Need suggestion on a simple Cortex-M development board

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I have some years experience with AVR MCU's.  But now I want to get my feet wet with Cortex-M MCU's.  As I have no experience with those MCU's so far, I'm looking for a development board with a lower to middle range MCU, not necessarily with a lot of peripherals onboard, only perhaps a button or two and some LED's, and with other GPIO pins exposed.  Any ideas on this?

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Last Edited: Thu. Sep 17, 2020 - 01:00 PM
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A SAMD21 based board might be suitable. For example a Arduino M0 (or compatible from ebay). Or something from Adafruit or Sparkfun. Another option is a SAMD21 Xplained Pro (a debugger is included with that).

/Lars

 

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I like the Adafruit and Sparkfun boards.  Make sure you get one with at least space for the SWD connector (and you'll need a SWD Debugger/Programmer.)

Adafruit tends to add at least 2MB of serial flash, for their "CircuitPython" support.
But the "SAMD21 Curiosity Nano" looks pretty nice as well (and has a built-in debugger.)

 

 

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I just got the Adafruit Grand Central M4, which contains a SAMD51P20A, some flash, a couple LEDs and buttons, and a ton of GPIO pins available in the Arduino Mega form factor. At just under $40 it's not the cheapest dev board out there, but if you want to see what a SAMD51 can really do for you, it's a great choice.

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I have a nosy desire to know what transpired between Adafruit and Arduino that they're no longer sharing designs and manufacturing.  (During the Arduino.org vs Arduino.cc battle, Adafruit was the Official US manufacturer of Arduinos, and the "Arduino Micro" is an Adafruit design, now manufactured by Arduino.)  But it's not any of my business, nor is it good for "the community as a whole" to speculate too much.  :-(

 

 

In any case,  the Grand Central M4 is the Arduino Due follow-on that should have happened a long time ago, and a nice board.

 

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Thanks for all the tips!

The SAMD21 Xplained Pro looks to be perfect for my needs.  And it was fairly cheap as well.

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I have liked the SAMD21 Xplained Pro. 

Engineering is the truest form of art

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+1 on the SAMD21 Xplained Pro board.  It's well represented in the Atmel START suite of example apps which lowers the learning curve substantially.

 

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Any board/chip that has Arduino support means you don't need to expose yourself to Start.