I have used the 68HC11 version of the IAR compiler about 7-years ago.  I have used the Keil 8051 compiler about 8 to 15 years ago. and I still use the SDCC compiler today.
What I will say about the IAR compiler is that it was not a pleasant experience. 
From my experience there are 2 great 8051 compilers.  Keil is/was the number 1 compiler if you can afford the price tag.  It produces smaller code and behaves more like a standard C compiler in the corner cases and when writing code to a standard like MISRA.
BUT SDCC is a very close 2nd the mailing list is active and you can get peephole optimizations that will solve all these corner cases.  They fix bugs in the compiler very quickly.  While in my opinion the bit variables do weird things when using logic operators on them, this is predictable and work around-able.  WIth the added feature of code-banks I see almost no reason to use the Keil compiler.

Hope this helps.

Rod Boyce

On 01/03/11 13:49, Joel Holdsworth wrote:

Hi All,


I'm trying to guage the relative merrits of the SDCC for a new project involving the Texas Instruments CC1110. We have a choice between building with the SDCC or tools from IAR systems ( In some ways the SDCC seems compelling; low cost, easy to pick up and use, open source, can run on linux, previous team experience. But in other ways we have concerns: no debugger, unsupported by the manufacturer etc.
Can anyone provide any information concerning the relative merits of the SDCC over other proprietary build environments when we have money to spend?
Best Regards
Joel Holdsworth
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