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I plan to use http://www.nordicsemi.com/eng/Products/Bluetooth-R-low-energy/nRF51822 to develop some products. I plan to get a breakout board made but even if I do have it made I was curious as to how I could actually get the code on the device. I guess I will have to use an external debugger. The recommended one is the J-Link segger but will something cheaper which I found like http://www.ebay.com/itm/J-link-V8-ARM-Emulator-ARM7-ARM9-ARM11-Cortex-M3-ADS-IAR-STM32-JTAG-Interface-/310747521001?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4859fedfe9 work. If not are there are other alternatives for me?

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The nRF51822 dev kit has a J-Link programmer already on board that you can use for development. Not sure if this can be broken out to program other devices but it might be possible.

Beware of cheap imitations, since they will likely not work with the debug environment due to missing serial number.

More importantly, realize that if you're serious about developing products, you need the right tools. Don't waste time building a hack one and getting it to work unless that's what you want to focus on. Get the right tools and get to work.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Given the amount of time I wasted trying to get it to work, I'd hardly call the genuine jlink "the right tool for the job". There are many cortex SWD solutions out there which are far cheaper and simpler - perhaps because they don't try to lock things down. \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Oct 7 '13 at 19:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ @ChrisStratton: Sorry to hear you had issues. Can you tell me what has gone wrong for you? \$\endgroup\$ – Gustavo Litovsky Oct 7 '13 at 20:16
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    \$\begingroup\$ Refusing to recognize the adapter, requiring obscure system library versions, and no documentation of the USB protocol which could be used to develop sane alternative drivers. Why pay a high price for such headaches? \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Oct 7 '13 at 20:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ @ChrisStratton Which lower cost alternative did you decide to go with instead of Jlink \$\endgroup\$ – Developer Android Oct 8 '13 at 1:11
  • \$\begingroup\$ We ended up shelving the whole approach as the nrf51822's did not then seem available in quantity, though that seems to have changed since. If we revisit it, it will be worth getting one of the $10 semi-open SWD solutions working (it looked to just need hardware reset added) similar to what we use for our other vendor cortex projects, so we have portability and ability to streamline the process and fix issues at the source. Too much time gets wasted otherwise. \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Oct 8 '13 at 12:15

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