Welcome to Paltronix: Embedded Development Products

Navigation Menu

We sell the best embedded products for your development needs

How to Begin Building Your Own Computer

Posted by in Development Boards, Development Tips, Guides

We decided to write a separate post on how to build your own computer. As this is an embedded development website, including as much information about all fields of computing is important. We at Paltronix hope you find this piece informative and come visit us at our local shop to purchase development products!

To begin building your own computer, you will need to gather the right components. There are build guides available online which offer component lists for a variety of “build your own” computers. We recommend choosing a build guide, such as this popular list to find a gaming PC under $500. and then shopping around online (or in your own community) in order to gather high-quality components for great prices. Once you have your supplies, you’ll be ready to get the job done!

We recommend clearing a flat surface, such as a larger desk or kitchen table, which gives you ample room for boxes and parts. Before you unbox your components, you should should be aware of one risk. It’s static electricity. There is a way to avoid the risk, and this is purchasing a wristband which is anti-static. When you wear it, you’ll be grounded at all times. We think that everyone who builds their own computers should invest in these wristbands.

Also, you should choose footwear that has rubber soles. Another tip on avoiding static electricity is to work on your computer build in a room that has non-carpet flooring. Rugs stir up a lot of static electricity. When you do open boxes that contain your components, you’ll notice that most of them come in bags with anti-static properties. Keep them in these bags until you need them.

Open Your Case First

Getting the case ready is probably the simplest part of building a new computer. Put the case on your flat surface and take away its side panel. This panel’s removal will allow you to get into the case. Usually, the panel is located on the left-hand side. In addition, you should take away things that are hanging inside of the case. If something is affixed to the case, on the inside, move it out of the way.

Now, you’ll need to put your power supply into the case. It’s known as PSU for short. This component is usually situated on the back of a case, in an uppermost corner or on the bottom. You should see a slot with a square shape. This is the slot for the power supply. The slot will feature screw holes on two or more corners and the power supply unit will rest inside of it, with its female socket and switch facing in an outward direction. If you need more help, look at the manual which came with your case. It should show you exactly where the PSU needs to go.

After you take care of this, it will be time to install the computer’s processor. This is a more complex operation. However, plenty of people do it themselves and you can, too. Be sure to read lots of tips on installing a computer processor before you begin. This guide by Super Micro should help. When you educate yourself, you’ll have more confidence. You’ll know exactly what to do and what not to do!

Start Building a Computer Today

The Internet makes it so easy to find great components for fair prices. Also, it’s loaded with instructions on which components to buy and how to build a computer, step by careful step. So, why not start building a computer today?

Read More

PICPLC16B Control Board

Posted by in Development Boards, PIC Development Boards

Ordering Information

Order Code: PICPLC16B
Manufacturer: MikroElektronika
Availability: In Stock
Price: £109.00


The PICPLC16B is a PIC-based control board that can be used both for development purposes and within actual installations. Suitable for use with 40-pin DIP-packaged devices in Microchip’s  PIC16F/18F families, the PICPLC16B comes fitted with a PIC16F887. The PICPLC16B includes a high-speed USB programmer and in-circuit debugger plus 16 opto-isolated inputs, 16 relay outputs (10A rating), four 12-bit A/D inputs, and RS-232, RS-485 and Ethernet communications.


  • On-board high-speed USB 2.0 programmer.
  • On-board in-circuit-debugger (when used in conjunction with mikroC, mikroBASIC or mikroPascal PIC compilers).
  • Socket for 40-pin PICs (40-pin PIC16F887 included).
  • 8MHz crystal.
  • 16 opto-isolated inputs.
  • 16 relay outputs (10A rating, varistors fitted to prevent contact damage).
  • Four 12-bit A/D inputs.
  • On-board analogue voltage reference selectable between Vcc (5V) and 4.096V.
  • RS-232 interface.
  • RS-485 interface.
  • Ethernet communications based on Microchip ENC28J60.
  • I/O lines are available for easy off-board expansion.
  • Pull-up or pull-down port defining.
  • Large range of optional interface boards available.

Using the PICPLC16B

The PICPLC16B is incredibly easy to set up and use. On first connecting it to the USB port of your PC using the lead provided, Windows will prompt you to install a driver from the supplied CD-ROM. You can then install the PICFlash2 programming software, also on the CD-ROM, and program the PIC with your own programs.

To write your own programs, you can use the assembler in Microchip’s freely available MPLAB software or any make of PIC assembler or compiler that generate HEX files. However use of MikroElektronika’s mikroBASIC, mikroC and mikroPascal compilers is recommended as these come with library routines that support all the PICPLC16B’s built-in I/O devices and MikroElektronika’s optional interface boards, as well as allowing for use of the PICPLC16B’s mikroICD in-circuit debugger. Demonstration versions of these three compilers are included, which enable you to write programs up to 2K in size.

