Microcontrollers

Microcontrollers, also referred to as MCUs (microcontroller units), are embedded semiconductor devices used in circuit board design. They are essentially a computer within an integrated circuit (IC). Microcontrollers are mostly used in single-function ’embedded’ applications, unlike microprocessors which are designed for general-purpose work in Personal Computers, Tablets and Smartphones. Microcontrollers are limited in their clock speed compared to microprocessors by the relative slowness of their non-volatile Flash program memory.


What are they made up of?


Microcontrollers contain single or multiple processors (sometimes referred to as CPUs), plus memory and I/O peripherals. These peripherals include timers, ADCs (analogue-to-digital converters) and DACs (digital-to-analogue converters).


What does “8-bit” mean?


Microcontrollers have a data bus width which describes the amount of data the MCU can process at a time. For example, an 8-bit microcontroller can process 8 bits at one time. Popular data bus widths include 8-bit, 16-bit and 32-bit MCUs.


What packages are there?


MCUs come in standard chip packages with various pin counts. Package types include:


  • LQFP

  • PDIP

  • QFN

  • SOIC

  • SSOP

  • TQFP

  • TSSOP

What are ARM processor cores?


Microcontrollers often contain an ARM microprocessor core. ARM represents an architecture developed by ARM Holdings, which is used by other companies to manufacture microprocessors and other devices such as System-on-Chip (SoCs).


  • Cortex-M0

  • Cortex-M0+

  • Cortex-M1

  • Cortex-M3

  • Cortex-M4

  • Cortex-M7

  • Cortex-M23

  • Cortex-M33

  • Cortex-M35P

Where are microcontrollers used?


