Family Comparison

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So you’ve decided on using a PSoC microcontroller, but what from what family? They all have their advantages/disadvantages…

PSoC 1

  • PSoC 1 is the oldest PSoC device
  • The cheapest PSoC family!
  • They also come in really small packages, a useful thing when needing something for a small project, and this is something the other PSoC families do not offer.

PSoC 3

  • In general, the chips are much cheaper than the PSoC 5 (US$2-10 compared to US$8-20, as of 2012)
  • Uses the cheap but not so fast 8051 core.
  • Higher accuracy IMO (±2% compared to ±5%, both at 3MHz)
  • Some PSoC’s with 32kB or more of flash support USB
  • Maximum of 64kB flash
  • More production ready than PSoC 5 (overall, there are less bugs)
  • More sleep functionality than PSoC 5 (sleep current is lower, wake-up times are faster, and wakeup sources are greater)

PSoC 4

  • PSoC 4 is the newest family in the PSoC range.
  • Uses the low-power ARM Cortex-M0 core (slightly less feature-packed version of the Cortex-M3).
  • In terms of price/features, it is higher than PSoC 3 but lower than PSoC 5/5LP.

PSoC 5

  • Faster maximum clock speed (67MHz vs. 50MHz)
  • Uses the very popular ARM Cortex-M3 core.
  • Better compiler (IMO, GCC is much better than Keil)
  • More flash and ROM
  • More UDB (Universal Digital Blocks)
  • More features (a big one being the Sigma-Delta ADC)
  • Maximum of 256kB flash


  • Same maximum clock speed as PSoC 5 (67MHz). It was initially spec’d at 80MHz but was revised to 67MHz when the 5LP family was released.
  • The LP family fixed most of the known silicone errors with the original PSoC 5. Designed to eventually replace the PSoC 5.
  • Much lower sleep power usage, and added sleep functionality (the LP stands for “low power”)
  • Like the PSoC 5, uses the ARM Cortex-M3 core.
  • You can get the PSoC 5LP micro in space saving 0.40mm pitch QFN packages.


Geoffrey Hunter

Dude making stuff.

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