Very General Newbie Questions


New Member
1. Are there any general guidelines / restrictions on commercial usage of the PICAXE controller

2. Is possible to replace a regular PIC controller with a PICAXE?

Michael 2727

Senior Member
The Picaxe chips themselves you could do whatever you
wanted with them, but saying that you have used
a picaxe or promoting it as a picaxe device you would
have to be careful what and how you said it, and also
include that Picaxe is a trade marked name

( then again if you say nothing who will ever know what's inside ? )

The Program Editor software must not be included,
supplied, given away free or sold with any product
you have that has a Picaxe inside it.
But there is nothing to stop you saying where the
software is available for download, after registration.

Obviously there is a lot more to the story than this.
If you are not sure contact Rev-Ed directly or E-mail
Technical they will piont you in the right direction.

Q2: In some apps you could write a direct PIC / PICAXE
replacement code and get it to work.
It all depends on the I/O pins used in the original and the
speed of the program, in many cases a Picaxe by design
will run much slower than a raw PIC.
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Technical Support
Staff member
As Michael 2727 said.

A PICmicro with the same pin-out can usually be dropped in to replace a PICAXE, but not always the other way round. You may have to redesign your circuit because the I/O of the PICAXE is not as flexible as the PICmicro and some pins can only be used in particular ways.

In general terms, put a PICAXE in your product rather than a PICmicro and you'll have no complaints from Rev-Ed. Manufacture a large enough quantity and Rev-Ed will almost certainly give you a discount on price and put you on their Christmas Card List. If you want to promote the fact that your product uses a PICAXE I am sure Rev-Ed will be pleased to advise on the best way to do that.


Senior Member
I actually hit this recently with some little projects I have been making for work. There is a "non commercial" tag on the software, I have actually been thinking of going over to the dark side and using SX processors because of this. Either that or getting a better grasp of PIC assembly language.

My view is that if I am making a piece of test gear or something I use AT work then its probably OK. If I make money out of it (ie resell it) then its not OK.

So whle we are on the subject, can you buy the Rev Ed basic editor if you want to use it for commercial use?


Technical Support
Staff member
There is a "non commercial" tag on the software
I'm afraid you have not read what's been written here nor what was previously given in response to this same assertion earlier ...

To repeat what I wrote there ...

There is no non-commercial use license in the way you have interpreted it. It is not as entirely clear as it could be but Rev-Ed have clarified what the license means -

What you cannot do is distribute the Programming Editor with your product.

What you can do is use the Programming Editor to develop the code which goes inside the PICAXE which is part of your product.

You do not need to buy a version of the Programming Editor to undertake development of PICAXE software which will be used in a commercial product; just use the one everyone else does.
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Technical Support
Staff member
The simplest way to look at commercial use is this:

Does the end user of the commercial product know the controller inside is a PICAXE chip?

No - you do not need to distribute the software, so no licence issues. You can however use the Prog Editor software to develop the code that is running in the PICAXE in the product.

Yes - you need a licence to distribute the Prog Editor software with your product. Some conditions of this licence also involve hardware requirements such as the need for the PCB to support the official AXE027 download cable etc. Contact Rev-Ed for more details if required.

In either case you cannot use the PICAXE registered trademark in any way within the product name.


Senior Member
Excellent! Thank you Hippy & Technical, that explains a lot.
My appologies for not reading earlier forums, I recall doing a search on this some time ago but missed those two threads Hippy pointed out.

If using the software to develop the code can be used, as long as the program is not distributed (and the end user is not aware that the IC is anything other than a Microchip PIC) then I have no problems.



Senior Member
Andrew, whatever product your fertile mind is ginning up, I wish you success with it! I hope you'll gain both intellectual and financial rewards from your efforts.

Me? I don't need to build a product. My future is assured. You see, I just looked in my inbox and found an email there from this guy in Nigeria who... :) :) :)