A tight budget and low power requirements used to limit design engineers to 8-bit and 16-bit MCUs. Freescale’s new Kinetis L Series is supposed to change this and offer full performance, peripheral sets, enablement and scalability of a real 32-bit MCU with an exceptional energy efficiency and a low price.
All Kinetis L-Series MCUs are based on the ARM® Cortex™-M0+ core. All family members have several nifty features such as 12-bit ADC, SPI, I2C, RTC and even a touch sense interface in common. There are 5 sub-families of the Kinetis L-Series family for various different requirements .
The KL0 sub-family contains entry level MCUs with up to 32 KB Flash and 4 KB SRAM. Up to 256 KB Flash and 32 KB SRAM are offered by Freescale’s Kinetis KL1 sub-family. KL2 sub-family members offer the same features as the KL1 family plus an USB On-The-Go interface. Segment LCD MCUs are offered in the KL4 (without USB On-The-Go) and KL5 sub-family (with USB On-The-Go).
What makes this board interesting for homebrew designs is that Freescale offers a low-cost development platform equipped with a Kinetis KL2-series KL25Z128VLK4 MCU and a Expansion IO for Arduino™-compatible hardware. The FRDM-KL25Z development board, called Freedom, is available for just $12.95 from Newark . The board is intentionally kept simple and offers an RGB-LED, an accelerometer and a capacitive touch slider as I/O-devices. The product is expected to start shipping next week. Until then, Newark takes pre-orders.
Freescale is going to ship out a pre-production Freedom FRDM-KL25Z development board before the official production boards leave their house and enable me to post a thorough an exclusive review before anyone else. So stay tuned for a “tell it like it is” guaranteed marketing BS-free review.