Using a straight PIC gives you more flexibility and capability, but there’s a steep learning curve in the beginning and you’ll spend ages learning and trying things out before you get anywhere satisfying. Once you’ve worked with something easier like the PICAXE you can either increase your PICAXE skills, or move onto another type of controller.

Thanks for the advice… I

Thanks for the advice…



I think that makes sense, Im gonna order the PICAXE next week and while i waiting for delivery have a go at flashing some LED’s etc with my board.


I’m gonna have to learn all this eventually as I work in a microcomputer department lol, but I’m still really new at electronics, which is the reason I was searching for PIC tutorials for a project I could get my teeth into. Most of the academics in our place dont have much time for beginners help…so anyway happened to stumble upon this site. Glad I did!


Anyway cheers… Ill keep you all posted with my first robot and Im guessing probably more questions as It goes along.



please help me start…

hello… im a student from malaysia,

here in malaysia, the technology we have are very low… i am only familiar with c programing… know a lil bit of asembly…

i only know how to use the pic16f877a and the bourd available for me is sk40b, but i can build my own bourd but it would be bigger in size,


this is the bourd available for me, and ive used it before for some of my simple project.'s_Manual.pdf


the PIC18F4520 just enter our country recently.

i dont know much about your new PIC.


is it posible for me to build a simple robot wif what i have.?

where can i get examples of c programing source code for a simple robot for me to learn and start modifiying it for my personal hoby project?


Look for any project on here
Look for any project on here that uses an arduino the cost should be in C.

C is definitely the way to

C is definitely the way to go…I know MPLab (for PICs) lets you interject with assembly if you want, but that might actually be part of the C language.

- P

PIC serial programmer trouble

Hello Everybody!

I’m a beginner with PIC and I started of with making the PIC serial programmer. But it isnt working and i’ve been banging my head on it. A voltage of 10 V is reaching till the IN4148 P-end and it drops to 0 and the N-end. Thus i’m not getting any voltage between pin 5 and 14 of my PIC16F84A.

Please Help.




If voltage isn’t crossing
If voltage isn’t crossing the 4148 then you’ve either got it inserted backwards, or it’s broken. Swap the diode around or replace it altogether.

Tried that
Tried both already. No use.

The 78L05 could also

The 78L05 could also potentially be the culprit, although it’s less likely. Why don’t you start a new post, preferably with some photos of your circuit, it’ll be easier to get help that way.

Ok Thanks. I’ll do that.
Ok Thanks. I’ll do that.