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Universal Device Programmers

Universal Device Programmers

Some solutions are more “universal” than others

There are quite a few device programming solutions that describe themselves as “universal.” You would think everyone is using the term “universal” the same way. Think again.

“Universal” as an adjective, means: “of, affecting, or done by all people or things in the world or in a particular group; applicable to all cases,” (Definitions from Oxford Languages). What does it mean to be “universal?” First, let’s go back to the first “universal” programmer…

BPM 1200, the First Universal Programmer

In the early 1990s, there was no such thing as a universal device programmer. If you wanted to program a different family of devices (for instance, an EPROM and a TSOP), it required purchasing two (or more) different programmers. The reason was the interface between the device and the programmer was hard-wired.

In 1992, BPM Microsystems (back then, they were called BP Microsystems) developed the 1200 Manual Programmer with a serial port connector. It was the first “universal” programmer– you could request additional device interfaces that would allow you to program more than just one device (or family of devices). BPM developed the first socket adapters, which are now used by all off-line device programmers.

Universal Hardware/Software 

Each device has specific programming parameters. It is not just a matter of sending an electrical signal to a specific pin—each device requires a unique algorithm to ensure it is programmed correctly. 

For instance, for a device programmer to support a NAND flash device, two algorithms are needed. The first is the conventional device programming algorithm as specified by the semiconductor manufacturer. The second is the BBM algorithm. The BBM algorithm is a user-selectable software module that interfaces with the device programming algorithm. Its implementation depends upon the target system, not just the NAND device. The challenge is in obtaining a well-defined BBM algorithm specification. See White Paper Here.

Algos “translate” the data into a specific pattern based on the specs from the semi-house. It also sends the correct electrical signal to the correct pin. See Signal Integrity Article Here.

In 1996, BPM introduced the 4100, the first universal fine-pitch automated pick-and-place programming system. Finally, there was a solution to program, at scale, a variety of devices. Again, prior to the 4100, pick-and-place programmers could only program-specific families of devices.

Fast-forward to Today

BPM Microsystems pioneered universal device programming, but nowadays, most device programming solutions are “universal,” right? While it’s true that the days of single-use programmers (except for some extremely high-volume machines) died 25 years ago, that doesn’t mean that all “universal” programmers are truly universal.

Take, for instance, Data I/O. They make automated and manual device programmers in the US and China; they promote their programmers as “universal,” but that depends on your device programming requirements. Data I/O uses two different programming site technologies. Their FlashCORE III sites were developed in 2009; their newer LumenX sites came out in 2016. Let’s say you have a mix of eMMC, MCU, and EPROM devices to program. Their “universal” solution would require two sets of sites; LumenX sites for faster programming with eMMC devices and FlashCORE III to program the others. Are they, in fact, “universal?” Sounds like “not really.”

BPM’s 9th Generation Technology launched in 2016. 9th Gen sites with Vector Engine™ Co-Processor accelerate flash memory waveforms for programming near the theoretical limits of silicon design. The faster the device, the faster it’s programmed. With data transfer rates to 50 Gb per second, and verify rates up to 200 MB per second, 9th Gen sites offer the industry’s fastest times with even more capacity compared to other systems in its class. This is up to 9 times faster than competing “universal” programmers, offering the Largest Memory Support in the industry―256 GB, upgradeable to 512 GB. Plus, by downloading image files up to 25 MB per second to all programmers simultaneously, the system rapidly produces devices at maximum achievable throughput.

PSV5000 vs BPM 3928

Comparing the two platforms (Data I/O vs. BPM) with similar specifications in a typical configuration, a Data I/O PSV5000 would require two FlashCORE III sites, plus one LumenX site (total of 3), while a BPM 3928 would require two 9th Gen sites (which is included in the basic machine configuration). The BPM 3928 is upgradable to five more sites (a total of seven); The PSV5000 can add three additional sites for a total of 6 sites. But only three or four could be used at a time (depending on which site technology is added). The BPM solution is much less expensive because it is actually universal, and allows you to utilize all the connected sites simultaneously.

