Whenever I want to burn the hex file on my chip, the following error message always appears:

Power On Failed

Cannot communicate with target chip

The programmer I am using is AVR USB programmer, from ABLab Solutions. The software I am using for program burn is extreme Burner AVR.

I don't think this is a problem with the driver because it says it has found an USBasp on USB port. There was an option to select the chip model, where I selected ATmega16 (because 16A) was not there. How can I solve my problem?

EDIT: The picture of the circuit: I used Zener for just-in-case voltage fluctuation.


simulate this circuit – Schematic created using CircuitLab

  • \$\begingroup\$ Is the chip powered during programming? \$\endgroup\$ – Matt Young May 6 '13 at 5:25
  • \$\begingroup\$ Not from external source. doesn't the usb powers the chip @MattYoung ? \$\endgroup\$ – cipher May 6 '13 at 5:28
  • \$\begingroup\$ Multimeter showd very low voltage though, do i have to supply external voltage? \$\endgroup\$ – cipher May 6 '13 at 5:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ Double check your connections. If its not the connections, then probably the ATMEGA 16 is locked and you should by a new one. There is a way to unlock, but it's really difficult. I advise you to buy a new one and it will work. \$\endgroup\$ – Injy Sarhan Nov 26 '13 at 22:04

AVR chips must be powered during programming. They are NOT powered from the programmer. I would recommend reading the following Application Notes

AVR910: In System Programming

AVR042: Hardware Design Considerations

  • \$\begingroup\$ Ok, so i powered it with 5.1V DC (100mA) supply, There's the same case. Same Error! \$\endgroup\$ – cipher May 6 '13 at 16:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ If that's the case, then there is probably something connected wrong. Please post a picture of your set up. \$\endgroup\$ – Matt Young May 6 '13 at 18:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ Edited the post. please see now \$\endgroup\$ – cipher May 6 '13 at 18:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ What about the rest of the pins? \$\endgroup\$ – Matt Young May 6 '13 at 23:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ All the shown pins (6) of the uC are connected to the programmer. I've checked it many times, The connection is correct. \$\endgroup\$ – cipher May 7 '13 at 1:48

I had same problem

1)connections were ok . 2)drivers were installed correctly.

but same error:power on failed

I tried second mcu (Atmega32): but problem not solved same error. I tried second usbasp : but same error.

Then finally i got it accidentally ,the problem was usbasp hardware......(i dont meant manufacturing fault) if you see it you will find jumper connection named(CLK) when i put the jumper on it ,it work succesfully. connect the two leads named (CLK) on usbasp.


Also had this problem. Was hardware issue. The clk pin of the atmega8 on the usbasp had no connection. A touch with the soldering iron and now it is working. Took me 2 days to find his little bug.


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