|MSP430 Launchpad requires almost no additional parts|
When selecting a microcontroller [board] for the digital readout project I overlooked the Launchpad in favor of an Arduino board. Earlier this year, though, a reader asked me to help him with a project that required reading a scale running 1.5V. While looking for a suitable hardware to read those scales I decided to try one of the MSP430 Value Line Launchpad kits I had sitting in the closet and realized that MSP430 microcontroller works very well for interfacing with Grizzly iGaging scales as well. First of all the MSP430 Launchpad board is much cheaper than an Arduino, selling for $10, including shipping, at TI’s store (until recently it sold for an incredible $4.50). Second, the microcontroller runs at 3.3V and has built-in pull down resistors, so there is no need for any additional resistors. Finally, it will let me easily add support for 1.5V “chineze calipers” in future.