These AVR programmers are based on Thomas Fischl's USBasp design and connect to your computer's USB port. Not only are they quite compact (70x20mm), but the design is really elegant. The USB interface is achieved by using an atmega8 processor and the rest is done in firmware.
Being an Open source hardware (OSHW) project, released under the GNU General Public License, you are free to download the schematic and firmware from Thomas's website, but then you have a chicken and egg problem. In order to load the USBASP firmware onto the atmega8 on the programmer, yes you guessed it, you need an AVR programmer. Much easier to buy one fully built and programmed.
Some of the features include:
- Allows you to read or write the microcontroller EEPROM, firmware, fuse bits and lock bits
- Support for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux (will work on Windows 8.1)
- 5 KB/sec maximum write speed
- Software controlled SCK option to support targets with low clock speed (< 1.5MHz)
- 10 pin ISP interface (conforms to standard ISP 10-pin pinout)
- The latest Window Drivers are fully signed, so you can use them on Windows Vista and above without any issues. The driver will work on both 32 and 64 bit platforms. On Linux And Mac OS X no kernel driver is required, just use AVRdude and specify the correct port.
- The programmer will work with a wide variety of Atmel AVR microcontrollers including the Atmega8a and Atmega168a. A full list is available on the specifications tab. The programmer will also work with a variety of software including
- AVRdude - Version 5.2 or later. AVRdude is available for many platforms.
- Khazama AVR Programmer - An AVRdude GUI for MS Windows
- BASCOM-AVR - Version 188.8.131.52 or later
- eXtreme Burner - An easy to use GUI application for MS Windows.
- Included with the programmer is a 10 pin ISP cable, as shown in the main photo. The programmer is ideal for use with our AVR development board and kits.