One could argue that the PSV5000 could be set up with six FlashCORE III sites or six LumenX sites (for a total of 12 sites)– you would only have to switch out the sites when you set-up for the specific job. Realistically, that’s not a viable option. The price for just the sites would cost more than double the original PSV5000 and would take many additional hours to do each change-over.

In the case of a site failure (it happens), with BPM’s universal sites and fault-tolerant hardware/software, the “dead” site can be automatically bypassed; thus, production still goes on (albeit, at reduced capacity). Recall the mix of eMMC, MCU, and EPROM devices to program. Their “universal” solution would require two sets of sites; LumenX sites for faster programming with eMMC devices and FlashCORE III to program the others. if the single LumenX site goes out on the PSV5000, your programming on the LumenX site is stopped until you can get the site replaced or repaired.

It’s always a good idea to plan for failures (they happen) by having a spare site available on-site (all APS manufacturers can provide you with spare kits). With BPM’s single-site technology, you only need one spare, which saves thousands of dollars. When getting a quote on an APS, make sure to ask for spares (and if you’ll need just one or two).

Universal could also mean “future-proof.” Knowing that 9th Gen sites can program legacy devices as well as the newest flash devices means your investment is not soon obsolete. BPM has customers that are still programming on ten- to 15-year-old (and older) 8th and 7th Gen machines. BPM continues to provide support for these legacy systems, and plan to for the foreseeable future.

Sockets

Socket modules and socket cards are the electro-mechanical interfaces between the programmable semiconductor device and the programmer. It’s one of the secrets to BPM’s Universal Programming. The robust design is ideal for manufacturing and design environments where high signal integrity and reliable performance are critical.

The sophisticated technology of BPM Microsystems’ active circuitry delivers the cleanest waveform signals to the device by eliminating noise, ground bounce, and overshoot, which allows for the most reliable vector testing available to ensure the highest quality and overall yield.

Signal Integrity designed into the socket card allows for high quality/high-speed communication between the programmer and the device under test (DUT). High-quality communication allows for high-speed data transfer.  How?

  • Multiple layer PCBs
  • Ground plane
  • Controlled impedance
  • Active circuit
  • High-quality, gold-plated Samtec connectors on all 9th Gen Sites and Sockets


BPM Microsystems offers a substantial number of socket modules and socket cards to support thousands of devices from over 218 semiconductor manufacturers. Currently, there are over 39,000 devices supported on 9th Gen (three times greater than BPM’s nearest competitor).

New socket module and socket card designs are continuously added and can be requested to meet your programming needs (you can request support here).

“Universal” also means many of our older sockets (7th and 8th Gen) work with 9th Gen sites. When you upgrade to 9th Gen’s much faster programming protocol, it’s possible you can use your existing sockets (see if your socket is compatible here).

Universal Device programming with 9th Gen

First Article to automated device production, use the same software, same sockets, same algos, same results.

Finally, universal means using the same software (BPWin), and sockets/algos on all 9th Gen programmers, from manual to automated (the only additional thing needed on the automated programmers are pressure plates which are inexpensive and last forever). No matter if it’s the first article to final production, nearly everything is compatible.

Conclusion

BPM’s universal device programmers are truly universal, in every sense of the word. In an uncertain world during uncertain times, it’s comforting to know a BPM solution will deliver years of reliably programmed devices, and that “universal” actually means “universal.”

BPM compares the 1710 and the 2900 Manual Programmers

BPM compares the 1710 and the 2900 Manual Programmers

BPM compares the 1710 and the 2900 Manual Programmers

Join Shelby B., our Inside Sales Intern, as she breaks down the benefits of the 1710 7th Gen manual programmer vs. the 2900, our latest 9th Gen manual programmer.

