The MSP430 CPU has a 16-bit RISC architecture that is highly transparent to the application. All operations, other than program-flow instructions, are performed as register operations in conjunction with seven addressing modes for source operand and four addressing modes for destination operand.
The CPU is integrated with 16 registers that provide reduced instruction execution time. The register-to-register operation execution time is one cycle of the CPU clock.
Four of the registers, R0 to R3, are dedicated as program counter, stack pointer, status register, and constant generator, respectively. The remaining registers are general-purpose registers.
Peripherals are connected to the CPU using data, address, and control buses, and can be handled with all instructions.
The instruction set consists of the original 51 instructions with three formats and seven address modes and additional instructions for the expanded address range. Each instruction can operate on word and byte data. CPUxV2 can also operate on address-word data (20-bit).