The first thing about these smart card programmers are that they are not simple devices and so not for everyone. Still, since I have now sold many hundreds of these programmers, then I know that most problems with people using them are actually computer related. The end rule being that those people actually able to look after their computer should have little problem making use of these programmers either.
Beyond those people who cannot control their computer then I can say that over the years I helped total newbies to do some of the more complex programming tasks. My point being that if they can do well with more complex tasks then you should have little problem doing more commmon tasks. Such as when it comes to programming my own smart card types then I have always said that programming a card is just like riding a bike, in that the first time can seem quite daunting, but once you have done it once then it does become very easy.
These programmers have just one function and that is to flash Integrated Circuits (microcontrollers, processors, EEPROMs and the like) with firmware, where this hardware can be found either in the die of the smart cards, or the common manufacturers like to provide device packages, like the DIL format, as well.
A microcontroller is like a mini computer containing a core processor and with ways to communicate with the outside world, which is impressive considering their tiny size. And an external EEPROM is simply a data store that a microcontroller can often make use of. Such hardware can be found in a vast volume of modern devices, like your DVD player, microwave and washing machine, when such hardware is the core components that make such devices process your commands.
As to the firmware then that you will have to obtain yourself when I never supply firmware to avoid all copyright and licencing issues. Anyone with some software programming skill can easily make functional firmware applications, when there is a vast volume of documentation and software around to assist you, but for everyone else there is also plenty of firmare to download from the Net.
The last thing I just have to mention is that I do not sell these programmers for any single application. From the below you can see that these programmers support hundreds of different devices, which means that there are hundreds of not thousands of possible applications. So if your application makes use of one or two of these mentioned devices then please keep in mind that one kind of professional person or another would have hundreds or thousand other applications. And as long as your application happens to be fully legal, and is not aimed to infringe copyright, then I can certainly help you with any programming problem that you may have.
Since you now have a general idea what Programmers are about then here is the list one ones I can currently supply...
Smartmouse and Phoenix USB Programmer
This new USB based Smartmouse and Phoenix "SMART3" programmer happens to be a replacement for my older SMART2 model. And when I came to find a replacement model then so did I have to go through dozens of rival models in order to find what must be the best model on the market. Other rival models I can say could not even support features found on my older discontinued SMART2 model, but of course if you want the best model that current technology can provide then you need look no further.
To begin with then let me explain how all Smartmouse / Phoenix programmers work. The most important thing to know about this programmer is that it does not program cards in the same way as a normal Atmel / Microchip microcontroller programmer, like my ALIEN model, goes about programming cards.
This means that the Smartmouse / Phoenix programmer actually "talks" to the card, just like a decoder or other smartcard reader would. And so if the programmer asks the card (in its own electronic way) "please can I program your EEPROM" then if there is no reply it cannot proceed further.
To understand this process more, then this programmer cannot straight away program cards, like my GOLD card on my Cards page. As these cards have a fully blank microcontroller, and therefore this programmer has no internal card program to talk to. And that is why the PIC16F84 microcontroller on my GOLD card would need to be programmed with a loader file first (using a PIC programmer like ALIEN), before this Smartmouse / Phoenix programmer could then through-PIC program the 24LC16B EEPROM.
This means that this programmer does not directly program anything, when in the case of the GOLD card it is actually the loader program running inside the PIC16F84 that I2C programs the EEPROM, in the same way as it normally writes to the EEPROM. As all this programmer did was to ask this loader program to program the EEPROM, followed by passing it the vital new EEPROM data when required.
So as long as you keep in mind that the smart card you are using needs to already have some firmware running then your communication should be good. Some more recent good news is that some of my second generation smartcards, along with all of my third generation cards, now come with some bootloader firmware by default. This means that with the right application then this programmer is the only type you will ever need to program your card.
To clarify the nature of this model further than this smart card interface happens to be one of the most powerful and useful models on this page, where this can be summed up in just one word "ISO7816". Now while it is true to say that every device carrying the "smart card" term would at least follow levels 1 to 3 (hardware requirements) of this International Standards Organization's 7816 specification, but only a Smartmouse or Phoenix model is made to follow levels 4 and above as well.
Since these higher levels go to ensure communication compatibility then hopefully it will now begin to click that every professional smart card in existence follows this same specification as well, meaning that contact can be made. That list includes subscription smart cards, token smart cards (phone etc), bank smart cards, and well completely everything else. Now would be a good time to point out that all these common cards would make use of encryption as well, meaning that you cannot make changes without the right key, which won't often be public knowledge for obvious reasons.