Features of the 1710

  • Program up to 4 devices at once using the FX socket modules
  • Able to support the FSM48D (handles 98% of the DIP package devices) and FSM84UP (handles 95% of the PLCC package devices) modules
  • Supports hundreds of different packages with a broad range of socket modules.
  • Supports many legacy devices: PLD, MCU, PAL, GAL, CPLD, FPGA, EPROM, NOR Flash, EEPROM, Actel Antifuse devices, and more
  • 49400 devices supported out of the box
  • Supports high and very low voltage devices
  • Industry-standard for mission-critical Aerospace and Military programing
  • Lifetime software renewal is included with this machine

Features of the 2900

  • Modern High-Speed Universal Programmer capable of programming at the theoretical limits of the device
  • Proprietary Vector Engine Coprocessor that stands alone in the industry
  • Designed more like a high-speed test system
  • Boasts a support list of almost 40,000 devices
  • Weekly device support additions
  • Programs up to 4 devices at a time using socket cards and daughter cards (FVE, LX, WX, WAS, WS)
  • Can purchase a single socket card for first article qualification
  • Programmer workhorse, capable of programming 10’s of thousands of devices annually.
  • Up to twelve (12) 2900 programmers can run a job at a single workstation Has backward compatibility with (almost) all devices supported on the 8th Generation (2800, 3800, 4800, etc) and most devices supported on the 7th Generation (1710, 2710, 3710, etc)
  • Supports the NAND flash series of devices
  • Supports the eMMC series of devices including the following programming speed modes: SDR, DDR, HS200 & HS400
  • 256GB onboard programming memory, expandable to 512GB
  • Technology poised to support newer high-density memory devices
  • Both use BPWin, the best process software The user experience and therefore the learning curve moving from a 1710 to a 2900 is almost nil.

To find out more, check out https://bpmmicro.com/programmers/manu…

Transcript:
Hey, y’all this is Shelby at BPM Microsystems. I’m with the inside sales team and you probably recognize my voice from some of those phone calls I make every day following up on y’all’s quotes and things like that. Anyways I just want to dive right in and talk about the 1710 programmer and the 2900 programmer and talk about some of the features and benefits that we offer here at BPM Microsystems.

All right so let’s dive right in and talk about the 1710 programmer. this is our programmer that programs a lot of our legacy devices. it was actually created in 2004 so it’s one of our older machines but it’s still one of the most popular machines that we sell here at BPM. The 1710 supports hundreds of different packages with a broad range of socket modules and it also supports many legacy devices like the PAP the GAL the CPLD the FPGA the EEPROM nor flash EEPROM and Actel antifuse devices. And an amazing fact about the 7th gen is that we support 49,400 devices out of the box. Wow, that’s a lot! it also supports high and very low voltage devices and it’s the industry standard for mission-critical aerospace and military programming. pretty amazing right? the 7th gen is able to support the fsm48d which handles 98% of the dip package devices. this is it closed and this is it open pretty easy to take on and take off. Okay, so it also supports the fsm84up which handles 95% of the PLCC package devices. that’s it open.

Now that we’ve learned a little bit about the 1710 let’s move on over to the 9th gen our newest model. The 2900 is a modern high-speed universal programmer that is capable of programming at the theoretical limit of the device this handles a lot of our future devices our newer devices whereas the 1710 was handling a lot of our older devices on board it includes proprietary vector engine coprocessor that stands alone in the industry vastly increasing throughput for high-density devices the 9th gen boasts a support list of almost 40000 devices wow it has weekly device support additions and programs up to four devices at a time using socket cards and daughter cards fve, lx, wx, was, and ws unlike most of our competitors who require you to purchase multiple saga cards at once you only have to purchase one for your first article and if you need more capacity no problem you can add up to 11 more programmers for a total of 12 programmers on a single computer programming up to 48 devices at a time isn’t that pretty awesome? the 9th gen has backward compatibility with all socket modules supported on the 8th generation that’s the 2800 3800 4800 etc and also most socket modules on the 7th generation so that’s your 1710 2710 3710 etc

the 9th Gen supports the NAND flash series of devices supports the EMMC series of devices including the following program speed modes sdr, ddr, hs200, and hs400. the onboard memory of the 2900 is 256 gigabytes and is expandable up to 512 gigabytes. Wow that’s a lot of megabytes (off camera: you meangigabytes?) whatever.

