Heterobimetallic molecular precursors [Co-2(acac)(2)(mu-OH)(2)Cu-4(dmae)(4)Cl-4] (2) and [Ni-2(acac)(2)(mu-OH)(2)Cu-4(dmae)(4)-Cl-4] (3) [dmaeH = N,N-dimethylaminoethanol and acac = 2,4-pentanedionate] for the deposition of mixed oxide thin films were prepared by the interaction of tetrameric N,N-dimethylaminoethanolato copper(II) chloride, [Cu-(dmae)Cl](4) (1) with M(acac)(2)center dot xH(2)O, [M =Co, Ni] in toluene. Both heterobimetallic cage complexes were characterized by melting point, elemental analysis, FT-IR spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, magnetometery, and single-crystal X-ray diffraction. Complexes 2 and 3 are isostructural and crystallize in the monoclinic space group P2(1)/n. A TGA study shows that both complexes undergo controlled thermal decomposition at 450 degrees C to give mixed metal oxides. Solid-state infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy-dispersive X-ray analysis (EDX), and X-ray powder diffraction (XRD) analysis were performed to analyze the chemical composition and surface morphology of the deposited oxide thin films. The results obtained indicate the formation of impurity-free crystalline mixed oxide films with particle sizes ranging from 0.55 to 2.0 mu m.