Computers, Development Boards & Shields
Educational & Robotics Kits
Electronic Sensors
Motors & Controllers
Communication & Display
Electronic Components
Soldering & Lab Tools

Versalino LCD & Keypad Design Notes

Check out the board in operation!

Check out the board in operation! Nothing like a design that works to make your day 100% better ;D

This board was designed as an interface between an LCD display panel and a 6-pin keypad output.  It only requires a single Versalino Uno or Versalino Nano BUS to operate.  Also, it doesn’t waste any pins on the BUS which is great (because wasting pins is wasteful).  The board came into existence while working on a Graphical User Interface (GUI) display unit for a blinds control system.

We designed the Versalino LCD & Keypad board as the first plug and play LCD and Keypad controller for the Versalino line, and we are super excited to make it available for anyone else who has a need for GUI and system control interfaces in their next product or project.

Though the concept is very simple, we have been pleasantly surprised by how much time it has already saved us in project development for user driven applications.

Schematic:

Versalino LCD & Keypad V1S0A SchematicThe top 16 pins in the diagram connect to the LCD display panel.  They’re numbered from right to left, as the board will be mounted from the back onto the LCD panel.  This is your output.  For the input, there are two sets of pins.  The 6 pins to the right on the schematic connect to a general purpose 6-pin load board, in our case to a 9-button keypad controller.  The other input consists of a set of 11 pins that connect to the Versalino Uno or Versalino Nano boards.

Also, the board comes with a TC33X-2-103E trimmer potentiometer (don’t worry it is already attached) whose role is to adjust the brightness of of the LCD display panel.  There are not manual settings needed for the trimmer as this will be done through the LCD panel’s setting options.  

Layout:

Versalino LCD & Keypad V1S0A LayoutThe board was designed to maximize the small space behind the LCD panel.  On one side you have the 11-pin input from the Versalino board, while at the other end is the 6-pin input from the keypad.  Once the board is attached to the LCD panel, it hangs about 3/4 inch outside of  the whole assembly so that a keypad can be physically attached if needed.  This clearance is needed to make both the input and the display devices easily accessible.

The two holes on the board were made available for mounting purposes.  The big diameter hole lines up with the LCD panel, while the small diameter one could be use to mount the board to a backing or LCD front panel.

Procedure:

Get your Versalino LCD & Keypad while supplies last.

Everything that comes with the Versalino LCD & Keypad.

The Versalino LCD & Keypad board comes as a loadboard that can be soldered to any standard 16 pin LCD screen and can be used with a variety of devices.

Once you have selected the LCD screen you will be using you will want to match the pins 1 and 16 with each other and solder the Versalino LCD & Keypad board to the LCD screen. Alternatively you could get a 16 pin male and female header if you wanted to be able to exchange LCD screens freely, or if you are feeling super adventurous you could solder Male to Male Dupont cables onto the board so that you could route them freely (though it kind of defeats the purpose of using a loadboard it is totally your call).

In addition to soldering the boards together we recommend covering any exposed electronics on the back of the LCD with a little bit of hot glue or tape (you may notice in our photos that we have some hot glue over the resistors and supports that might otherwise cause bridging on the Versalino Uno/Nano or your LCD screen.

Code:

Be sure you download the Versalino Library for your Versalino Uno or Versalino Nano if you are going to use the code above. The mapping below is Reset as BUSA/B.D1, Enable as BUSA/B.P1, D4 as BUSA/B.D2, D5 as BUSA/B.P2, D6 as BUSA/B.D3, and D7 as BUSA/B.P3.

This board is designed to use 4-bit parallel output to the LCD, not 8-bit parallel; which should be supported by most standard 16 pin LCD screens, and is supported by all Virtuabotix 16 pin LCD Screens.

// include the library code:
#include
#include

// initialize the library with the numbers of the interface pins
LiquidCrystal lcd(BUSA.D1, BUSA.P1, BUSA.D2, BUSA.P2, BUSA.D3, BUSA.P3);

void setup() {
// set up the LCD's number of columns and rows:
lcd.begin(16, 4);
// Print a message to the LCD.
lcd.print("Get your Versalino");
lcd.setCursor(0, 1);
lcd.print("LCD & Keypad Board");
lcd.setCursor(0, 2);
lcd.print("from Virtuabotix.com");
lcd.setCursor(0, 3);
lcd.print("LCD Sold Separately");

}

void loop() {
//you can do stuff in the loop to include changing the LCD
//output, and other things like processing keypad input.
}

If you have any problems make sure to check which bus you have your board plugged into, and make sure you plugged the Versalino BUS correctly (since this board does not have a VIN and blank indicator space).

If you have any doubt in your set-up unplug your board and double check that the Ground and VDD pins match on the Versalino Uno/Nano and the Versalino LCD & Keypad board.

Project ideas:

While we have designed this board primary for a blinds control system, its uses could be applied to a lot of other applications based on LCD panels.  Some ideas that come to mind include, but are not limited to, home security, home entertainment systems, gardening monitoring devices, weather control stations, heating and cooling panels, and so on.

We can’t wait to hear your ideas and feedback about what you were able to use this board for.  Please share your thoughts below these comments and let us know how we can make it even better.

2 Responses to “Versalino LCD & Keypad Design Notes”

  1. I ordered and received my first shipment in less than a week. The quality, prices & service are exceptional! In particular I am very impressed with the ASSEMBLED Arduino Proto board as wells at the Ultrasonic Ranger .. I intend to spread the word.

    Gary Mize

    • Thank you so much, be sure to write up reviews for the products you got if you feel up to it. Sharing your experience with our products is an awesome way to help others choose the best devices for there projects.

      Thanks again, and best of luck with your nerdly endeavors!

      Respectfully,
      Joseph Dattilo
      Founder Virtuabotix LLC

Leave a Reply