Your programs can make full use of the PICPLC16B’s in-built I/O features and MikroElektronika’s range of optional interface boards that can be easily fitted to futher expand the system. The supplied PIC16F887 microcontroller can easily be removed and replaced with any other 40-pin DIP-packaged PIC microcontroller from the PIC16F and 18F familes.


Supported PICs

The following list gives the PICs currently supported in DIP-package form by the PICPLC16B in numerical order.PIC16F Family
PIC16F877A, PIC16F887

PIC18F Family
PIC18F442, PIC18F448, PIC18F452, PIC18F458, PIC18F4220, PIC18F4221, PIC18F4320, PIC18F4321, PIC18F4331, PIC18F4410, PIC18F4420, PIC18F4423, PIC18F4431, PIC18F4439, PIC18F4450, PIC18F4455, PIC18F4480, PIC18F4510, PIC18F4515, PIC18F4520, PIC18F4523, PIC18F4525, PIC18F4539, PIC18F4550, PIC18F4580, PIC18F4585, PIC18F4610, PIC18F4620, PIC18F4680, PIC18F4682, PIC18F4685

Package Contents

  • PICPLC16B development board with 40-pin PIC16F887 microcontroller and 8MHz crystal.
  • USB programming cable.
  • Printed user manuals.
  • CD-ROM containing PICFlash2 programming software and drivers.

PICPLC16B Options

PIC Microcontrollers Book
This 394 page book accompanied by CD-ROM details the PIC16F887 microcontroller as supplied with the PICPLC16B and makes an invaluable reference.
Manufacturer: MikroElektronika
Availability: In Stock
Price: £17.95

PICPLC16B Additional Microcontrollers & Adapter Boards

PIC16F887 40-pin MCU
As supplied with the PICPLC16B, a popular 40-pin PIC, pin-compatible with the 16F877A but with more features at a lower price.
Order Code: PIC16F887
Manufacturer: Microchip
Availability: In Stock
Price: £2.95
PIC18F4520 40-pin MCU
Pin-compatible with the 16F877A but with more memory and an architecture optimised for use with compilers.
Order Code: PIC18F4520
Manufacturer: Microchip
Availability: In Stock
Price: £4.95
PLCC44 to DIP40 Adapter
An adapter that enables 44-pin PLCC-packaged PICs to be used in the 40-pin DIP socket of the PICPLC16B. (PIC not supplied.)
Order Code: DIP40PLCC
Manufacturer: MikroElektronika
Availability: In Stock
Price: £5.95
Read More

MikroC for dsPIC/PIC24 Compiler

Posted by in Compilers, dsPIC/PIC24 Compilers

Ordering Information

Manufacturer: MikroElektronika
Price: £169.00


The mikroC for dsPIC/PIC24 Compiler is a powerful feature-rich development tool for dsPIC digital signal controllers in the dsPIC30F and dsPIC33F families and 16-bit PIC microcontrollers in the PIC24F and PIC24H families. It is designed to provide the user with the easiest possible solution for developing applications for embedded systems without compromising on performance. Its highly advanced integrated development environment (IDE), broad set of library routines, ready-to-run examples and comprehensive documentation should be more than enough to get anyone off to a great start when developing dsPIC and PIC24 applications.


  • Advanced code editor to aid in the writing of source code.
  • Included libraries covering communications, data acquisition, displays and much more dramatically speed up development.
  • Code explorer allows you to monitor your program’s structure, variables and functions.
  • Generates commented, human-readable assembly language files and HEX files compatible with any dsPIC programmer.
  • Integrated simulator lets you inspect program flow and debug executable code.
  • Provides real-time debugging on a hardware level when using MikroElektronika’s EasydsPIC4A, dsPICPRO4 and LV24-33A development boards and dsPICprog and LVPICFlash programmers with MikroElektronika’s mikroICD in-circuit debugger.

Code Editor

mikroC’s code editor is an advanced text editor fashioned to satisfy the needs of professionals. Advanced editor features include adjustable syntax highlighting, code assistant offering an auto-complete function, auto-correction of common typos, the ability to comment/uncomment a block of code with single mouse-click and bookmarks that can be set to aid navigation through even the largest program code.

Code Explorer/Quick Help/Keyboard Shortcuts

To the left of the main window area a pane contains mikroC’s code explorer, quick help and keyboard shortcuts tabs.
The code explorer tab provides a clear view of every declared item within the source code and from here you can jump to the declarations of those items.
The quick help tab lists all the available built-in library functions as a helpful reference.
Finally, the keyboard shortcuts tab lists all available keyboard shortcuts that may be used within mikroC.