So when it comes to smart cards then this card interface only has one limit and that happens to be the clock frequency that the card requires the data rate to be at. This model I can say supports the clock frequencies of 3.58 MHz (or 3.579545 MHz to be exact), 3.68 MHz and 6 MHz, which are by far the three most common data rates.
This Smartmouse / Phoenix interface is connected via a USB cable (included) which allows you plug this programmer into an available v1.1 or v2.0 USB port on your computer, laptop, USB hub, or even these days to your USB supporting satellite receiver. No external power supply is required when it is powered through the USB port.
The final thing I have to mention is the available software for this model when your desired option out of the available six modes [Smartmouse 3.58, 3.58, 6 Mhz and Phoenix 3.58, 3.68 and 6 MHz] can be changed using an easy to use application for Windows, but a Linux version is also available. Also available is software to program DragonLoader and Titanium cards, but of course vastly more software exists on the Internet aimed at any number of thousands of possible applications.
So if you happen to need to communicate with an existing smart card then this pocket size card interface could well be the perfect model for you.
Ordering Code: SMART3
Includes: The SMART3, USB cable and programming software.
Gross Weight: 75g
DIL Chip Programmer
This is indeed a small one; when measuring just 42 mm x 47 mm means that this programmer is smaller than most people's smallest finger. Now before you start thinking that without a card reader this is one weak baby, then I can assure you that this baby model sure packs a solid punch. Baby Hercules comes to mind.
What this super baby can do are mostly limited by the 18-pin DIL socket and programming software, like ICProg, which certainly includes the PIC16C84, PIC16F84/A, PIC16F628, PIC12C508/A, PIC12c509/A and a whole lot more. In fact it is easier if you just ask me if it supports the device you are using, but this model certainly supports the common 24xxx series EEPROMS.
This model is commonly known as a JDM type programmer which is a programmer format supported by many public programming applications.
Moving on to the hardware then this is a factory made model on a fibre glass circuit board. No external power is required when it is powered through the serial port. All you need to made use of this model is a fully wired straight through serial cable (like my SERIAL) and a working free serial port. Such a port is often labelled as COM1 or COM2. So it is just insert your device into the 18-pin DIL socket, load in the firmware, then click on "program".
With such a low price then why not make space in your family for a new baby? One that I am sure you will soon grow to love, when this baby leaves no bad smell behind.
Ordering Code: BABY
Includes: Your new BABY and programming software.
Gross Weight: 17g
PIC/EEPROM Card and Chip Programmer
Before I tell you what this one does then have a good look at this photo of it on your left, which you can see a lot better if you click on this photo to bring up the big version. As does not this model just appear damned weird looking for a card programmer? And as this one is not much much larger than your middle finger, then compared to other models this one is certainly an ALIEN.
Now I cannot say which planet the design for this one originally came from, but I can tell you that this model can program both smart cards and ICs. This includes the PIC16C84, PIC16F84/A, PIC12C508/A, PIC16F628/A, PIC12C509/A, 24xxx series EEPROM, and Atmel EEPROM cards. I should also mention that the included programming software allows for hundreds of other devices to be programmed, but since I have never owned those devices in order to test them, then I have only listed the models that I have tested. So if you are looking to program a certain device then let me know so that I can see if this programming software supports it, when if it does then there are good odds that this model will work, when after all all the devices I have tried so far sure did.
On this model is a reduced sized card reader and an 18-pin DIL socket for programming all the mentioned DIL PIC and EEPROM chips. There are no switches at all on this programmer when it is fully automatic. Best of all this model makes use of the very latest service mounted components that are hidden under the card reader in order to avoid user damage. It is the use of these surface mounted components, and the reduced size card reader, that allows that model to be so compact. As certainly this small programmer can fit in your pocket if required, which makes this model very portable.
This model is commonly known as a JDM type programmer which is a programmer format supported by many public programming applications.
Moving on to the hardware then this is a factory made model on a fibre glass circuit board. No external power is required when it is powered through the serial port. All you need to made use of this model is a fully wired straight through serial cable (like my SERIAL) and a working free serial port. Such a port is often labelled as COM1 or COM2. So it is just insert your device into the 18-pin DIL socket or card reader, load in the firmware, then click on "program".
So if you are looking for a very functional smart card and DIL IC programmer then you need look no further. After all this alien is not known to eat your family members.
