A newer version (Rev 4) of
this circuit board is available. Rev 4 includes a faster CPU,
more memory, more I/O and an optional LCD. We recommend you use
Rev 4 for new projects. We are keeping these very old pages on-line
for reference to assist people who build the original version of
the 8051 development board.
New Rev 4 Board
The very old design is difficult to troubleshoot due to
the use of an external 27C64 EPROM for the monitor program. We highly
recommend you use the new design for any new projects.
To use the 8051 microcontroller, you need to have some sort of
a development system. A popular low-cost approach is to buy or
build a board containing an 8051 microcontroller, ROM, RAM,
a serial port interface, and perhaps some additional I/O
capabilities. You install a monitor program such as
in the ROM, so it will boot the system and allow you to download
your code from a PC into the RAM (using an ordinary terminal
emulation program), and then you try your code and
see if it works. If it dies or otherwise doesn't work, you
reboot the 8051 system (pull reset high with a switch), edit
and reassemble your code, using an assembler like
and try again. Once it finally works, you can build a dedicated
board without the extras and place your code into the ROM.
The assumption here is that you have some time and want to
save money by building your own board. Maybe you think it
will be fun and interesting, or perhaps you're required to
do this for a class? Fortunately, the 8051
is a relatively simple chip, so only a small handful of chips
are required. The entire board can be constructed using
wire-wrap construction in about two days, plus the time it
takes to acquire all the necessary materials.
Go on to the list of what you will need.
Paul's Sample 8051 Development Board Design
Last updated: November 28, 2003
Statue: about 80% done now... need some photos... and proofreading
Suggestions, comments, criticisms, things you want??