The source-level debugger is an integral component of the mikroC development environment and has been designed to simulate the operations of Microchip Technology’s dsPIC digital signal controllers and 16-bit PIC24 microcontrollers to assist users in the debugging of their programs. The simulator simulates program flow and execution of instruction lines, although not operating in real-time it does not update timers, interrupt flags, etc.
Once you have successfully compiled your project, you can run the simulator allowing you to carry out operations such as single-stepping code and running the code to a cursor position.
A simulator watch window enables you to monitor program variables and registers of the dsPIC/PIC24 with their values updated as you carry out simulation operations. Values changed as the simulation progresses are coloured red to clearly identify them. You can also edit values of variables and registers during the simulation process.
A stopwatch window is also provided for use when simulating to calculate the processor cycles and execution time since the last debugger action.
A view RAM window acts in a similar manner to the watch window and shows the contents of RAM, again with recently changed values highlighted in red and with the ability to manually change values.

mikroICD In-Circuit Debugger

mikroC for dsPIC/PIC supports real-time debugging on a hardware level when used in conjunction with MikroElektronika’s EasydsPIC4, dsPICPRO4 and LV24-33A development boards and dsPICprog and LVPICFlash programmers. This works in a similar way to the simulator described above but instead of the PC simulating a dsPIC/PIC24, the code is actually downloaded to the target device. As with the simulator you can step through code and run to breakpoints. Information on variable, register and memory contents within the dsPIC/PIC24 is sent back to the PC for display in the watch and RAM windows.

Supported PICs

The following list gives the dsPIC and PIC24 devices currently supported by the mikroC for dsPIC/PIC24 compiler in numerical order. As new releases of the compiler are launched support for newer devices is continually added and once you have purchased mikroC for dsPIC/PIC24 you always have access to the latest compiler releases.

dsPIC30F Family
dsPIC30F1010, dsPIC30F2010, dsPIC30F2011, dsPIC30F2012, dsPIC30F2020, dsPIC30F2022, dsPIC30F2023, dsPIC30F3010, dsPIC30F3011, dsPIC30F3012, dsPIC30F3013, dsPIC30F3014, dsPIC30F4011, dsPIC30F4012, dsPIC30F4013, dsPIC30F5011, dsPIC30F5013, dsPIC30F5015, dsPIC30F5016, dsPIC30F6010, dsPIC30F6010A, dsPIC30F6011, dsPIC30F6011A, dsPIC30F6012, dsPIC30F6012A, dsPIC30F6013, dsPIC30F6013A, dsPIC30F6014, dsPIC30F6014A, dsPIC30F6015

dsPIC33F Family
dsPIC33FJ64GP206, dsPIC33FJ64GP306, dsPIC33FJ64GP310, dsPIC33FJ64MC506, dsPIC33FJ64MC508, dsPIC33FJ64GP706, dsPIC33FJ64MC706, dsPIC33FJ64GP708, dsPIC33FJ64GP710, dsPIC33FJ64MC710, dsPIC33FJ128GP206, dsPIC33FJ128GP306, dsPIC33FJ128GP310, dsPIC33FJ128MC506, dsPIC33FJ128MC510, dsPIC33FJ128GP706, dsPIC33FJ128MC706, dsPIC33FJ128GP708, dsPIC33FJ128MC708, dsPIC33FJ128GP710, dsPIC33FJ128MC710, dsPIC33FJ256GP506, dsPIC33FJ256GP510, dsPIC33FJ256GP710, dsPIC33FJ256MC510, dsPIC33FJ256MC710

PIC24F Family
PIC24FJ32GA002, PIC24FJ32GA004, PIC24FJ64GA002, PIC24FJ64GA004, PIC24FJ64GA006, PIC24FJ64GA008, PIC24FJ64GA010, PIC24FJ96GA006, PIC24FJ96GA008, PIC24FJ96GA010, PIC24FJ128GA006, PIC24FJ128GA008, PIC24FJ128GA010

PIC24H Family
PIC24HJ64GP206, PIC24HJ64GP210, PIC24HJ64GP506, PIC24HJ64GP510, PIC24HJ128GP206, PIC24HJ128GP210, PIC24HJ128GP306, PIC24HJ128GP310, PIC24HJ128GP506, PIC24HJ128GP510, PIC24HJ256GP206, PIC24HJ256GP210, PIC24HJ256GP610

See also:

