After perusing all the noob threads, this seemed like the most relevant place for my question.
I've just spent a couple months getting into embedded systems through the Arduino. Having a background in CS, when I learned it was just an AVR with a special bootloader to allow flashing via USB, I wanted to get down and touch the guts (we wrote compilers and did assembly in school).
My weakness is in understanding electronics.
I finished making an LED cube with the Arduino a couple weeks ago, but now I want to build an LED cube that can be programmed via USB (so that I can give/sell them to people).
I just ordered a USBTinyISP from adafruit industries, and it supports the ATMEGA324P (which seems like the best bang for my buck). This is a 20MHz chip, so I know I'm going to need an external oscillator (after reading "Why You Need A Clock Source")
I found a crystal that SEEMS to be what I need, but I want to clarify a few things.
The above guide says that the manufacturer should say what the Load Capacitance is. It says if it's a "series crystal", it's no good. This crystal seems to be both at once. The datasheet says the minimum LC is 10pF, while the maximum is "series" pF. I'm not sure how to interpret this.
Also, would it be advisable to grab one of each clock source type in case I incorrectly set the fuse bits? I'm very cautious (especially when each chip costs 5 USD), but you can never tell when the universe will decide to curse your existence. :lol:
And a second question, would a MAX232 be all I need in conjunction with the processor to get my project talking on USB? (lest whatever drivers and applications I'll have to write). I'll be ordering most of my other parts from Digi-Key soon, and I'm thinking of putting in a sample request through MAXIM to make sure this chip meets my needs before buying any (also rather expensive).
Looking forward to expanding my knowledge of embedded systems. This seems like a great community. :D