Instructables

Use Arduino code on a TI Launchpad MSP430

Picture of Use Arduino code on a TI Launchpad MSP430
You can now use Arduino sketches to program your TI Launchpad MSP430.

The video show me programming an Arduino Mega 2560 and a TI Launchpad MSP430 with the same Arduino sketch.


The TI Launchpad MSP430 is a microprocessor development board from Texas Instruments.  It's very similar to the Atmel chips in the Arduino.  The MSP430 2553, which is the processor that ships with the Launchpad, has 14 I/O pins and 16K of program memory. Compare this to 20 I/O pins and 32K of program memory of the Atmel 328, the chip in the Arduino Uno, Nano, and several others.

The TI Launchpad MSP 430 only costs $4.30 from TI.  This includes two MSP430 chips, a USB cable, and a cool sticker.  The reason the TI Launchpad has not been more popular is they are very hard to program, especially if you are coming over from the Arduino.  You have to use a complex software package called Code Composer Studio and either program the MSP430 in Assembly code, or you can use C code that just as cryptic looking as the assembly code.  I've tried a few times, and always went back to ease of the Arduino.

Now you can use Energia to upload Arduino sketches to you TI MSP430 chips.  A lot of the more popular libraries like LCD Serial and Servo have already been ported over, and people are porting more code over all the time.

So the tip is:  use a low cost TI Launchpad in your next project instead of an Arduino, if the I/O requirements permit.  For simple applications, the TI chips may make more sense.  You can buy more chips from Mouser.com - the processors run anywhere from .50 cents to 2 dollars, and you don't have to have a bootloader like you do with the Atmels.  It's very easy to either program your chips in the Launchpad, then move it to your circuit, or you can use the Launchpad as an In System Programmer very easily.

At $4.30, you can just use the development boards in your projects if you want.  Compare that to the 20-30 dollar cost of Arduino boards...

Links:

Energia at Github

Energia forum at 43oh.com

TI MSP430 Launchpad at Texas Instruments
Shortcircui11 days ago

So if i were to upload my code form arduino onto the launchpad, how would the pins correspond to those on the arduino?

sam9ma10 months ago
could u upload the link where I can find the corresponding pins between arduino and the lunch pad please
Msp430 fix:
The MSP430from TI would not take any code. ran:
sudo apt-get install mspdebug msp430mcu msp430-libc libgempc430 gcc-msp430 gdb-msp430
All was well.(used debian jessie. Tried it with Ubuntu12.04, but Hackaday has a fix. (takes forever).http://hackaday.com/2010/08/11/how-to-launchpad-programming-with-linux/ Use at your own risk....
vicvelcro1 year ago
Thank you.

I've wanted to explore the MSP430, but didn't have the courage to learn the language.

Because of your information, today I ordered 5 of them.
meanpc (author)  vicvelcro1 year ago
Nice! You're going to like it, it's a cool board. Be sure to stop by the Energia forum at 43oh.com and say hi - the Energia developer is there all the time.

So, my 5 units arrived.

I visited 43oh.com, as you suggested. Thanks for that advice.

After much scrounging around, I managed to find info about the pin assignments. Now a bit of play-time, just for practice.

Hopefully soon after that, I'll be busy on something practical and useful (such as a beer sip counter or an alarm system for the bag of pork rinds).

But really, thanks again and more thanks than last time. Your info here has already been helpful and appreciated.
nharo2581 year ago
You have just become my best friend. Like many others I've been looking for a simplier way to program the MSP430 (I hate bit flipping). I almost gave up when I found your post. I'm glad i did as I was about to break down and buy an Arduino. THANKS FOR POSTING!!!
meanpc (author)  nharo2581 year ago
I think Arduinos are good too - I especially like buying the $12 Nano clones on eBay, or the Arduino Mega 2560 knockoffs for around $20 are good deals too.

For simple designs, you can't beat the MSP430.

Stay tuned to Energia though, they are going to be coming out with a version that will work with the Stellaris Launchpad soon!

maewert2 years ago
Way cool!  I bought a few of the launchpads but was turned off by the rather closed software development tools, etc. but I was interested in the processor family itself.  This make it even more inviting.

Best Wishes
meanpc (author)  maewert2 years ago
I loved the hardware, but couldn't be bothered to learn how to program the damn things when the Arduino was so easy. I am a fan of TI, though. Thanks for looking and commenting!