Difference between Microprocessor and Microcontroller

12/23/2022 12:00 AM by Small SEO Tools in Difference

Hello friends! Today I will tell you about the very important topic What is Microcontroller (Difference between Microprocessor and Microcontroller) and will read about its types. They will also know what is the difference between it and the microprocessor. So let's start:-

What is Microcontroller?

Microcontroller is a small and very cheap microcomputer which is designed to perform special functions of embedded system. For example – to display microwave information, and to receive remote signal etc.

In other words, "a microcontroller is an integrated circuit (IC) that is used to control other parts of an electronic system."

A typical micro-controller consists of a processor, serial ports, memory (RAM, ROM, EPROM) and peripherals.

Micro-controller is also called embedded controller. They are used in vehicles, medical equipment, robots, vending machines, and home appliances etc.

Features of Microcontroller

Its features are as follows:-

  1. Its cost and size are less.
  2. It operates at the lower clock rate frequency. Generally it uses 4 bit words and it consumes very little power.
  3. It has a dedicated input device and often a small LED or LCD display for output.
  4. Usually it is embedded (connected) in other devices and controls the functions of those devices.
  5. The program used by the microcontroller is stored in ROM.
  6. It is used in situations where limited computing tasks are required.

Difference between Microprocessor and Microcontroller

The difference between them is given below:-

Microcontroller Microprocessor
It is used to execute a single task in an application. Microprocessor is used in large applications.
It is like the heart of the embedded system. It is like the heart of the computer system.
The microcontroller which is there keeps storing the internal memory and I/O components as well as the external processor. It is only a processor. And in this memory and I/O are connected externally.
Since memory and I/O are connected internally in it. That's why its size is small. Since memory and I/O are connected externally in it. That's why its size is big.
It can be used in compact systems. It cannot be used in compact systems
The cost of the whole system is less. The cost (value) of the entire system increases.
It consumes less power. It consumes more electricity.
Most microcontrollers have a power saving mode. Most microprocessors do not have a power saving mode.
It is easy to replace it. It is difficult to replace it.
It is mainly used in washing machines, MP3 players etc. It is mainly used in personal computers.

Types of microcontroller

We can divide microcontrollers into different categories on the basis of memory, architecture, bits and instruction sets: -

Bit (Bit) :-

On the basis of bit we can divide the micro-controller into three categories:-

  • 8 bit microcontroller: - This type of micro-controller is used to execute arithmetic and logical operations such as: - adding, subtracting, multiplying, dividing etc. For example:- Intel 8031 and 8051 are 8 bit microcontrollers.
  • 16 bit: - This type of microcontroller is also used in arithmetic and logical operations where high accuracy and performance is required. For example:- intel 8096.
  • 32 bit: - This type of micro-controller is used in automatically controlled appliances such as: - in automatic operational machine, medical equipment etc.


On the basis of memory, it can be divided into two parts:-

  • External memory microcontroller: - This type of microcontroller is designed in such a way that there is no program memory in the chip. for example:- intel 8031.
  • embedded memory microcontroller: - This type of micro-controller is designed in such a way that the chip contains all the programs and data memory. For example:- 8051.

Instruction Set:-

On the basis of instruction set, it can be divided into two parts:-

  • CISC: - The full name of CISC is complex instruction set computer (Complex Instruction Set Computer). It allows the user to insert only one instruction instead of many simple instructions.
  • RISC: - The full name of RISC is Reduced Instruction Set Computer. It reduces the operational time by shortening the clock cycle for each instruction.

Microcontroller Applications

Its applications are as follows:-

  1. Light sensing and control devices like: - They are used in LED.
  2. Temperature sensing devices like:- microwave oven, and chimneys etc.
  3. Fire detection devices and safety devices such as: - in fire alarm.
  4. Measuring device like: - in volt meter.
  5. In current meter.
  6. In industrial instrumentation devices
  7. In hand-held metering systems

Elements of Microcontroller

Let's now read its elements: -

  • CPU (central processing unit) – CPU is the brain of the microcontroller. It fetches the instruction, decodes it and finally executes it. That is, it performs arithmetic operations, manages data flow, generates control signals.
  • Memory - Memory is used to store data and programs. A microcontroller usually has a fixed amount of RAM and ROM (EPROM, EEPROM etc.) or flash memory.
  • Parallel input/output ports - Parallel input/output ports are used to drive many devices like LCD, LED, printers etc.
  • Serial Ports - The serial ports that provide the interface between the microcontroller and other peripheral devices.
  • Timers / counters – A microcontroller can have one or more timers and counters. The timers and counters which are there provide the facility to do all the counting and timing tasks.
  • Analog to Digital converter (ADC) – It converts analog signal into digital signal.
  • Digital to Analog converter (DAC) – It converts digital signal into analog signal.