Which Processor can kill the ESP32?
Also in Corona times., It was introduced six years ago., So it is pretty old in electronic terms.. Therefore, the question Do we have to change And for which processor Grezi YouTubers. Here is the guy with the Swiss accent., With a new episode and fresh ideas around sensors and microcontrollers.. Remember If you subscribe, you will always sit in the first row. Lets start with the things we never liked. When we used the ESP32, It is pretty power hungry. We have to pay attention to the pins.. Not all are general purpose, and quite a few of us lost time trying to use GPIOs above 32 as output, pins, for example. Sometimes we wish to have more pins. It only supports Bluetooth 4.2. Its deep sleep behavior is not as expected because it boots after deep sleep and does not continue where it went to sleep like the Arduino Uno, for example, The ADCs are of low quality. What we liked is Its Wi Fi and Bluetooth Its price, Its abundance of memory. It is used in many boards with additional components like displays, LoRa, batteries etc., And we get it as modules if we want to use it on a PCB. So what possibilities do we have to replace the old ESP32 After the success of the first ESP32 Espressif started to create new chips like the C3, the S2 and the S3., The Raspberry Pi foundation came with the Pi Pico, which became interesting after they added Wi Fi To their board.
, The Pi Pico has its advantages, but still is not much supported by the Arduino community.. Its primary focus is MicroPython.. Maybe I will compare it in a later. Video. STM still does not have a valid Wi Fi offer for Makers.. So today I will focus on Espressifs new chips to see if we find a replacement for our ESP32.. The C3 is a small chip with only a few pins designed to replace the ESP8266.. So it is no competition to our old ESP32.. I do not know why they made the S2.. The Maker community never accepted it, because it only had one core and no Bluetooth., So it was more or less considered a downgraded ESP32.. But what about the S3? It has most of the features of the ESP32 and more.. So if any, this is the successor of our darling. Lets. Compare the two The most important thing. First, The Arduino IDE fully supports the S3. Just upgrade to the newest version and select the ESP32S3 Dev Board.. I tried a few examples and they worked on both boards without changes.. If you select the S3 board, you also get new examples to check out new features.. The S3 has a newer processor.. Its benchmark is slightly faster., Nothing to write home about., But it supports a new class of vector commands that, amongst others, accelerate audio applications by factors. Wi Fi was upgraded.. It seems that the sensitivity and stability of the connections are improved.
, But still no 5.7GHz support.. The only thing I expected from the new chip is that it could keep the Wi Fi connection while sleeping to save energy.. Unfortunately, there is no change to the old ESP32.. It still loses the connection while sleeping. And it still reboots after deep sleep., No change here. Too. We have to wait till Wi Fi6 comes with the ESP32 C6 chip. BLE now supports version 5.0, which has a significant difference. The output power is 20dBm compared with the 9dBm of the old ESP., Keep in mind. 6Db more power doubles the range., So the S3 should have four times the range if it connects to another BLE 5.0 station., Not bad. The internal memories are more or less the same.. The S3 can use double the Flash size and can use Octal SPI. If you need it., The S3 also has two 12 bit ADCs. And unfortunately the same issue as the old ESP32 ADC2 is used for Wi Fi and is not always available. If Wi Fi is on., Espressif claims that they improved the quality. If you use a calibration compensation. So far, I did not test it.. A significant difference is the number of pins 33 compared with 24. And the 33 pins have fewer restrictions.. Again I made an Excel sheet where you find all the functions of the pins. Red means. Pay attention and only use these pins. If you know what you are doing., Only three pins are red.
One crucial difference. The I2S master clock of the old ESP was on GPIO0, sometimes creating issues.. The S3 allows any pin for that signal.. If you have projects using LCDs, the S3 offers an interface that improves speed. And because it has a lot of pins, you can connect them in parallel.. Differences are also in the infrared, LED and SDIO slave interface., But these functions are not commonly used.. In one of my last projects, I used the Ethernet functionality of the ESP32, which is handy.. The S3 does not offer such an interface anymore.. You have to use an external SPI controller. And what about power consumption? I compare the two chips in a typical situation when they use Wi Fi and do not transmit. Here both have very similar power consumption. And in deep sleep. The S3 consumes 30 less.. So in scenarios with long sleep periods, the S3 is better.. The biggest difference, however, is the integrated USB interface.. You just have to add a USB connector and some protection to get USB functionality., And it can act as a USB drive, a vital function. If you use the chip with Micropython., This is definitively an upgrade for the Python guys.. You can use this USB functionality with the Arduino IDE too. Just adjust the settings like that., And you have to be aware that in this mode, the COM port changes after the upload. After resetting the ESP. I regularly had to reconnect the USB connector.
, Not too convenient.. This is probably why many development boards still offer a standard USB connector, using a USB to Serial chip parallel to the native USB interface.. If you plan to use OTA, the built in functionality is perfect., And the price Here is the comparison of development boards. The one with the old chip is two dollars cheaper. At LCSC. Both modules for your projects have roughly the same price. LCSC BTW is the distributor of JLCPCB. Where I get my parts, because I stopped to assemble my PCBs.. If you use their basic parts, this service is dirt cheap and it is an excellent feeling. If you get a professionally assembled PCB made from your design., You have to try it if you do not believe me. And what about boards with the S3 chips, As seen before we get development, boards. And TTGO started to create S3 boards, mainly with displays.. I assume more will come over time and the market will transfer more and more toward the S3 chip.. So what is my verdict? Does the new S3 chip remove some of the things we did not like? Yes, we get more pins with fewer restrictions and it supports high power. Ble 5.0.. The rest stayed the same. Do we lose something we liked Not really.. There are small things like Ethernet., But we still have the old ESP32 for those projects. Native USB, for sure, is a big plus. Maybe the new Wi Fi sensitivity will help in one or the other project.
. The extended BLE range can be helpful too. And we can play with the RISC V ULP. If we want. There is hardly a price difference between the old and the new modules if you buy it from LCSC. So what is my strategy? I will still use my old ESP development boards and buy boards with the old chip if they are not yet available with the S3.. Typical examples are TTGOs LoRa boards, But I will no more use the old ESP32 modules for new designs. In our current project. We have already changed to the new module.. When we started with the old ESP32, we had to add a multiplexer chip to get enough pins. And a USB to serial chip., And I lost a few days till I understood why I2S did not work. GPIO0 was blocked by the usual flashing circuitry. With the S3. We have a smaller chip count and need less space. One last thing, Espressif still is very active, announcing new chips, The ESP32 H2 with Zigbee and Matter support The ESP32 C6 with WiFi6 support.. This chip should be able to keep the WiFi connection during sleep. The ESP32 P4, with lots of pins and lots of power, All of them with RISC V CPUs BTW.. Hopefully they will also be supported by the Arduino IDE.. This was all for today.. As always, you find all the relevant links in the description.. I hope this video was useful, or at least interesting for you.
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