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 ATmega 168 NG ??
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By: Anonymous: Ken () on Tuesday, January 11 2011 @ 04:38 PM PST (Read 1486 times)  
Anonymous: Ken


I'm in the middle of assembling my monochrome bulbdial kit, and have reached the first testing and aiming step. But alas I have a seemingly dead clock on my hands.

In my troubleshooting, I've examined the following...

All solder connections are solid... I do a fair amount of soldering in my job, and am rather certain my soldering is solid... I even examined every point with a loupe and re-flowed any suspect connections.

I tried the reset procedure (holding the + and - buttons during power cycle for 5+ seconds), hoping the LEDs were set to zero brightness for some reason, but no change.

When I scope out the circuit, I find solid Vcc and ground, and a solid pullup on pin 1. I don't however see any 16mhz on pins 9 or 10, nor do I get any pullup on the button pins 11-13.

FYI: The chip has been marked with a single "B" in pencil.

Could this possibly indicate a dead 168? Would I see pullup on pins 11-13 if the chip was good but the crystal ng? Is reprogramming a possible solution?

Is there any other information I can provide to further troubleshoot?

Thanks! Aside from this little snag, your kit is assembling quite nicely! Smile

By: Windell (offline) on Wednesday, January 12 2011 @ 12:07 AM PST  

From all indications, it sounds like the chip is not running its program. (The marking on the chip indicates B for Bulbdial, not B for bad.) If you're sure on all the soldering, then the likely causes are an issue with the crystal or capacitors, or an issue with the programming on the chip. It's unlikely that the chip itself is damaged, beyond the possibility of corrupted firmware.

If you do have access to an ISP programmer, or a bit of patience an a USB-TTL cable, you might try reprogramming it-- that solution worked for someone who had a similar problem (compounded by an additional goof on our part):
If not, you might consider returning the clock to us for diagnostics.

Windell H. Oskay

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