Contains the EasydsPIC4A development board for 18, 28 and 40-pin dsPIC30F devices with 16×2 character LCD, 128×64 graphic LCD, DS1820 temper-ature sensor plus a full version of mikroC dsPIC/PIC24 compiler.
Contains the dsPICPRO4 development board for 64 and 80-pin dsPIC30F devices with 16×2 character LCD, 128×64 graphic LCD, touch-screen overlay, DS1820 temperature sensor plus a full version of mikroC dsPIC/PIC24 compiler.
Contains the LV24-33A development board for 64, 80 and 100-pin dsPIC33F and PIC24 devices with 16×2 character LCD, 128×64 graphic LCD, touch-screen overlay, DS1820 temperature sensor plus a full version of mikroC PIC compiler.
A powerful BASIC compiler with user-friendly IDE for dsPIC30F/33F and 16-bit PIC24 devices. Provides in-circuit debugging when used with EasydsPIC4, dsPICPRO4 and LV24-33A development boards.
A powerful Pascal compiler with user-friendly IDE for dsPIC30F/33F and 16-bit PIC24 devices. Provides in-circuit debugging when used with EasydsPIC4, dsPICPRO4 and LV24-33A development boards.
Read More

RoboStamp Robot Kit

Posted by in Beginner, Robot Kits

Ordering Information

Manufacturer: Inex
Availability: In Stock
Price: £89.00


The RoboStamp robot kit is based on a BASIC Stamp2SX microcontroller board, which can be easily programmed using Parallax’s PBASIC language. The kit is easy to assemble and program and is ideally suited to hobbyists, educational use and anyone with an interest in microcontrollers and robotics.


  • Quick and easy to assemble – no soldering required.
  • Programmed using easy-to-use PBASIC language – ideal for robot beginners and use in schools and colleges.
  • Complete package includes everything required to build and operate a number of different robot projects.
  • Experiments cover simple wheel and track-based robots, collision detection, light following and line tracing techniques.
  • Supplied with detailed and easy-to-follow documentation covering robot assembly and programming.
  • Wide range of optional interface boards and sensors available.

Stamp-Box Robot Controller Module Specifications

The “brains” of the RoboStamp is the Stamp-Box microcontroller board, which features:

  • Based on BASIC Stamp2SX controller.
  • 16KB memory (divided into eight 2KB blocks).
  • Two DC motor outputs.
  • Three RC servo motor outputs.
  • Seven digital input/output channels.
  • Eight 10-bit analogue input channels.
  • Piezo speaker.
  • Download programs via RS-232 serial port or USB (using included USB to RS-232 adapter).
  • Powered from four AA batteries (not included, 1700mAH or higher rechargeable batteries recommended).

Package Contents

  • 1 x Stamp-Box controller board.
  • 1 x battery holder box.
  • 2 x ZX-01 touch sensors.
  • 3 x ZX-03Q infrared reflective sensors.
  • 1 x GP2D120 distance sensor.
  • 1 x ER-4 infrared remote control.
  • 1 x ZX-IR infrared sensor.
  • 1 x circular chassis.
  • 2 x wheels and tires.
  • 1 x universal baseplate.
  • 1 x tracks and wheels set.
  • 1 x axles pack.
  • 1 x screws and fixings pack.
  • 1 x plastic joiners set.
  • 2 x DC motor with 48:1 gearbox.
  • 2 x motor mounting.
  • 1 x CX-4 RS-232 serial cable.
  • 1 x USB-serial converter.

See also:

A flexible robot kit that can be easily and quickly programmed in graphical or text-based LOGO.


Read More

Serial 240×128 GLCD Adapter

Posted by in Display and User Input Interface Add-ons, Interface Add-ons

Ordering Information

Order Code: GLCD240X128SER
Manufacturer: MikroElektronika
Price: £9.95

Connect your Toshiba T6963C type 240×128 graphic LCD easily and save MCU pins with this high quality serial graphic LCD adapter. The board is based on a Microchip MCP23S17 16-bit I/O expander with SPI serial interface and also features adjustable contrast. Suitable for use with MikroElektronika’s PIC development and prototyping boards.

See also

A blue backlit 240×128 dot graphic LCD based on Toshiba T6963C controller
Parallel adapter for connecting 240×128 GLCD to development board.
Read More

LCD Adapter

Posted by in Display and User Input Interface Add-ons, Interface Add-ons

Ordering Information

Order Code: LCDADP
Manufacturer: MikroElektronika
Price: £6.95

A handy adapter for connecting a character LCD to MikroElektronika’s development boards where the on-board LCD connector is not suitable, such as when a different I/O port to that used on the development board needs to be used or when working with displays other than 2×16 character. Suitable for use with any MikroElektronika development or prototyping board.

Read More