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MSP430FR4133: Flashing Custom Hardware via SBW and TI Launchpad

Part Number: MSP430FR4133
Other Parts Discussed in Thread: TEST, MSP-EXP430FR4133

Hey,

I'm currently working on a university capstone project. One of my additional MCUs is the TI MSP430FR4133. I made a pcb to test out the MCU I'm currently looking to verify whether or not the schematic I produced should be programmable. I'm not sure if I'm missing any sort of hardware features necessary for programing custom hardware.

I'm having issues trying to flash the device via CCS with one of the example projects. 

The Error I'm getting on CCS:

From what I've looked up so far it seems that it could be a hardware error.

This is the current schematic I'm using. Only thing that I think could be the issue is that I'm not currently running an external oscillator. I'm not sure if that matters or not. Maybe I needed to ground the XOUT and XIN pins.

I'm not sure what other additional context is necessary to further debug the issue. Could it be the project I'm using?

This is the launchpad I'm currently trying to use to flash the board: https://www.ti.com/tool/MSP-EXP430FR4133

I have 

SBWTIDO LP -> SBWTIDO my HW

SBWTCK - > SBWTCK my HW

3v3 -> 3v3

GND -> GND 

I'm not sure if the uart connection was necessary but I also plugged the uart TX/RX to my LCD headers (no LCD connected) since those use the same pins as uart

  • Hi Marquez,

    I would recommend that you refer to (a) the datasheet and (b) the schematic of the MSP-EXP430FR4133. After a quick review, I don't see enough capacitance on VCC (search for CDVCC in the datasheet). Also, check the SBW interface and make sure it matches what's recommended in the MSP430 Hardware Tools User's Guide. You should have a ~1nF pull-down cap on the RST/SBWTDIO pin. You could also try slowing down the SBW speed in CCS to account for extra capacitance from long traces or jumper wires which aren't ideal. There should be several threads that describe how to do that.

    Make sure your code uses wait states if CPU frequency is greater than 8 MHz and that your code is not trying to use a crystal that isn't connected. Also, I see there are some 5 V connections on the top right of your schematic, so make sure they aren't connected directly to the MSP430 since the max voltage is less than 5 V.

  • I'm about to go back to lab and add additional capacitors. I based my schematic off the launchpad one and just checked the hardware tool's guide.

    I more or less want to verify that the schematic looks fine so I can narrow down the issue to probably a solder connection.

    This should be all I need correct? So if I add the additional capacitors and it still doesn't work could it be an issue in CCS I need to fix other than making sure I set the internal clock. Is there a good software example for configuring the clock sources?

    I'm not quite sure what the error means? Does it means there's no connection to the board of that it connects and fails in some other way like bus noise?
    I'm also going to verify my connections again in lab/check soldering again. 

  • I based my schematic off the launchpad one and just checked the hardware tool's guide.

    The passives on the VCC and JTAG pins didn't match the LaunchPad, which is why I recommended it as a reference.

    This should be all I need correct? So if I add the additional capacitors and it still doesn't work could it be an issue in CCS I need to fix other than making sure I set the internal clock.

    If the device on the LaunchPad gets programmed correctly and the device on your custom board does not, then that would indicate a hardware difference that is probably causing the issue. Jumper wires, long connections, excessive solder are all differences that can impact high speed signals such as JTAG.

    I'm not quite sure what the error means? Does it means there's no connection to the board of that it connects and fails in some other way like bus noise?

    I'm not sure either, but it does seem to indicate a communication issue. Here's an FAQ thread that describes how to lower the SBW speed in CCS in an attempt to improve communication robustness.

    [FAQ] CCSTUDIO-MSP: How to manually select a JTAG interface type in Code Composer Studio (CCS)

  • So if I add the 1nF cap to the SBWIO line it just fails to connect. So I believe the memory error at least means there's some kind of valid connection to the MCU when I have the SBWIO line without the pull down cap. I also set SBW to slow mode instead. I also tried flashing with no connection and get the no target found error so at least there's something there. 

    I've designed boards with other MCUs like the TIVA and STM SWD ,but the JTAG connection wasn't this finicky. Is there something special about the MSP430 JTAG? 

    I just desoldered the external oscillator from my launchpad so that's probably not the issue. 

  • So if I add the 1nF cap to the SBWIO line it just fails to connect. So I believe the memory error at least means there's some kind of valid connection to the MCU when I have the SBWIO line without the pull down cap. I also set SBW to slow mode instead. I also tried flashing with no connection and get the no target found error so at least there's something there. 

    This makes me suspect that there is significant capacitance on the SBW lines. Slowing down the SBW clock will help but it can only help so much. Are you using jumper wires to make the connection? Are they long? Are the traces long on your custom board?

  • Hey James,

    Thanks for all the help. It was a bad soldering job on my part. 

    But a couple take aways; you can basically remove all of the capacitors from the launchpad board and it'll still program. 

  • That's great to hear. Nice work! Thanks for double-checking the soldering and for letting us know what you found. Our devices are quite robust, so it doesn't surprise me that they would work without passives. I would still recommend following the datasheet to ensure at least the minimum capacitance is available on the VCC pin.

    Please let us know if you have any other issues.

  • I recall one device (one of the early FR59-s I think) which wouldn't program on my breakout board until I installed the Vcc bypass cap. It forgave me everything else.

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