Zilog introduced a new reference design, the Mini-Z USB Design Board. The board incorporates a USB host and peripheral functionality with the company’s portfolio of Mini-Z modules. This hardware design uses a Max3421E USB transceiver to provide an interface to USB communications with supporting power-limiting and connection circuitry. The design also incorporates a Secure Digital (SD) card using its SPI interface. The firmware includes host functionality for USB mass storage devices and Secure Digital (SD) card support. The Mini-Z USB Design Board includes all of the hardware necessary to develop prototypes and projects incorporating the host and peripheral functions on Zilog’s wide selection of MCUs. The Board is designed to be operated by either a 9-V battery or an external power supply. Features include low/full speed USB host capability, secure Digital (SD) card, full-speed USB peripheral capability, and USB serial communications. The Design Board can be used to develop a number of applications such as secure Digital-to-USB converter, adding removable storage to Zilog MCU projects, or adding USB Human Interface Device (HID) input for Zilog MCU projects .
The Mini-Z USB Design Board also ships with a USB host shell application that provides the ability to access USB mass storage devices (using FAT16/FAT32 file systems) and SD/MMC cards from the shell. Every module in Zilog’s Mini-Z product mix is preloaded with a boot loader and this control shell. Additionally, this shell facilitates access to any Mini-Z module and to the Mini-Z USB Board, which the module attaches to.