Ordering Code: ALIEN
Includes: One ALIEN and programming software.
Gross Weight: 25g
CLaNZeR's Build5 PIC/EEPROM Programmer
Had I not decided to call this model by its already well known public name then I would have called this model "The Fly". The reason for this name is that it reminds me of a scene from the movie under this name when brundle-fly has a slight telepod accident and ends up as brundle-fly-telepod.
This programmer seems to have been built in a similar way, when if you take a common PIC / EEPROM Programmer and fuse this together in an unholy union with a 3.5 Mhz Phoenix Programmer, then that is what this BUILD5 model is all about. Hopefully no telepod was involved in this production process.
This creation you can certainly see for yourself, just by looking at the photo on the left, when it is just unnatural for a programmer to have two cable connections. So this model is certainly two models fused together, on the atomic level, when they are now joined in a new creation called BUILD5 (or is that pic/eeprom-phoenix-fly?).
The usual 9-pin serial connection is for the 3.5 Mhz Phoenix half of this model, while the second connection is nothing more than a 36-way Centronics Printer connection. This second connection is for the PIC / EEPROM Programmer half, when just connecting this Programmer into your printer cable will offer a faster data transfer rate when programming.
Also on the photo you can see a large switch low down in the picture, where this switch simply allows you to switch between the "PP" (PIC Programmer) and "SWR" (Phoenix) modes.
Apart from the visible card reader you will also notice three DIL type sockets. I can say that the 18-pin socket is for 16x84 microcontrollers and the 8-pin black socket is for 24xxx EEPROMs. As to the third 8-pin red socket then that is for the 12C508/A and 12C509/A, but then again on this model maybe it just a left over piece of telepod door. ;-]
The final thing to notice about this hardware is the large number of components it uses, where this helps to explain why this model requires a 15v to 18v power supply. And just like with my GMPC+ model my unregulated MPACK Power Adapter is perfect for this task.
This happens because when an unregulated model is set to the 12v setting then about 17v will actually be supplied to this power hungry model. The answer for this difference rests in the forumla... Power (in Watts) = Current (in Amps) x Voltage (in Volts). As when the voltage increases then the current decreases in order to provide the same wattage. So there you go.
In terms of device support then this model can program the PIC chips of 16C84, 16F84, 16C622, 12C508/A and 12C509/A. And for EEPROMs then it can naturally handle the entire 24xxx range of the 24x01, 24x02, 24x04, 24x08, 24x16, 24x32, 24x64/5, 24x128, 24x256, 24x512 and 24x1024.
As to CLaNZeR, then naturally he is the wild-eyed genius type person who designed this model, where this is the fifth and final version in his build series. And you can tell a guy who is a touch insane, from his hairy knuckles, and when he spells his name with an odd mixture of upper and lower case letters. ;-]
The software that comes with this model allows for programming under both DOS and Windows (including 95, 98, NT, XP, 2000 and 2003). Although the default software allows for through-PIC programming I will also include the popular WinPhoenix software. Since WinPhoenix makes use of the 3.5 Mhz Phoenix half of this programmer then this is an example to show how this programmer can make use of the hundreds of public programs available for these Phoenix models.
The final aspect to mention is that apart from needing my MPACK power adapter, then you could also need a serial cable (SERIAL) for the Phoenix half, and then a printer cable (LPTR, LPTB, LPTG) for the PIC / EEPROM programmer half. So with a total of five components, including the computer, then you will be all ready to program your smart cards and ICs.
Now I cannot say if the production of this model made use of a telepod, or not, but to me that red socket will always look like a part from the telepod door.
Ordering Code: BUILD5
Includes: One BUILD5 and a software CD.
Gross Weight: 205g
Advanced PIC/EEPROM Card Copier
To begin with then this smart card programmer can do something that no other model on this page can so, where that happens to be the ability to program a smart card without even having to use a PC. It achieves this impressive task by storing the card image, the PIC and EEPROM firmware, in its attached 24LC256 EEPROM. And since I had the default model modified to my requirements then this one change allows you to easily swap over EEPROMs containing different firmware if desired.
So all you have to do is to insert your desired smart card, wait for the programming to complete, where your new programmed smart card is now all ready for use. Best of all you can use this model to program hundreds, or even thousands, of smart cards if desired, when this programmer is quite quick with programming these cards.
I just wish that I had this model available in my old business when I sure could have done good things with it.
Since I have not even begun to sum up the great features of this model then I will add that this model has just one jumper setting that reads...