So to sum up what we talked about today your 1710 programmer is going to be a little bit slower but it’s going to be for programming those older devices like your legacy devices whereas your 2900 is going to be a little faster and it’s better for newer and higher density devices. one of the benefits of having a 1710 over the 2900 is software is included for life so you don’t have to get a renewed quote for it every year like you would have to on the 2900. However the 2900 is going to be a lot faster and it has a lot sleeker design it’s just better for overall production if you’re going to be using those newer and higher density devices both of these are going to be using bp win so if you are looking to purchase a new programmer and you don’t want to get rid of your bp win you don’t have to fret because both of these use that actually all of our programmers do.

If you are interested or have any questions regarding these programmers you can email tech at bpmicro.com or if you’re interested in purchasing you can email inside sales bpmicro.com thank you guys so much for watching this video I really hope you enjoyed it and I will see you guys next time. bye!

(That’s like a lot of gigabytes)

BPM Microsystems Announces a Small Footprint/High Throughput Automated Programmer with 75% More Capacity

BPM Microsystems Announces a Small Footprint/High Throughput Automated Programmer with 75% More Capacity

Reduces Cost of Programming for 30- to 90-Second Programming Time MCUs and Flash Devices

HOUSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–BPM Microsystems, Inc. today announced it will be demonstrating a mid-sized Automated Programming System (APS) with a 75% increased capacity at Productronica in Munich, Germany— the 3928. Rated at 1,432 Devices per Hour (DPH) and 28 sockets, the 3928 delivers high-volume automotive-level quality and reliability in a small footprint. With 75% greater capacity, vision centering, 9th Gen programming sites, WLSCSP and eMMC support and a base price that starts under $110,000, the 3928 is positioned to outperform higher-priced systems. BPM chose to include standard high-end features such as WLCSP support, universal sites that support eMMC programming, self-teaching, Vector Engine, process integration API and CE Mark. The 3928 supports even complex processes requiring 3D inspection, encryption, serialization, and laser marking.

“By focusing on making our customers highly successful in competitive industries, the engineering team has delivered 75% increased capacity in the same footprint at a lower cost,” says William White, founder and President of BPM Microsystems. “By coupling the 3928’s high throughput with high socket count, the 3928 maintains extremely low cost-per-device for a wide variety of complex MCUs and Flash memories requiring up to 90 seconds to program. The 3928 delivers the best value currently available in device programming.”

“Our customers need the capability and flexibility to program everything from simple MCUs to large eMMC devices on a single machine,” says Colin Harper, Product Manager at BPM. “The 3928 provides a lot of capacity and is highly configurable, including 3D inspection, previously only available with more expensive, large footprint machines.”

The 3928 is easy to set up and use primarily due to WhisperTeach, one of BPM’s award-winning exclusive software features. WhisperTeach™ automatically teaches the critical Z-height with 15-micron accuracy for each pick/place location even for very small packages and saves an average of 83% of the time required for the job setup while increasing yield.

Advanced 3D inspection is available for high-speed device inspection required for automotive/aerospace applications. Peripherals and sites are more configurable than previously possible due in part to advances in 3D printing. On-the-fly vision alignment is achieved with CyberOptics®, maintaining consistent speeds without sacrificing precision. 9th Gen Technology supports over 37,000 devices, over three times more than BPM’s closest competitor.

“For customers with 30- to 90-second programming times, the lower prices combined with increased capacity can cut their total cost of ownership in half compared to previous solutions,” White says.

BPM manufactures its systems in the ISO 9001:2015 certified plant located in Houston, Texas, and carries the CE Mark.

BPM also offers the 3901 for customers who are looking for a sub-$90,000 automated system. If you’re at Productronica, visit Hall A1-353 November 12 through 15, 2019 to see a live 3928 demo. For more information on the 3928, go to bpmmicro.com/3928-7-site-aps/.

BPM Unveils the 3901 APS

BPM Unveils the 3901 APS

Armando Garcia, BPM’s former Americas Account Manager, unveils the 3901 at the SMTA Guadalajara Show

BPM Microsystems launched its latest Automated Programming System (APS) on October 23, 2019, at the SMTA Guadalajara Show— the 3901. Rated at 1,088 Devices per Hour (DPH), the 3901 delivers the lowest cost of ownership in its class. Unlike other low-cost systems, the 3901 has vision centering to accurately align CSP devices, a full range of peripherals and up to 16 universal sockets to program the widest range of MCUs, Flash, eMMC, and EEPROMS at near theoretical speeds.

