Need help identifying LCD module from printer

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by Barnaby Walters, Aug 19, 2011.

  1. Barnaby Walters

    Thread Starter Member

    Mar 2, 2011
    Hello everyone,

    I've just got hold of an old printer/scanner/copier — I can't remember the make or model but it was a goldmine to dismantle! The power supply was even in a nice little double-isolated box, all ready to use…

    I'm having problems identifying the LCD character module I found, however. Marked "PC1602ARH-EWM-A-Y9Q" on a label, and "PB1602E-P7 (1.0)" on the board, I have figured out that it's manufactured by Powertip, it's a 16x2 module with no backlight, and it's possible that it was designed specifically for this application.

    The closest match I can find is the Powertip PC1602E (Datasheet). The dimensions of the actual lcd component are exactly the same, but that one has has a 14 pin interface, and this has a 10 pin interface. Pins 1 and 2 are clearly gnd and +v, and from research I'm thinking that this could use a HD44780 compatible controller designed for 4 bit mode (From this Thread).

    Attached is a photo. What do you think?


  2. tom66

    Senior Member

    May 9, 2009
    Attaching a picture of the bottom might help. If it's 4 bit, you will have to guess which pins are which.

    Also, you can buy a new 8x2 LCD from China for about $8, and a 16x2 for around $10, so consider if it's worth buying that one to get some LCD code up and running before trying to get this one working, because otherwise you'll have no idea if your PIC/AVR/other chip is sending the right data to the LCD.
  3. ErnieM

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 24, 2011
    The 14 pin interface parts contain an 8 bit data port, but you can initialize it so you only need to drive 4 bits.

    Someone knowing they would do that might buy their display with only the pins they were using on it. As (total pins) - (unused pins) = 14 - 4 = 10 is the same as your part that's what my guess would be.
  4. THE_RB

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 11, 2008
    The 10pin LCDs are normally I2C driven, with a chipset that is 44780 compatible but also has the additional I2C drive feature. I can't remember the chip name right now but I have a datasheet somewhere if you can't find one.
  5. Barnaby Walters

    Thread Starter Member

    Mar 2, 2011
    Hi there everyone,

    Thanks for your help, by the sound of it the easiest thing to do would be to treat it as a 4 bit interface, and if that doesn't work then ditch it. I'll give that a go.

  6. THE_RB

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 11, 2008
    I dug around in a folder and found the datasheet it's a Philips NXP IC, PCF2113x;

    "The PCF2113x is a low-power CMOS LCD controller and driver, designed to drive a dot
    matrix LCD display of 2 lines of 12 characters or 1 line of 24 characters with 5 ´ 8 dot
    format. All necessary functions for the display are provided in a single chip, including
    on-chip generation of LCD bias voltages, resulting in a minimum of external components
    and lower system current consumption. The PCF2113x interfaces to most
    microcontrollers via a 4-bit or 8-bit bus or via the 2-wire I2C-bus. The chip contains a
    character generator and displays alphanumeric and kana (Japanese) characters."

    It seems to be just for 2x12 or 1x24 LCDs, the reason I remembered it was because the LCD modules had 10 pins. If your LCD has more than 2x12 chars it would not be this IC.

    For the record I have never seen a 4bit 44780 style LCD interface on a LCD that has 10 pins!
  7. Barnaby Walters

    Thread Starter Member

    Mar 2, 2011
    Hi there,

    I don't think it's a PCF2113x, as the LCD is 2x16 characters. I have a feeling that this is a custom developed module specifically for the printer, so there's a chance it could be 4 bit 44780. I'll give that a try, and if it doesn't work I'll probably ditch it.

    Thanks for your help,
  8. alzx

    New Member

    Jul 26, 2012

    it is some custom variation made by POWERTIP (I think I salvaged it from HP printer). It has 10 pins so works only in 4-bit mode, but otherwise seems to be fully compatible with standard 2x16 character displays.

    1 - GND
    2 - Vcc
    3 - Vee
    4 - RS
    5 - R/W
    6 - E
    7 - D4
    8 - D5
    9 - D6
    10 - D7

    note: even it has only enough pins for 4-bit mode, but controller is set by default for 8-bit so you still need to set it to 4-bit mode in code.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2012