Monday, July 27, 2009

COG LCD Character Module with SPI Interface


For some applications adding an alphanumeric display, particularly an LCD Character Module could be a plus, not only as a Human Machine Interface (HMI) but also as an output interface for device diagnostics and troubleshooting.

Nowadays Character Module LCDs are quite inexpensive, most of them use a parallel interface based old Hitachi HD44780 or its Samsung cousin KS0066 controllers.

You will also find some folks selling a Character Module LCD with an add-on serial interface or things like the
Serial Enabled Backpack from Sparkfun.

On one of my projects I showed
how to interface a regular Character Module using the SPI interface taking advantage of the Microchip MCP23S08 port extender.

I’ve been looking around for a while for a reasonable priced integrated solution, preferable with Chip On Glass Technology that does not take to much pcb real state.

To my satisfaction I recently found that the folks from
Electronic Assembly in Germany started to produce the DOG-M LCD series that is exactly what I was looking for.


The DOG-M LCD display series, not only provide the classic parallel interface but they also offer using the same controller the SPI interface option, and guess what you can use them with +5V or +3.3V supply.

There are different variants including STN yellow/green, reflective, STN blue, FSTN positive and negative, some of which require a backlight, but EA also offer a nice collection of LED based backlighting with ultra thin construction.

The EA DOG-M display series is available from
Mouser Electronics.

I’ll be using the 3 x 16 model for one of the products I’ve under development.
I'll soon post some pictures with the DOG-M displays in action.
Cheers
Jorge

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