BPM is partnering with Interlatin as part of their booth. If you’re at the show, come by Booth 509 and check out the 3901 (and say hi to Armando).

“The 3901 offers features and performance not previously available in an entry-level APS,” says Colin Harper, Product Manager at BPM. “We expect the system will be a great solution for customers that require an APS with low cost of ownership and the ability to add capabilities as their needs change.”

SMTA Guadalajara 2019

3901 Video Demo

3901 Video Demo

3901 Video Demo

The Lowest Cost APS with Vision Centering and True Universal Support– Under $90K!

The 3901 is the feature-rich Automated Programming System offering precise vision alignment and true universal programming technology at the lowest cost of ownership. Based on BPM’s proven 3910, this highly flexible APS supports the full complement of input/output peripherals and is configurable with up to 16 sockets using 9th Gen programming site technology. By combining vision alignment for high quality and yield, impressive programming speeds with 9th Gen, plus fast job setup and changeover with BPWin process control software and optional award-winning WhisperTeach, the 3901 offers unmatched productivity at an unequaled value. The system boasts real production output of up to 1,088 devices per hour, while handling a broad range of packages, including CSP. The 3901 is offered in a variety of bundled configurations that allow it to support price-competitive markets, while providing features, versatility and reliability unavailable from cheaper systems. The 3901 truly delivers Extreme Value.

BPM Microsystems Launches Sub-$90K Automated Programming System

BPM Microsystems Launches Sub-$90K Automated Programming System

3901 is the lowest cost APS with vision centering and truly universal support

BPM Microsystems launches its latest Automated Programming System (APS) today at the SMTA Guadalajara Show— the 3901. Rated at 1,088 Devices per Hour (DPH), the 3901 delivers the lowest cost of ownership in its class. Unlike other low-cost systems, the 3901 has vision centering to accurately align CSP devices, a full range of peripherals and up to 16 universal sockets to program the widest range of MCUs, Flash, eMMC, and EEPROMS at near theoretical speeds.

“Our engineering team has relentlessly focused on perfecting our 3-series to serve highly cost-sensitive users while still delivering the ease of use, feature-rich software, and quality that we are famous for,” says William White, founder and President of BPM Microsystems. “Unlike competing platforms, the 3901 offers WhisperTeach™ (automatic self-teaching for rapid setup) and universal sites that support everything from 30-year-old MCUs to the latest 256GB eMMC flash devices.”

“The 3901 offers features and performance not previously available in an entry-level APS,” says Colin Harper, Product Manager at BPM. “We expect the system will be a great solution for customers that require an APS with low cost of ownership and the ability to add capabilities as their needs change.”

The 3901 has WhisperTeach™, one of BPM’s award-winning exclusive features, as an option. WhisperTeach™ automatically teaches the critical Z-height with 15-micron accuracy for each pick/place location even for very small packages, saving an average of 83% of the time required for the job setup and increasing yield. There is also a CE Mark version for companies that require additional certification.

On-the-fly vision alignment is achieved with CyberOptics®, maintaining consistent speeds without sacrificing precision. While other competitive systems say their technology is “universal,” they may require different types of sites depending on the device mix. The 3901 has truly universal 9th Generation high-speed programming sites, supporting up to 16 devices programmed simultaneously, utilizing the same hardware, algorithms, and software (manual and automated systems). Vector Engine with BitBlast, standard on all BPM’s 9th Gen systems, increases the throughput for high-density eMMC devices, compared to other systems. 9th Gen Technology supports over 37,000 devices, over three times more than BPM’s closest competitor.

BPM manufactures its systems in the ISO 9001:2015 certified plant located in Houston, Texas.

BPM offers the 3910 and 4910 for customers who require greater throughput. To discover more about the 3901, such as pricing and specifications, go to bpmMicro.com/3901APS.