"Cheap" PAL/GAL programmers... (was: Palasm?)

From: Richard Erlacher <richard_at_idcomm.com>
Date: Wed Aug 9 23:13:18 2000

What I considered a cheapie back in '85 was something at or under $1k. You
can get cheaper ones nowadays, but the problem is that, in my case,
portability was a requirement, and most of them, though they'll fit in a
briefcase, require a wheelbarrow full of adapters to handle a wide variety
of parts.

The ones I bought were both about the size of a textbook, though thinner,
and supported (or claimed to) most of the devices available on the market at
the time, with the exception of a few single-chip micros, for which one
would probably want to buy or make a special purpose programmer anyway,
since that was no more difficult than making/buying the adapter.

I don't know what cheapies there are nowadays, but I doubt you can buy any
for less than $500. If you get a $500 device, don't forget that the typical
adapter, (murphy says you'll need at least three) will cost about $100 or
more. The great hope for the future is "In-situ-programming" now touted as
the latest and greatest improvement for larger devices. These allow you to
solder your device to the board, avoiding the airflow problems presented by
sockets, etc, but their pitch is so fine, generally, that you can't clip on
a 'scope or logic analyzer, hence have to build in pins that disrupt that
nice airflow.

If you just want to play with programmable logic, I'd get a couple of
wirewrap adapters for PLCC84 packages to whatever your favorite type of
wirewrap card might be, and buy a device or two that comes in that package.
Be sitting down when you read the price of the adapters, though. It gives
new meainig to the term
"sticker shock."


----- Original Message -----
From: Roger Merchberger <zmerch_at_30below.com>
To: <classiccmp_at_classiccmp.org>
Sent: Wednesday, August 09, 2000 3:16 PM
Subject: "Cheap" PAL/GAL programmers... (was: Palasm?)

> Rumor has it that Richard Erlacher may have mentioned these words:
> [snip]
> >The last time I used a model 29 was in '85. They were already pretty old
> >back then and wouldn't program the then new Altera parts and Lattice
parts I
> >was using. That was later fixed, but too late for me. I bought a
> >that still works . . .
> Define "cheapie..."
> This (well, at least for me) is on topic, because I've always wanted to
> into PAL/GAL/Programmable Logic to "play" with to make projects on
> upgrading various classic systems that I have... but a few C-notes is too
> much for me to dedicate to a "toy" right now.
> Anyone know of a good source for older programmers that would cost in the
> $20-50 (USD) range?
> Thanks,
> "Merch"
> --
> Roger "Merch" Merchberger --- sysadmin, Iceberg Computers
> Recycling is good, right??? Ok, so I'll recycle an old .sig.
> If at first you don't succeed, nuclear warhead
> disarmament should *not* be your first career choice.
Received on Wed Aug 09 2000 - 23:13:18 BST

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