1. Read card.
2. Program card.
3. Program card with code protection.
What I love about this model is that, depending on the jumper setting, it will either read or program your smart card automatically just as soon as you insert it into the slot. No buttons or switches to push when say on the program card setting you can insert card 1 and the programming starts, wait a short time for programming to complete, remove the card and then insert card 2, and so on. Should you desire to clone a card then simply put the jumper on position 1 and insert the card, where once fully read you can remove the card, set the jumper back to position 2 program card, then create how ever many close copies you desire.
Position 3 being program card with code protection means that the contents of a card programmed under this setting cannot then be later read back by this GMPC+ or any other model.
Next on this model are the two LEDs. The green LED shows that the model is being correctly powered, when it won't light if it is not, while the red LED happens to indicate the programming status. How it achieves this is that should there be any errors then the red LED will flash a number of times to indicate the problem. You can easily look up the error codes when they are all clearly printed on the base of this model.
From the photo of this model you can see that this one includes a serial socket for connection to a PC. Unlike what you may assume this connection is not for programming a card when instead it is used to upload new smart card firmware. The included Windows software can also be used to read the firmware from the model for storage and use on your computer.
This model I can say handles White (PIC16x84), Gold (PIC16x84+24LC16B), Emerald (PIC16F628+24LC64) and Silver (PIC16F877+24LC64) cards.
The Windows software I can say is very good looking and goes a great job with what it has to do. I can always send you a copy if you desire to see it before purchase, but you should also able to find it on the Net.
The last thing to mention is this models power requirements when it needs a 16 to 20v DC power supply. You can easily do this using my MPACK power adapter when this unregulated model will output around 17v with set to its 12v setting. You can see more about this power method in the above BUILD5 details.
One other power option is to use batteries when say two PP3 batteries can produce 18v when chained together. Let me know if you desire this option when I can always obtain the connection cables. This is a good power option when by running on battery power means that you can even use this model in the middle of a field.
Since that is all I can say about this great model then here is my price...
Ordering Code: GMPC+
Includes: The GMPC+, instruction sheet, and the software.
Gross Weight: 72g
Advanced Card and Chip Programmer
And following I will explain why...
Ease of Use
Now the first super feature that will certainly make this model a very popular item is it's ease of use.
As to begin with I have to confess that for a long time I have been a fan of the Keymaster VI+ (no longer produced, but does have a "Millennium" clone). The reason for this is not because it is in anyway useful for anything other than a PIC16x84 and 24xxx cards/chips, but because it is an easy and fairly fast programmer to use (even overlooking it's over use of error messages).
Now, I can say that during my testing of ELVIS I was so much impressed by how easy it was to use that my old Keymaster VI+ has just become obsolete. As ELVIS with it's special software for Windows allows you to set up "projects", which means that once you have specified your *.hex files then you need never do it again.
This is extra useful, when now you can program entire cards with a push of a button, including cards like my Gold wafer, where the 24LC16B can only be programmed through the PIC16F84. As this task before now would have required both my ALIEN and SMART2 programmers, which is still fine choices for those that do not need these extra features.
Next, if you then change your card type, then just select the required matching software with one click on the main display. As with a second click you can have that card programmed or read as well.
And from my testing ELVIS can program a card in about half the time of my Keymaster VI+, which for ELVIS is 26 seconds for one of my GOLD cards (PIC16F84A + 24LC16B).
Another useful feature of my old Keymaster VI+ was it's auto-detection feature, which would identify the PIC chips in the card. Now I can say that once again ELVIS does a very much better job, when now most of these PIC and Atmel types will be detected automatically. See below for all the PIC and Atmel chips that this programmer can handle.
And that is not all by a long way, when this programmer will go one step further by also auto-detecting any attached EEPROMs on the card (supported types also listed below).
Hopefully you can now see that this programmer is very easy to use.
Now I am sure that it would have been faster to just list the chips that it cannot handle, but anyway here is the large list...
PIC16CR83, PIC16F83, PIC16C84, PIC16CR84, PIC16F84, PIC16F84A, PIC12C508, PIC12C509, PIC16C554, PIC16C556, PIC16C558, PIC16C61, PIC16C620, PIC16C620A, PIC16C621, PIC16C621A, PIC16C622, PIC16C622A, PIC16F628, PIC16C62, PIC16C62A, PIC16C63, PIC16C64, PIC16C64A, PIC16C65, PIC16C65A, PIC16C66, PIC16C67, PIC16C710, PIC16C71, PIC16C711, PIC16C72, PIC16C73, PIC16C73A, PIC16C74, PIC16C74A, PIC16C76, PIC16C77, PIC16F876, PIC16F877, PIC16C923, PIC16C924.
