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TICkit 74 Interpreter IC
 (Part Number: T74H256J-IC)


Protean Logic’s TICkit 74 Interpreter IC is the core of the TICkit 74 product line.  It is available as a 40 pin DIP (0.6” row centers) or special ordered as a surface mount 44 pin PLCC.

To create a working TICkit microcontroller, a reset circuit, a serial EEPROM, a crystal, and some passive components are required in addition to the TICkit interpreter IC.  Use of the TICkit IC in your project offers cost savings, layout flexibility, miniaturization, and design options above those available when using a module or SBC. During the design and prototyping phase of a project ,  proof of concept and rapid development are primary goals which suggest the use of pre-assembled modules, single board computers or laboratories. When projects are in production, however, miniaturization, durability, and low component count and cost are primary goals which suggest the use of the interpreter IC in a custom TICkit circuit.

The schematic above shows a typical TICkit 74 circuit which requires only a 24LC256 EEprom, a crystal, 5 resistors, 1 diode, and three capacitors. This circuit adds an RS232 buffer and some LEDs to form a simple RS232 monitor. Notice that the TICkit processor has sufficient I/O drive to light multiple LEDs without external drivers.


  • IBM PCAT keyboard interface: Applications; use a PCAT keyboard, scanner etc. for input.
  • Audio playback from EEprom: Applications; sound effects, spoken output, complex waveform generation.
  • 4-voice sine wave generator: Applications; DTMF output (phone dialing). music output (4 line chorus).
  • Background real time clock: Applications; DAQ time standard, periodic functions, time of day/calendar, clocks.
  • Time base interrupts: Applications; background processing, time-out processing.
  • Real-time functions (2 marks): Applications; measure elapsed time precisely, sample waveforms in real-time.
  • Dallas one-wire support: Applications; interface Dallas temperature sensors, security keys or multidrop sensors.
  • X-10 Power line carrier transmission: Applications; automate lighting, control HVAC equipment, PIR security system, control other commercially available X-10 devices.
  • X-10 Power line carrier reception: Applications; monitor X-10 messages, use X-10 feedback.
  • Simultaneous pulse generation for 4 RC servos: Applications; RC servos for robotic actuators, model airplanes, satellite RC servo controller. Control up to 16 servos with single TICkit.
  • 2 background PWM generators: Applications; control motors in background, use as 10-bit D to A converters.
  • SPI / 3-wire interface (in background): Applications; interface to devices like LTC1298 A/D or 74LS594 ICs.
  • I2C hardware slave (in background): Applications; create an I2C based network.
  • I2C master generation: Applications; control I2C devices like 24LC EEproms or Protean’s Xtender IC.
  • Up to 256K bytes of EEprom storage: Applications; store audio samples, non-volatile data storage, use for POS transaction storage, use for long term DAQ, bank select for even larger amounts of EEprom.
  • 32K byte program size: Applications; create programs 50,000 lines long! Subroutine calls limited only by RAM.
  • 128 Bytes of RAM: Applications; variables storage, subroutine calls. Efficient use supports huge programs.
  • RS232 hardware (in background): Applications; implement high baud rates; Implement 9 bit formats, Implement interrupt driven ring buffers.
  • RS232 emulation routines (foreground): Applications; up to 19200 baud with no RTC time loss, full handshaking scheme. RS_SCANF function parses input fields. Supports inverted or true levels. Custom baud rates allowed.
  • 8 bit counter/timer with 8 bit prescaler: Applications; count pulses in background, monitor RPM or frequency.
  • 16 bit counter/timer (in background, not available when using RTC): Applications; count pulses in background, RPM monitoring, frequency measurement, interval measurement, count capturing. (Use with CCP).
  • Rotary encoder support (foreground): Applications; update counts on up to 2 switches, use for “wheel” input devices or slow speed position sensing, create closed loop servo systems.
  • 3 types of RC resistance or capacitance measurement functions: Applications; Use with pull up/down for delay measure, use potentiometers as input devices.
  • 32 bit floating point math: Applications; mathematic operations like PID calculations, scientific calculations.
  • 32 bit signed integers: Applications; monetary calculations, fixed-point support, high precision A/D.
  • 8/16 bit unsigned integers: Applications; normal process calculations.
  • String operations: Applications; easily support for text, user interface or text based games.
  • 4/8 bit parallel bus functions: Applications; interface peripheral ICs, 4 bit devices, octal latches and multiplexers, or common LCD modules.
  • Various pulse gen and measurement: Applications; instruments, determine RPM using period measurement.
  • Digital I/O on 26 pins: Applications; I/O intensive applications, control LEDs, small motors and relays, monitor switches, optical sensors, analog comparators and digital inputs.
  • 8 bit A/D conversion available on 2 I/O pins: Voltage measurement, analog measurement.
  • Modern FBasic programming language: Applications; easily update and modify FBasic programs in Win95/98/2000/NT Integrated environment. Supports data structures and arrays. Functions and libraries allow encapsulation. Parameter passing and local variables. Structured flow control. Programs can be freely distributed.
  • Fast token based interpreter: Applications; Programs run relatively fast. Token code is not easily un-assembled. Interpreter ICs can be purchased separately for embedding.