Graphical LCD Starting Point MPLAB

Discussion in 'Embedded Systems and Microcontrollers' started by toonamo, Sep 27, 2012.

  1. toonamo

    Thread Starter New Member

    Sep 27, 2012

    I recently started learning how to program PIC's. I have purchased a led chaser kit and successfully assembled and programmed that project. With function calls, delays, loading data from a table, and basic assembly. I have the PICkit 2 and MPLAB to code, build, and upload.

    I then started reading about analog to digital conversion and 4 wire restrictive touch pads and ASCII lcd displays. I found a tutorial on how to take the analog values from the x and y axis and display the coordinates on a 2 line lcd display.

    I then wanted to learn how to do a graphical display on a 4.3" LCD TFT display. This unit also has a touch screen. Here is a link to the touchscreen for it's datasheet.

    What i do not understand is if this touchscreen has a built in display controller, i think it doesn't because the pin out shows 8 inputs for R, G, and B. Then this has a horizontal and vertical sync as well.

    I am just trying to learn at this point. I just want to make a touch panel with basic 2d "buttons" that will trigger different button layouts and also drive another pic that would trigger led's to light depending on the button press. For now i am thinking of loading raw hex data for "buttons". Eventually i would also like to trigger relays that could power a fan and perhaps a small motor. I would also like to possibly add a micro sd card to hold more data for the graphics.

    My questions are how do i find a graphic controller to match a graphic lcd?

    What is the best way to store image data?

    If i store data onto a sd card are there specific chips i need to load a Jpeg or even a png graphic file?

    What is the "best" way to have pic's trigger events in another pic and then give feedback to the pic that called a event?

    Perhaps i am getting ahead of my self but i wanted to give an idea of what i am looking to do. To start i just want to purchase a graphic lcd and the additional components i need to start creating graphics.

    Does anyone know any good starting kits to do the items i am looking for? Even on the individual tasks i am looking at. Like a kit that only takes events from one pic and triggers another.
  2. MrChips


    Oct 2, 2009
    Welcome to AAC. I am sure you will find this site very useful for answering your questions.

    But that's a lot of questions for a first post.

    Can you begin with one simple question for starters so we have an idea where you're at?
  3. ErnieM

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 24, 2011
    When I first saw a Graphic LCD 128x64 with TouchPanel for under 30 bucks I got some and used it successfully. It did take a bit of work to get some software together to drive it but I eventually made a nice library where I had various sized fonts, ability to draw pictures (from bitmaps edited on a PC) and a few ways to make on screen buttons to get them to react. I believe I had a PIC18F4550 running things, but when I went to add things like an SD card I quickly ran out of programming room.

    While I was building a PIC32 based breadboard to move up on processors I found Microelectrica and these displays. You can get a complete board for $100 to $150 that has a color touch display, SD card, sound outputs and more all on a completed board.

    I tossed my breadboard for one of their PIC32MX4 MultiMedia Board PIC32MX4 MultiMedia Board a week before the upgrade (same price) came out. It's just awesome.

    You'll need a programmer/debugger, I believe the PICkit 3 works fine with it, but I use an ICD3.

    There are free compilers from Microchip. They also have great graphic libraries for all the widgits on screen you want.

    It is a steep learning curve, but not an impossible one. Mikroelectrnica has some sample programs, but they lean towards their own compilers ($$$).

    And welcome to the forums!