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B7971 Smart Socket
Redesign of B7971-V2

Smart Socket Board
(Schematic (Rev-) / BOM / PIC16F690 Image)

Circuit Board Only
Assembled and tested
Smart Socket

Assembled SmartSocket
Smart Socket Parts Kit
Includes items 1-9 on the BOM / Labeling / Socket Soldering
Includes: 1 Programmed PIC16F690-I/P
  15 2N5550BU TO92 140V/600mA
  3 22K Resistor
  6 27K Resistor
  4 24K Resistor
  17 33K Resistor
  1 0.1uF 50V X7R Ceramic Capacitor
  17 Mill-Max tube socket pins (See below)
  1 Jumper (Lead clipped from resistor above)

Parts Kit
Smart Socket PIC
Programmed with Smart Socket code

Programmed PIC

Nixie Tube Sockets
included in the parts kit

Nixie Power Supplies
Click here


          The circuit created by Chris Barron (Yahoo group fixitsan2) covered under a generous license agreement has been redesigned in Proteus CADD.  This B7971 14 segment nixie driver board was originally done in the Eagle PCB design program but needed a bit of cleanup for production PCBs to be ordered.  The circuit itself was changed as little as possible from the original design.

I have written a GUI to provide for testing serial communication to smart socket strings and includes a font editor for the B7971 SmartSocket UDC (User Defined Character) feature.  See the B7971 page and download the Calculators installer <controllers><[1386] SmartSocket> for more info.  The protocol is also detailed in the help section of the GUI.

Floating MCLRn (Pin 4)

  • If you have problems that look like EMI induced resets, consider terminating the MCLRn pin of the PIC (Example).  If enough current is pushed through the pin (Or any pin for that matter) from an external transient, the part can latch up and brown-out reset itself or if the programming entry threshold of 10V is exceeded on the /MCLR pin the device will behave unexpectedly.

Terminal blocks for P1

Any questions or comments?
This page last updated on November 25, 2012