  • Computers

  • Automotive

  • Robotics

  • Automation

  • Medical equipment

  • Home appliances

...
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Description Price Family Name Package Type Mounting Type Pin Count Device Core Data Bus Width Program Memory Size Maximum Frequency RAM Size USB Channels Number of PWM Units ADC Channels Number of SPI Channels Typical Operating Supply Voltage
RS Stock No. 887-7139
Mfr. Part No.PIC16F877A-I/P
BrandMicrochip
PHP260.25
Each (In a Tube of 10)
units
PIC16F PDIP Through Hole 40 PIC 8bit 14.3 kB, 256 B 20MHz 368 B 0 2 8 1 4 → 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 467-1690
Mfr. Part No.PIC16F877A-I/P
BrandMicrochip
PHP260.25
Each
units
PIC16F PDIP Through Hole 40 PIC 8bit 14.3 kB, 256 B 20MHz 368 B 0 2 8 1 4 → 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 703-7602
Mfr. Part No.PIC24FJ64GB002-I/SP
BrandMicrochip
PHP191.74
Each
units
PIC24FJ SPDIP Through Hole 28 PIC 16bit 64 kB 32MHz 8 kB 1 x OTG 5 9 2 2 to 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 159-6642
Mfr. Part No.PIC24FJ64GB002-I/SP
BrandMicrochip
PHP175.421
Each (In a Tube of 15)
units
PIC24FJ SPDIP Through Hole 28 PIC 16bit 64 kB 32MHz 8 kB 1 x OTG 5 9 2 2 → 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 876-7023
Mfr. Part No.PIC24FJ64GA002-I/SP
BrandMicrochip
PHP161.06
Each (In a Tube of 15)
units
PIC24FJ SPDIP Through Hole 28 PIC 16bit 64 kB 32MHz 8 kB 0 1 10 2 2 to 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 400-734
Mfr. Part No.PIC24FJ64GA002-I/SP
BrandMicrochip
PHP161.06
Each
units
PIC24FJ SPDIP Through Hole 28 PIC 16bit 64 kB 32MHz 8 kB 0 5 10 2 2 to 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 165-4090
Mfr. Part No.PIC24FJ128GB202-I/SP
BrandMicrochip
PHP206.05
Each (In a Tube of 15)
units
PIC24FJ SPDIP Through Hole 28 PIC 16bit 128 kB 32MHz 8 kB 1 1 9 3 2 → 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 122-5742
Mfr. Part No.R5F10JBCGFP#V0
PHP218.175
Each (In a Pack of 2)
units
RL78/G1C LQFP Surface Mount 32 RL78 16bit 2 (Data Flash) kB, 32 (Flash ROM) kB 24MHz 5.5 kB 3 0 8 - 2.4 → 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 829-0131
Mfr. Part No.PIC24FJ128GB202-I/SP
BrandMicrochip
PHP206.05
Each (In a Pack of 2)
units
PIC24FJ SPDIP Through Hole 28 PIC 16bit 128 kB 32MHz 8 kB 1 1 9 3 2 to 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 400-277
Mfr. Part No.PIC16F677-I/SS
BrandMicrochip
PHP63.40
Each (In a Pack of 5)
units
PIC16F SSOP Surface Mount 20 PIC 8bit 2048 words 20MHz 128 B 0 - 12 1 2 → 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 786-3899
Mfr. Part No.PIC16F527-I/SS
BrandMicrochip
PHP35.28
Each (In a Pack of 10)
units
PIC16F SSOP Surface Mount 20 PIC 8bit 1.5 kB 20MHz 68 B 0 - 8 0 2 → 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 145-9015
Mfr. Part No.PIC16F527-I/SS
BrandMicrochip
PHP32.484
Each (In a Tube of 67)
units
PIC16F SSOP Surface Mount 20 PIC 8bit 1.5 kB 20MHz 68 B 0 - 8 0 2 → 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 876-6773
Mfr. Part No.PIC16F677-I/SS
BrandMicrochip
PHP61.622
Each (In a Tube of 67)
units
PIC16F SSOP Surface Mount 20 PIC 8bit 2048 words 20MHz 128 B 0 - 12 1 2 → 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 817-3967
Mfr. Part No.PIC16F677T-I/SS
BrandMicrochip
PHP61.305
Each (On a Reel of 1600)
units
PIC16F SSOP Surface Mount 20 PIC16F 8bit 3.5 kB 20MHz 128 B 1 2 12 1 2 → 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 660-0805
Mfr. Part No.Z8F0822SJ020EG
BrandZilog
PHP190.79
Each
units
Z8 Encore! XP SOIC Surface Mount 28 Z8 8bit 8 kB 20MHz 1 kB 0 1 5 1 2.7 → 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 169-8332
Mfr. Part No.Z8F0822SJ020EG
BrandZilog
PHP163.923
Each (In a Tube of 27)
units
Z8 Encore! XP SOIC Surface Mount 28 Z8 8bit 8 kB 20MHz 1 kB 0 1 5 1 2.7 → 3.6 V
RS Stock No. 829-0970
Mfr. Part No.R5F10JBCANA#U0
PHP224.97
Each (In a Pack of 2)
units
RL78 HWQFN Surface Mount 32 RL78 16bit 2 kB, 32 kB 24MHz 5.5 kB 3 1 8 2 2.4 → 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 165-4832
Mfr. Part No.PIC18F45K20-I/P
BrandMicrochip
PHP126.80
Each (In a Tube of 10)
units
- - - - - - - - 1.536 kB - - - - -
RS Stock No. 889-5288
Mfr. Part No.PIC18F458-I/P
BrandMicrochip
PHP348.20
Each (In a Tube of 10)
units
PIC18F PDIP Through Hole 40 PIC 8bit 32 kB, 256 B 40MHz 1.536 kB 0 2 8 1 4.2 → 5.5 V
RS Stock No. 467-2154
Mfr. Part No.PIC18F458-I/P
BrandMicrochip
PHP348.20
Each
units
PIC18F PDIP Through Hole 40 PIC 8bit 32 kB, 256 B 40MHz 1.536 kB 0 2 8 1 4.2 → 5.5 V