RoadTest: Renesas EK-RA6M3 MCU KiT
Evaluation Type: Development Boards & Tools
Did you receive all parts the manufacturer stated would be included in the package?: True
What other parts do you consider comparable to this product?: STM32F723E Discovery kit
What were the biggest problems encountered?: Trying to find examples that cover the Pmod, mikroBUS, and Grove connections. Both Grove connections were i2C only and the majority of the Grove boards I have are mainly GPIO.
The Renesas EK-RA6M3 Evaluation Kit is an excellent platform to both learn and to design with the Renesas RA6M3 family of MCUs. The EK-RA6M3 has a R7FA6M3AH3CFC MCU which contains a 120Mhz 32-Bit ARM Cortex-M4 Core along with 2Mb Flash, 640kB RAM and 64kB of Data Flash. On board development options for the EK-RA6M3 include Renesas E2/E3 Lite and SEGGER J-Link for Debugging and Renesas PG-FP6, SEGGER J-Link and Third Party options. Some of the target applications for the RA6M3 are High Speed USB and Wired Ethernet, Security (Fire Detection, Burglar Detection), Industry (Robotics, Door Openers, Sewing Machines), HVAC (Heating, Air Conditioning, Boiler Control) and so on.
After an initial install of the e2 Studio IDE, it was then discovered that the EK-RA6M3 eval kit required the installation of the Renesas Flexible Software Package (FSP) which includes the e2 Studio IDE. The FSP includes HAL drivers, a configuator and code generator, application support for RTOS and non-RTOS environments, FreeRTOS support, and many other features.
The version that was used when starting the RoadTest was v0.8.0 and then upgraded to v1.1.0, but the most recent at the time of this wring is v1.1.1.
1. Download the latest FSP for the Renesas RA MCU family from:
2. Run the installer. The following Pop-up window will appear. Select Yes
3. Select an Install Type. Quick install was used in this example
4. A window showing the summary of the install will appear.
5. The install directory can be changed.
6. Once set, select next:
7. Accept the license terms and click Install
8. A progress window will appear
9. If successful, a window similar to the following will appear.
10. the e2 Studio IDE should launch
11. Select a workspace
12. Enable logging report if needed
13. The Welcome screen will appear if the e2 Studio IDE opens successfully.
1. From the main menu. select File -> RA C/C++ Project
2. Select a RA C/C++ Project Template
Renesas RA C Executable Project was used in this instance
3. Select a Project Name a location for the project
4. Set the board type and device type. The toolchain version can be selected as well.
5. Select a type of project
Bare Metal - Minimal was used in this example
6. Open Associated Perspective
7. When the project opens, the Project Explorer, Summary, and Pin configuration is visible.
The EK-RA6M3 QuickStart example can be downloaded from the FSP example projects..
1. Download and extract the quickstart_ek_ra6m3.zip project
2. From e2 Studio, click File and then Import to import the QuickStart project.
3. Select Existing Projects into Workspace
4. Browse to the quickstart_ek_ra6m3 folder.
5. The should show in the Import Projects window. Select Finish to import the project
6. The QuickStart project should appear in the Project Explorer window
1. Double Click the configuration.xml file to open the RA Configuration.
2. Click the Stacks tab and then "g_adc ADC Driver on r_adc" block.
3. Change Parameter Checking to "Enabled"
4. Click Generate content at the top of the Stacks Configuration Window
5. Build the project and ensure the build completed successfully
1. Connect the EK-RA6M3 to the computer via the USB Debug connection
2. Start the debug session as Renesas GDB Hardware Debugging
3. First time may result in a Firmware upgrade window
4. Click Yes when the Confirm Perspective Switch window pops up
5. The debug session should open
6. Click resume to start the debug
NOTE: This may need to be done twice.
7. Once the code is loaded and running, the "Running" indicator should appear.
8. When the QuickStart program runs, the LED1, LED2, LED3 should blink, and SW1 controls the blink rate and SW2 controls the brightness of the LEDs
Video of QuickStart Debug session
To demonstrate the FSP SPI API, the spi_ek_ra6m3_ep demo example was used.
5. Build the project and connect the RA6M3 Eval Kit via the Debug port
NOTE: Ensure the following connections have been made on the board as per the README file.
Pin Connection for EK-RA6M3
MISO ----> P410 - P202
MOSI ----> P411 - P203
RSPCK ----> P412 – P204
9. If successful, a J-Link RTT Viewer window should appear with the main menu of the SPI Demo
There are 3 options: "Write and Read, WriteRead, or exit.
10. Enter some text in the blank text box and click Enter to see it appear on the other end.
11. Click on tab Terminal 0 to see if the value was transmitted
The Renesas EK-RA6M3 Evaluation Kit is a great board for getting acquainted with the Renesas RA family of MCUs. The board has many options, many which were not covered in this RoadTest. Renesas does a good job of providing examples that can be used with the kit, but more time would be needed to modify these for other uses. It would have been nice to have a Digital option on the Grove Connections rather than i2C only though. The intention is keep working with the EK-RA6M3 and associated software to further my familiarity of the uses of the kit.