Make a board myself


Let me introduce myself first:
My name is Rik, a student electronics from the Netherlands.

My idea is to make a board myself and for some classmates.
A domino board to be a bit more precise.
This because i want more I/O ports but still be able to connect arduino shields.

My idea was to place a bigger header on the backside.
There is a 10 pins I/O header but i would really like a bigger one, a 20 or 32 pins 1.27mm header would be much better. (32 pins 2.54mm wont fit i think.)
I have about 3 years experience with Eagle at the moment and i have soldered 100pins SMD stuff before so i really think i can make a modded domino board.

I dont have a domino board atm but i ordered one on smartfun a few mins ago, should arrive when i am back from my holiday (28 august)
But is it as simple as opening the eagle files of the normal domino and add a bigger header and connecting it to the right pins on the uC?
And are there other things i need to know?


Yes you can take the domino files and change them anyway you like…like add more pins.
The FEZ Rhino files will be online next week so you can also see what pins we have added. Rhino and Domino use the exact same chip, USBizi 144

Welcome Rik!

Making a board yourself is cool and fun considering the USBizi 144 chip, mentioned by Gus.

There is another person on the board who is doing the same (NETUINO project), you might be able to help eachother? :wink:

Here is the link:

Good luck, and if you need help, feel free to ask!

Hmm, on the pic of the domino i saw a LPC2388 uC on it from NXP.
But you call it a USBizi 144.
A LPC2388 costs me 10 euro’s
An USBizi144 30 dollar’s

What is the difference between them, is an USBizi144 just a normal LPC2388 with a high price tag?
Or is an USBizi144 a LPC2388 with extra software loaded in it?
If so, is it possible to get the software and load it in with the normal bootloader in the LPC2388 Or maybe a JTAG programmer?
As almost 20 euro’s its a big difference on a small board like this.


LPC2388 is a chip like any other microcontroller
USBizi = LPC2388 + GHI NETMF software. You are paying extra to buy the software PLUS the free support that comes with the software that goes on LPC2388.

Of course if you do not need the software or our support then LPC2388 is all you need

And, as far as I know, GHI does not provide you the software to load it onto the chip. (correct me if I’m wrong)

No, the software is GHI’s and this is how GHI make living :slight_smile: GHI is actually a software company but instead of selling you a software on a CD (anyone can pirate), we sell you a software on a chip (can’t be pirated) :wink:

hmm, kinda sucks, if i make a nice design and want a special board for it it will cost me 30 dollars + shipping for just the uC.
hope i can make my own board and keep the costs a bit low, going to design it on my vacantion i think.
and will look at other compilers that i can use to program a normal cheap LPC thingy :slight_smile:

Hey Rik

Are you looking for a LPCXXX development board ? There are too many of them out there. You can buy one or make one… You can create code in C or Assembler or some other… You can use one of those high cost IDEs or one of those free ones or some thing in between…

…but low cost development with REAL Support, industrial grade IDE called Visual Studio, a jumpstart framework called .NET … and a lots more… well you need to buy a USBizi, or a FEZ…

What you are paying for is the IP on the chip that enables all this… a blank DVD cost pennies (or cents) but when you put a legit music video or sound track or software or a couple of photographs… the price goes up… there is a cost to design, build, test, support this IP and actually keep innovating and upgrading this IP over versions…

Well I can go on … but … never mind

Cheers mate, let me get back to my beer !



** Unless you try one of these devices it will sound like air, get in touch with someone nearby who is using a FEZ … and then we can continue …

Yes Raj, only someone who had actually used FEZ would know the real value. You can spend 3 months trying to read a file from USB stick and not be able to do it or use FEZ and get it working in the first hour!
Some users just do not want to see this value :wink:

Cost economics are always an interest discussion on a non-professional site.

If you were making a million devices, then the difference between a $10 chip and a $30 chip would make a big difference. You can do a lot of development for twenty million dollars.

If you are making a hundred units, then you have $2000 to do the development to use the lower cost chip. In the real world this would not be cost effective.

The FEZs are profession stuff for the non-professional. It is a bit more expensive that some other non-professional alternatives if you value your time at zero.

In my non-professional playing with the FEZs I enjoy trying out different software techniques. I can do things in hours that used take me weeks on an Arduino.

And, it is just an urban legend that when you buy a FEZ you also get a packet of Kool-Aid.

i understand the difference between a good IDE like the .net framework and a sucky IDE like the arduino thingy :wink:
so i will try the FEZ domino and see how good it is, but i will also try a normal IDE like a C compiler for a LPC2*** uC so i can see the difference for myself.
i have my internship in 3 weeks at NXP, so enough people there that can help me with it i hope :slight_smile:
and 1 USBizi144 is 30 dollars, shipping it to the netherlands is a whooping 55 dollars!

ah yes, freight…

Is Saelig where you looked? If not, might be worth trying them as an option?

@ riktw

There were a GHI distributor in the netherlands. Maybe he can make a better offer ;D

i will poke them a bit for those uC’s :slight_smile:
design of a domino with more I/O pins should be done tomorrow, will post it here.
seeedstudio has a nice PCB service, 40 dollars for a 10*10cm board, arduino size is just 7 * 5cm roughly :slight_smile:
and i can use the soldering over from school if i want, aw well can do it by hand to if i want :smiley:

rik, antratek is a good company which will try to help you.
You can ask them to ship your chip when their order their next shipment.
Still costs you 15 euro handling/shipping costs to your home, but compared to 55 dollar this is a huge difference.

Just contact them and ask for André Veenstra. Although he is mostly the guy who replies to emails.

i hope sparkfun starts selling them, there shipping costs is very low, even to the netherlands :slight_smile:
making the boars will be delayed a bit as i got some windows related errors (read, W7 shows a BSOD at booting)

Ok fine, keep us posted :slight_smile:

just a warning, if you do decide to make your own board - double check that your purchasing department orders the NXP LPC2387 (UsBizi100) from GHI and not from NXP (or local distributors) the physicl device is the same and can appear a little cheaper but without the GHI firmware probably not the best value for money, so what can I do with 50 off NXP LPC2387 devices??

eBay? :slight_smile:

The part number on all your docs should be “GHI USBizi100”. The LPC part number shouldn’t enter your ordering system.