AT90S2323, AT90S2343, AT90S8515, AT90S8535, ATMEGA163 and more.
24x00, 24x01, 24x02, 24x04, 24x08, 24x16, 24x32, 24x64/5, 24x128, 24x256, 24x512, 24x1024.
Although this programmer can read and program many devices (including Playstation 1 & 2 mod chips); I can say that even more chip types will be added over time when later versions of the software adds support for other chip types.
Apart from those chips this programmer also supports many card types like...
Gold (PIC16F84/A + 24x16)
Blue (PIC16F84 + 24x64)
FUN2 / Purple (AT90S8515A + 24x64)
FUN3 (AT90S8515A + 24x128)
FUN4 (AT90S8515A + 24x256)
FUN5 (AT90S8515A + 24x512)
FUN6 (AT90S8515A + 24x1024)
FUN7 (AT90S8515A + 2x 24x1024)
Jupiter / Pink (AT90S2323/AT90S2343 + 24x16)
Emerald 2 (PIC16F628 + 24x64)
Emerald 4 (PIC16F628 + 24x256)
Silver (PIC16F877 + 24x64)
Green (PIC16F877 + 24x128)
Green2 (PIC16F877 + 24x256)
SuperPIC (PIC18F452 + 24x256)
M2 / Platinum (AT90SC6464C)
M2 v2 (?)
DragonLoader (PIC16F84+ 2x 24LC1024)
to name but a few...
And you can rest assured that this programmer will almost certainly support any important future card, when most of the types listed above did not even exist when I first began supplying this model. Should your desired card not be listed above, then ask me directly if needed, when the odds are that I just cannot keep this section up-to-date.
Also support for GSM Sim Cards has now been included.
And what with a Smartmouse and Phoenix emulation feature, then I cannot even tell you the real limits for this programmer, when that is only limited to what people can think of next.
With any programmer the software that you use it with is just as important as the hardware (if not more so). As I have known software in the past that was so complex and unfriendly as to make it unusable. You can rest assured with ELVIS, when I would rate the special included software as "exceptional".
Already you have heard about the main Windows software in the above "ease of use" section, which only comes with this programmer. And apart from the wide range of supported chips, and simple buttons to push, then I can say that new versions of this software get released when further features are added.
Also apart from the default software that comes with this model, then also available for download is the extra useful software like the ELVIS Control Center and the highly recommended TJ's MP Utility. If my Software page is not available yet, then you can always ask where this extra software can be found.
If you don't have Microsoft Windows, then you are still in luck. As also included is a DOS version of this MP software, which still supports mostly all of the features including auto-detection.
However, one extra add-on simply demands mention, when this more than doubles the real value of this programmer. As if you are concerned about unique software for a unique programmer, which would one day in the far future make such a programmer obsolete, then I can put your mind at rest.
As if you feel that this default software does not meet your needs, then why not run this add-on feature, which would turn your programmer into another type of programmer. What I mean by this statement is that upon activating this feature, then you will have a choice to fully emulate a Phoenix or Smartmouse programmer (at 3.5 Mhz).
And that would then allow you to use any of the thousands of public programs around, which are developed for these widely used models.
As I said this is truly "exceptional" software that is certainly worthy to be included with the King of the Programmers.
The last aspect that I have to mention is how you connect ELVIS to your computer. As included for this price is a 9pin M-F serial cable which is a long 1.8 meters in length.
Also ELVIS requires a 9v DC Power Supply to operate, which if you need one then see the models available on my Power Supplies page.
And after all that I guess that you would want to know the price...
Ordering Code: ELVIS
Includes: ELVIS, Serial Cable, software, and a FREE FUN2 card.
Gross Weight: 205g
If you require a serial cable for use with the above programmers then here is a well built good value one. This 9-pin male to female serial cable is the straight through fully wired type and is 1.8 metres in length.
Or if you order any two programmers (excluding ELVIS, which comes with a different serial cable already, and SMART3 that is USB based) then you will receive a serial cable for FREE.
Ordering Code: SERIAL
Gross Weight: 141g
Finally I will be pleased to help if you have any questions about these programmers or need to know which you require for whatever project you are planning.